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Test For Travel

I am American.

As of today, what test do I need to take to fly to Amsterdam? I have gone to the Amsterdam website and find it confusing.

The website was last updated mid February. When might it be next updated?

Posted by
11511 posts

Travelling from a country or area that is not on the safe list

If you are travelling from a country or area outside the EU/Schengen area that is not on the list of safe countries and areas, the following rules apply.

Rules for people travelling from a country or area that is not on the safe list
You live in this country or area
These are the rules for travelling to the Netherlands:

The EU entry ban applies. There are some exceptions. For example for travellers with a proof of vaccination.
You must always show a negative test result, even if you have proof of vaccination or recovery. There are exemptions.
If you are travelling by air, complete a health declaration form.
Do a self-test after arriving in the Netherlands

The US, like the majority of countries, is NOT on the 'safe list'

Posted by
1424 posts

The most important question is whether or not you’re fully vaccinated. And fully vaccinated means vaccinated plus boostered. If you’re not fully vaccinated, you’re not allowed to enter the Netherlands for non-essential reasons such as tourism.

Posted by
1989 posts

I am fully vaccinated and boosted but I am coming from a country that is considered Not Safe ie, The United States.

As things stand now, it is so difficult for me to get tested that I might have to cancel my trip.

When might The European Union and or Amsterdam next have an update?

Posted by
1424 posts

“When might The European Union and or Amsterdam next have an update?“
The testing requirement is not a EU requirement nor is it a requirement of the city of Amsterdam. It’s a requirement of the Dutch government for all those wanting to travel to the Netherlands from lots of countries outside the EU. Currently there is no indication of when this requirement might be dropped.

Posted by
1989 posts

Thank you all for your responses. I have not traveled since 2019 and I am having to learn about Test for Travel.

Dutch _ Traveler.

I. appreciate the information. i had no idea who decides Test for Travel in the Netherlands.

It seems like every European country has the same rules so I thought that the European Union was the body that made the rules.

Posted by
1424 posts

The EU doesn’t have jurisdiction to decide under what COVID conditions visitors from outside the EU are allowed to enter specific individual EU countries. They however can and will issue an urgent advice and sometimes all EU countries decide to follow that advice. This happened for instance during the peak of the COVID pandemic when all EU countries followed the urgent EU-advice not to allow non-EU nationals to enter their country. Every EUcountry was having serious problems with their health care system at that time, so they all benefited from the EU entry ban. Now that the situation is improving, EUcountries are deciding for themselves again, based on their individual situation. Some countries have abolished all entry requirements and some, like the Netherlands, still have entry requirements in place.

Posted by
14269 posts

I'm not sure what your whole trip looks like but can you fly in to Paris? There is no testing requirement for France. If you can spend a few days there the antigen tests are really easy to get there. Nearly any pharmacy on the street will do it for 25E and it will take 15 minutes for results and a printout.

It is pretty awful to get tested here as well, although I have not checked in a couple of weeks. So happy to go to France in April and will end in Amsterdam.

Posted by
1989 posts

I just went to IAmsterdam and then to the City of Amsterdam. The City of Amsterdam is going to re-evaluate COVID restrictions on March 15th.

Things might improve for me at the time but they can also always go back to required testing when flying before August. However I am going to assume that the situation will improve during the Spring and Summer months.

I am flying to Amsterdam for two days before I take a cruise to iceland. Norwegian Cruise Lines is booking my flight at a very good deal.

My problem is that I need to pay up fully before mid April. If there is any problem with testing, I LOSE 75% of my payment. That will be my penalty. I have bought insurance but it does not cover any problems with required testing.

I have to fully pay up my cruise four months in advance. From then on, it is more or less non-refundable. I will only get back 25%. As said, I have travel insurance but it does not cover any problems with testing. Even if I have to cancel for a reason covered by insurance, i then have to file a claim with the insurance company.

My cruise is costing over $3,500. That is a lot of money to lose.

I am thinking of changing my cruise to one that leaves and returns from a port in the United States. I will not have the same problem with testing for travel.

Posted by
1424 posts

“I just went to IAmsterdam and then to the City of Amsterdam. The City of Amsterdam is going to re-evaluate COVID restrictions on March 15th.”

