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Norway Travel Restrictions: Who Can Enter Norway?

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While Norway has ended its national restrictions, the entry rules remain in place—but they are changing. Here's the latest situation on entry restrictions and quarantine obligation in Norway.

Well, who'd have thought we'd still be here almost a year and a half after the first infection was detected in Norway? The pandemic has killed 850 people in Norway so far, but far more elsewhere.

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For that reason, some of Norway's travel restrictions remain in place, even though the government has ended all national measures.

Before we start…

I get questions literally every day from people wondering when they will be able to travel to Norway. Despite sharing the latest information on Life in Norway's coronavirus status page, I have no ‘insider' information. All I can do is share the current rules and restrictions.

With that in mind, I have produced this article to gather together the latest information on the entry restrictions in one place.

Bear in mind that there may be a delay between new announcements and this page being updated. Please also understand that I can't cover every personal situation and exception. This page is not a substitute for checking the official guidelines. I'll be sharing the relevant links throughout the article.

With that in mind, read on…

Tourist hiker in Norway's Lofoten islands
Most tourists must wait a little longer for views like this in Norway's Lofoten Islands

Norway's travel restrictions in brief

  • From September 25, all residents of EU/EEA/Schengen countries, the UK and Switzerland can enter Norway.
  • Only those coming from red countries have to quarantine, but those holding a valid EU digital certificate are exempt. The UK's NHS Covid Pass is accepted on the same terms as the EU certificate.
  • The above rules also apply to Norway's list of ‘purple' countries – see below.
  • Residents of all other countries are not permitted to enter Norway for tourism, but can visit close family and boyfriends/girlfriends upon application.
  • Testing requirements for those arriving in Norway has been reduced.
  • Quarantine hotels are no longer mandated—quarantine can now be undertaken at home or other suitable locations.

The full Norway entry restrictions are quite detailed, so please be patient as we dive into the full list of ifs and buts!

Firstly, it's important to understand that even if you are permitted to enter Norway, you may be required to serve a quarantine period.

Norway's colour-coded system

As with many countries, Norway adopted a traffic-light system for grading a country's coronavirus risk. Residents from countries graded ‘red' are considered to have a ‘quarantine obligation' upon entry.

Norway travel restrictions Europe map as of 4 October 2021
Image: FHI.

To see what colour grading your country has, check the website of the Norwegian Institute of Public Health. Their colour map is updated regularly. I have included the latest version above for your convenience.

Rules for Norwegian citizens and residents of Norway

Generally speaking, all Norwegian citizens and foreign-born residents of Norway are allowed to enter the country. That has been the case throughout the pandemic so far.

However, you may be required to undergo a period of quarantine at home if you arrive from a red/purple/grey country and do not hold a digital coronavirus certificate.

Norway's coronavirus certificate (also known as a vaccine passport) is available at helsenorge.no. It provides verifiable digital proof of vaccination status, test results and/or proof of previous infection. A valid certificate enables residents of Norway to skip quarantine when returning to the country.

Rules for residents of European countries

The following rules apply to residents of EU/EEA/Schengen countries, and the United Kingdom and Switzerland. From midday on 25 September, all residents of these countries are permitted to enter Norway for any reason.

If arriving from a red country, you will be required to undergo a quarantine period, but this no longer needs to take place in a hotel. If you hold a valid EU digital coronavirus certificate, you are exempted from the quarantine. Those having to quarantine can take a PCR test to exit quarantine after three days.

Vaccine pasport for EU residents

From June 24, the EU vaccine passport has been accepted at the border under the same terms as the Norwegian version. This means that fully-vaccinated European residents will be able to enter Norway, quarantine free. The UK's NHS Covid Pass is now accepted on the same terms as the EU system.

This does not mean that everyone who is fully vaccinated can enter Norway! It means that if you are otherwise eligible to enter Norway, you can skip the quarantine if you are fully vaccinated.

Hikers view of fjord in Norway
Norway's hiking trails will once again be populated mostly by Norwegians this summer.

