Travel advice

The Government advises against international travel that is not strictly necessary.

Foto: Mostphotos/Chad McDermott

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs advises against all international travel that is not strictly necessary. Exceptions have been made for countries and regions in the Nordic region and the Schengen area/EEA with a sufficiently low level of transmission (referred to as "green areas"). This should not be taken as encouragement to travel. The Government still advice everyone to consider whether an international travel is strictly necessary.

Anyone returning from an international travel to countries/areas with a high level of infection ("red areas") must enter a 10 days travel quarantine.

The travel advice is intended to reduce the risk of those resident in Norway to be infected while abroad and of those traveling to bring the infection with them to Norway. Prior to travelling it is important that you familiarize yourself with the current infection situation, both for the area where you live and for the area that you want to travel to. Pay attention to the advice for infection control. Keep in mind that the infection situation and the advice for infection control may change rapidly.

What if the area/country you are in is or turns "red"?

A country or area can turn "red" while you are traveling, even if the same area was "green" when you left home. If the area you are in should reach a certain level of infection (number of persons infected per 100 000 inhabitants) the area can turn "red".

The final decision as to which areas and countries are "red" is made by the Government based on recommendations from The Norwegian Directorate of Health and The Norwegian Institute of Public Health (NIPH). 

Refer to the map of the areas that are presently "red" and "green" (fhi.no)

As a rule of thumb, the map will be updated Fridays with changes taking effect from midnight 00:00 am Saturday.

What if you arrive in Norway from a "red area/country"?

  • Keep wearing the face mask from your flight until you have reached home.
  • You need to be in travel quarantine for 10 days from the day of your arrival to Norway.
  • You should stay at home or in another suitable place of residence.
  • You should not go to work, school or kindergarten while in travel quarantine, but you can work from home.
  • You should not use public transport.
  • You can go for a walk but keep a good distance to others. 
  • You should make arrangements for others to help out with your grocery shopping or other necessary errands.
  • If you cannot make any such arrangements, you should visit the shop at times when only few others visit.
  • Wash your hands frequently and thoroughly.
  • Pay close attention to any symptoms developing.
  • Take a test for the coronavirus if you develop any symptoms, see the Coronavirus Self-Checker.
Violation of the quarantine duty is a criminal act.

What if you arrive in Norway from a "green area/country"?

The Government has decided that you are exempt from travel quarantine when arriving in Norway from areas and countries within the EU/EEA/Schengen with a sufficiently low level of transmission. These areas are marked as green in this map from NIPH (fhi.no).

When arriving from a "green area" the following applies:

  • You do not need to go into travel quarantine.
  • Pay close attention to any symptoms developing.
  • Stay at home if you feel ill.
  • Take a test for the coronavirus if you develop any symptoms, see the Coronavirus Self-Checker.
  • Keep a distance to others.
  • Wash your hands thoroughly and frequently.
  • You cannot visit a hospital or nursing home prior to 10 days after your arrival.
  • If you work with patient care in the health services, the Institute of Public Health recommends you provide one negative test for the coronavirus prior to returning to work.
  • Testing can be considered at a local level for healthcare personnel who do not have direct patient contact. This should be determined in cooperation with your employer.

Frequently asked questions and advice for international travel

What if I arrive from a "red area", but am not resident in Norway?

Persons who are not resident in Norway and are under quarantine duty must provide documentation upon arrival of their continuous residence at one registered address for the first 10 days of their stay in Norway. For stays shorter than 10 days, the documentation requirement applies for the full period the person is to stay in Norway. The documentation requirement does not apply to persons residing in Norway.

What if I arrive at a Norwegian airport and have a connecting domestic flight?

Healthy persons who arrive in Norway from a "red area" without any symptoms can travel onwards to their final destination and then stay in quarantine in their own home. Keep wearing the face mask from your flight until you have reached home.

Persons with symptoms can be transported – e.g. by private car – to their place of residence based on guidance from the municipal health officer. An alternative emergency measure would be to keep the person in quarantine in the municipality where the airport is located.

Can I travel through a "red area" without having to go into quarantine?

You can drive your own vehicle or a tour bus through an area with a higher level of infection (referred to as a "red area") on your way to Norway without having to enter travel quarantine. Conditions are that you do not stay overnight in this "red area", that you maintain good hand hygiene throughout the journey and keep a distance to others if you must stop.

Can I be in transit in a "red area" without having to go into quarantine?

No. If you are in transit/have a connecting flight in a "red area" during your travels you will need to enter a 10 days travel quarantine. Violation of the quarantine duty is a criminal act.

Are health personnel arriving from "green areas" outside of Norway required to undergo testing upon return?

