Health Alert – U.S. Embassy Sofia, Bulgaria

Location:  Bulgaria

Event:  Health Alert: Ministry of Health Order revises entry restrictions and quarantine requirements starting July 16, 2020.

Entry restrictions:  U.S. citizens are still prohibited from entering Bulgaria unless they meet one of the exceptions to entry restrictions found in the current Ministry of Health Order.  The entry restrictions apply to all persons, regardless of their citizenship, through all border crossings, by air (including commercial and private aircraft), sea, rail and road transport, which is in effect from July 16, 2020 to July 31, 2020 and is posted on the Bulgarian Ministry of Health website.

Exceptions:  Those excepted from entry restrictions include: (a) Bulgarian nationals (and their family members or persons who are in actual cohabitation with a Bulgarian citizen in Bulgaria), (b) nationals of the European Union, the Schengen Agreement States (including San Marino, Andorra, Monaco and Vatican City), Algeria, Australia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Canada, Georgia, Japan, Montenegro, Morocco, New Zealand, Rwanda, Serbia, South Korea, Thailand, Tunisia, the United Kingdom (UK), Uruguay, and Ukraine; (c) persons with permanent or long-term resident status in Bulgaria (and their family members); (d) permanent residents (and their family members) of the European Union, the UK, the Schengen Agreement States (including San Marino, Andorra, Monaco and Vatican City); (e)medical professionals, medical researchers, social workers, and their supervisors when traveling related to their duties; (f) workers involved in the supply of medicinal products, medical devices and personal protective equipment, medical equipment, including its installation and maintenance; (g) transport staff engaged in the international carriage of passengers and cargo, crews of commercial aircraft and other transport staff as required, including vessel crews and persons involved in the maintenance of vessels; (h) foreign officials, diplomats, officials of international organizations, military personnel, and humanitarian workers in the performance of their duties and their family members; (i) persons traveling for humanitarian reasons and their family; (j) representatives of trade, economic, and investment activities directly related to: construction, maintenance, operation and ensuring the safety of strategic and critical infrastructure of the Republic of Bulgaria, implementation of projects certified under the Investment Promotion Act, analysis on projects of potential investors and other activities of importance for the economy of the country, certified by a letter from the Minister of Economy or another minister responsible for the respective activity, as well as persons engaged in shipbuilding and ship repair; (k) seasonal agricultural and tourism workers; (l) frontier workers; (m) students traveling for the purpose of activities related to the completion of the current academic year, including practical training and exams, or for the preparation of the next academic year, when it is impossible to conduct these activities from a distance.

Transit: The order allows transit through Bulgaria to the country of  residence for: (a) nationals of the EU, a Schengen country, or the UK and their family members; (b) non-EU nationals, who have a long-term residence permit in another EU Member State, the UK, or in a Schengen country and their family members.  Nationals of Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Serbia, or Turkey can transit to return to the country of which they are nationals.  Transit is only permitted when the traveler will immediately depart Bulgaria.

Quarantine:  All persons (with limited exceptions) arriving in Bulgaria from Sweden and Portugal, and from all third countries (outside the European Union), except Andorra, Algeria, Australia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Canada, Georgia, Iceland, Japan, Lichtenstein, Monaco, Montenegro, Morocco, New Zealand, Norway, Rwanda, San Marino, Serbia, the Republic of Korea, Switzerland, Thailand, Tunisia, Ukraine, the UK, Uruguay, and Vatican City, must either present a negative result from a polymerase chain reaction (PCR) COVID test performed up to 72 hours before entering Bulgaria or must quarantine for a period of 14 days at the traveler’s place of accommodation.  Please note that the country from which a traveler arrives is the place where travel originated.  Exceptions to the quarantine requirement are listed here.

Declaration for non-quarantined and those allowed to transit
Persons not subject to quarantine or permitted to transit through Bulgaria under this order must submit to health inspectors at the border a declaration (find a sample linked here), regarding observation of the Ministry of Health’s anti-epidemic measures and acknowledgement of the risks of COVID-19.

  •           The Department of State has issued a Global Level 4 Health Advisory for Covid-19.
  •           U.S. citizens who are not prepared to remain abroad for an indefinite period should arrange for immediate return to the United States.
  •           Travelers should be prepared for travel restrictions to be put into effect with little or no advance notice.
  •           U.S. citizens who need assistance should contact the American Citizen Services Section at

Actions to take:

Contact Information:

U.S. Embassy Sofia, Bulgaria
+359-2-937-5100 (business hours)
+359-2-937-5101 (after hours—emergencies only—arrest, death, or danger to the safety and security of U.S. citizens)

State Department – Consular Affairs
888-407-4747 or 202-501-4444

Bulgaria Country Information

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