What you need to know about the validity of vaccination certificates in Europe

From February 1, the European Union unified the validity of vaccination certificates.

What you need to know about the validity of vaccination certificates in Europe

The European Union has unified the validity of vaccination certificates since February 1. However, not all EU countries follow the pan-European requirements. What do vaccinated Russians need to know when planning trips to Europe? We collected the most important.


From February 1, 2022, the recommended validity period for the EU digital certificate for COVID-19 vaccination (EU DCC) for those who completed the full cycle of vaccination officially is 9 months (270 days).

Thus, vaccinated Russians will not be able to use their annual vaccination certificates to enter a number of European countries if more than 9 months have passed since the second vaccination (and in some countries even less than that).

As stated in the materials of the European Commission, the period of 270 days after the completion of the primary vaccination is valid for both single-phase and two-phase vaccines. At the same time, the established period of 9 months does not apply to the effect of booster doses of the vaccine.

It is also emphasized that the EU DCC digital certificate is only valid for movement across EU borders, however, countries- EU members may apply different rules when used in a domestic context. For example, for admission to public places (similar to Russian certificates with QR codes from the State Services website).

On vaccination certificates, booster doses will be indicated for two-component vaccination as “3/3”, for a single vaccination – as “2/1”. At the same time, for those who have recovered from COVID-19 and received the first dose of the biphasic vaccine, the vaccination will also be recorded as “2/1” on the certificates.

In the EC, they emphasize that certificates that were issued differently must be corrected and reissued in order to make sure boosters can be distinguished from full vaccination status on the certificate.


Despite the general recommendations of Brussels, not all EU countries adhere to the pan-European rules. Including among them there are states that accept Russian tourists. Therefore, our compatriots need to take into account the requirements of individual countries for the validity of vaccination certificates and booster doses for their renewal. 

Let's emphasize right away: in those EU countries where Russian tourists vaccinated by Sputnik V are allowed, most likely a guaranteed booster will be a re-vaccination with the same drug. And therein lies another big problem for vaccinated Russians. The most common (and practically the only one in many regions) revaccination option is Sputnik Light.

But “Sputnik Light” as a booster vaccination of all EU countries recognizes only Cyprus, in addition, with any Russian vaccine, you can enter Hungary. But this is where the list ends. And in the rest of the open countries of Europe in 2022, vaccinated tourists from the Russian Federation, who have passed more than 9 or even 7 months since the vaccination, will either have to take a PCR test on a general basis, or look for a booster somewhere with Sputnik V.< /p>

According to the information of the Tourism Office of the Republic of Croatia in Russia, vaccinated to Russian tourists to enter Croatia from 1 February, you will need a certificate, the validity of which does not exceed 270 days. 

“If this period is longer, the Russians will need a booster vaccination – this should also be Sputnik V,” the Croatian tourist office specified. Recall that you can also enter Croatia with a PCR test, without a certificate.

Bulgaria follows the European rules from February 1: the validity of the vaccination certificate is 270 days, after of which Russians will need a booster vaccination to confirm their vaccinated status. And most likely, it will be the same Sputnik V, since again only this Russian vaccine is recognized in Bulgaria. However, it is also possible to enter Bulgaria without vaccination – only with a PCR test.

The validity of vaccination certificates with which tourists, including Russians, can enter Slovenia will also be reduced from 12 to 9 months (270 days). Of the vaccines, only the classic Sputnik is recognized. But you can also enter Slovenia only with a PCR test, without a vaccination certificate.

From March 1, 2022, the vaccination certificate for entry into Cyprus is valid for a maximum of 9 months. If more than 9 months have passed since the completion of the vaccination course, the traveler will need a booster vaccination. For Russians vaccinated with Sputnik V, Sputnik V (two doses) or single-phase Sputnik Light are recognized as a booster. You can also come to Cyprus just with a PCR test.

Greece is more demanding on the validity of vaccination certificates: from February 1, it will be only 7 months. Thus, local and foreign citizens who have passed more than 7 months since the last full course of vaccination are considered unvaccinated in Greece.

To confirm their COVID-19 vaccinated status in Greece, they need a booster dose of the vaccine. Which of the Russian vaccines is recognized by the Greek authorities as a booster is not yet clear at all. Perhaps some clarifications from the Greek side will appear later. But “Sputnik V”   (and not “Sputnik Light”) is the most likely option. If there is no booster, it remains to go to Greece with a PCR test, without a certificate (this is also possible).

In Hungary, from February 15, the validity of vaccination certificates will be limited to only 6 months. Since Hungary accepts all Russian vaccines, those who have been revaccinated with Sputnik Light should have no problems with entry. In addition, you can also come to Hungary without vaccination – with a PCR test.


As for other EU countries, so far closed to Russian tourists, vaccinated with domestic vaccines, the recommended validity period of the vaccination certificate of 270 days from February 1 is followed by Ireland, Iceland, the Netherlands, the Czech Republic, Switzerland, Germany, Spain, Poland, Portugal, Estonia, Norway, Finland, Latvia (for single-phase vaccines, this is 5 months).

Austria, Lithuania and Italy will require a vaccination certificate no older than 180 days, Belgium will recognize the vaccination certificate as valid , if no more than 150 days have passed since the completion of immunization.

France has limited the validity of the vaccination certificate to 7 months. The most difficult will be vaccinated tourists who are planning a trip to Malta. There, the vaccination certificate is only valid for 3 months.


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