The EU vaccination certificates will lose their validity nine months after the basic immunisation. The uniform Europe-wide regulation is intended to avoid an organisational patchwork quilt.
In future, EU vaccination certificates will lose their validity nine months after basic immunisation. The uniform Europe-wide regulation is intended to avoid an organisational patchwork quilt.
Without a booster, EU vaccination certificates will in future be invalid in the European Union nine months after basic immunisation against the coronavirus.
The decision comes into force on 1 February, as the EU Commission announced on Tuesday. Theoretically, the EU countries can still veto the decision, but this is as good as impossible. The regulation had been agreed with the EU states and was also mentioned in the latest summit decision, a Commission spokesperson said. The new rules are intended to guarantee uniform travel rules within the EU.
The EU vaccination certificate consists of a QR code that is generated directly after the vaccination in practices and vaccination centres, or is subsequently available in Germany, for example in pharmacies. The code can be displayed in a smartphone app and can be read digitally. The codes are recognised everywhere in the EU despite different apps in the individual countries and facilitate proof of vaccinations, fresh tests and recently survived infections with the coronavirus when travelling.
Additional tests also possible
Member states can still theoretically require additional tests for entry. However, they are asked to abide by the agreements that freedom of movement should not be "disproportionately" restricted. How long a booster vaccination will guarantee simplified travel in the EU is not yet regulated.
Booster vaccinations are recommended no later than six months after the full vaccination, according to the Commission. However, the vaccination certificate should be valid for three more months before it expires, so that people have enough time to get a booster vaccination.
EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen had already announced after the EU summit last week that her authority would soon present a regulation with regard to the EU vaccination certificate. The EU countries and the EU Parliament had agreed on the final details of the Europe-wide certificates before this year's summer season. According to the Commission, they are now recognised and used in 60 countries and regions, including outside the EU. In total, more than 800 million certificates have already been issued.