You keep talking about the city of Amsterdam, but as I tried to explain before, COVID measures are decided upon at a national level by our government. Our national government decides on the rules and then the same COVID restrictions are valid throughout the entire country. The city of Amsterdam has no say in this matter whatsoever.
And incidentally, it may be called Amsterdam Schiphol Airport, but the airport is actually located in the municipality of Haarlemmermeer, so it’s not even on Amsterdam soil. Given them even less say in this matter.

The COVID restrictions mentioned that are going to be evaluated, again by our national government, on March 15, are the 2 only remaining COVID restrictions within the Netherlands. It’s the mandatory requirement to wear a mask in public transport and the requirement to show a negative test before attending a large indoor event with no seating. However it’s unlikely that these measures will be scrapped, because the relaxing of most of the rules on February 25 has resulted in a huge increase in cases.
The requirement that those who wish to travel to the Netherlands from outside the EU/Schengen should be able to show a negative test is currently not up for debate. I’m sorry, but it is what it is.
I will update this thread if there’s news.

Posted by
1989 posts

I check with a site Iamsterdam almost daily. That site has a link on it to the City of Amsterdam and that is where I get my COVID information from.

My dealings with and about Amsterdam are with the City. I do not care who makes the decisions when it comes to testing for Travel..

If the Test for Travel restriction is not relaxed as you have suggested, then I have to cancel my cruise from Amsterdam and book one that leaves and returns from a USA port.

Posted by
1424 posts

“ I check with a site Iamsterdam almost daily. That site has a link on it to the City of Amsterdam and that is where I get my COVID information from.”

When it comes to entry requirements into our country and testing for travel, both the website of the city of Amsterdam and the website of IAmsterdam refer to the government website. The government website will always show the latest up to date information https://www.government.nl/topics/coronavirus-covid-19/visiting-the-netherlands-from-abroad

Posted by
1989 posts

Dear Dutch-Traveler,

Thank you for the information. It is such a load off of my mind but now we have to watch the newest variance.

My situation is that I have a cruise booked August 17th from Amsterdam to Iceland. I am planning on spending two nights in Amsterdam before sailing.

I have to pay off my cruise by mid April, a month away, and then it is considered to be non refundable.

If I have to get tested and can not, I LOSE 75% of $4,000, a lot of money.

It is very hard for me to get tested for travel where I live. I am fully vaccinated and boosted. Because I am in in a clinical trial, I actually have the second booster.

I am going to call my cruise consultant and post this information in my cruise chat rooms.

Posted by
1424 posts

I posted earlier today that the test requirement for those arriving into the Netherlands from outside the EU is going to be removed by March 23. But now there is some confusion whether or not this only applies to EU nationals. This would mean that non-EU nationals arriving from outside the EU would still need to test.
That’s why I removed my post.
The announcement was only made a few hours ago today, so please bare with me as I’m trying to find things out.

Posted by
2494 posts

I'm following these requirements closely as I'm hoping to go to the Netherlands in September, which is a loooooong way away when it comes to Covid..

Posted by
14269 posts

Dutch_Traveler, thank you for trying to sort this out for forum members.

Posted by
1424 posts

So, based on all the information now available it seems that the following will apply starting March 23; The EU entry ban remains in place for non-EU nationals arriving from outside the EU/Schengen. There are exemptions to this entry ban, for instance for those who are fully vaccinated and boostered or those who are recently recovered. If you fall into one of the exemption categories you can enter without a test. If you don’t qualify for an exemption you’re not allowed to enter, not even when you’re tested.

Posted by
14269 posts

Thank you for the update. Looks like Phil can do his cruise, lol.

Posted by
2494 posts

Are there any stipulations about how long ago one was vaccinated and boostered?
For example, I want to go the the Netherlands in Sep 2022. I receive my vaccinations March & April 2021 and booster December 2021.

Posted by
2494 posts

I was able to answer my own question :-)

Booster vaccination
A booster vaccination is an additional dose you received after completing your primary vaccination.
Validity begins immediately after booster vaccination
Proof of vaccination is valid immediately after receiving a booster dose.
No end date for validity after booster vaccination
Proof of vaccination is valid indefinitely after you receive your booster vaccination.

https://www.government.nl/topics/coronavirus-covid-19/visiting-the-netherlands-from-abroad/requirements-for-proof-of-vaccination

Posted by
1989 posts

Hi Pam, Just to let you know that I am a she. Phil is my nickname so I frequently use it for a screen name. Thank you for your good thoughts.

