The Public Health Agency of Sweden
Updated 19 February 2020

Information to travellers

Information to travellers

  • What are the recommendations for travel within Sweden?

    Please consider whether your trip is necessary – we all need to help slowing the rate of COVID-19 spreading through Sweden. Anyone that is ill should not travel at all. People belonging to a risk group particularly need to consider whether they should travel or receive visitors.

    There are clear indications that COVID-19 is spreading in the community in several regions in Sweden. Therefore, the Public Health Agency urges everybody to consider whether trips to cities, skiing resorts, and other popular holiday spots are necessary at this time.

    If COVID-19 spreads to a majority of the regions in Sweden, we risk a situation where the healthcare system’s resources become increasingly difficult to redistribute in order to support all affected areas. It is also important to know that you need to be able to care for yourself, should you fall ill when away from home. If you require help, please be aware that resources might be limited. You should also arrange for either isolation or a way to travel home in a way that does not risk spreading the infection to others.

    In addition to the above, previous recommendations regarding how to protect yourself and others from disease still apply.

  • What are the recommendations for skiing trips?

    Please consider whether your trip is necessary – we all need to help slowing the rate of COVID-19 spreading through Sweden. Skiing resorts can be particularly problematic as they attract people from many different parts of the country, for example during the Easter holiday.

    The resorts themselves have already put measures in place to decrease the risk of large gatherings at queues to ski lifts etc., and there is a smaller risk for transmission in the open air than indoors. Therefore, the ski slopes can remain open while restaurants and after ski events are affected by the new rules for restaurants and bars.

    More information is available here:

    New rules for restaurants and bars (news article from the Public Health Agency, March 24th, in Swedish).

    Ski resorts put measures in place for increased safety (Swedish ski areas industry association, March 24th, in Swedish).

  • What is the advice for travelling with train, bus or taxi?

    When you travel by train, bus or taxi, follow our advice on how to protect yourself and others. Stay at home if you feel ill, keep your hands clean, cough and sneeze into your elbow, avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth.

    You can also aim to keep at a distance from other people. Please refer to local advice and routines issued by the transportation providers.

    It is still unclear whether indirect contact, i.e. contact with respiratory droplets or secretions on surfaces and items, contributes to the spread of COVID-19.

    Make sure to wash your hands after travelling. Alcohol-based hand rub is an alternative when washing facilities are not available.

    Protect yourself and others from spread of infection

  • Would health checks for people arriving by air prevent COVID-19 from spreading in Sweden?

    Our recommendations are based on information from agencies like the WHO and ECDC. Experience from the SARS epidemic shows that health checks had little or no effect. Health checks are require a lot of resources, but have limited possibilities to identify infected people since they only detect those that have developed symptoms. According to international health regulations, the flight captain is required to inform the arrival destination of any symptoms of illness in passengers.

  • What is the advice regarding international travel?

    The Swedish Ministry for Foreign Affairs issues advice regarding travel to other countries (in Swedish).

    Due to the ongoing pandemic and a changeable situation, the Ministry for Foreign Affairs currently advise against non-essential travel to all countries. This is valid from 14th March through to 14th April, when a new assessment will be done.

    For updated information, please visit the Ministry’s web page about the coronavirus and about the current situation in other countries. If you are a Swedish citizen and need further assistance, you can email the consular services at ud-kc-resefragor@gov.se or call 08-405 5005.

    A formal advice against travelling to certain countries or regions can be issued on the basis of political unrest, violence, threats, or a risk for disease. The Public Health Agency are in close contact with the Ministry for Foreign Affairs regarding the possible consequences of disease transmission between countries.

    The Ministry for Foreign Affairs can advise against non-essential travel (e.g. tourist visits), or from all travel which includes business travel and all other visits. There are also situations where Swedish citizens are advised to leave certain countries.

    The Public Health Agency does not issue recommendations for individuals or groups of people. However, we may pass on recommendations based on our international collaborations with the WHO and others to the Ministry for Foreign Affairs.

    Each person must assess their own situation, based on the need to travel and the available information about the disease from sources such as the WHO and ECDC, who present the official data reported by different countries.

    The International Air Transport Association (IATA) offers information about travel to different countries. For advice regarding planned journeys, please contact your travel agency or insurance company if you have questions about cancellations.

  • What are the rules for placing people in quarantine in Sweden?

    Mandatory quarantine is a powerful intervention that is strictly regulated in the Communicable Diseases Act. Since COVID-19 is classed as a disease that is dangerous to society, the regional communicable diseases officers can decide to place healthy individuals in quarantine. This may mean restricting people’s movements to particular buildings such as their home, a part of another building, or a geographical area.

    If a less intrusive intervention, e.g. issuing rules of conduct, can give the same effect it should be used instead.

  • Do I need to take extra precaution after travelling, even though I feel well?

    No, but you should follow the current recommendations in Sweden. Stay at home if you feel unwell. The symptoms reported are manly fever and cough. Breathing problems, runny or blocked nose, sore throat, headache, nausea, or muscle and joint pain are common symptoms. Most people have mild symptoms that clear without treatment. Some develop a severe form om COVID-19 with breathing difficulties and pneumonia.

    The time between getting infected and developing symptoms (the incubation period) seems to be between 2 and 14 days. Most people develop symptoms after 5 days. Individual cases may deviate from this time frame.

    It is very important that you stay at home if you feel ill. If you can no longer manage the illness on your own, please call 1177 for medical advice (available in English). Please do not visit a hospital or healthcare centre unless instructed to do so.