A pair of European countries have set expiration dates for vaccines when it comes to travel, the latest move in an ever-changing international travel landscape. By Alison Fox
Croatia and Austria, which both welcome tourists, have each implemented a 270-day expiration for accepted vaccines, which amounts to about nine months. Travellers who intend to enter the countries with proof of vaccination must show it has been less than 270 days since they received their second dose.
Travellers heading to Croatia can choose to either show proof of vaccination or proof of a negative test (taken within 72 hours of travelling for a PCR test or within 48 hours of travelling for an antigen test) to enter the country and skip quarantine, according to the government. Alternatively, travellers can show proof they contracted COVID-19 and recovered.
Tourists in Croatia must also show they have a pre-paid accommodation.
For its part, Austria welcomes travellers who show proof of vaccination, proof of a negative PCR test taken within 72 hours of their arrival, proof of a negative antigen test taken within 48 hours of their arrival, or proof they have COVID-19 antibodies, according to the Austrian National Tourist Office. Children under 12 are exempt from testing.
While both countries are continuing to welcome tourists, the European Union has removed the US from its safe-countries list, recommending member states impose travel restrictions on unvaccinated American tourists.
The decision to set expiration dates for vaccines for travel comes as the world debate when and how to administer booster shots of vaccines. Overall vaccine efficacy has dropped to 39% to 84% with the emergence of the delta variant, a doctor with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention told an agency committee on Monday, according to CNN, but efficacy against hospitalisation remains 75% to 95%.
Alison Fox is a contributing writer for Travel + Leisure. When she’s not in New York City, she likes to spend her time at the beach or exploring new destinations and hopes to visit every country in the world. Follow her adventures on Instagram.