Entering Germany

Current regulations for entry into the Federal Republic of Germany for travellers from risk areas

In connection with the coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 and the infectious disease Covid-19, extended regulations apply for entry into Germany. The regulations refer to regions that are classified as risk areas by the Robert Koch Institute.

Since 14 January 2021, the Robert Koch Institute has divided the risk areas into three risk levels for which different obligations apply:

You can find out about the current classification of all countries and regions at any time on the website of the Robert Koch Institute.

Stricter entry and transport regulations

Please note that stricter entry and transport regulations currently apply for travellers from risk areas with occurring virus mutations when entering Germany. It is very important to inform yourself about the current entry regulations to Germany in due time before your journey by checking the current flight information.

Complete and valid Covid-19-related entry documents: more relaxed and faster through the document check

The obligation to be tested for the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus before entry and/or after arrival (depending on the risk area visited) does not only apply in Germany for those entering or returning from foreign risk areas. Almost all destinations have stipulated requirements for Covid-19-related entry documents in their entry regulations. Make sure that yours are correct and complete.   

Example: For entering Germany the following specifications have to be met:

  • The test result has to be available as a printout or in electronic form.
  • The certificate needs to be personalised (including name, address, date of birth of the person tested).
  • It has to be available in the German, English or French language.
  • The proof must include the test method and the test result.
  • The test result needs to be validated by a physician or a recognised laboratory.

Please note: Depending on your destination, the requirements, specifications and contents of the entry documents will vary. Please inform yourself about the current entry regulations before your trip.

At many international airports you'll have the option of getting tested for Covid-19. For details, see our information on Covid-19 testing at airports.

Compulsory wearing of masks in the Federal Republic of Germany

In Germany, it is compulsory to wear medical masks in public transport and in shops. These include masks with the FFP2, KN95 and N95 standard or surgical masks. Masks made of fabric, visors or masks with valves are not permitted.

Lufthansa has taken up the regulation the German federal states defined on 19 January 2021. As of 1 February 2021, only the above-mentioned mask types are therefore permitted on all flights to and from Germany during boarding, on board and when leaving the aircraft.

Overview of entry regulations for passengers arriving in Germany

  Level 1:
risk areas
Level 2:
high risk areas
Level 3:
virus variant areas
Countries concerned Classification and overview of risk areas (Robert Koch Institute) Classification and overview of risk areas (Robert Koch Institute) Classification and overview of risk areas (Robert Koch Institute)
Digital Entry Application (DEA) or substitute message necessary
Yes Yes Yes
Compulsory testing for passengers Yes, up to max. 48 hours after arrival Yes, max. 48 hours before entry Yes, max. 48 hours before entry
Prohibition of carriage for the airline None Without valid test certificate Without valid test certificate
Transit / Transfer in Germany (Schengen/Non-Schengen) possible without test and DEA possible without test and DEA

Only possible with test max. 48 hours before entry in risk area and DEA
Children up to 6 years of age DEA obligation; exempt from testing obligation DEA obligation; exempt from testing obligation DEA obligation; exempt from testing obligation
Cross-border commuters/ Border crossers Cross-border commuters: DEA obligation; exception from testing obligation
Border crossers (up to 24h): exemption from test and DEA obligation
No exemption from DEA/testing obligation No exemption from DEA/testing obligation
Quarantine obligation* 10 days quarantine with possibility of shortening from day 5; further known exceptions according to national law 10 days quarantine with possibility of shortening from day 5; further known exceptions according to national law 14 days quarantine without the possibility of shortening; further known exceptions according to national law.

* The quarantine regulations are the responsibility of the individual federal states (entry quarantine regulations, e.g. Hesse, Bavaria, North Rhine-Westphalia etc. – German only). Please enquire independently how the quarantine regulations are specifically applied in your federal state.

Entry regulations according to risk levels

Entry from risk areas

All persons entering Germany from a level 1 risk area are required to provide evidence of a negative Corona/Covid 19 test. The test can be carried out up to 48 hours after entry and reported to the competent authorities. The ten-day quarantine requirement, and the Digital Entry Application (DEA) or a replacement application remain mandatory for all entrants.

Certain groups of persons are exempt from the registration and proof requirement. These include:

  • Persons entering the Federal Republic of Germany for transit purposes only.
  • Persons who have only stayed in a risk area for 24 hours or who will stay in the Federal Republic of Germany for a maximum of 24 hours.
  • Children up to and including 6 years of age are exempt from the obligation to provide proof of testing but not from the obligation to register.