Well, there is a new variant or two out there. Who knows what is next?

But I found out that if I pay off my cruise, I do not lose all my money if for any reason I have to cancel

I have bought the travel insurance and I get back 75% of my cruise fare with the standard plan and 90% with the platinum plan which is not much more than the standard plan. So i can pay off my voyage with a little more peace of mind. Well, I do not get my money back but I do get a Future Cruise Credit and that is ok with me.

Still if am forced to cancel because I can not get tested within the required time period, I will lose several hundred dollars to about $1,000. That is a lot of money to lose because I was unable to get easily tested.

I am still considering changing my voyage to sail Alaska or New England / Canada.

Posted by
14269 posts

Oh gosh....so sorry I mis-identified you, Phil!

Yes, still a lot to think about. Make sure if you purchase Cancel for Any Reason insurance that it actually covers the reason you have in mind. I was shocked a few years ago when having a discussion with a Travel Guard Representative that the reason I thought I might cancel for was not covered. (No, I don't remember what was on my mind then as it was way before Covid).

Posted by
1989 posts

I have bought my insurance through Norwegian. I have the Standard Plan but think that I am going to upgrade to the Platinum which is not much more. money.

I called the insurance company and spoke with someone who was very helpful. She told me that if I have to cancel for a NON covered reason, I will get a certificate for a future cruise but no money back which is ok with me. However I will still have to pay a penalty of several hundred dollars.

When I booked my cruise over a year ago, I thought that COVID would be in our rear view mirror.

My problem is that getting tested to travel is too difficult and complicated for me given where I live etc etc etc. I find the window of time too narrow for me as well.

I respect that the airlines require testing. I respect that. countries require testing. I do not have any problems with this but it is made so difficult to test. It seems like a racket has grown up around the need to test for travel.

Norwegian will test me at the ship before I board but I now have to pay for the test. If the airlines require testing, then they should arrange to test me at the airport.

There is nowhere close to me that tests. I have to make an appointment and then take.a bus about one hour each way. Depending on the test, I might have to pay $139.00.. My health care provider is going to charge me $150.00. There are some urgent care facilities that are closer and more convenient but they charge a whopping $300.00. And I do not feel that I can deal with a at home test. I am not computer savvy.

It is all too complicated and I might choose to fly to a port in the United States like Boston or Seattle. Then I do not have to test.

Amsterdam is relaxing the requirement for testing for now but now we also have a new variant.

I have to change my cruise by mid April and or pay up on this one.

Posted by
1989 posts

Pam, no problem in thinking I am a boy. it happens often.

I have been in a Moderna COVID clinical research trial since before there was a vaccine. I have received the fourth one already and Moderna is now applying for emergency approval for all adults.

So some of you are soon going to be offered a fourth shot.

Posted by
1424 posts

Amsterdam hasn’t changed anything, because Amsterdam has no say in this matter whatsoever. It’s the Dutch government who dropped the testing requirement for those arriving from outside the EU. The government decided this based on the advice of our national Outbreak Management Team. This OMT consists of scientists, medical doctors etc. In order to come to their advice the OMT combines data from various sources. This data includes data about the new variant, a variant which is already dominant here in the Netherlands. Despite the new variant, hospitalizations remain low, which is a key focus of our government.
It’s highly unlikely that the testing requirement will be reinstated anytime soon, or else the government wouldn’t have dropped in the first place.

Whether or not you feel comfortable traveling right now is another matter. I get the impression from your posts that you’re very concerned. Perhaps it’s best for you to change your plans for this year and postpone this trip to next year.

Posted by
2207 posts

I had an interesting discussion this week about COVID in the NL. I came home from Portugal and after three days, felt terrible. Yup, Covid! Because my wife teaches, I used a home self-test (we test weekly anyway) and confirmed the results. (I still blame my wife for this as 25% of her kids are out on any given day!).

So I did my days of quarantine, isolating myself from everyone. But as I travel a lot, it became apparent that under the rules - at that time - I would need a letter of recovery to offset my current positive status if a test was required to enter another country, or even the NL as I had a trip scheduled soon to the UK. There's a great system here that if you test positive at the GGD (Health Center), you can - using that test - create an electronic letter of recovery on your Corona App (the Dutch equivalent of the EU Digital COVID Certificate, more commonly referred to as the QR code). All electronic and registered through your DigID! So I did go to the GGD to do my "official" test - a very efficient system as it took me longer to park my car than it did to get the test.

