COVID-19 Testing for Travellers

Anyone entering Hamburg from risk areas must register and show proof of vaccination or recovery, or hold a negative test result. There are additional requirements for people entering from virus variant areas.

COVID-19 test swab with letters in background

Information on Testing for COVID-19 After Travelling or Returning to Hamburg

Entry from risk areas

All travellers entering Hamburg from risk areas (Risikogebiete), whether they travel by plane, train or car, must report to the public health department (Gesundheitsamt). This can be done at (English and other languages available) from a mobile/cell phone or computer.

Generally, anyone entering Hamburg from a risk area must put themselves in isolation for at least 10 days. However, this isolation period may be shortened or avoided altogether by testing negative or showing proof of vaccination or recovery:

  • Persons with proof of full vaccination with a vaccine approved by the EU (Impfnachweis) or proof of recovery from an infection with COVID-19 within the past 6 months (Genesenennachweis) do not have to undergo testing after they enter Hamburg, and they do not have to put themselves in isolation.
  • Persons entering from a risk area who are not fully vaccinated or recovered can undergo testing for the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus. They may either be tested by PoC antigen rapid testing (valid for 48 hours after testing) or PCR testing (valid for 72 hours after testing). They can get tested in pharmacies or at doctor’s offices, but they have to bear the costs for testing themselves.
  • Children under the age of 12 may end the isolation period after five days.

High-risk and virus variant areas

High-risk areas include areas with an especially high number of COVID-19 cases (Hochinzidenzgebiet), and virus variant areas are areas with a high incidence of certain highly contagious variants of the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus (Virusvarianten-Gebiet).

Travellers who have stayed in a high-risk area within 10 days before entering Hamburg and who are neither vaccinated nor recovered must put themselves in isolation for at least 10 days. Travellers entering from a virus variant areas must stay isolated for at least 14 days; this applies also to vaccinated and recovered persons.

Anyone experiencing symptoms of a COVID-19-related illness within 10 days of entry from a risk area must report to the local public health office and follow their recommendations.

A list of areas that qualify as risk areas according to the guidelines published by the Robert Koch Institute can be found here.

Testing for access and safety

In Germany, due to the relatively high percentage of vaccinated persons, antigen rapid testing is not free for all anymore. Special exceptions apply to persons who have not had the chance to get vaccinated for example, due to age restrictions, pregnancy or health conditions. For a map of testing centre locations or pharmacies offering testing in your area, see here (German only).

For more English information on COVID-related restrictions in Hamburg, see our FAQs.

COVID-19 Testing