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Original date of publication: September 2, 2020

Rent a Car in Hungary

Kemwel - Leisure seekers aspiring to rent a car in Hungary may need to temporarily put that idea to rest as the country closed its borders to international visitors on September 1. The ban will be in effect for 30 days.

So far in the trajectory of COVID-19 across Europe, Hungary and Ukraine have become the two countries to shut down its borders for a second time due to increasing COVID-19 numbers. The mission is to flatten the curve as Hungary currently deals with an average of 686 new daily cases, according to CoronaTracker. As of September, Hungary has registered over 6,100 cases and 615 deaths from COVID-19.

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Can foreigners travel to Hungary?

While non-essential tourism to Hungary is currently prohibited, exemptions do exist for Hungarian citizens, residents and their spouces, as well as diplomats, military convoys, essential workers, humanitarian workers, as well as foreign students. According to Prime Minister Gergely Gulyás, “As a main rule, from the beginning of September, foreign citizens may not enter the territory of Hungary, only in justified cases.”

Gulyás will reportedly implement tighter border controls and stricter quarantine policies for Hungarians returning from abroad who “must be quarantined for 14 days – or until they can present two negative tests two days apart,” said the Prime Minister. “We can only accept results if the testing takes place under controlled laboratory conditions in Hungary.”

Whether or not Hungary will reinforce its "color-coded entry system" as it did when the borders first opened has yet to be determined. Taken into effect on July 15 until the recent closure, this system based around risk assessment designated countries as green, yellow or red. Specifically, green meant uninhibited entry while yellow signified 14-day quarantine and red meant no entry at all.

Does Hungary have a travel ban?

Beginning September 1, the country of around 10 million citizens reverted to the same restrictions from March 16 when Hungary first closed borders. Citizens are also advised not to travel outside of Hungary for the next month as the country implements similar procedures taken back in March when it first closed-off the borders.This time around, officials intend to mitigate a second-wave of COVID-19 cases that have been happening elsewhere in places like Spain, France and Poland.

Although tourism is currently put on pause, special border crossings can be made during limited hours plus travel within the humanitarian corridor, according to Gulyás. Sporting events will also still take place but with stricter rules, in addition to diplomatic and official travel. Further exemptions are also up to the discretion of the national police chief.