Slovenia Relaxes Border Controls as it Ends Coronavirus Epidemic

Ljubljana, Slovenia
Photo by Photo by kasto80/iStock/Getty Images Plus/Getty Images

Slovenia became the first country in Europe to officially call an end to its COVID-19 (coronavirus) epidemic, according to Reuters. The report adds that the country has seen fewer than seven new confirmed cases each day for the past two weeks. Overall, according to Johns Hopkins University & Medicine, the country has had 1,465 confirmed cases and 103 deaths.

What this means: Travelers arriving in Slovenia from other European Union (EU) member states will no longer have to quarantine themselves for at least seven days. Foreign citizens who display symptoms of coronavirus will not be allowed to enter the country. A quarantine of at least 14 days will remain in place for those traveling from non-EU countries.

All bars and restaurants as well as small hotels with up to 30 rooms will be allowed to open next week. It's expected that face masks will remain required in public, as will social distancing measures (at least five feet).

Earlier this week, the European Commission released a comprehensive set of guidelines and recommendations for reopening travel and tourism among EU countries. The strategy, which includes 2020 and beyond, provides a framework for safely reopening borders, health protocols to keep locals and visitors healthy and safeguards to reimplement restrictions should the epidemiological situation require.

Slovenia declared a nationwide epidemic on March 12, when is closed all schools, sports and cultural institutions, bars, restaurants, hotels and shops (except food and drug stores,) while cancelling public transport. The country began easing lockdown measures on April 20.

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