Health Alert – COVID-19 Coronavirus

Health Alert – COVID-19 Coronavirus
U. S. Embassy Prague, Czech Republic
May 11, 2020

Event:  The Czech Ministry of Health confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the Czech Republic.  U.S. Embassy Prague will be sending a daily update to ensure all US citizens have the latest information about COVID19 and local conditions.  Updated information will be prefaced with (NEW).

The U.S. Embassy urges U.S. citizens to enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) to receive alerts and ensure you can be located in an emergency.  U.S. Citizens in an emergency can call 1-888-407-4747 from the U.S. and Canada or plus-1-202-501-4444 from overseas.  

On May 4, 2020, Czech authorities announced that they will continue control of Czech borders until June 13, 2020.  If you need to return to the United States, you are advised to depart now or be prepared to remain in the Czech Republic for an indefinite period of time.  KLM Royal Dutch Airlines has added a daily 11:15am flight to Amsterdam.  Please inquire directly with the airlines about flight options.  If you need to return to the United States, you are advised to depart now or be prepared to remain in the Czech Republic for an indefinite period of time. Please be advised that commercial flight options from the Czech Republic continue to decrease, with very limited flights remaining. Flights from the Czech Republic will likely cease at any moment due to global travel restrictions.  If you need to return to the United States, you must depart now or be prepared to remain in the Czech Republic for an indefinite period of time.  Please understand that the embassy is unable to guarantee seats or assist with booking tickets on commercial flights for private U.S. citizens.  Note that flights from Europe are only being permitted to fly into 13 specific airports in the United States, as detailed on the Department of Homeland Security’s website, so you will need to plan your travel route accordingly.  Please be prepared to stay overnight and make lodging arrangements at connecting points and upon arriving to the United States.  For flight numbers and times, visit https://www.prg.aero/en/flight-information#/odlety or contact the airlines and travel agents directly.

The Embassy has been notified that RegioJet will provide bus service to Frankfurt and London on Mondays and Thursdays throughout May.  Citizens seeking to depart the Czech Republic who are unable to find a flight from Prague may want to consider bus transport to one of these transportation hubs. Interested U.S. citizens should contact the U.S. Embassy at ACSPRG@state.gov for further information.

Czech Ministry of Foreign Affairs has announced that foreigners, including U.S. citizens, who were in the Czech Republic legally at the time of the declaration of the state of emergency on March 12 will be allowed to remain the Czech Republic until July 17, 2020 (i.e., 60 days after the expiration of the state of emergency, currently set for May 17, 2020). This applies to foreigners who were in the Czech Republic on March 12 both with valid visas and on visa-waiver basis.

We understand how difficult the current situation is for those trying to get home to the United States.  The U.S. Embassy in Prague is actively exploring all options to assist U.S. citizens in the Czech Republic, and we will provide additional updates as soon as possible.

Restrictions:  The Department of State has issued a Global Level 4 Health Advisory for COVID-19.

On April 28, the Czech Republic extended the State of Emergency until May 17, 2020.  Please reference the website of the Government of the Czech Republic and the Czech Ministry of Foreign Affairs, as well as our website https://cz.usembassy.gov/, for additional information on these new measures.

Czech authorities are gradually re-opening businesses and loosening restrictions on free movement and gatherings.  For information on planned gradual re-openings of commercial and other facilities in the Czech Republic, see https://koronavirus.mzcr.cz/uvolnovani-opatreni/ (Czech language only). All persons outside of their residences must still wear masks covering face and mouth, except children under two years old, drivers alone in a car, and persons engaging in sports (e.g., running, biking) who remain at least 2 meters away from others.

A mandatory 14-day quarantine or negative COVID result is now compulsory for everyone (Czech citizens/EU nationals/other foreigners) returning from abroad.  This does not pertain to transit through the country and several specific exceptions.

All persons outside of their residences must wear masks covering face and mouth, except children under two years old, drivers alone in a car, and persons engaging in sports (e.g., running, biking) who remain at least 2 meters away from others

Please see additional information for U.S. Citizens Returning from Europe on the Department of State’s website regarding where U.S. citizens are allowed to transit en route to the United States.

On March 14, the Department of State authorized the departure from any diplomatic or consular post in the world of U.S. personnel and family members who have been medically determined to be at higher risk of a poor outcome if exposed to COVID-19.

On March 12, the government of the Czech Republic declared a State of Emergency and implemented enhanced screening and quarantine measures to reduce the spread of COVID-19.  Travelers should be prepared for travel restrictions to be put into effect with little or no advance notice.  U.S. citizens who are considering returning to the United States are urged to work with their airlines to make travel arrangements while flights are still available.  The Czech Republic has barred admission to travelers who have recently visited high-risk countries.

The government of the Czech Republic has implemented measures to limit the spread of COVID-19. Schools and universities, as well as cultural institutions, including theaters, museums, and cinemas, for the next 30 days.

Embassy Services:  Effective March 16, 2020, the U.S. Embassy in Prague has suspended routine services.  For routine or emergency American Citizens Services, including emergency passports, please visit our website for additional information.

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