But one of the strange quirks of the Dutch system was if I came home from a non-EU country - like the UK or USA - I would need to not only have the letter of recovery but ALSO a negative test. Doesn't the letter of recovery explain the fact that you may test positive, given my recent diagnosis?

So I called the Central Government at 0800 1351 and spoke to a well-informed rep. (I guess they get these questions ALL DAY LONG!). She said, well yes, under the current rules, you will need both the test and the letter. We discussed the challenges of perhaps testing positive while in the UK and she suggested, "Do an antigen test, not PCR and you're less likely to return a positive result." I asked her if she would go to the UK, betting on "perhaps a negative test." And she admitted, no that's not a good option.

But then, she excitedly said, HANG ON, the new restrictions have just been announced and she read them out loud to me as they scrolled across her screen. The good news is that the USA and UK are now green countries - in terms of the NL - so no test is required. Hooray! Unknowingly, I was one of the first to get the official word as she JUST got the government notification. We are very much relieved here because some of the rules - like this negative test and letter of recovery combo - made it almost impossible to get back into the country (and home) from a non-EU country.

Posted by
2494 posts

Amsterdam hasn’t changed anything, because Amsterdam has no say in this matter whatsoever. It’s the Dutch government who dropped the testing requirement for those arriving from outside the EU.

Goodness, I'm so sorry you have to keep repeating this. You have more patience than I would.

Posted by
1989 posts

Dutch_traveler

I have another cruise already booked for August 2023. Another brand new ship, Norwegian Viva and it goes from Southhampton to Lisbon. Amsterdam is one of the ports.

I may change this upcoming August cruise and take one leaving from Boston or Seattle. I would not have to worry about testing before flying.

I hate to give up the one leaving from Amsterdam this August but the testing before flying does cause me a lot of anxiety.

I am going to have to make a decision very soon.

Thank you for your help.

Posted by
1989 posts

RnR

It is all too complicated and stressful for me.

So for now, perhaps some or all of the restrictions have been relaxed but now we have a new variance or two.

What about next week or next month?

Posted by
2207 posts

I guess we're pretty used to testing and the facilities are in place here to do so more easily.

The biggest challenge may be... getting back into the USA (given that a COVID test is still required when you are entering the USA from many international locations). So unless you stay North American (Alaska/Canada/Caribbean/Mexico? - and who knows what those rules will be in a few months?), you're gonna have to test to go home. Testing when I am AWAY from home is always more disconcerting to me than when I am leaving home!

But yes, things will probably change again - certainly, that's what Covid has done (and the rules change with it - not always in sync and certainly inconsistent from country to country).

Posted by
1989 posts

hi roubrat

I have been going to Iamsterdam for information on Covid and restrictions

There is a lot of very valuable information on the site and below is one of the paragraphs. This is the most recent posting although it will be changing next week.

"in line with government measures to reduce the spread of the coronavirus, there are new rules in place for visiting Amsterdam and exploring our beautiful city. Museums, theatres, cinemas, shops and restaurants are open, but a Covid Entry Pass is mandatory. Please keep in mind that these regulations may change depending on how the situation develops, so check the City of Amsterdam’s website for the most current official guidelines. Always adhere to the additional safety regulations."

From here, I then go to the City of Amsterdam website. This is why I keep referring to Amsterdam.

I am 77 and do not travel a lot. I am identifying with City of Amsterdam rather than the government of the Netherlands.

I will be flying to Amsterdam and the restrictions that apply to me have to do with flying from Austin, TX to Amsterdam.

I do not care who makes the rules.

The last time that I traveled was in 2019 before COVID. I have never once had to test for travel and this is all new to me. I am trying to figure it out.

