(Update: August 2020) COVID-19 and Traveling to Poland
It’s no question that COVID-19 has caused many disruptions to life around the world. With the amount of information out there, it is easy to get lost in the current restrictions and requirements. In this article, we will provide important updates with information about traveling to Poland based on the most reliable sources.
COVID-19 in Poland (As of August 18, 2020)
Please remember that this article is not an official source and that you should always check your information on government websites or with consulates prior to making any travel plans!
COVID-19 Summary as of August 18, 2020 (Source: Johns Hopkins Corona Virus Resource Center)
- Number of confirmed cases in Poland in total: 57,876
- Number of deaths in total: 1,885
- Tested in total: 2,409,394
These numbers mean that Poland is far from having the highest number of recorded cases in comparison to other European countries such as the United Kingdom, Spain, Italy, Germany or France, but it is not time to celebrate yet. In fact, many of Poland’s neighbors are doing much better.
At the moment, the biggest problem in Poland are still outbreaks that have recently hit the coal mines in the Silesia Province (in the south of Poland). This region is also burdened with the highest number of infections in the entire country and is responsible for over a third of all case in Poland. The regions with the lowest number of cases are the provinces located in the north and northeast of the country, but this does not mean their situation won’t chance in the future.
With many European borders opened for the summer season there was an increase in COVID cases within last couple of weeks. It is expected that with autumn and the school year beginning we can expect another wave within next few months. Stay safe!
Current Map of COVID-19 Cases in Poland: COVID-19 Map - Poland
Can I travel to Poland from United States?
Unfortunately, at this moment, you can not travel to Poland from the United States. The US Department of State recommends that all US citizens refrain from international travel during the COVID-19 pandemic. Counties within the European Union do not allow US citizens to enter due to the very high number of cases reported in the United States in recent weeks.
There are a few instances in which US citizens can travel to Poland, but because they are not related to tourism, we won’t get into the details here. Full information on this subject can be found on the government website: https://www.gov.pl/web/coronavirus/travel
Starting in June, travel to Poland was opened to citizens of the European Union, Iceland, Norway and Switzerland. Tourist traffic between the European Union countries is slowly opening up, but it is obviously far from the normal of previous years. There are no doubts that this is a difficult season for the tourism industry including tour operators, accommodations owners and other in the travel business. It is very difficult to predict which businesses will survive this year, so please hold off on making any specific plans.
Once travel restrictions are lifted from Poland, you should remember that each country and territory decided who can enter or exit through its borders. This means that your journey may be prevented or impeded at every stage. Please remember that consulates have very limited possibilities of assistance in this type of situation. This is why every trip at the moment is associated with a high risk.
As Key To Poland we do not recommend planning visits to Poland in the summer or autumn of 2020.
How does life in Poland look like now?
As of today, many restrictions have already been lifted in Poland and some government representatives are reporting the low risk of an outbreak. Specialists, doctors and epidemiologists point out that the problem in Poland has not disappeared and it is not time to celebrate yet.
According to our friends and family in Poland (yes, we are stuck in the US too), life there has returned to (a new kind of) normal. Some events like parties or weddings (with some restrictions) are already taking place. Most hotels and restaurants are open. The requirement to wear masks is only mandatory in indoor public spaces and on public transportation. Like most other places, it seems the majority of people are tired of thinking about COVID-19 and no longer follow the recommended guidelines. Only time will tell how the situation develops in the second part of this exceptionally difficult and emotional year.
Poles have started to travel again. The majority of Polish people have chosen to stay and travel within Poland. Unfortunately this means that the high number of visitors at popular destinations have increased the risk of an outbreak. On the hot, sunny weekends in Poland, there is the same number (or even higher!) of visitors in places like Zakopane than in previous years. Some Poles have also decided to travel abroad and one of the most popular destinations this summer was Croatia.
At this moment schools are planned to be reopened on September 1st.
The travel industry is very worried about the additional restrictions and according to Polish politicians they will happen again.
The incoming tourism (international visitors) is very, very low and the tour operators working with them have been hit hard.
Yes, toilet paper is still available at the stores.
When can I travel to Poland?
We can’t wait to share Poland with you and hope to travel with you there as soon as possible! Our goal is to organize tours to Poland that are safe, peaceful and enjoyable for our guests and we will not rush into anything until we can guarantee it is safe. At this moment, we are starting to work on tours for the summer and autumn of 2021.
We will continue to monitor the situation on an ongoing basis. In case of any doubts or questions please contact us.
Poland will wait! Stay safe!
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