Is Norway safe to visit
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The spread of COVID-19 continues to lead to restrictions in international air and travel traffic and impairment of public life.
Before unnecessary, tourist trips to the provinces of Oslo, Agder, Viken and Vestfold og Telemark against the background of high numbers of infections warned.
There is currently no need for tourist trips to the other provinces of Norwayt against the background of current quarantine regulations advised against.
COVID-19 affects Norway differently from region to region. The regional focus is on the city and metropolitan area of Oslo as well as the provinces of Agder, Viken and Vestfold and Telemark. There, the number of new infections exceeded or exceeded 50 cases per 100,000 inhabitants for seven days, which is why these regions are classified as risk areas.
The European Center for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) provides current and detailed figures.
Norway has closed its borders until further notice. Entry is only possible for travelers who can prove a permanent place of residence in Norway. This proof must be provided by an extract from the Folk Register with the entry “bosatt”. Proof of a residential relationship or a job or study place in Norway alone is not enough, just as little as proof of a D number. There are a few exceptions, including for visits to close relatives (minor children, spouses). Details on the exception rules can be found on this website of the Norwegian government. Since March 17, 2021, the obligation to quarantine in a designated quarantine hotel applies when entering or returning to Norway, unless the stay abroad was urgently necessary. The Norwegian authorities provide information on the necessity of negative tests and quarantine regulations for travelers who fall under exemptions.
Transit and onward travel
When entering from Germany and other countries classified as risk areas, the quarantine must be carried out at the point of entry in a quarantine hotel designated by the municipality.
The airports are open; Entry and exit by plane are generally possible within the framework of the applicable entry restrictions. However, it cannot be ruled out that existing flight connections will also be suspended for a short time depending on the development of the infection process.
Ferry connections exist with restrictions. The shipping company Colorline has stopped ferry traffic to Germany (Oslo-Kiel) up to and including May 19, 2021. The connection Larvik - Hirtshals is only operated from Norway to Denmark.
You can find an up-to-date overview of the travel connections on the website of the German Embassy in Oslo (all information without guarantee).
Restrictions in the country
Domestic travel should only be undertaken if it is unavoidable. Tourist trips should be avoided. The restrictions in the respective municipalities differ in type and extent, the Norwegian government can provide further information. The recommendation applies nationwide to restrict social contacts as much as possible. In addition, there are restrictions on participants at events and the urgent recommendation to observe the distance and hygiene rules. In Oslo, all restaurants and shops are closed, with the exception of essential shops (pharmacies, grocery stores, petrol stations). There is a ban on all events in closed rooms, including private ones. The city of Oslo provides further information.
The Norwegian health authorities offer a catalog of questions and answers.
In the respective municipalities, different hygiene rules that differ from the national measures may apply, which are continuously adapted and can be found on the website of the respective municipality. The rules in force in the city of Oslo can be found on this website.
Mouth and nose protection should be worn nationwide if a distance of two meters cannot be maintained.
It is also strongly recommended to strictly follow hand and cough hygiene and to stay at home if symptoms of illness are present.
Special features in the regions
travel to Svalbard / Spitzbergen are basically possible. The entry rules and restrictions to Norway still apply.
- Note the detailed information on the health situation based on data from the ECDC, existing restrictions including quarantine and testing requirements for travelers and mobile coronavirus contact tracking and warning apps on Re-open EU.
- Find out more about the list of countries and health regulations from the Norwegian Institute of Public Health.
- Find out more about the current situation at the German embassy in Oslo.
- When you return to Germany, note the valid entry restrictions such as registration, test and quarantine regulations, inquire about the current conditions of carriage at the responsible company or your tour operator, if necessary, and contact the health department at your place of residence or residence if you are entering from a risk area . Further information is available in our continuously updated info box on COVID-19 / Coronavirus.
Norwegian authorities warn of the risk of terrorist attacks.
The crime rate in Norway is low. Pickpockets can occur in popular places and on public transport, especially when traveling.
- Keep your money, ID, driver's license, air tickets and other important documents safe.
- Prefer cashless payments and only take the cash you need for the day and no unnecessary valuables.