The Institute of Public Health recommends that healthcare professionals who have been to "green areas" outside of Norway and who work in patient care provide one negative test for the coronavirus prior to returning to work. This applies to all employees, including new employees and substitutes. Testing can be considered at a local level for healthcare employees who do not have direct patient contact.

Links to further advice

Advice before travelling to "red areas" despite recommendations

Should you need to travel to certain areas despite the recommendations, several things should be considered.

As part of the preparations, you should check what is covered by your travel insurance, including what applies if you turn ill during your journey.

Each country may introduce measures and restrictions to prevent further transmission, e.g. transport restrictions, quarantine or other measures that can have consequences for travellers. Several countries and airports have introduced control measures and closed their borders to people who are not resident in the country. Travellers should also be prepared to answer questions about their health and might be denied entry or be placed in quarantine.

Consider the following before travel:

  • Risk of being infected while travelling (destination, duration, contact with other people).
  • Risk of travel restrictions, curfews, quarantine or other measures in the country you are travelling to.
  • Risk of capacity problems in the healthcare service at the destination if you should turn ill.
  • Risk of lack of possibilities of return travel or medical repatriation.
  • Risk of travel quarantine in Norway upon your return.
  • Risk of not being able to work during the first 10 days after travel (applies to healthcare personnel in particular, but other employers may also have rules about this).

Travellers who are part of a risk group should be vaccinated against seasonal influenza within 14 days before departure during the flu season.

It is also important to familiarize yourself with the general travel advice related to vaccines for other infectious diseases as well as other preventative measures.

Preventive advice during travel


Thorough hand washing with soap and water is an important preventative measure both during the journey and to limit further transmission. Alcohol-based hand disinfection may be an alternative if hand-washing facilities are not available.
  • Avoid contact with persons who are ill, especially those with symptoms of a respiratory tract infection.
  • Avoid coughing onto others, wash your hands frequently and thoroughly and refrain from travelling if you are ill.
Students and other people who are staying in areas with widespread transmission over a longer period should follow the advice from the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, local health authorities and the educational institution/employer.

Travel quarantine

Anyone returning from "red areas" within the Schengen/EEA region or countries outside the Schengen/EEA region must stay in quarantine for 10 days after the date of their arrival in Norway. This is referred to as travel quarantine. See NIPH for an overview of the relevant countries.

If you travel from a "red area" and pass through one or several "red green areas", the time you spend in these "green areas" is counted as quarantine time. As an example: If you travel from a "red area" and pass through a "green area" and spend five days in this "green area" before entering Norway, you are left with only five more days of quarantine duty.

If you are in travel quarantine the following applies to you

You should stay at home or in another suitable place of residence

For a residence to be suitable for implementation of quarantine duty, it must be possible to avoid contact with anyone other than those you normally live with.

This means that accommodations where you have to interact with other guests are not suitable for quarantine. Staying in a motorhome, caravan, tent or cabin at a camping site is not an acceptable address for implementation of quarantine duty if you share a toilet, kitchen or other rooms/facilities with people other than your close contacts/travel companions. The same applies to addresses where you share rooms/facilities with others than those you usually live with, such as a dormitory or other place of residence with a shared bathroom or kitchen.

You can only go outside of your home or place of residence if you can avoid close contact

If you go outside, you must avoid close contact with anyone other than those you normally live with.

You should not seek out public places such as shops or cafes. If unavoidable, you can conduct necessary errands in the store or pharmacy, but you should maintain a minimum of one metre distance to others and avoid queuing.

You should not go to work while in travel quarantine, but you can work from home.

If you are in quarantine and develop symptoms of a respiratory infection such as coughing, fever or breathing difficulties, you should stay at home and not go out until you have fully recovered and display no symptoms. You should also undergo testing as soon as possible. Contact your doctor or the healthcare services if you need medical attention. If you are tested for COVID-19 you should stay at home until the test result has come back negative and you are free of symptoms.

See also information on quarantine (travel or transmission quarantine).

See also questions and answers on travel quarantine at regjeringen.no (in Norwegian).

Exceptions to the quarantine rules

From 15 July 2020, you are not under travel quarantine duty if you arrive in Norway from a country or an area that has a sufficiently low level of infection, also referred to as "green areas".

Crossing borders between Sweden and Norway in connection with work

You are exempt from quarantine duty if you cross the border between areas in Sweden subjected to quarantine duty (referred to as "red areas") and Norway when you travel between your home and your workplace, or while at work. This applies to residents in Norway who work in or are on a business trip to a "red area" in Sweden. It also applies to those from a "red area" in Sweden who are in Norway due to work.

The exceptions do not apply to persons in transit from "red areas" in Sweden.

