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COVID Non-EU Nationals and the EU Digital Covid Certificate

natefaith

Moderator
Staff member
Year of past OR future Camino
2009
After reading @Kathar1na and @JabbaPapa 's discussion in a recent thread about whether non-EU citizens would be eligible for the EU Digital Covid Certificate, I found these two articles from CNN (written with an American audience in mind).


"Who is eligible?
EU citizens and their families, and legal residents, according to the official word so far.
However, an EU spokesperson has told CNN that the bloc expects to open the scheme up to non-citizens -- including Americans. Access will depend on individual countries providing certificates for their visitors. More information is expected to be released before the official launch on July 1."


"Right now if you're an American, not living in the EU, you could get the certificate if you ask the national authorities of a member state to give you that certificate based on some proof that you've been vaccinated, or had a recent Covid test," said the spokesperson with knowledge of the policy.

However, he cautioned that such a decision would rest with each individual member state.

The spokesperson also said the EU Commission was in talks with the United States on a US Covid-19 certificate which EU states could accept as equivalent."

So - if anyone from the US is wondering if they will be able to get the EU Digital Covid Certificate, or how they should go about getting it, the recent word is that you cannot - at least right now. However, talks are happening to perhaps open up the scheme to non-EU folks...but this also depends on the individual EU countries providing certificates for their visitors.

To me, this sounds complicated. The EU countries already have their hands full making the certificates available to their own people....so to put in place a system to provide one for visitors (that each individual member state will need to decide on and implement) will take a while. So if you're an American making your way over soon, I would say, until further (official) information is available, don't stress about the EU Covid Certificate. IF you are eligible to come over to the EU, you are not eligible right now to get the certificate anyway. So just follow the official guidance provided by the EU countries you'll be visiting.
 
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natefaith

Moderator
Staff member
Year of past OR future Camino
2009
This press release is from the EU Commission itself and addresses a more general audience:

From the EU Commission:


The relevant information (scroll to the end of the FAQs):

"Will the EU Digital COVID Certificate be compatible with other systems developed at international level?

The Commission is working to make sure that the certificates are compatible with systems in countries outside the EU. The proposal is open to global initiatives and takes into account ongoing efforts of the WHO and the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) to establish specifications and guidance for using digital technologies for documenting vaccination status. Non-EU countries should be encouraged to recognise the EU Digital COVID Certificate when lifting restrictions on non-essential travel. The Certificates could serve as an example for other certificates currently being developed around the world.

The Regulation allows the Commission to issue decisions recognising certificates issued by non-EU countries to EU citizens and their family members, where such certificates meet quality standards and are interoperable with the EU trust framework.

5. Non-EU nationals traveling to the EU

Can the EU Digital COVID Certificate facilitate travelling to the EU from non-EU countries?


On 20 May, the Council adopted a revised Recommendation updating the approach to travel from outside the EU. The Council Recommendation aims to ease the current restrictions on non-essential travel into the EU taking into account the progress of vaccination campaigns and developments in the epidemiological situation worldwide.

Where the Commission is satisfied that a non-EU country issues certificates in compliance with standards and systems, which are interoperable with the EU system, the Commission can adopt a decision on the basis of which such non-EU country certificates would be accepted according to the same conditions as EU Digital COVID Certificates.

In any case, the rules for acceptance of proof of vaccination would be the same as for EU nationals: vaccines that have received EU-wide marketing authorisation have to be accepted, but Member States can decide to also accept vaccines approved by the WHO."
 
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JabbaPapa

"True Pilgrim"
Year of past OR future Camino
100 characters or fewer : see signature details
It is complicated, Faith.

The most favourable present regime is probably the French one.

Their current Digital Certificate has existed for many months, initially concerning test status only. It was fairly recently updated to include vaccination status. And the French Government has announced that it will roll the EU certification into the TousAntiCOVID app rather than the two existing separately.

And there are no nationality requirements at all attached to it.

So at the very least, any pilgrims starting in France should be able to obtain this certificate, although that might require the ability to travel there in the first place.