- Be particularly vigilant in large crowds such as at airports, train stations and on public transport and watch out for your valuables.
- Be skeptical of unfamiliar e-mails, profit notifications, offers and requests for help from alleged acquaintances. Do not disclose any data about yourself; if necessary, make sure yourself personally or contact the police.
Nature and climate
Along the coasts there is a certain oceanic climate due to the Gulf Stream, in the interior it is more of a continental or high mountain climate.
Heavy snowfall, avalanches and landslides can occur in the mountains in particular.
In the event of a thaw, there is a risk of local flooding and landslides.
In the summer months there is an increased risk of forest fires in longer dry periods.
Away from the mainland, e.g. on Spitsbergen, there is a risk of earthquakes.
- Pay close attention to the news and weather reports.
- Always observe prohibitions, information signs and warnings as well as the instructions of local authorities.
- When traveling to archipelagos, make yourself familiar with earthquake behavior. These are provided by the fact sheets of the German Research Center for Geosciences.
Infrastructure / traffic
Traffic routes may be impaired due to measures related to COVID-19 containment, see Current.
There is a dense domestic flight network and many bus connections. Railway lines connect the most important cities in the south.
In particular, caution is advised on the sometimes narrow, winding and steep roads in the mountains or along the fjord coast. In winter, some routes are closed to traffic.
There is a year-round obligation to drive with dipped headlights during the day as well.
The alcohol limit is 0.2. Violations of the traffic regulations are severely punished, sometimes with prison sentences.
There is no general requirement for winter tires, but summer tires must be equipped with snow chains in winter road conditions.
A continuous white line on the edge of the road means no parking.
In Norway, motorways, interurban roads and the city of Oslo are toll roads. Autopass offers a precise overview of payment methods by chip, also in German. The control is carried out by automatic stations that can simply be passed through without stopping. The invoice will be sent later by post, with no extra charges.
The German driving license is recognized.
Hiking / trekking tours / trips to the open sea
In the north of the country and in winter, activities require good preparation and equipment.
The official travel site for Norway offers checklists of rules to be followed and helpful information, e.g. on a free weather app, also in German under Safety in the Mountains and Safety on the Water.
Glaciers can be more unstable than they look.
Hikes along the Norwegian-Russian border are possible. The border is partly a “green” border without a visible barrier, which is, however, closely monitored. Even the smallest step across the border will be prosecuted by both the Norwegian and Russian authorities.
- Plan activities carefully and observe essential safety measures.
- Always find out about the weather.
- When in doubt, take tours with a local guide.
- Be especially careful around glaciers and heed recommendations and warnings from local authorities, especially on the Russian border.
In remote areas of Norway there is no mobile phone network, which is why it is not always possible to establish contact with the outside world or to be reachable during longer hikes.
- Let your loved ones know early enough so they don't worry.
There are no indications of any particular difficulties; acceptance is particularly good in cities.
The Norwegian criminal and regulatory law strictly follows the exceeding of the speed limits for motor vehicles and drink-driving, but also drug offenses and violations of customs and fishing regulations. Carrying even the smallest quantities of narcotics usually leads to arrest at the border, an entry ban or imprisonment.
Alcohol consumption is prohibited in public places and parks.
Fishing enthusiasts should definitely inform themselves sufficiently about the local conditions. Disregard leads to very high fines, which have to be paid directly on site. Fishing near breeding facilities is strictly prohibited.
Money / credit cards
The national currency is the Norwegian krone (NOK). Withdrawing cash from ATMs and paying with credit cards is possible almost anywhere.
Entry and customs
Entry and transit regulations may currently differ due to measures to contain COVID-19, see Current.
Entry and import regulations for German citizens can change at short notice without notifying the Foreign Office beforehand. You can only obtain legally binding information and / or information going beyond this information on the entry and customs regulations for importing goods directly from the representatives of your destination country.
You can find the customs regulations for Germany on the website of German customs and via the “Customs and Travel” app, or you can inquire about them by telephone.