Rules for other countries

All other countries are considered ‘grey' countries, with the exception of a handful of countries considered to have a low infection risk. These are known as purple countries.

Purple countries

From September 25, residents of purple countries can travel to Norway on the same terms as European citizens, see above. The quarantine period will apply. At the time of writing, only New Zealand, Saudi Arabia, Singapore and Taiwan are classed as purple countries.

Grey countries

Tourism from grey countries—including the United States—is not yet permitted. To gain entry to Norway, one of the items of the exception list must apply to you.

This includes holding the EU's digital certificate proving vaccination, or having a close family member in Norway. The full list of exceptions can be found at the Norwegian Directorate of Immigration. There's more information about “close family members” below…

Family visits from outside of Europe

From September 12, close family members and romantic partners of Norwegian residents will be able to visit the country, regardless of their country of residence. Up until that date, this exemption remains possible for residents of ‘purple' countries only.

SAS airliner
More people will soon be able to visit Norway from outside Europe.

However, the quarantine period will still apply to arrivals, as will the requirement for a negative test result. In this case, family members are defined as:

  1. Adults, children and stepchildren and parents and stepparents of adult children/stepchildren
  2. Grandparents, grandparents, grandchildren and great-grandchildren
  3. Boyfriends/girlfriends over the age of 18 and their children. The relationship must have lasted for a minimum of nine months and the parties must have met each other physically before. For this category, prior consent must be obtained through UDI.

Norway travel restrictions FAQ

As I said before, I can't address individual circumstances on this page, especially as there are so many exceptions to the rules. However, some key information follows.

Do I need a negative test to enter Norway?

A negative test certificate taken within 24 hours of departure must be presented by all travellers arriving from ‘red' countries that do not hold the EU coronavirus certificate. The government also requires those arriving from ‘red' areas to undergo a rapid antigen test or PCR test at the border.

The testing requirements are set to be updated on 25 September, removing the testing requirement for many groups of people. We will update this when we know more.

What is a quarantine hotel?

Previously, people entering Norway from an area with a high infection rate had to stay in a quarantine hotel. This wasn't optional – authorities at the border took arrivals directly to the hotel.

A colourful guest room at the Thon Hotel Alta

The quarantine hotels are typically located close to airports. Travellers must pay a subsidised fee of NOK 500 per day for the accommodation and meals. You are not permitted to leave the floor, nor have guests.

The full quarantine period is 10 days but can be shortened to seven days upon a negative test result. The minimum stay in a hotel is three days and upon a negative test, the rest of the quarantine period can be served at another suitable location.

However, from 25 September, the requirement for a quarantine hotel is removed. Quarantine can now be served in a private home or other suitable location. Quarantine hotels will remain open for those who have nowhere else to stay.

When will things change?

The government revealed that it will consider loosening further requirements in 3-4 weeks. The next steps will include an expansion of the purple country list to include all countries on the EU's third country list, and a relaxation of the quarantine obligation for some groups.

Where can I get the official guidelines?

Great question! As I already said before, I cannot guarantee the timelines of the information on this page. So, you should definitely check the official guidelines.

Unfortunately, unlike some other countries, Norway has kept its coronavirus information distributed across the various government ministries and directorates, so finding a precise answer can be tricky. Here's where you can find the details:

Regjeringen.no: The official government webpages on the pandemic

FHI: The Norwegian Institute of Public Health maintains the colour-coded map of country-based restrictions. It's also home to the official statistics.

UDI: The Norwegian Directorate of Immigration details the specific entry requirements and exceptions in full.

About David Nikel

Originally from the UK, David now lives in Trondheim and was the original founder of Life in Norway back in 2011. He now works as a professional writer on all things Scandinavia.

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46 thoughts on “Norway Travel Restrictions: Who Can Enter Norway?”