The EU was supposed to clarify implementation, application, and rollout of the scheme this week, so I suppose that more precise details are forthcoming.
 

natefaith

Moderator
Staff member
Year of past OR future Camino
2009
That's what's becoming more clear to me @JabbaPapa, that each country will need to figure out how to implement the EU Covid certificate for both its own people and, in the (near?) future, for visitors to that country. There are several layers of logistics and systems, and it's good for all of us to patient and wait to see how things develop. Thanks for the context on France.
 

alexwalker

Forever Pilgrim
Year of past OR future Camino
(2009): Camino Frances
(2011): Sevilla-Salamanca, VdlP
(2012): Salamanca-SdC, VdlP
(2014): SJpdP-Astorga
(2015): Astorga-SdC
(2016) May Pamplona-Moratinos; Sept.:Burgos-SdC
(2016): August/Sept: Camino San Olav (Burgos-Covarubbias), Burgos-Sarria
(2017): May: Portuguese; Sept: Pamplona-SdC
What is now clear, is that by July 1st (or sooner), the EU certificate will be implemented for all EU/Schengen member countries. But the pre-versions are already in use: Flights are now going, f.ex., from Norway to Spain & Greece. Things are going the right way. And as been posted in other thread(s) on the Forum, US citizens have already arrived in Spain with their vaccine cards.
 
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Peaceable Projects Inc. is a U.S.-based non-profit group that brings the vast resources of the wide world together with the ongoing needs of the people who live, work, and travel on the Camino de Santiago pilgrim trail network in Spain.
Rent a house in Santiago (1 month minimum)
300m from the cathedral and around the corner from the fresh food market in Santiago. Perfect place to tele commute from (1GB symmetrical connection).
Year of past OR future Camino
To Santiago and back (roads & paths; Tours; Francés; sea; roads & paths)
Meanwhile, I had another closer look ... and I have only one comment and one plea: Use the appropriate terminology so that everybody knows what you talk about !!!

Don't use vaccination pass, or sanipass, or vaxx passport or green pass or whatever.

If you want to talk about the EU Digital Covid certificates, whether for vaccination, test or recovery, use the name or an abbreviation like EU DCC. The EU DCC has very specific security features. Don't confuse the EU DCC QR code with the Spanish SpTH QR code that is already in use for tourists arriving to airports in Spain, or the French TousAntiCovid QR code that is already in use and will be used to control access to large scale events and similar, or any other national scheme that one or the other EU country already uses or comes up with and that is only for domestic consumption. Avoid needless confusion.
 
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lt56ny

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
CF(2012) Le Puy/CF (2015) Portugues (2017) Norte (2018) CF (2019) VDLP?
This is why I keep saying prepare for your camino, keep up to date, be vaccinated and make sure you have authorized proof of vaccination from your country and then when it gets within a few weeks of your departure than start to the process of legally entering Spain. Policy today is tomorrow's old news.
 

t2andreo

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
2022
I concur 110% with the above. I hasten to add - ALWAYS HAVE A PLAN B. If you are bound and determined to go do a Camino in Europe, there are multiple ways to enter legally.

Assuming you are fully vaccinated and can prove it, you need to be well-read, researched, and always, ALWAYS remain flexible to last-minute changes. From my perspective, the disease situation on the ground, while much improved, is still dynamic as new variants arrive. So, we need to be informed and prepared.

The ever-present Plan B is a living evolving alternative.

I am dealing with this evolving situation by not going until September to volunteer or just be a tourigrino. My recent severe illness precludes me from traveling earlier. I am still pending some surgery, and medical clearance to fly. I have faith.

Hope this helps.

Tom
 

lt56ny

Veteran Member
Year of past OR future Camino
CF(2012) Le Puy/CF (2015) Portugues (2017) Norte (2018) CF (2019) VDLP?
I concur 110% with the above. I hasten to add - ALWAYS HAVE A PLAN B. If you are bound and determined to go do a Camino in Europe, there are multiple ways to enter legally.

Assuming you are fully vaccinated and can prove it, you need to be well-read, researched, and always, ALWAYS remain flexible to last-minute changes. From my perspective, the disease situation on the ground, while much improved, is still dynamic as new variants arrive. So, we need to be informed and prepared.

The ever-present Plan B is a living evolving alternative.

I am dealing with this evolving situation by not going until September to volunteer or just be a tourigrino. My recent severe illness precludes me from traveling earlier. I am still pending some surgery, and medical clearance to fly. I have faith.

Hope this helps.