Entry is possible for German citizens with the following documents:
- Passport: Yes
- Temporary passport: Yes
- Identity card: Yes
- Provisional identity card: Yes
- Children's passport: Yes
Comments / minimum remaining validity:
Travel documents must be valid for the entire duration of the stay.
Norway is not a party to the European Convention on the Regulation of Passenger Traffic between the member states of the Council of Europe of December 13, 1957.
Many Norwegian authorities and e.g. banks do not recognize the identity card. It is therefore advisable to enter the country with your passport for a longer stay.
German citizens do not need a visa to enter the country.
German citizens who want to stay in Norway for more than three months should apply for a residence permit from the Norwegian police no later than two weeks after entering the country. For more information, please contact the Embassy of the Kingdom of Norway and the Norwegian Central Office for Foreigners UDI.
There are no known special regulations for the entry of minors. If necessary, note the instructions for a declaration of consent for minors.
Onward journey to the Russian Federation
To enter Russia (border crossing in the municipality of Sør-Varanger / Kirkenes) a valid visa is required, which must be applied for at a diplomatic mission abroad and cannot be obtained at the border. Entry from Norway to Russia can only take place via the "Storskog" border crossing. It is not possible to cross the border at other locations in the region (not even for visa holders).
Norwegian customs regulations are very strict. In particular, the import of alcoholic beverages, but also tobacco products, is subject to strict restrictions. Small excesses are punished severely. When importing cars, high import duties are to be paid.
The import and export of local and foreign currency is possible without restriction, but registration is required from a value of NOK 25,000.
The export of self-caught fish is only permitted if it has been fished under the management of a registered fishing company. The new export quota is a maximum of 18 kg twice a year.
Further details and the regulations on the documentation to be provided can be found in English on the website of the Norwegian Directorate of Fisheries.
Any exceeding of the upper customs limits when importing or exporting goods by car or coach is usually the sole responsibility of the driver of the vehicle. This also applies if several people in the vehicle claim to be the owner of the goods. This can result in severe penalties for the driver.
The Norwegian customs authorities provide information - also in German - about the precise customs regulations that must be observed when entering Norway.
The following rules apply to trips with certain pets (dogs, cats, ferrets):
The animal must have an identification (legible tattoo before July 3, 2011) or a microchip before it can receive a rabies vaccination. Dogs must have been treated against tapeworms 120 to 24 hours before entry. The importation of some terriers and wolfhounds is prohibited. The Embassy of the Kingdom of Norway provides more detailed information.
The World Health Organization (WHO) has declared the disease COVID-19, which is triggered by the novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, a pandemic.
In January 2019, WHO declared delaying or skipping vaccinations as a threat to global health. In particular, the lack of vaccination against measles poses a high risk when the number of cases increases internationally.
- As part of your travel preparations, check your and your children's vaccination protection against measles and have this supplemented if necessary.
No compulsory vaccinations are required to enter Norway.
- Make sure that you and your children have the standard vaccinations according to the Robert Koch Institute's vaccination calendar up to date.
- Vaccinations against tick-borne tick-borne meningoencephalitis (TBE) are recommended as travel vaccinations for long-term stays or special exposure.
- Please note the instructions for use and help for the indication in the travel vaccination recommendations leaflet.
- The DTG offers up-to-date, detailed travel vaccination recommendations for specialist groups.
Anyone who depends on regular medical care should find out beforehand about the options available in sparsely populated Norway. Depending on the region, there may be bottlenecks in some areas in the healthcare system. Outside of regular business hours from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. / 4 p.m., the local emergency centers (legevakt) to be contacted. The central emergency number in Norway is 112 (police) or 113 (emergency services and emergency doctor).
At the dental emergency service (tannlegevakt) usually has to be paid on site in cash or usually by credit card. For all other treatments, a cover may be required.For treatment costs incurred, the presentation of the European Health Insurance Card is required, which can be obtained from your local health insurance company. Further information can be obtained from the German Liaison Office for Health Insurance Abroad.
Travelers should note that the European Health Insurance Card is not recognized in Svalbard (Spitzbergen).
When traveling to Svalbard, care should be taken to ensure that this area is covered by insurance. In this context, it should be noted that costs for necessary relief measures will be invoiced.
