Poland has been one of the most successful European countries in containing the coronavirus. The country began easing its lockdown at the end of May and is keen to welcome visitors back. This regularly-updated guide includes details on current travel restrictions, flights, outbreak information, and tips for a safe journey.
Last update: August 03, 2020 (this page is updated every Monday)
- The number of new coronavirus cases has been largely stable in Poland throughout the pandemic and social life is increasingly returning to normal
- However, infection rates have been rising over the last fortnight and we advise checking the situation over the coming weeks before committing to travel on Google News.
- There are no travel restrictions within Poland itself, although the government stated this week that quarantines are being considered in key affected areas. This does NOT currently include Krakow.
- There is no quarantine for visitors entering Poland from another country within the European Union, including the UK. However, you may get a random health test when you arrive
- The EU has opened its borders to residents of the following countries: Algeria, Andorra, Australia, Canada, Georgia, Japan, Monaco, Montenegro, Morocco, New Zealand, Rwanda, San Marino, Serbia, South Korea, Thailand, Tunisia, Uruguay, and the Vatican. Most visitors from these countries will be able to enter Poland without quarantine, depending on health checks at the border. China is expected to follow and the list is due to be revised fortnightly
- Most transport into Poland by road, rail, and sea from other EU countries is now back to normal
- Budget airlines are already flying into Poland from other EU countries, but flights from Portugal and Sweden may have restrictions. Check with the airline before booking. International flights are returning as more countries are allowed access. You can check available flights, timings and prices for your chosen dates with one search. It’s also easy and affordable to book your own private Krakow airport transfer to your hotel.
- All air passengers must complete a locator form before travel – see the Flights to Poland section below
- The page will be updated every Monday with the latest information
Travel Restrictions and Visas
Poland is part of what is known as the Schengen Zone, roughly made up of countries in the European Union, and which allows largely borderless freedom of movement within the region. This means you can now enter Poland from any other country within the Schengen Zone, including the UK. Air travel from Portugal and Sweden is now possible but may have entry restrictions on arrival. Check with the airline for clarification.
Additionally, from July 1, the EU opened its borders to residents of the following countries: Algeria, Andorra, Australia, Canada, Georgia, Japan, Monaco, Montenegro, Morocco, New Zealand, Rwanda, San Marino, Serbia, South Korea, Thailand, Tunisia, Uruguay, and the Vatican. China is expected to follow as soon as reciprocity is confirmed. You can enter Poland directly from any of these countries, provided you live there.
Entry is not yet possible from other countries, including the US, but the list is reviewed on a fortnightly basis.
Visitors from most of the countries listed above will not need a visa for a stay of up to 90 days. The exceptions are: Algeria, Morocco, Rwanda, Thailand, and Tunisia. This guide to the Schengen area has full details of which nationalities need a visa for Poland.
Kraków Airport – image © Jason Weaver
Poland Travel Restrictions and Visa Pages
Flights to Poland
Although international flights are now permitted to Poland from countries listed in the previous section, many services have still not fully resumed, and travel restrictions may still apply when flying in from Sweden or Portugal. Budget airlines like Ryanair and EasyJet are already running a basic timetable between key European cities and international services are expected to increase as more countries relax restrictions.
Use a service like Skyscanner to check flights for your chosen dates. See also our comprehensive guide to Kraków Airport and how to get from Kraków Airport to Kraków city centre.
- Important! Everyone is required to fill in a passenger locator form before travel
Queen Boutique Hotel – image © Jason Weaver
Accommodation and Social Hygiene in Poland
Poland is keen to welcome tourists back and hotels were allowed to reopen from early June. Infection rates continue to fluctuate between 200 and 600 new cases, roughly 400 per day.
Polish customer service tends to be excellent, with high standards of cleanliness and hygiene. But new legal requirements have been introduced to help tackle coronavirus, some with heavy fines attached. All establishments must ensure that their staff wear gloves and masks, and that customers maintain at least 2m distance. Tables and other public areas must be disinfected after use, with signs to display this has been done. Most public buildings, including hotels and shopping malls, provide hand sanitiser and ask customers to apply before entering. Hotels are subject to strict rules of hygiene. See our recommendations for the best hotels in Krakow for various budget categories and ideas on the best areas of the city in Where To Stay In Krakow.
Poland Coronavirus Information
Poland currently averages around 400 new cases of coronavirus per day. This figure has been broadly stable since April, although there has been a gradual uptick over the last fortnight. So far, the country’s attempts to contain the virus have been largely successful, although Eastern Europe has generally seen lower infection rates than its Western counterparts. Poland has had roughly 950 confirmed cases per million people, compared to over 2,000 in Germany, more than 4,000 in the UK, and almost 10,000 in the US. The highest Polish infection rates have been in Katowice and Warsaw.
Here is a useful page for the latest coronavirus numbers in Poland. Click EN on the top left for an English version. The daily number of new cases is in the top row, after the + sign. Note that Kraków is in the Małopolska district:
Forum Przestrzenie – image © Jason Weaver
Tips for Safe Travel in Poland
Here are some useful tips to make your trip to Poland a safe one.
- Visitors to Poland still face a moderate risk of exposure to COVID-19, a highly contagious virus, so at-risk individuals should consult a doctor before considering any travel. Similarly, if you display any symptoms of the virus before you leave, don’t travel! See the Travel Health Pro COVID-19 Travel Risk Assessment and the UK government Poland travel advice for comprehensive details
- If you start to feel ill while you’re away, contact the Polish National Health Fund on 800 190 590. Press 6 for English language advice on what steps to take if suspect you might have coronavirus
- You are still required to cover your nose and mouth on public transport and, where practical, in any other shared indoor space. Whilst you no longer have to wear a mask outdoors, there’s strong medical evidence that it’s safer for everyone if you do. Although masks should be available from pharmacies, supermarkets, and a number of enterprising vendors, we recommending bringing them with you. After all, you’ll need one to travel
- Hand sanitiser is widely available at hotels, shopping malls, bars and restaurants, public transport, and many other public buildings. All the same, carry a bottle with you and use it frequently
- As a traveller, you’ll have less access to soap and running water than you would at home, so wash your hands at every opportunity
- Respect the 2m social distancing rule in any shared space. You may get fined up to £6,000 if you don’t!
- Kraków is a very walkable city, so consider exploring on foot, instead of via bus and tram
- Google provides a chart of estimated busy times for popular attractions, so search for what you plan to visit and try to go at quieter times of day
- Provided you meet the criteria for travel to Poland, your visit is no longer considered high risk and you can buy travel insurance to cover the trip. However, things are changing very quickly and not all firms will cover costs incurred by COVID-19. Be sure to check with your provider to clarify what’s on offer. Moneysupermarket has an up-to-date guide on questions relating to the coronavirus and travel insurance. The UK government’s advice on travel insurance is useful for all travellers, regardless of nationality