  1. I lived in USA for 45 years and now moving back to Norway. I am a US citizen
    applied for duel citizenship 70 years old fully vaccinated and can not travel to Norway now. I have two sisters and two brothers in Norway that are Norwegian
    citizens, and I am going to live with my sister until I get all my things in order.
    I do not understand why I cant go there.I was born norwegian citizen and was
    a citizen of Norway for 42 years before I became US CITIZEN. Duel citizenship
    was not allowed at the time.

    Reply
    • The rules are unkind, unfair, and not entirely rational. That is a feature, not a bug: authorities want to discourage people from travel. The objective is partly political (“look how strict we are to protect you from the evils that lurk outside Norway”) and partly incompetence (once the most vulnerable are fully vaccinated, severe restrictions make little sense).
      Unfortunately, in your case the decision to end your citizenship had consequences which now makes you a ‘foreigner’.

      Reply
  2. Your article was very informative. Thank you. But there is something I didn’t understand. I am a Romanian who lives outside EU/EEA. Hence after 5th of July can I enter Norway with quarantine or will it be still forbidden? Because in some news it says residents of EU countries and in some others it says EU citizens.

    Reply
  3. Hi David. Thank you for this wonderful website. I refer to it almost daily for news and especially news of the borders opening. It must take a humungous amount of time to keep up!
    I am half Norwegian and am desperate to see my ailing aunt in Bergen. She is 92 and we are very close.
    I have read conflicting advice. In some articles I have read, red countries are not permitted to enter unless we have a spouse or very close relative (aunts not included.) Other articles seem to say we can enter but must quarantine, and in other articles, tourists (as I would be classed) from a red country cannot enter even if they’re fully vaccinated, as I am. Very complex and confusing. I would appreciate some clarity, if possible. There must be others like me, who have family in Norway they have not seen for over a year. Thank you.

    Reply
    • Hi, I can’t answer your question as there’s lots of information I don’t know, such as where you live. For very specific situations such as yours you shouldn’t rely on news reports and just read the official guidelines on both the entry restrictions and quarantine obligation (they are two different things). News sites (including this one) are just reporting on those rules. The links are at the end of the article. Best wishes

      Reply
      • Thanks David. I’m in the UK, a UK citizen. I’m checking the Gvt website regularly. That’s all we can do for now. Although chances are we’ll stay red for a while now, sadly. Thank you.

        Reply
    • Hi Debra,
      I am in a situation similar to yours. Half Norwegian, U.S. citizen, but my mother was a Norwegian citizen so I am not. My uncle is not well and I would love to see him and my aunt, but it doesn’t seem like he would be considered close family. I am in disbelief over how opaque the Norwegian government websites are! This website has provided the clearest information so far. I am confused about what color the U.S. is (above it says it was denied purple status?) or if it is included in the E.U. color coding.
      It seems we just have to be patient and wait a little longer.

      Reply
      • Apologies, have just seen this, Kirsten. I know how you feel, I’m so sorry. Just keep checking the Government websites and, like me, one day soon it will be a different story!

        Reply
  4. Hi David. Thanks for the Article. Any idea on when the borders will be opening to North American Countries. Particularly, Canada?

    Reply
  5. Hi David,

    read now through all official statements of the Norwegian government that I could find. So in short to be sure: In case I am a foreigner from a green country (as of 5th July), I will be allowed to enter Norway as a tourist, right? Then taking either a test or be excepmted as fully vaccinated person.
    Best wishes

    Reply
  6. Hi David,
    Great Reading & very informative. With this, can you please clarify the following being – I am a UK resident awaiting a Work Permit from UDI to start a new job in Norway where I have worked many times in the past prior to Brexit. I am not vaccinated nor do I want to be & am under the impression that I can travel to Norway as long as I complete the 72 hour Entry Registration plus take a Covid Test 24 hours prior to travelling. I am also fully aware that I will have to quarantine on arrival & take the required Tests during that period. Bottom line is can a non-vaccinated UK citizen travel to Norway for Work purposes if adhering to the above? All Norwegian Government websites do not specifically answer my question.
    Cheers David.

