Covid-19 Travel Restrictions – Hostels Info, Regulations and Updates

As of June 2021, we are seeing more and more countries slowly opening hotels, hostels, bars and especially, borders. But, there are many different regulations in place now. Some of the 5 Star Hostels already opened, other hostels unfortunately closed their doors permanently.

On this page we collect information from the hostels and other important resources we all need for traveling. How to get to the country or even the island? What transport is running? Are there some regulations? Did the visa process change? Are there some safety regulations you need to follow from now on?

First things first: This information was written first on 17th of March, 2020, updated last 21.06.2021. It may not be not up to date with the absolute latest information. Please use this page as a starter and help, and please use official websites of airlines and governments to get complete and updated information.

We cover:

  1. Latest News
  2. Websites for Covid-19 Travel information
  3. Booking Flights during Covid-19
  4. Book Hostels and accommodation
  5. Travel insurance

Check out Omio.com Travel Index. They collected information on where you can travel safely.

How to find updated information for travelling during and after Covid-19? Go to Google.com > Search your term e.g. “how to travel to Europe after Coronavirus” > Tools > Any time > then choose your time frame.

This way you ensure you read an updated article.

How to find updated information for travelling during and after Covid-19?

Latest News

Below you find latest news about Covid-19 and travel restrictions.

21.06.2021 – EU recommends lifting Europe travel restrictions for all US tourists, vaccinated or not

The European Council added several countries, including the US, to its “white list” of countries for which travel restrictions should be lifted. This applies to both vaccinated and unvaccinated travelers.

While the council is recommending that countries permit non-essential travel from the US, the decision isn’t legally binding – meaning that countries are ultimately able to make their own decisions. Still, it likely also means that EU nations will shortly begin the process of welcoming Americans back this summer.

More info here >>>

This website will help you to plan your travels to Europe during Covid-19.

20.06.2021 – Germany open for US American Travelers

Since June 20th, Germany is officially open to US American travelers, regardless of the vaccination status.

For entering Germany and therefore Schengen area, travelers must present proof of vaccination, a negative COVID test, or proof of recovery from COVID.

Both PCR and rapid tests are accepted but with different requirements. Proof of vaccination must be physical. Digital copies or photos of vaccine cards will not be accepted.

More info here >>>

18.06.2021 – Italy to further relax rules on Americans

Though Italy has been open to American travelers for a few weeks now, passengers were only permitted to skip quarantine requirements if they arrived on an approved “COVID-tested” flight.

However, the country’s health minister announced via Facebook that Americans will be able to enter with just proof of a negative COVID test taken within 48 hours of arrival in Italy.

More info here >>>

Websites to stay up to date

How to find and Booking Flights

Due to the Coronavirus Crisis (COVID-19), we recommend checking your flights directly with the official website of the Airline as well as Skyscanner, Kiwi and others.

Omio.com also lists flights, as well as bus connections and trains. It is very useful for travelling in Europe and USA. Read here our full review of Omio.

How to find flights at this moment?

We recommend checking the most common flight aggregators out there to find options on how you can fly.

These are:

Before the final booking we recommend checking as well the official website like Qatar.com

Why? Some 3rd party websites like Kiwi.com still show cancelled flights in their system. Booking these flights can leave you with a cancelled flight and an open claim to Kiwi for a refund. Here is our review of Kiwi.com

waiting for my cheap flight booked with kiwi

Booking Hostels and Accommodation

Same as for Airlines, we recommend checking hostels, hotels, guesthouses and all accommodations directly, on Hostelworld.com and Hostelz.com.

Now after so much time into the pandemic, only open hostels should be available for booking on Hostelworld, Booking.com and other booking portals.

Either way, I recommend calling the hostel before booking.

My own first-hand experience booking a hostel during Covid-19: I did so for a hostel in Germany. As it turned out, I would have needed a paper by my employer to show that I am traveling due to work and not as tourist. Only then I could stay in the hostel. Furthermore, I was not even able to stay there in case I would have had this paper. Why? Because I was coming from a red-flagged country. This would have meant I needed to do a 14 days quarantine and would not have been allowed to check-in the hostel.

The best way to contact them is by calling the official phone number. You can find them on the official website of the accommodation, Facebook, or other listings. Check out as well their official website. Maybe there’s some useful links and information available already.

Also remember, many hostels and other accommodation may already receive many calls. When calling directly, you can ensure the hostel is open to receive guests, updated information on possible quarantine or even if the hostel closed. Many hostels already closed temporarily, others require guests to stay in 14 days quarantine. The situation really depends on the city and country.