Posted by
2207 posts

bostonphil7, I think what Dutch_Traveler and others are trying to tell you is... the information you are reading on the City of Amersterdam website... is ALREADY OUTDATED. Contrary to the statement you quoted, they DO NOT have the most current official guidelines:

Please keep in mind that these regulations may change depending on how
the situation develops, so check the City of Amsterdam’s website for
the most current official guidelines. Always adhere to the additional
safety regulations

As he was saying, it really doesn't matter what they say - its the Dutch government site: https://www.government.nl/topics/coronavirus-covid-19 that dictates policy. The City of Amersterdam - and EVERY OTHER metropolitan area in the NL update their websites directly from the Dutch government website. So, as everyone is advising you - go to the source for the most current information. Granted, it may not be as easy to read, BUT IT'S THE CORRECT INFO. This statement you quote - on the City of Amsterdam website - is incorrect and outdated:

Museums, theatres, cinemas, shops, and restaurants are open, but a
Covid Entry Pass is mandatory.

Like THE Dutch_Traveler, we're living this every day... We all follow the Tuesday press conferences LIVE so we're up to date on the most current rules. Just because the City of Amsterdam says they're up-to-date, they're not... Good Luck in your travels!

Posted by
2494 posts

bostonphil7 the good news is that as of March 23rd you won't need to be tested :)

Take a look at the Dutch government website:
https://www.government.nl/latest/news/2022/03/15/further-easing-of-coronavirus-measures

As of 23 March, travellers to the Netherlands coming from within the EU or the Schengen area will no longer require a test, proof of recovery or proof of vaccination. The rules will also be lifted for nationals of EU countries travelling to the Netherlands from countries outside the EU and the Schengen area. Everyone travelling to the Netherlands is advised to do a self-test immediately after arrival and again on day 5. Non-EU nationals remain subject to an EU entry ban. Exemptions apply in several cases, however, such as for people travelling from ‘safe’ countries, people who are vaccinated or who have recovered from coronavirus, and people travelling for certain purposes.

Posted by
1424 posts

“ bostonphil7 the good news is that as of March 23rd you won't need to be tested :)
Take a look at the Dutch government website:
https://www.government.nl/latest/news/2022/03/15/further-easing-of-coronavirus-measures”
@Roubrat; I really appreciate you trying get this message across, but I already shared this exact same information days ago. Bostonphil however keeps insisting that it’s the city of Amsterdam they’re dealing with and only relies on their website for information. The truth of the matter is that the city of Amsterdam has nothing to say about entry requirements into the Netherlands. Nothing, zero, nada, niets. I mean, like I already tried to explain, Schiphol Airport isn’t even located on Amsterdam soil. But more importantly, the Amsterdam website shows outdated information.
As can now clearly be seen on the website of the Dutch government, the ones who actually do have a say in this matter, the test requirement will be dropped on March 23.
I’m really trying to be patient here and I’m trying my best to help Bostonphil, but I’m starting to think she may have a different agenda.

Posted by
1989 posts

roubrat

thank you for the information. It is good news and I would have been very excited but as you may know, we have a new variance which is spreading rapidly.

So, I am going to take a wait and see attitude before I begin to wildly celebrate.

Thanks to everyone for your feedback and for the information that you shared.

As I have said, I have not gone anywhere since Fall 2019 and knew nothing about testing for travel. I have learned and I am learning.

Posted by
1424 posts

Okay, I’m going to try one more time. As I already explained above, the new variant is already dominant in the Netherlands. Despite that, hospitalizations and ICU admissions remain at a relatively low level. Hospitalizations and ICU admissions are the most important figures where our government base their decisions regarding COVID on. Hospitalizations and ICU admissions still remaining low, was one of the reasons for the national Outbreak Management Team to advise our government to drop the test requirement. And, as also already explained the Dutch government decided to follow the advice and cancelled the testing requirement per March 23.
The requirement to show your Covid Entry Pass before entering museums, restaurants, cinemas etc was already dropped per February 25. However the Amsterdam website you insist to rely on is still telling you that you need it. That website is outdated and you shouldn’t rely on it for trustworthy information.
You’ve told us several times now that this whole testing for travel thing is new to you. We’ve tried to tell you that you no longer need to test for travel to enter the Netherlands. We’ve also tried to explain where you can find reliable, accurate and up to date information, but you insist on using a website that shows old outdated incorrect information. All this gives me the impression that you’re not ready to travel yet and are perhaps looking for a reason to cancel. It’s perfectly fine to have second thoughts and doubts about your travel plans. It’s however not a good idea to base your reasons for canceling on incorrect information.