Tom
I have faith in you too. Buen Camino
 
Rent a house in Santiago (1 month minimum)
300m from the cathedral and around the corner from the fresh food market in Santiago. Perfect place to tele commute from (1GB symmetrical connection).
Camino Maps
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Year of past OR future Camino
To Santiago and back (roads & paths; Tours; Francés; sea; roads & paths)
Don't confuse the EU DCC QR code with the Spanish SpTH QR code that is already in use for tourists arriving to airports in Spain, or the French TousAntiCovid QR code that is already in use and will be used to control access to large scale events and similar, or any other national scheme that one or the other EU country already uses or comes up with and that is only for domestic consumption. Avoid needless confusion.
Although I don't know the details, I've read today that Belgium will also use a national "pass", similar to France, which will be used for access to large scale outdoor events for example, proving that the holder is either vaccinated or had a recent negative test. I remember having read that the French health pass or pass sanitaire was subject to a controversial vote in the French parliament and is only allowed to be used until the end of September. The Belgian pass will be called Covid Safe Ticket.

These digital passes may be similar or barely distinguishable from the EU Digital Covid Certificates but there are fundamental differences. The EU DCC are voluntary and not mandatory, nobody can be made to use them. They serve to facilitate travel, in particular travel between EU countries. They will be in use until the end of June 2022. Every EU citizen and resident has the right to request EU DC certificates as of proof of vaccination status, test results or recovery from illness.

Hence my plea to use the correct names and not throw all these "passes" into one pot in forum threads. It will only increase confusion.
 

alexwalker

Forever Pilgrim
Year of past OR future Camino
(2009): Camino Frances
(2011): Sevilla-Salamanca, VdlP
(2012): Salamanca-SdC, VdlP
(2014): SJpdP-Astorga
(2015): Astorga-SdC
(2016) May Pamplona-Moratinos; Sept.:Burgos-SdC
(2016): August/Sept: Camino San Olav (Burgos-Covarubbias), Burgos-Sarria
(2017): May: Portuguese; Sept: Pamplona-SdC
Although I don't know the details, I've read today that Belgium will also use a national "pass", similar to France, which will be used for access to large scale outdoor events for example, proving that the holder is either vaccinated or had a recent negative test.
The same goes for Norway. The purpose is to not count fully-vaccinated people in large events, giving room for more people attending than the allowed limits of people.

Edit: There has been some debate about this, about favoring vaccinated people versus non-vaccinated people. Personally, I think it's nonsense: We must open up again our societies as best we can IMHO. It seems clear now that vaccinated people represent little or no danger to un-vaccinated, and should be allowed to travel freely, both for economical as well as psycological reasons for countries and people, relieving the burdens we all have had to face for nearly 1 1/2 year of our lives.
 
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Year of past OR future Camino
To Santiago and back (roads & paths; Tours; Francés; sea; roads & paths)
A bit more clarification:

The EU DCC isn't even available yet in France.

The French gouvernement has a website about their "health pass" system: https://www.gouvernement.fr/info-coronavirus/pass-sanitaire. They explain that their Pass sanitaire integrates "two devices, each of which has its own use". They describe them as follows:
  • "Activities" health pass tier: Limits risks of epidemic dissemination, while allowing the gradual reopening of certain activities or places. Authorised by law until 30 September 2021.

  • "Border" health pass tier: This is the EU DC certificate. Facilitates safe entry into France, facilitates the implementation of health control measures at borders and helps to combat the falsification of proof documents. Authorised by law until 30 June 2022.
There are explanations on how to get the French Pass sanitaire if you are integrated into the French health and social security system. No information about how others can or may obtain any of these two "devices" in France.
 

JabbaPapa

"True Pilgrim"
Year of past OR future Camino
100 characters or fewer : see signature details
Kathar1na, TousAntiCOVID is an app, and you just download it to iPhone or Android.

There are no special explanations for those not in the "system" because it's unnecessary, as they're always the same.

You get your test or whatever in France and you pay upfront. Get reimbursed later by your insurance if you can. But if you have the app on your phone, my understanding is that any Covid medical acts performed in France, and those that will be digitally compatible with the EU system will be easily transferred to the smartphone app.

If you had your vaxx or test outside France and the EU and it's not digitally compatible, then just use your paper certificate as explained in the article.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
To Santiago and back (roads & paths; Tours; Francés; sea; roads & paths)
This thread is mainly about how non-EU nationals who do not live in the EU and did not get vaccinated in the EU (+ 4 other countries) can/could get an EU Digital Covid Certificate as proof of their vaccination. In France, in Spain, in Portugal or another EU+ country.