The Upcycled Hostel Huacachina is one of the best hostels in Peru, South America
The Upcycled Hostel in Huacachina, Peru, South America

Travel Insurance

Do you have a travel insurance? Some travel insurance cover political evacuation in case you want to return to your home country. Please contact your travel insurance for further information.

We usually use Safetywing, World Nomads or Iati Seguros. Here is a review for Spanish speaking travelers about travel insurance.

Safetywing covers Covid-19 if…

Coverage works the same as any other illness as long as it was not contracted before your coverage start date, and does not fall under any other policy exclusion or limitation. Testing for COVID-19 will only be covered if deemed medically necessary by a physician. The antibody test is not covered, as it is not medically necessary.

As of April 15th 2021, Nomad Insurance also covers quarantine outside your home country of $50/day for up to 10 days (with the limitation of being once within a 364-day period). The coverage requires that:

You are covered by Nomad Insurance for a minimum of 28 days.

  • Your quarantine is mandated by a physician or governmental authority, because you have either tested positive for COVID-19 OR you are symptomatic and waiting for your test results.
  • If you don’t currently have an active policy with us, the COVID-19 coverage is automatically a part of your plan. If you currently have an active policy, reach out to our customer service team.

Following statement by safetywings was sent to us in April 2020.

Dear SafetyWing members,

We want to give you an update in response to the growing number of cases related to COVID-19 (commonly known as the coronavirus). We want to let you know that SafetyWing is here to help keep you safe and informed as the situation progresses. Here are detailed answers to some commonly asked questions. Please read the following information to see how it relates to your specific location and active coverage.

We’ve also added some remote work tips at the bottom for those who are working from home because of the virus! 

Does SafetyWing cover coronavirus?

You are eligible for coverage of coronavirus-related expenses unless either of the following applies to your situation:The U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) issued a Warning Level 3 for your location, and you arrive there, or purchased your policy, after it was issued

The CDC issued a Warning Level 3 for your location while you were already there, and more than 10 days have passed since the warning went into effect

As of March 11th, 2020, the CDC has issued a Warning Level 3 for the following countries:

  • 🇨🇳China on January 27, 2020
  • 🇰🇷 South Korea on February 24, 2020
  • 🇮🇹 Italy on February 29, 2020

As of March 11th, the following European countries:
Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Monaco, San Marino, Vatican City.

Keep an eye on CDC’s Travel Health Notices to check whether any travel plans you have are affected by the coronavirus.

What if I’m already in a location that receives a CDC travel warning?

After a CDC Warning Level 3 has been issued, you have 10 days to depart the warned-against location to remain eligible for coverage of coronavirus contracted there. If you stay beyond 10 days, you are no longer eligible for coverage of coronavirus contracted in that location.

You also have relevant coverage under the “Political Evacuation” benefit in the SafetyWing policy, which means you may be eligible for evacuation (people in the mentioned European countries* from the March 11th CDC warning are eligible, if they contact +1 800 605 2282 in the 10 day time span).

You must contact +1 800 605 2282 within 10 days of the U.S. Department of State (not the same as CDC) issuing a new Level 3 or 4 travel advisory for the country you are located in. The Political Evacuation benefit provides coverage for the most economical means of transportation to take you to the nearest, safest country or your home country. The travel assistance team will determine which country you will be evacuated to. Contact Emergency travel assistance at +1 800 605 2282 to arrange evacuation. Because of the current situation, there might be a wait on the phone. You have the option to type your phone number and have them call you back. Check the U.S. Department of State government issued travel advisory for all countries here.

*Italy is not eligible as a Department of State Level 3 travel advisory has been in place as of February 29th. If this affects you, contact support(at)safetywing.com to get assistance with exploring options.

Is my insurance cancelled if I am in a location that is affected by a level 3 travel warning from CDC?
If you choose to stay (and not be covered for Coronavirus), the rest of your insurance coverage will function as normal.

Coronavirus & the world’s largest remote work experiment 🧑‍

Companies around the world are encouraging (and sometimes requiring) their employees to work from home. For many of these people, it’s the first time they’ve worked remotely, and much of the world’s employers will be watching to see how it goes.

We’ve collected some tips on how to break past some common obstacles, if you or anyone you know is working remotely because of the virus. 

Coronavirus tips while traveling

  • Wash hands frequently with soap and water, or with an alcohol-based hand rub.
  • Cover your nose and mouth with a flexed elbow or paper tissue when coughing or sneezing.
  • Dispose of tissue immediately if used.
  • Refrain from touching your mouth and nose.
  • Practice social distancing: remain out of congregate settings, avoiding mass gatherings, and maintain distance with other people.