To summarize;

Per February 25; you no longer need to show anything in order to enter restaurants, museums, shops, theaters etc etc etc

Per March 23; you no longer need to show a negative test to enter the Netherlands.

Posted by
2494 posts

So, I am going to take a wait and see attitude before I begin to wildly celebrate.

That's OK to do. Everyone has to do what feels best for them. If the thought of travelling now causes more stress than joy, maybe it's a sign that you should put it off until next year when things hopefully are more settled? Just remember, since you are vaccinated and boosted, if you arrive in the Netherlands after March 23rd, 4 days from now, you will not need to be tested. Of course, things can always change, so just check the Dutch government website before you go...whenever that may be.

Posted by
1989 posts

I want to thank everyone for your advice, suggestions and input.

For now, I have decided to go with the Amsterdam to Iceland cruise in August.

I am going to increase my travel insurance from Standard to Platinum.

And now, I am looking at my shore excursions.

Posted by
2494 posts

Bon voyage, bostonphil7!

Funnily enough, even though I've been planning a trip to the Netherlands for September, I'm now strongly considering moving it up to May....

Posted by
2494 posts

Dutch_traveler and RnR -

This was published yesterday the 22nd on an American site I follow. No wonder there is such confusion. I don't think this website checked the official gov site.
https://thepointsguy.com/news/netherlands-drops-predeparture-covid-testing/

"However, the country still expects all travelers to take a self-test immediately upon arrival in the Netherlands,
and another one five days after arriving in the country."

https://www.government.nl/topics/coronavirus-covid-19/visiting-the-netherlands-from-abroad/mandatory-negative-test-results-and-declaration

Posted by
1424 posts

Well actually the American site you quote is 100% correct. The pre-departure test is dropped per today, and the Dutch government indeed advises those arriving in the Netherlands to do a self test upon arrival and another one on day 5.
All clearly explained on the official government website that has now been fully updated; https://www.government.nl/topics/coronavirus-covid-19/visiting-the-netherlands-from-abroad/checklist-entry

Doing the self test upon arrival and on day 5 is an advice or recommendation and can be seen as a nice gesture towards the country you’re a guest in. Doing a self test is however not mandatory and you don’t need to show the result to anyone.

Posted by
2494 posts

Thank you. That's exactly as I was reading it too, but started second guessing myself.

Posted by
1989 posts

If all goes as planned, I will be arriving in Amsterdam on the 15th of August and leaving on the 17th. I am going to be taking a cruise and Norwegian will test me at the ship if I do not get one one my own. I am hoping that perhaps Norwegian is next going to drop the test requirement.

It would be to my benefit to get a test on the 16th while in Amsterdam. Is it easy to test in Amsterdam? Do they have convenient test sites? is cost reasonable?

Norwegian is booking my air and I am guaranteed that I will spend two nights in Amsterdam but I might end up getting in at 10 pm. I will not be getting information about my air until about 45 days before I leave. who knows what I am going to get?

Posted by
21 posts

This is my question too. My son is going to an indoor concert in den haag on 4/9; does he need a test prior to an indoor concert w/over 500 people or has this requirement been removed? Also, we have to take a test before we fly back to the U.S. on 4/11. Where/when do we do this? I am bringing 2 Abbott self-tests with me, but need to read up more on the requirements. I can check the sites, but since everyone has been following the updates closely, I thought I would ask. Thanks.

Posted by
1989 posts

I was going to IAmsterdam which will take you to the government link that might answer your questions but I found it complicated.

you might try the airline that you are going to fly back on. You might go to CDC or the state department.

Ask at your hotel.

Begin a brand new topic on this forum asking the questions that you have about testing

My post is about testing before flying to Amsterdam but that is no longer necessary. I would be flying home from Reykjavik .

Posted by
18 posts

I'm American. My only question after reading this long thread is "will they accept the vaccination record card issued here in the USA? I have 2 doses of The Pfizer vaccine and 1 booster of Pfizer.
Bill

Posted by
2494 posts

aquariusphotos yes, the CDC card is accepted as proof of vaccination.

Posted by
1225 posts

What about the J&J vaccine, and a Pfizer booster? Anyone know if that is accepted?

Posted by
1989 posts

jikelman

where are you going? That might help.

It also might help if you begin a new discussion with your unique question?