Since I like to know what I am talking about, I've actually downloaded the French TousAntiCovid app from the App Store. Whether I would ever use it in real life, depends. I am cautious about which apps I allow to use my personal data, my location, where my personal data are stored (here in particular: the French centralised approach in contrast to the decentralised approach in neighbouring countries), how my personal data are processed.

I have downloaded my own EU DCC about my two Pfizer vaccinations to a dedicated national app that deals with nothing else but the EU DCC, and I am confident in using it.
 
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Year of past OR future Camino
To Santiago and back (roads & paths; Tours; Francés; sea; roads & paths)
Since I like to know what I am talking about, I've actually downloaded the French TousAntiCovid app from the App Store.
The French TousAntiCovid app, which is a combo app of a warning & tracing app + an app for scanning codes at restaurants and other venues + an app for storing Covid-19 test results, is easy to set up and easy to use. Contains plenty of information on usage and rules and general Covid info. Has an English language version that looks well written. It has a wallet for storing French Covid test results; you can scan the code of an official French test result document (sample shown in the app) to load the information in the app's wallet. Ditto for French vaccination documents. They are in a national format and do not correspond to the EU DCC standard.

No option yet for storing EU DCCs.
 
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Year of past OR future Camino
To Santiago and back (roads & paths; Tours; Francés; sea; roads & paths)
If you're an American making your way over soon, I would say, until further (official) information is available, don't stress about the EU Covid Certificate. IF you are eligible to come over to the EU, you are not eligible right now to get the certificate anyway.
So at the very least, any pilgrims starting in France should be able to obtain this certificate, although that might require the ability to travel there in the first place.
If you had your vaxx or test outside France and the EU and it's not digitally compatible, then just use your paper certificate as explained in the article.
And with this, we've come full circle. ☺️
 
Year of past OR future Camino
To Santiago and back (roads & paths; Tours; Francés; sea; roads & paths)
Another thumbs up for Reopen EU, a website that doesn't cease to pleasantly surprise me with their up to date information and links to the relevant government websites of each EU country. Go to the "Measures in place" tab, pick the EU country of your choice, and there's information and links to the official government websites about getting your EU Digital Covid certificates in this country, whether there's an app, what's it called, where to get it, how to identify yourself at startup if that's required. I've just clicked through half a dozen EU countries.

When you reach the relevant Spanish government website, you are helpfully encouraged to ask yourself first this question: "¿Estás en el lugar correcto?" - "Are you in the right place"? ☺️

For EU DCC information on Reopen EU, you need to activate the map icon and the icon of the EU circle of stars with a checkmark at its centre:

Reopen EU.jpg
 
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JabbaPapa

"True Pilgrim"
Year of past OR future Camino
100 characters or fewer : see signature details
This thread is mainly about how non-EU nationals who do not live in the EU and did not get vaccinated in the EU (+ 4 other countries) can/could get an EU Digital Covid Certificate as proof of their vaccination. In France, in Spain, in Portugal or another EU+ country.
This will be through recognition by the EU of third country digital certificates, as President Macron has alluded to.
 
Year of past OR future Camino
To Santiago and back (roads & paths; Tours; Francés; sea; roads & paths)
In France, they may well issue QR codes for tourists to be used for access to large scale events and selected locations and stored in the health tier of their 'pass' ... but that is not the EU DCC QR code/certificate.

As to interoperability between the EU DCC system and non-EU systems ... "I believe it when I see it".

I recommend art. 8 of Regulation (EU) 2021/953. So far, no corresponding European Commission implementing act is in the pipeline. Hold on to your CDC cards, peregrin@s and pèlerin·e·s.

Article 8 on COVID-19 Certificates and Other Documentation issued by a Third Country
The Commission may adopt an implementing act establishing that COVID-19 certificates issued by a third country in accordance with standards and technological systems that are interoperable with the trust framework for the EU Digital COVID Certificate and that allow for the verification of the authenticity, validity and integrity of the certificate, and which contain the data set out in the Annex, are to be considered as equivalent to certificates issued by Member States in accordance with this Regulation, for the purpose of facilitating the holders’ exercise of their right to free movement within the Union.
Before adopting such an implementing act, the Commission shall assess whether COVID-19 certificates issued by the third country fulfil the conditions set out in the first subparagraph.
😐
 
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