Is Poland safe for visitors
Welcome to the website of the Federal Foreign Office
The spread of COVID-19 infections in Poland continues to lead to increased restrictions in international air and travel traffic and impairment of public life.
You are warned against unnecessary tourist trips to Poland due to the high number of infections.
The Polish Ministry of Health provides an overview of the test centers in Poland.
Epidemiological situation in Poland
Poland is badly affected by COVID-19. The number of infections is continuously falling and is now back below the mark of 200 new infections per 100,000 inhabitants over seven days, which is why Poland will be downgraded from high incidence area to risk area from 9 May 2021. The European Center for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) provides current and detailed figures.
Entry to Poland
When entering via an external EU border, a 10-day quarantine obligation applies. For those entering from India, South Africa and Brazil there is an obligation to quarantine, which can be ended after 7 days at the earliest with a negative test. When entering from other EU countries (including Germany) there is an obligation to quarantine for 10 days, regardless of the means of transport used and also on foot. The quarantine obligation does not apply if a negative corona test (PCR or antigen), which must not be older than 48 hours, is presented on entry. If you enter Poland and are therefore in quarantine, you can get rid of it with a negative test.
Exempted from the quarantine obligation (without submitting a negative test result) are, among other things:
- Professional drivers and personnel involved in freight and passenger transport,
- People who cross the border for professional or business reasons,
- People who can prove a vaccination against COVID-19 with a vaccine approved in the EU,
- People who have demonstrably been isolated or hospitalized due to a COVID-19 illness within the last six months.
Further exceptions and details can be found in the ordinances in the Polish Law Gazette. Border controls only take place at the borders with Ukraine, Russia and Belarus.
Passing through Poland
Travelers from Ukraine, Russia or Belarus are only allowed to pass through Poland if the destination of the transit is to travel to their place of residence or stay and if they are EU citizens, citizens of Switzerland, Liechtenstein, Norway or Iceland as well as their spouses and Children. The same applies to foreigners who have an unlimited residence permit or an EU long-term residence permit for one of the aforementioned countries, as well as their spouses and children. The Polish border guard offers an overview of open border crossings.
There are fewer international rail connections for passenger traffic to Poland across the EU's internal borders. International flight connections are currently only offered on a reduced basis. Domestic flight, train and bus connections are limited.
Restrictions in Poland
Public life is severely restricted in Poland. The Polish Ministry of Health provides information on the measures currently in force on its website, via Twitter and on the website of the Polish government.
Compliance with the regulations is increasingly monitored by the police and fines are threatened in the event of violations.
The following rules and restrictions currently apply in Poland:
School and child care:
- Kindergartens and daycare centers are open,
- The opening of schools from homeschooling via alternating instruction to face-to-face teaching will be completed in various stages by May 31, 2021.
Retail and Shopping:
The retail trade, shopping centers, furniture and hardware stores are open, hygiene regulations and a maximum number of customers per square meter apply.
Hairdressers, beauty and cosmetic salons are open,
- The maximum number of passengers applies in local public transport.
Culture, leisure and sport:
Museums and art galleries are open
Cinemas, theaters, concert halls, opera houses and cultural institutions are open for outdoor events from May 15, 2021 and generally open from May 21, 2021,
Gyms open on May 28, 2021,
Many sporting activities are allowed,
- In churches there is an upper limit of 1 person per 20 square meters with a minimum safety distance of 1.5 meters.
Gastronomy and hotel business:
Hotels are open, but with an occupancy limit of 50% (wellness & spa areas remain closed),
Outdoor areas of restaurants are open from May 15, 2021, indoor areas only from May 28, 2021. Dishes may be sold outside the home.
Private meetings at home with a maximum of 25 people are allowed (the host household is not counted), from May 28, 2021 with up to 50 people in compliance with hygiene and distance regulations.
- Celebrations outside the home are allowed from May 15, 2021 with up to 25 people, from May 28, 2021 with up to 50 people, subject to hygiene and distance rules.
Medical care can be limited due to the heavy burden placed on the health system with COVID-19 patients.
Also pay attention to local warnings and notices in the Polish media.
Hygiene rules in Poland
- Mask requirement: Mouth and nose must be covered with a mask, even outdoors. From May 15, 2021, it is only mandatory to wear a mask in closed rooms and on public transport. Exceptions apply to children under 5 years of age, car trips alone and with people in their own household, people who cannot wear a mask for health reasons, jobs without customer contact, professional drivers if a partition prevents direct customer contact. In the event of identity checks, there is an obligation to remove the mask. The wearing of protective visors, scarves and handkerchiefs as mouth and nose protection is prohibited. Wearing medical masks is recommended. You can find details on the mask requirement in English here.
- The minimum distance in public space is 1.5 m. Carers for needy children and small children are excluded.
- People who live in the household of someone who tested positive for Covid-19 are automatically quarantined without a separate decision by the Polish Health Department. The quarantine applies until the end of seven days after the isolation of the person who tested positive in the household has ended. The quarantine obligation does not apply to vaccinated persons and persons who have demonstrably been isolated or hospitalized due to an infection with SARS-CoV-2 within the last six months.
- Shops, banks and petrol stations may only be entered with gloves, which must be provided by the shops, or after using the hand disinfectant available at the entrance.
- Violations can result in fines amounting to 5000 to 30,000 PLN can be penalized.
Polish borders outside Schengen
According to the order of the Polish Interior Minister, border traffic at selected border crossings has been temporarily suspended or significantly restricted.
The border with RUS (Kaliningrad Region) can only be crossed at the road border crossings Bezledy and Grzechotki (no pedestrian traffic).
From November 1st, 2020, BLR has introduced restrictions on passenger traffic at the border with Poland. Freight traffic is not affected. Three border crossings are open: Kuźnica, Bobrowniki and Koroszczyn.
At the border with UKR, border traffic takes place at the road border crossings Korczowa, Dorohusk, Hrebenne, Medyka and Budomierz.
Details and updates on Polish border crossings can be found on the Polish Border Guard website
Please also note the travel and safety information from the Federal Foreign Office.
Only Polish authorities (e.g. border guards, health authorities) can make binding statements on entry and quarantine regulations in Poland.
The Polish Ministry of Health (in Polish) and Polish Ministry of Health (in English) hotline for coronavirus is: 800 190 590
Also pay attention to local warnings and notices in the Polish media.
Please note the information in the COVID-19 leaflet and on the websites of the World Health Organization WHO and the Robert Koch Institute RKI.
Quarantine, entry registration and compulsory test when entering Germany
Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, there are travel restrictions on entry from many countries. When entering from a risk area, there is an obligation to digitally register and a quarantine obligation in accordance with the Immigration Ordinance of the Federal Ministry of Health of May 12, 2021. Exceptions exist, for example, for people who have been proven to have been vaccinated with full vaccination protection and those who have recovered with evidence as well as those with negative tests. Details can be found on the website of the Federal Foreign Office and the Federal Ministry of Health.
Poland is a risk area with effect from May 9, 2021. You can find more information here.
Summary information on the extent to which you as a traveler must be in quarantine when entering the Federal Republic of Germany can be found at the Federal Ministry of the Interior, for Building and Home Affairs (in German and English).
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