Visit The Centers for Disease Control website for more information on the coronavirus, including what you should know about symptoms, treatments, testing, and other frequently asked questions.

If you have any other questions or concerns, please email [email protected]

Be safe! The SafetyWing Team

Skydiving Insurance? It was a solid idea to get a travel insurance beforehand

More Information

Due to the COVID-19 Coronavirus outbreak, we are sharing travel tips based on the first-hand experience and feedback from the Hostelgeeks Community. Here you find all travel stories related to corona virus. From travelers being stuck to finally being able to go home.

Common Questions for Post-Corona Travel

  • Is there any regulations?
  • Is it mandatory to wear a face mask?
  • How is the safety regulation in hostels and hotels?
  • What about cooking in hostels?
  • What about activities in hostels?
  • What about sightseeing, musems and activities like bike tours?
  • How do airlines operate for post-corona travel?
  • Do I need a health certificate to get into the country or to get on the plane?
  • Are restaurants, cafés, bars etc open?
  • What happens in case there is a covid infection? Is there a protocol to follow?
  • What about taking a cab/ taxi?
  • Can I cross borders by land in Europe?
  • Can I go to the beach?

On this page the 5 Star Hostels submit their updates.

Former Travel Information for Covid-19 in 2020 and 2021

Caveland in Santorini, Greece

Caveland is re-opening its doors on 15th June 2020. Caveland in detail – read our complete review here.

A few important things to note regarding your stay, as well as how to reach Santorini and get around, has been outlined in the following information pages:

Some quick answers of what to expect:

  • All cafes, bars & restaurants are open (1.5m distancing in place, max 6 people per table)
  • Island hopping? Check www.viva.gr to see which boats are running
  • Yoga classes are running at the hostel
  • Transfers are running as usual
  • Beaches are full, yet some long stretches are still empty

Caveland Santorini - Sleep in a Cave and Former Winery

Backpackers Villa in Interlaken, Switzerland

Get to know Backpackers Villa in Interlaken, Switzerland by reading our complete review here.

We reached out to our friends at the Backpackers Villa regarding the current situation in their destination. Here is the key points about traveling in Switzerland during the pandemic of Covid-19 and staying in the hostel:

CLEAN & SAFE: It is close to our hearts to provide a healthy and safe environment for you, our staff and everyone involved.

  • We keep distance and work with a plexi separation at reception to safeguard against Covid19.
    Contactless payment is possible and preferred.
  • Everyone receives their personal kitchen utensils and dishes.
  • In 6-bed dorms we keep 2m distance by having a max. of 3 people in the dorm.
  • Surfaces and common contact points are regularly cleaned and disinfected.
  • Ventilation is ensured even with closed windows due to our automated airing system that brings in a continuous flow of fresh air.
  • Tables are placed with generous distance.
  • Washing basins and points for disinfection are available in all common areas.
  • Our staff is carefully trained to fulfill their roles in coherence with the obligations of the federal office of public health.

Safety Protocol in Switzerland during Covid-19:

  • Switzerland made face masks compulsory in public transport from July 1st
Backpackers Villa Sonnenhof is one of the best hostels in Interlaken, Switzerland
Backpackers Villa Sonnenhof

Casa Pepe in Mexico City, Mexico

Get to know Casa Pepe by reading our complete review here.

Here are some key points given to us by the owners at 5 star hostel Casa Pepe, regarding the current situation in Mexico City:

  • Airports have been open throughout pandemic; some airlines are recovering their frequencies
  • Hostels are open but with a limit of 15%
  • Full capacity should be up and running on 15th of June
  • July will be the month when everything will start to feel like normal
  • All the practices about using masks, washing hands, etc is still in place
  • The health system is (and has been) under control due to predominantly young population
  • Other destinations such as Cancùn and Puerto Vallarta are already open

A detailed protocol for all touristic companies in Mexico City (hostels, museums, public areas etc), can be found at the platform nuevanormalidad.gob.mx (in Spanish).

Casa Pepe, the best hostel in Mexico City

The Dwellington in Wellington, New Zealand

Check our full review of The Dwellington here.

New Zealand is now declared Covid FREE, with a drop to level 1 practices.

Here is an important note from the owners at The Dwellington:

“Currently, the borders are still closed to everyone except NZ residents/citizens indefinitely but there is talk that a “trans-Tasman bubble”, which would include some Pacific islands and Australia, being an option in the near future.”

For those already in New Zealand, hostels are now open and many are accepting long-term stays at a reduced rate.

Read our guide to best hostels in New Zealand.

Making friends at The Dwellington

Hostel Celica in Ljubljana, Slovenia

5 Star Hostel Celica in detail – read the full review here.

Hostel Celica re-opened its doors on 18th of May 2020.

