Updated: Monday July 19, 2021 11:23
Posted: 07.19.2021 11:21
Since July 7, Europe has been open. Open, yes, with conditions: all Union travelers must take with them, if they are to avoid some of the most severe restrictions against the coronavirus, a COVID digital certificate.
In it, not only can vaccination with a full schedule be demonstrated – the main reason it was implanted – but it also serves as a safe-conduct for people who have had an appropriate PCR test or for those who have had illness in the past six months. Here we go over the key points, how it works and how to apply for it.
How to request the COVID certificate?
The first option is to request the certificate from the Ministry of Health. The procedure is simple: you must first access the website of the government entity at this link. Once inside, click on the “Request for EU digital COVID certificate” section. You’ll see that it appears in the center of the page, with the option to open the file in a separate tab.
After this step, a text appears with information about the certificate. To access it, there are two ways: on the one hand, the digital certificate – remember that to be able to activate it you must have activated the Autofirma program, which you can download here – or the Cl @ ve format ( here you can see how to request it if you don’t have it).
Once done, all you need to do is choose the digital certificate you want to use (along with your identity) and you can start requesting. You must put your first and last name there, as well as the community in which you reside. Likewise, you must choose one of two options: vaccination certificate or recovery certificate. After following these steps, it will give you the option to download a PDF. And there you have it, you can take the COVID certificate to your own mobile.
The second option is to do it through the health portal of your autonomous community. To date, all regions issue the certificate in case you have received both doses of the vaccine, but there are two regions (Extremadura and Castilla-La Mancha) that still do not collect the information on PCR tests. To access each of these portals, just click on this link; then, click on your community and navigate to the “COVID Digital Certificate Request Service” section.
Who can access the COVID certificate?
Although the main function of this document is to accredit the vaccination of EU residents, it collects all kinds of health information regarding the coronavirus. In this way, it can also help people who have not received the injection to cross borders without being subject to severe restrictions. Here are the three cases in which the document can be used:
– If a person has been vaccinated. To be in this group, at least 14 days must have passed since the second dose of the vaccine, although other information can also be gathered.
– If a negative diagnostic test is presented. In case the tourist has not received the vaccine, he must present a negative PCR test or similar, or, failing that, a negative antigen test included in the common list of the European Commission, which you can consult on this link. Of course, to be valid, the proof must have been issued within 48 hours before arrival in the case of some countries, not later.
– If it can be shown to have transmitted the disease. This fact is a novelty compared to what was previously requested: in it the tourist can demonstrate that he has overcome the coronavirus (in the event of a positive test) with a document, issued by a medical service and included in the COVID certificate, which claims that more than 11 days have passed since the contagion. However, its validity ends after 180 days from the positive (about 6 months).
Regarding vaccination, the COVID certificate specifies whether the person in question has received the vaccine or not, the number of doses they have received and even the batch of medication used for their vaccination, among other data.
And what advantages does it have?
The key to this vaccination certificate lies in tourism. EU governments have pledged not to impose a quarantine on anyone who can prove, in one way or another, that they are healthy (either by vaccination or PCR testing) , although they may impose restrictions if the epidemiological situation worsens.
However, as we have explained, to avoid this type of restriction, one must meet one of the three conditions mentioned: to be fully vaccinated, to have a recent negative PCR or to have conquered the disease within a time not exceeding six month. If these requirements are met, the tourists in question with the document are free to travel to any EU country without restrictions.
At the same time, it should be remembered that this document can be presented in digital format (for example on a mobile phone) as well as on paper. Of course, you must always have with you, whether on your mobile or on a folio, the code that allows the host country to verify the traveler’s vaccination.