Denmark attracts 8km queue of German tourists as EU borders reopen again

Panoramic view from center of Copenhagen toward Amager, Denmark.

European nations have begun easing border controls, with German tourists entering Denmark enmasse for summer holidays.

Traffic queues as long as eight kilometres were recorded at Denmark’s southern border on Monday, which began after the country opened up to residents from Germany.

According to the South Jutland police, the queues started building at the Frøslev border post immediately after midnight and steadily grew overnight, reaching eight kilometres in the early morning.

By about 9am, the queues had reduced to a delay of around 15 minutes, The Local Denmark reported.

It comes as governments across the European Union begin to open their borders, after weeks of closures during the coronavirus pandemic.

With the summer holiday season – a key period for the continent’s tourism market – fast approaching, tourists have, however, been left confused due to a mixed picture across Europe, with each country imposing its own rules and timetables for reopening.

Conflicting statements by Spanish officials, for example, have sparked confusion over the country’s rules for British travellers.

According to BBC News, the mixed messages began after Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez announced over the weekend that Spain’s borders would reopen to travellers from all EU countries on Sunday 21 June, with the exception of Portugal.

And on Monday evening, a Spanish government spokeswoman confirmed to the broadcaster that the UK would be added to the list of countries whose citizens could travel to Spain.

However, Spain’s foreign affairs minister Arancha González Laya later appeared to give new guidance on the travel rules for UK travellers arriving in Spain.

The new stance was apparently prompted by the UK government’s previous decision to impose a two-week quarantine period on most overseas travellers, BBC News reported.

To assist in dispelling confusion by local travellers keen to travel across Europe, the European Commission has launched a website that provides information on travel, COVID-19 restrictions and whether hotels and beaches are open.

However, border checks for most Europeans were dropped in Germany and France, nearly two weeks after Italy opened some of its major attractions, including the Leaning Tower of Pisa, with restrictions.

Announcing Monday’s reopening of borders and Paris restaurants, French President Emmanuel Macron said it’s time “to turn the page of the first act of the crisis” and “rediscover our taste for freedom”.

“This doesn’t mean the virus has disappeared and we can totally let down our guard,” he warned, according to the Associated Press.

“The summer of 2020 will be a summer unlike any other.”

Additionally, Spain is currently allowing in about 1,500 visitors from Germany as part of a pilot project to begin opening up the Spanish tourism market in the coming weeks, Reuters reported.


Featured image:iStock/Brzozowska

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