CORONAVIRUS

Coronavirus US: what is the "green pass" and who can use it to travel?

For vaccinated residents in the US hoping to travel to Europe this summer, the European Union’s Green Pass may be the key when it becomes available.

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Coronavirus US: what is the "green pass" and who can use it to travel?
DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS AFP

The Green Pass is a Digital COVID Certificate that “allow EU citizens to move safely within the European Union during the COVID-19 pandemic.” The Green Pass is free and allows member states to quickly verify the negative covid status of visitors.

While currently only available to EU citizens, the EU Commission, “is hoping that third-country nationals,” including those from the US “will also be allowed to obtain one.”

The Commission has yet to release a timeline for when the pass could become available to non-EU residents, however, the trial period for EU residents ends on 12 August. After that date, more information on its wider use may become available.

What information does the passport keep track of?

The Green Pass allows travelers to upload their vaccination information, covid-19 tests including PCR and rapid antigen versions, and “health certificates for persons who have recovered from COVID-19.”

The European Union member states have agreed that all countries must accept all “vaccination certificates” issued by other members. The vaccines approved by the European Union are all available in the United States, so travelers should have no problem having their vaccine card accepted.

European Politics and Vaccine Passports

According to the European Commission, around ten percent of the EU’s GDP comes from tourism, and the sector as a whole employs around 27 million people.

Each EU nation’s economy derives revenue through a variety of sources.

While some countries like Germany were skeptical of its use and making a vaccine passport-like Green Pass a requirement, others like “ Spain, Italy, and Greece, have supported the approval of the COVID pass from the beginning.” These three countries derive a high percentage of their income from tourism, making easy mobility in and out of the country important to their economic recovery.

Which EU countries are accepting tourists from the United State?

The list of EU member states allowing fully vaccinated passengers is growing.

Currently, those who have received one (Johnson and Johnson) or two doses (Moderna and Pfizer & BioNTech) of a covid-19 vaccine are able to visit Croatia, Cyprus, France, Germany, Italy, Latvia, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal, and Spain.

To understand what is required of travelers from the US it is best to visit the US embassy webpage for the countries you will be traveling through and your destination,