Health Alert – U.S. Embassy Budapest, Hungary May 8, 2020
The Department of State has issued a Global Level 4 Health Advisory advising U.S. citizens to avoid all international travel due to the global impact of COVID-19.
International commercial flight options currently exist in Hungary. U.S. citizens who wish to return to the United States should make commercial arrangements as soon as possible unless they are prepared to remain abroad for an indefinite period. The U.S. government has no plans to arrange repatriation flights in Hungary at this time.
- Hungary has 3178 confirmed cases of COVID-19 within its borders. Number of deceased: 392.
- According to the government’s decree (published March 27 in the Official Gazette), people can only leave their homes to go out to go to work and shop and to “run errands regarding basic needs.” Grocery stores, drug stores, pharmacies, and markets will be open. People will be required to keep one and a half meters apart. Those above 65 can only visit food stores and pharmacies between 9 am and 12 pm. Between 9 am and 12 pm only those above 65 are allowed to visit these places. Gathering in groups will be banned. People will be allowed to go for walks and children will be allowed to be taken out for walks in small groups. Curfew measures are in effect from March 28 until further notice. For more details please see the Government of Hungary’s coronavirus page at www.koronavirus.gov.hu
- As of April 27, people visiting shops, markets, and shopping malls, or using public transport and taxis in Budapest are mandated to wear face masks or otherwise cover their faces with mask-like substitutes (scarves, shawls, etc.).
- Budapest’s Liszt Ferenc airport remains open, however only Hungarian citizens and permanent resident card holders of the European Economic Area (EU member states, Switzerland, and Norway), other permanent resident card holders who have close Hungarian relatives, and diplomats with resident cards are able to enter Hungary. Per the airport authority, foreign citizens who are turned away by the authorities must wait in the designated transit area until departure.
- For departing passengers with cancelled flights, travelers should check carrier schedules for the latest updates and work directly with the carrier or travel agent to arrange or reschedule travel.
- The U.S. Embassy in Budapest is currently offering only limited American Citizens and visa services. All previously scheduled American Citizen Services appointments through the end of April are cancelled. In case you need to travel to the U.S. in the next seven days please come to the Embassy to submit an application for an emergency passport. Official hours for emergency passport applications: Monday – Friday 8:30 – 9:30 and 13:00 – 14:00. Passport pick up: Monday – Friday 15:00 – 16:00. No previously scheduled appointment is necessary. Visa applicants with interview appointments scheduled in the next 30 days should refer to the following website for more information: http://cdn.ustraveldocs.com/hu/.
- As of March 17 the government ordered the closure of all clubs, entertainment venues, pubs, cinemas, and cultural institutions. Cafes, restaurants, and stores are subject to limited opening hours. This limitation does not apply to pharmacies, food, and drug stores.
Entry and Exit Requirements
- Hungary’s chief medical officer on the evening of March 26 issued a decree banning with immediate effect all civilian passenger transport by air, rail or bus into Hungary, as well as the entry of non-Hungarian citizens into the country. Hungarians entering the country were obliged to undergo medical examination. The decree allowed a humanitarian corridor to be left open for foreigners travelling across Hungary into neighboring countries, and made allowances for drivers in international freight transportation.
- Only Hungarian citizens, permanent resident card holders of the European Economic Area (EU member states, Switzerland, and Norway), other permanent resident card holders who have close Hungarian relatives, and diplomats with resident cards are able to enter Hungary. (For detailed information on temporary reintroduction of border control in the Schengen Zone please visit the website of the European Commission.)
- Travel restrictions barring entry to the U.S. from the Schengen Zone do not apply to U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents and some family members of U.S. citizens, including any prospective adoptee who is seeking to enter the United States pursuant to the IR-4 or IH-4 visa classifications. For further information about the exceptions and the most current information regarding COVID-19, the March 11 and March 14 Presidential Proclamations, and its impact on travel to the United States, please visit www.coronavirus.gov, www.dhs.gov/coronavirus and www.whitehouse.gov/.
Actions to Take:
- Consult the CDC website for the most up-to-date information.
- For the most recent information on what you can do to reduce your risk of contracting COVID-19 please see the CDC’s latest recommendations.
- Visit the COVID-19 crisis page on travel.state.gov for the latest information.
- Check with your airlines or cruise lines regarding any updated information about your travel plans and/or restrictions.
- Visit our Embassy webpage on COVID for information on conditions in Hungary.
- Visit the Department of Homeland Security’s website on the latest travel restrictions to the U.S.
- U.S. Embassy Budapest, Hungary
Szabadság tér 12
+36 1 475 4400
- State Department – Consular Affairs
888-407-4747 or 202-501-4444
- Hungary Country Information
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