The quarantine regulations are the responsibility of the individual federal states (entry quarantine regulations, e.g. Hesse, Bavaria, North Rhine-Westphalia, etc. – German only). Please enquire independently how the quarantine regulations are specifically applied in your federal state.

Entry from high risk areas

All travellers to Germany from a level 2 risk area must present a negative Corona/Covid-19 test upon departureThe proof of the negative Corona/Covid-19 test must not be older than 48 hours at the time of entry and is checked by the transport companies, for example Lufthansa, before departure.

Certain groups of persons are exempt from the obligation to register and provide proof. These include:

  • Persons entering the Federal Republic of Germany for transit purposes only.
  • Children up to and including 6 years of age are exempt from the testing requirement but not from the registration requirement

Important note for cross-border commuters and business travellers: For entries from high-risk areas (RKI level 2), the exemption for border commuters and business travellers no longer applies. Since 14 January, they have also been subject to the obligation to register and provide proof.

The quarantine regulations are the responsibility of the individual federal states (entry quarantine regulations, e.g. Hesse, Bavaria, North Rhine-Westphalia, etc. – German only). Please enquire independently how the quarantine regulations are specifically applied in your federal state.

In the absence of a negative test result, all transport companies are subject to an official transport ban.

Entry from risk areas with occurring virus mutations

Due to the stricter entry and transport regulations that currently apply for travellers from risk areas with occurring virus mutations to the Federal Republic of Germany, only passengers with German citizenship, a residence in Germany and right of abode in Germany or passengers transferring in a transit area of a commercial airport may be transported. Please be sure to check the current flight information in due time before your journey for the current entry regulations to Germany and possible exemptions.

All travellers to Germany from a level 3 risk area (region with virus mutation) must present a negative Corona/Covid 19 test upon departureThe proof of the Corona/Covid-19 test must not be older than 48 hours at the time of entry and is checked by the transport companies, for example Lufthansa, before departure. 

Travellers who will not enter Germany and want to/need to transfer to a non-Schengen country must present a negative Corona/Covid-19 test before departure to Germany and are not allowed to leave the transit area.

Children up to and including 6 years of age are exempt from the obligation to provide proof of testing, but not from the obligation to register.

Important note for cross-border commuters and business travellers: For entries from regions with a virus mutation (RKI level 3), the exemption for border commuters and business travellers no longer applies. Since 14 January, they have also been subject to the obligation to register and provide proof.

The quarantine regulations are the responsibility of the individual federal states (entry quarantine regulations, e.g. Hesse, Bavaria, North Rhine-Westphalia, etc. – German only). Please enquire independently how the quarantine regulations are specifically applied in your federal state.

In the absence of a negative test result, all transport companies are subject to an official transport ban.

Information on the quarantine obligation

As a general rule, persons entering or returning from a risk area (levels 1 to 3) within the last ten days before entry are obliged to enter a ten-day quarantine immediately after entry.

  • A ten-day quarantine is obligatory, when entering from a risk area of levels 1 and 2.  From the fifth day after entry, it is possible to be tested again for COVID-19 and to end the quarantine prematurely if the test result is negative. This also applies if a negative test result was already available at or before entry (two-test strategy).
  • A 14-day quarantine is obligatory, when entering from a level 3 risk area (virus variant areas). The possibility to end the quarantine early explicitly does not apply to return journeys from virus variant areas due to the longer duration of infection by virus variants.

Important note for exemptions from the quarantine obligation

In the Federal Republic of Germany, the regulations regarding the quarantine obligation (e.g. shortening or exceptions) are the responsibility of the federal states. There may be different regulations and measures in the individual federal states (entry quarantine regulations, e.g. Hesse, Bavaria, North Rhine-Westphalia, etc. – German only).

Please check the website of the federal state in which you reside or will be accommodated to find out how the quarantine regulations are actually implemented there.

Test centres are available in Frankfurt, Munich and at many other German airports for testing on entry.

Information about the testing possibilities at departure points outside Germany can be obtained at the destination airport, from local authorities or see our ↗ information on Covid-19 testing at airports.

Please note

If, despite a negative test result, the typical symptoms of an infection with the SARS-CoV-2 virus, such as fever, dry cough and loss of the sense of taste or smell, occur within ten days of entry, you are obliged in any case to inform your competent authority.

All information without guarantee. The applicable ordinance of the federal state in which the traveller is domiciled or in which the traveller is staying in Germany is decisive.

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