Synopsis of the EU travel guidance for travelling in the coronavirus period (until vaccine or treatments are available)

 

The European Commission has announced a series of measures that will ensure that people can travel safely to Europe, as European governments take steps to open up the tourism sector in the post- coronavirus era.

So how do we travel to Europe in the corona age? See the Commission ‘s instructions in detail, both general and specific, by sector of transport.

GENERAL INSTRUCTIONS

  • Travellers are encouraged to buy tickets, book and check in online.
  • Passengers should wear protective masks, especially when social distancing measures cannot be fully and always applied.
  • The physical distances must be respected in the security checks and the delivery and collection of luggage.
  • Routes should be provided to separate the flow of passengers to ports, airports, train stations, bus stations, ship docks and public transport stations.
  • Passenger seats, tables and any other equipment that could create overcrowding should be removed from passenger stations or rearranged in a way that ensures social distancing.
  • Smaller groups must be controlled boarding on buses, trains and ferries and passengers who do not belong to the same family must be seated separately.
  • Transportation personnel must wear protective equipment.
  • Antiseptic solutions must be available and the means of transport must be systematically disinfected.
  • Food, beverages and other products must not be available for sale on the means of transport.
  • Duty-free shops and other travel shops should control the movement of passengers by setting stopover points on the floor and limit the number of customers, strengthen cleanliness and install barriers to keeping distance at cash registers.
  • Tracking services and warning messages can be used through mobile phone applications on a voluntary basis. These applications will operate cross-border.

AIRPORT TRANSFERS
Regulators will issue protocols in the coming weeks:

  • Ventilation should be enhanced with hospital-type filters and vertical airflow.
  • Passenger movement inside the cabin must be reduced by reducing hand luggage and contact with the crew.
  • Passenger flow must remain controlled through early arrival at the airport. Priority should be given to on-line check-in, limited baggage handling, security and border controls, boarding and baggage handling.
  • Pre-ordering of services inside the aircraft should be done, where possible, at the time of booking.

ROAD TRAVEL

  • Rest areas along highways, parking lots and refuelling and charging stations should maintain high levels of hygiene
  • At the stations, the flow of passengers should be properly adjusted
  • Where adequate public health protection cannot be ensured, the closure of stops or stations should be considered.

BUS

  • Boarding should be done through the back door and windows should be used instead of air conditioning to ventilate vehicles.
  • The locations should, where possible, be arranged so that family members can sit together, and individual passengers must be separated.
  • On minibuses, passengers should not be allowed to sit next to the driver unless they can be physically separated from him.
  • If possible, passengers should manage their own luggage.

RAILROAD

  • The frequency of train services and the capacity of trains should be increased, if necessary to reduce the density of the passenger public.
  • Railway management companies will have to implement mandatory reservations on long distances and on regional trains.
  • For short distances, passengers should leave empty seats with each other, unless they are members of the same family.
  • Railway management companies should use passenger counting systems, mainly on trains that serve workers moving to and from work as well as on the suburban railway, in order to manage capacity.
  • There should be management of the flow of passengers at the stops and the stations should be closed if sufficient levels cannot be ensured in terms of public health protection.
  • Incentives should be provided to encourage off-peak hours, such as customized pricing or flexible working hours in the case of workers’ trains, in order to avoid overcrowding.
  • Doors must be opened at each stop either automatically or remotely from the driver.

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