Covid situation: Changes to quarantine hotel regulations proposed

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The government has put proposals to amend the Covid-19 regulations pertaining to quarantine hotels out to consultation. The main rule will remain that persons arriving in Norway from red countries must be confined to quarantine hotels during their quarantine period.

‘We are also proposing that persons who are able to document access to a permanent residence in Norway will be permitted to quarantine at that location, regardless of whether this residence is owned or rented. You will be able to stay in your own home while undergoing quarantine. Other people will be able to stay in a suitable location if its suitability can be documented,’ says Minister of Justice and Public Security, Monica Mæland (Conservative Party).

A suitable location must be a private room with access to dedicated toilet facilities, a separate kitchen or eating facility, and it must be possible to avoid close contact with others. According to the proposal, travellers will be able to provide confirmation that they have access to a location fulfilling these requirements in which they may undergo quarantine. As noted, this will not apply to those persons who quarantine in their own homes, regardless of whether their home is owned or rented.

Persons within the same household arriving together in Norway may quarantine in the same location.

‘Some of the current rules have been the subject of criticism and are perceived to be unfair. I have the greatest of sympathy with this point of view, which is why we have put the proposal out to consultation with a short deadline. These changes will be implemented as quickly as possible and no later than during the course of the weekend,’ says Minister of Justice and Public Security, Monica Mæland.

The government believes that the proposals included in this consultation paper will reduce the need for special exemptions from quarantine hotels. At the same time, the government does not wish to disregard the fact that there may be a need for a narrower range of exemptions applicable to persons with specific health or welfare needs, and it is therefore requesting feedback in this regard.

The deadline for responses to the consultation is Friday 11 December 2020. The current rules will continue to apply until the changes take effect.

No changes to quarantine rules

The quarantine hotel scheme changes apply only to requirements relating to where quarantine is undertaken.

Persons arriving in Norway from red countries must undergo 10 days of quarantine upon arrival – regardless of whether this takes place in a quarantine hotel, at home or at another suitable location.

Persons in quarantine following their arrival in Norway may only leave their accommodation if they are able to avoid close contact with others.

Any breach of the quarantine rules may result in punitive fines.