  • The exception applies only during the time you are travelling between your home and place of work and while at work.
  • You should still avoid close contact with other persons as far as possible, both at work and when travelling to and from work.
  • If you have time off in Norway - either between work sessions or prior to leaving – you must stay in travel quarantine during this leisure time.
  • The travel quarantine period for this leisure time is 10 days from when you last crossed the border from a "red area" in Sweden and into Norway.
You do not need to apply to be exempt. The exception is valid independent of for how long you are in Norway for work. In other words, the exception is valid both for daily commute, longer working periods and for individual assignments.

Neither do you need any special type of documentation, but you must be able to prove that the exception applies to you. For example, your employer may provide you with a written confirmation of your employment in Norway and that you live in Sweden. This can be shown when you cross the border.

When you travel to another country in the Nordic region for work you must relate to the current rules that apply for the specific country.

Testing of employees from the Schengen-/EEA-areas outside of the Nordic region

Persons who enter Norway from Schengen-/EEA-areas in order to work can be exempt from quarantine duty provided that their employer ensures that two corona-virus tests are performed after entry into Norway. The first test must be negative prior to the person starting work. Two tests are required after entry into Norway, with a minimum of 48-hours in between. The second test should be performed on day five at the earliest.

If the first test comes back negative, the exception to the travel quarantine applies only during work and during travel to and from work. You should be in quarantine during leisure time. If the second test also comes back negative, you are exempt from travel quarantine both during work and leisure time. For more information, see the COVID-19-regulation.

In connection with maintenance that is strictly necessary

If you cross the border between areas of Sweden that are subjected to quarantine duty and Norway after having performed maintenance that is strictly necessary and supervision to avert major material damage to holiday properties in Sweden, you are exempt from quarantine upon your return to Norway. 

Exceptions do not apply if you stay overnight at the holiday property or somewhere else in Sweden prior to returning to Norway. Nor do the exceptions apply if you have visited stores or malls etc. or have been in close contact with anyone in Sweden who is not part of your own household.

Access and contact arrangements between children and parents

Persons who cross the border in order to be with children as part of access and contact arrangements between parents and children or children living in two homes are exempt from quarantine duty.

The exception applies to contact arrangements between one of the parents and the child when the parents are divorced or do not live together, or when the Child Welfare Services is responsible for the care of the child and the child travels to be with the parents. This does not open for the opportunity to visit family in another country and then avoid travel quarantine when returning to Norway.

Opportunity for the entity's management to grant exemptions

The entity's management can grant exceptions from the quarantine rules for persons who are essential to maintain the proper operation of critical public functions related to matters of life and health. These are functions such as:

Exceptions do not apply during leisure time, only while at work or during the time you are travelling between home and your place of work by other means than public transport. Avoid close contact with other persons as far as possible.

See also questions and answers about travel quarantine from the Government (in Norwegian).

Previously confirmed COVID-19

It has been decided that persons who have had a confirmed (laboratory tested) COVID-19 infection within the last six months are exempted from quarantine duty. The reason for this is that persons who have undergone a COVID-19 infection are predominantly likely to be protected against a recurrence of the disease, but it is not yet known for how long this protection will last. Anyone showing symptoms of an acute respiratory infection shall still stay at home until all symptoms are gone.

Domestic leisure travel

You can travel freely in Norway if you can avoid spreading the infection. We all share the responsibility to follow the advice for infection control.

To travel in a way that will prevent you from spreading the infection means that you:

  • Do not travel if you are ill, nor to a holiday property.
  • Maintain good hand and cough hygiene.
  • Keep at least one metre distance to others not considered to be your closest contacts.

The above-mentioned advice will help prevent and limit the transmission and spread of COVID-19.

The key measure for infection control is that you stay at home if you are ill. Good cough etiquette and social distancing is crucial in order to limit droplet transmission. Reduced contact between people, by keeping distance and avoiding larger crowds, reduces the risk of transmission – also prior to symptoms developing. Good hand hygiene, and in particular avoiding touching your face with hands that might carry infection, is important to avoid indirect contact transmission.

Plan your trip

Planning trips with a view to avoid transmission between places is advisable. Limit travels that involve close contact with many people, perhaps at several locations. Travels where you are mostly with your own family members or others who you would already have been in contact with at home pose a lower risk of transmission.

It is particularly important to follow the general advice for leisure travel:

  • If you are ill with symptoms of a respiratory infection or fever you should not travel for leisure. Stay at home if you are ill. The Norwegian Institute of Public Health recommends that all persons with symptoms of COVID-19 are tested as soon as possible, read more about testing.
  • Make sure you keep at least one metre distance to others as recommended by the health authorities. As far as possible, you should only spend time with those you normally associate with and are travelling with.
  • Avoid crowded stores that are designed to accommodate fewer people.
  • Avoid public transport if you can (see recommendations for public transport in general.)
  • You should not travel or go to a holiday property if you are in quarantine. Exceptions apply if you show no symptoms and overnight stay at the holiday property is the only way to avoid close contact with a member of your household who is ill with COVID-19.
  • Should you turn ill while travelling or while at a holiday property you should go home, if your state of health permits you to do so. Avoid using public transport as far as possible.