“The clinical picture and epidemiological circumstances in Slovenia are, as of now, one of the most favourable in Europe. All transfers, attractions, accommodation, restaurants, bars and events up to 500 people (1,5 m distance guarantee) are open.”

Here are some of the precautions the team at Celica are still taking seriously:

  • Keeping up to date (daily) with the recommendations issued by the National Institute for Public Health
  • Sanitiser dispensers installed all around the hostel
  • Disinfect surfaces multiple times a day (door knobs, toilets, common surfaces)
  • Masks are not obligatory, keeping safe distance 1,5 m is required
  • Common areas rearranged to meet the safe 1,5 m distance
  • For now, small dorms only on offer for safe distancing
  • Breakfast is available upon prior order at check in (take-away also available)

All info about borders, traffic, safe and healthy vacation in Slovenia: https://www.slovenia.info/en/plan-your-trip/all-you-need-to-know-for-a-healthy-and-safe-vacation-in-slovenia

Lay back and relax at Hostel Celica's outdoor lounge

STAY Rhodes Hostel in Rhodes, Greece

Have a read of our full review of STAY Rhodes.

Tourism officially opened in Greece on the 15th June 2020.

International flights are only operating from Athens and Thessaloniki.

“From 1st of July Rhodes airport will be open with no restrictions from any European country. There will be some random tests at the airport. No need for quarantine. Masks mandatory only for workers not for customers.”

A few important things to be aware of at STAY:

  • Posters remind you to keep your 1,5m distance & regularly wash hands
  • Info & rules handed out to everyone during check in
  • Maximum of 6 people per table @ the hostel bar
  • A steam machine is used daily to clean dorm rooms

Best Hostels in Rhodes, Greece: STAY Hostel in Rhodes

Combo Hostel in Venice, Italy

All of the Combo properties opened the in first week of June 2020.

Read: Full review of Combo Hostel

Here are all of the safety measures laid out by the Combo team.

HOW WE TAKE CARE OF YOU

  • All rooms will be cleaned and sanitized at each guest arrival.
  • Common spaces will be too, with extra cleaning and sanitizing of public and frequent contact areas.
  • We use cleaning products and protocols which meet the Italian Ministry of Health guidelines.
  • Room keys and other objects previously used by other guests will be sanitized with special care before distribution.

HOW WE TAKE CARE OF OUR STAFF

  • Employees always wearing personal protective equipment.
  • Employee temperature checks at the start of every shift.
  • Employees have been adequately trained on COVID-19 safety and sanitation protocols.
  • In each of our location, you will find hand sanitizer dispensers and additional information available at the front desk.

WHAT YOU CAN DO

  • No time to waste! Pre-pay and check-in online, we’ll have your keys ready for you.
  • Contactless payment also available – no extra touching involved!
  • Digital menu available online – get ready from your home!

Best Hostels in Venice: We Crociferi is for sure the ONLY 5 Star Hostel

Swanky Mint Hostel in Zagreb, Croatia

Swanky Mint has been open during the pandemic and continues to welcome travellers. Here is a full review of Swanky Mint Hostel.

Things to note about visiting Croatia and the hostel:

HOSTEL INFO

  • The reception hours have changed and we no longer work 24/7, so it is very important to contact the reception about the time of your arrival and departure.
  • All of our rooms are available, but the capacity of dorms is limited.
  • The hostel reserves the right to cancel or change the reservation if we think that someone’s health or safety might be affected.
  • The hostel needs to know and ask the guest about how are they feeling, were they in contact with an infected person or have they been infected themselves, where have they travelled before coming to the hostel and to be available for the receptionist to measure their temperature at check-in.
  • The hostel is doing everything to follow rules and regulations regarding the safety and health of everyone in the hostel, and we expect the guest to do the same.
  • There are masks and gloves that you can get at the reception for free, and recommended to use.
  • All hostel areas are being disinfected regularly, and we expect that the guests wash and disinfect their hands regularly as well, especially when entering the hostel.
  • The hostel bar and restaurant are working normally, but you need to follow the rules of distancing and disinfection.
  • Breakfast is still served, but there is no longer a buffet option.
  • Kitchen and common room are open, but there musn’t be more than 4 people in the room, and guests need to wash and disinfect their hands before coming in, and clean everything properly after use.Before coming to the hostel the guest needs to fill out the online check-in form: https://swanky-hostel.com/check-in-form/

TRAVELLING TO ZAGREB

Lots of love by the Swanky Mint Hostel Team

Love and safe travels,
The Hostelgeeks