- Take out travel health and repatriation insurance for the duration of your stay abroad.
In addition to the general disclaimer, please note:
- All information is intended for the information of medically trained. They are not a substitute for the consultation of a doctor.
- The recommendations are tailored to direct entry from Germany to a travel destination, especially for longer stays on site. For shorter trips, entries from third countries and trips to other areas of the country, deviations may apply.
- All information is always dependent on the individual circumstances of the traveler and may require medical advice.
- In spite of the best possible efforts, the medical information is always just a consultation offer. They cannot cover all medical aspects, eliminate all doubts or always be completely up-to-date. You stay responsible for your healthy.
Country information for your travel destination
Here you will find the addresses of the responsible diplomatic missions and information on politics and bilateral relations with Germany.
Further information for your trip
The global threat of terrorist attacks and kidnappings remains unchanged.
Since September 2014, the terrorist organizations "Al Qaeda" and "Islamic State" (IS) have been threatening with attacks against various countries and their nationals. There were a number of attacks with firearms, explosives, kidnappings and hostage-taking.
Even if there are currently no specific indications of a threat to German interests abroad, it cannot be ruled out that German nationals or German institutions abroad will also become targets of acts of terrorist violence.
Places with a symbolic character come into question as possible targets. These include well-known sights, government and administrative buildings, transport infrastructure (especially airplanes, trains, ships, buses), economic and tourism centers, hotels, markets, religious meeting places and generally larger gatherings of people.
The level of terrorist threat differs from country to country. There is a particular risk of an attack in countries and regions in which attacks have already been carried out repeatedly or in which they can be carried out relatively easily due to a lack of effective security measures, or in which terrorists have the support of the local population.
More detailed information about the terrorist threat can be found in the country-specific travel and safety information. These are checked regularly and adjusted if necessary.
The risk of falling victim to an attack is still comparatively low compared to other risks that travel abroad entails, such as accidents, illness or ordinary crime. Nevertheless, travelers should be aware of the risk.
The Federal Foreign Office strongly recommends that all travelers behave in a safety-conscious and appropriate manner. Before and during a trip, travelers should carefully inform themselves about the conditions in their country of travel, behave appropriately, follow the local media and report suspicious incidents (e.g. unattended baggage in airports or train stations, suspicious behavior by people) to the local police or security authorities .
German nationals are recommended to register in the Foreign Office's "Elefand" crisis prevention list, regardless of their country or the length of their stay abroad:
Crisis preparedness list
Please clarify with your health insurance company whether there is adequate health insurance coverage for your trip abroad, which also covers the costs of a rescue flight to Germany.
Without adequate insurance cover, the costs necessary on site (e.g. treatment or hospital costs, flight home) are generally to be borne by the person concerned and can quickly use up all of your savings.
It is common in many countries that the costs invoiced by doctors or hospitals have to be settled or even advanced before discharge. It can also not be ruled out that the doctor / hospital will obtain a refusal to leave the country for the patient if the bill is not paid.
Many souvenirs are subject to strict import regulations. Find out in good time!
Before starting your trip, please find out which souvenirs are not allowed to be imported for reasons of species protection. Quite a few tourists experience a nasty surprise on their return, when the memento is confiscated by customs or even punished. No matter how impressive an exotic souvenir is due to its peculiarity and uniqueness - many of the animal and plant species from which such souvenirs are made are endangered or even threatened with extinction. These souvenirs are subject to strict import regulations.
Customs and the Federal Agency for Nature Conservation have introduced the online portal species protection for travelers on vacation. Here you can find out exactly which souvenirs from which countries can be imported into Germany.
Please do not contribute to the illegal and harmful trade in wild animals and plants. Nature conservation organizations as well as environmental and customs authorities advise you not to take any risks and to refrain from taking any souvenirs made from animals or plants. Instead, they recommend purchasing local textiles, ceramics, metal and glass work or paintings. Basically, you should exercise caution when buying animal and plant products if you cannot understand their origin. In this way you do not harm the flora and fauna of your holiday destination.
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