Companies providing public transport should prepare their own routines for longer journeys on how to handle a passenger who falls ill during the journey. If a passenger is suspected to have COVID-19, the passenger should be separated from the other passengers by a minimum of one meter and preferably two metres. Persons who are ill should cover their mouth and nose by using a paper tissue or by wearing a non-medical face mask to reduce the risk of transmitting the disease onto others. When the use of a toilet is required, this should then not be used by others without first being cleaned.

Advice on sound infection control for businesses that offer accommodation, dining, activities and equipment rental etc. have been prepared.

Health care requirements

You are entitled to receive necessary health care in the municipality where you live, or where you currently reside. If you are on holiday/a tourist in another municipality and turn ill, call the emergency out-of-hours clinic on 116 117 to get access to health care or an appointment for COVID-19 testing.

Svalbard

From June 1st, 2020 the Government opened for tourists to travel from mainland Norway to Svalbard and the general entry quarantine for travellers from mainland Norway was lifted. Foreign nationals residing in Svalbard can now travel to mainland Norway on the same terms as prior to the corona-pandemic. For more information, see the governor of Svalbard.

Travel advice for persons in risk groups and their relatives

Advice for persons in risk groups is collated in a separate article on risk groups. An explanation of who has a slight increase of risk and who has a higher risk is also given in that article.

When the level of infection in society is low and you have only a slightly increased risk, you can basically travel like others do while taking extra care to follow the general advice on infection control. As an example, this may imply that grandparents can spend their vacation with their family.

For persons with a definite elevated risk but only a low level of infection in society, you need to make an individual assessment on whether you should travel or not, and with whom you can travel.

Conditions to be considered:

  • Travel duration
  • Proximity to those you travel with and with whom you are not normally in close contact, the number of persons you travel with and whether it will be possible also during the journey to have separate bedrooms and toilets
  • Whether it will be easy to return home if someone should turn ill
  • Access to health services during the journey
Persons in risk groups will in many situations be able to plan for trips with children, grandchildren or others close to them but with whom they do not usually spend time with, in a way where the risk of transmission can be reduced. If the level of infection in society increases, those with only a slightly increased risk should also consider whether or not to travel, while those at a higher risk of a more severe disease progression are discouraged from travelling under such circumstances. For more on this, refer to the article on risk groups.

Recommendations for public transport

When travelling by public transport, people often gather in crowds and it can be difficult to keep sufficient distance to others. This may contribute to further transmission. It is therefore recommended to limit the use of public transport.

Transmission can occur prior to (waiting area, bus-stop, boarding), during or after (disembarking, baggage claim) travelling by public transport. 

Public transport

Recommendations for public transport journeys:

  • Do not travel if you are ill.
  • Try to keep a sufficient distance to your fellow passengers and avoid face-to-face contact. A distance of at least one meter to others throughout the journey is recommended. Distance is the most important factor when traveling for a longer period of time. If crowded, consider postponing your trip.
  • Passengers should stand/sit with sufficient distance to each other. You can sit next to persons considered to be you closest contacts.
  • Avoid coughing or sneezing in the direction of your fellow passengers. If you need to cough or sneeze you should use a paper tissue that you then dispose of, or the crook of your elbow.
  • Keep a good hand hygiene prior to, during and after travelling.
  • Avoid unnecessary touching of surfaces.
  • Be considerate of your fellow passengers and other who travel, in particular elderly people.
  • When you take a taxi, you should sit in the back seat if possible.

Persons who are in quarantine or home isolation should not travel by public transport.

Read the full Infection control guidelines for public transport (bus, train, tram, etc) (in Norwegian).

Flights

A separate guideline for infection control in aviation connected to the COVID-19 outbreak (in Norwegian) has been prepared.

Persons with an acute respiratory tract infection should stay at home, even when the symptoms are only mild. Persons who are in quarantine or home isolation should not be at the airport or travel by air. This applies both to passengers and employees.

​Will I receive sickness benefits if I must stay at home?

You are entitled to sick leave if a doctor recommends you stay at home because you are infected, presumed to be infected or in quarantine. Self-notification must always be considered before sick leave.

The Norwegian Labour and Welfare Administration (NAV) can approve sick leave without personal examination in the case of an infectious disease of significance to public health. More information is available on NAV's webpages (in Norwegian).