    Reply
    • Hi, I get all my information from government websites, so if you don’t find an answer there then I certainly won’t have one. As your inquiry deals with immigration you should try http://www.udi.no as there is detailed information there related to how coronavirus affects people with work permits.

      Reply
    • Hi – beware. We were also under the (false) impression that UK residents and nationals are allowed to enter for up to 3 months (with a quarantine requirement) without a visa and were even told this by the ministry of health helpline. My daughter travelled to start her student placement yesterday but was returned home because at the moment, UK nationals are NOT allowed to enter (****Brexit!) and generally speaking, visas are not being issued – from 1 August student visas will be valid but I don’t know about work visas. The 90 day rule has been suspended. She has both vaccines, but this is not yet accepted either. A very frustrating and expensive experience! Good luck. And great web resource by the way! The information available is so difficult to get a clear answer from.

      Reply
  7. Hi,

    Thanks for keeping this page updated.
    I’m travelling to Norway from the uk on 5/7 to work. I’m fully vaccinated. Do you know if the borders are accepting nhs COVID certificates. I can’t add my certificate to the eu passport app yet and this is all I have. Thanks

    Reply
    • Adrian

      You will have to go to the Quarantine Hotel I am here at present also fully vaccinated in UK, spending my fifth night as they are slow in getting results back to you. You may be lucky but generally they don’t accept the NHS certificate at the border, See my post under COVID tab.

      Reply
      • Hi Mark – are you there under an exemption? My daughter was just turned back as she needed a visa (90 day rule is suspended). They tried to scan her NHS vaccine certificate but it didn’t work. She was happy to quarantine but was denied entry. Just interested to know what grounds UK people can enter.

        Reply
  8. Hi David

    Thanks for the information. Is it correct that colour codes change every Sunday to Monday night at 00:00? Does this mean if my country (Belgium) stays green coming Sunday, I will surely be able to travel on Sunday 18th of July?

    Thank you

    Reply
  9. Dear David,

    Many thanks indeed for all info. I am British and arrive next week from London with my Norwegian wife, and British 16, 14 and 11 year olds. We have both been double vaccinated. We know the NHS certificate is not valid, that we will take tests before and on arrival, and quarantine, although not in a hotel. Please can you confirm if it is 3 days or 10 days quarantine- with a test not before 7 days ? I have been given contradictory info and have been in contact with the UK embassy in Oslo, as well as scouring the deliberately confusing and complex No govt info. ? Many thanks in advance, Matthew.

    Reply
  10. Hi David thankyou so much for the info you share i am going fishing to sandland brygge up north in early sept i will watch for your updates every week the indian varient is exploding in lancashire and the prediction is for cases to double every week with possibly 200 deaths a day by august with upto 100 thousand cases a day causing severe times for our nhs, this looks like travel to Norway this autumn is very unlikely.
    Regards,
    Graeme.

    Reply
  11. I am a norweigan citizen living in Canada.
    Going to visit my family on the 27th of July.

    Was wondering if I need to take a covid test prior to landing in oslo?

    Reply
  12. I’m fully vaccinated and traveling on July 24th From USA to Trondheim via Amsterdam. My Norwegian wife and kids are currently in Trondheim. Will I be able to visit them? Do I have to quarantine? If so, at home or at a hotel?

    Thanks!

    Reply
  13. I am a fully vaccinated American physician. My wife is Norwegian. We live in the USA.
    She can get in, but it appears I’ll be deported. Are there any exceptions. I am registered and have a certified helsenorge certificate. But I can’t access it without a digital ID
    Any advice
    We are traveling tomorrow
    July 16

    Reply
  14. Hi David

    I live in England with my Norwegian son partner of 14 years and our 10 year old son. We are both double vaccinated but only have the nhs app as proof as can’t have the EU covid pass because of brexit!
    We have flights booked to go to Norway next week, but I’m concerned now that I can’t go with my partner and my son?
    I’ve read and reread the rules and I go round in circles!!!! Help please!

