EU extends digital COVID certificate acceptance across the EU including the UK

Eu Covid Pass
Eu Covid Pass (Image credit: European Commission)

What you need to know

  • The EU is making it easier to travel with a digital COVID certificate.
  • Digital proof of vaccination is now valid across all member states and the UK for 9 months after the last dose of the vaccine was issued.
  • The EU says this means certificate holders shouldn't face any additional restrictions or tests.

The EU this week announced that new rules will establish a new binding acceptance of digital vaccination certificates across member states for 9 months.

The EU stated:

As of 1 February 2022, there are new rules in place that establish a binding acceptance period of 9 months for vaccination certificates, used for travel within the EU.Member States must accept vaccination certificates for a period of 9 months following the administration of the last dose of the primary vaccination. For the Johnson&Johnson vaccine this means 270 days from the first and only shot. For a two-dose vaccine it means 270 days from the second shot, or, in line with the vaccination strategy of the Member State of vaccination, the first and only shot after having recovered from the virus.

The EU says that member states should not provide for different acceptance periods and that the standard doesn't apply to certificates for booster doses. These also only apply to travel restrictions, rather than domestic settings within member state countries. Regardless, it may help smooth out travel across the region, including in the UK:

A person who has a valid EU Digital COVID Certificate should in principle not be subject to additional restrictions, such as tests or quarantine, regardless of their place of departure in the EU.

An interactive map confirms that the UK's own COVID certificates will be accepted as part of the program, and likewise EU certificates are accepted in the UK. 32 other non-EU member states have also joined the initiative.

It means travelers using devices like the iPhone 12 and iPhone 13 can store their vaccine certificates on their phone and travel to any EU member state with minimal fuss. The EU further says the plans will help when it comes time to lift the restrictions. It further stressed that travelers do not need a vaccine to travel in the EU but may be subject to further restrictions such as testing or quarantine.

Stephen Warwick
News Editor

Stephen Warwick has written about Apple for five years at iMore and previously elsewhere. He covers all of iMore's latest breaking news regarding all of Apple's products and services, both hardware and software. Stephen has interviewed industry experts in a range of fields including finance, litigation, security, and more. He also specializes in curating and reviewing audio hardware and has experience beyond journalism in sound engineering, production, and design.

Before becoming a writer Stephen studied Ancient History at University and also worked at Apple for more than two years. Stephen is also a host on the iMore show, a weekly podcast recorded live that discusses the latest in breaking Apple news, as well as featuring fun trivia about all things Apple. Follow him on Twitter @stephenwarwick9