    Reply
  15. Currently students from all countries are allowed back into Norway to study. However, the new rule excludes PhD students. PhD students are still barred entry into Norway to complete their studies as they would have a work visa and not a student visa, given that most perform both work (eg lecturing) and student duties. Is there a reason why PhD students are being discriminated against? In many cases, coursework is still needing to be done and these students will not be able to take part in any course activities if they are not allowed entry into the country to study. Does anyone know when PhD students will be allowed to enter Norway to study?

    Reply
  16. When will the Norwegian government be allowing PhD students to enter the country (currently they cannot enter as they have work visas and not student visas)?

    Reply
  17. H i
    My husband is Norwegian living in England, we plan to visit my son who is Notwegian and live in Noteay ,
    We are both double vaccinated do we need aPCR test before entering Norway kind reagards

    Reply
  18. Is anyone able to help please? The information on gov websites aren’t clear at all. I have flights to Norway from UK to visit my English father who lives in Norway (he moved last August and not seen him since). My two younger siblings (14 and 17) are allowed to quarantine at his apartment, however I (23 years old, full vaccinated for 2+ months) must isolate at a hotel? Why is this? I have read if you have a BOYFRIEND or GIRLFRIEND that has lasted 9+ months you can go and quarantine at their home, but I aren’t allowed to quarantine at my own fathers home? I applied for an exception but it got rejected and I am not allowed to appeal this. Does anyone have any advice?
    I would also like to know if we need to pay for private Covid tests in the UK prior to leaving for Norway and if so do my young siblings need one too? I also can not find this information anywhere.

    Reply
  19. is a person allowed to enter norway with sinovac vaccine ???because some peope sad that if your vaccine is sinovac you can not enter norway ? is this true ?

    Reply
  20. It’s too harsh. I have been waiting for over 6 months since I have received my skilled workers visa. For the first 2 months I didn’t work remote because they said 2 weeks only. Then I started working but since I’m not registered resident I cannot get salary(taxes, bank account and stuff) then I had to work as freelancer to get paid. It’s so much messy situation and there are so many people like me.

    Reply
  21. In my opinion Norway is still simple minded people almost as bad as the USA over this fake virus garbage. I wouldn’t travel to Norway if I was paid .. this vaccine is killing people but still you push it .. I will never be vaccinated.. and not a government can make me .. Hell Norway will go if you don’t stop poisoning your citizens.

    Reply
  22. My daughter, a US citizen who lives in Arizona, is supposed to leave for Norway on September 5th to visit a friend. Does this mean she can no longer travel to Norway?

    Reply
  23. I am a US passport holder, but I am traveling to Norway from Canada with a layover in Paris. Am vaccinated and have the EU COVID Pass digital certificate, which according to the Norway website is all you need to enter Norway from the EU. Now I feel like there is conflicting information. Do you think they will turn me away because of my citizenship even though we are entering from Paris? Thank you!

    Reply
    • Hi Tash! How did you obtain the EU Covid Pass digital certificate? I’m in need of getting that one (I have two Astrazeneca shots) to enter Norway. Thank you!! 🙂

      Reply
  24. Hi David, I am a Norwegian citizen living in Melbourne Australia for 48 years. I want to go home and visit my 93 year old mother who lives in a nursing home . I am fully vaccinated. And can my husband travel with with me, he is an Australian and also fully vaccinated.
    Thank you

    Reply
  25. We are USA citizens. Our son married a Norwegian and has resident status, we have three grandchildren there. One is getting confirmed in November. We very much want to go for 5 days. We are fully vaccinated. I have read that I may be able to get a French Health Passport that is accepted in Norway, according to the French website. What do you think the reaction will be to a USA citizen showing up with a USA Passport and a French Health Passport?

    Reply
  26. Ser at Nord Sverige (Norrbotten) er grønt
    mens resten av Sverige er rødt.
    Kan folk i Nord Norge nå reise til Nord Sverige på handletur
    uten vaksine og karantene?
    Hvis det kreves test, kan man da kreve spyttest og ikke pinne langt oppi skallen!?

    Reply

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