The competitive advantage of German trade fairs is their internationality: trade fairs bring the world markets to Germany. Around 60% of the approximately 180,000 exhibitors each year come from abroad, a third of them from countries outside Europe. Almost 30% of the 10 million visitors come from abroad. Therefore, AUMA advocates open borders for trade fair participants.
Open borders and the smoothest possible international travel are therefore essential for German trade fairs. International travel is partially restricted due to the COVID-19 pandemic. For this reason, trade fair participants from abroad must carefully inform themselves about the entry requirements before their trip.
Participants from non-EU countries play an important role at German trade fairs.
It is generally possible for trade fair participants from abroad to enter Germany.
The German government qualifies countries as either no risk areas, high risk areas or areas of variants of concern (see also List of risk areas and country search on https://www.einreiseanmeldung.de).
Citizens from countries with visa requirement who travel to Germany to visit a trade fair or exhibit need a business visa. Employees of exhibiting companies are exempt from the visa fee.
A digital registration on entry is to be filled out by persons entering Germany, who spent time in the 10 days prior to entry in a high risk area or an area of variants of concern. The application can be reached via https://www.einreiseanmeldung.de .
Unvaccinated trade fair participants may enter Germany as business travellers without quarantine obligation. Vaccinated trade fair participants do not have to take advantage of this exemption, as they are not required to be quarantined anyway.
All travellers entering Germany have to provide proof of a negative test, vaccination or recovery. When entering Germany by plane travellers must must provide proof upon departure. The test has to be taken no more than 48 hours (for antigen tests) or 72 hours (PCR test) before arrival in Germany and is checked by the airlines before departure. Proof of a negative test must be available in German, English, French, Italian or Spanish in paper or digital form. (see also FAQ
A list of vaccines and necessary number of vaccine doses leading to a vaccinated status is available here. Recognized vaccines are so far: Johnson&Johnson, Moderna, Oxford/AstraZeneca and Pfizer/BioNTech. (a complete list of all vaccine product names used abroad is available here)
In general unvaccinated travellers from high risk areas have to quarantine themselves upon arrival in Germany. However,
quarantine regulations provide for exceptions for trade fair participants entering Germany from high risk areas. They are business travellers whose entry is absolutely essential and cannot be postponed ((Section 6 (2) 1. c) of the
COVID entry ordinance). For them a quarantine obligation does not apply if they stay for up to five days and provide a negative test result, as they are considered business travellers with an urgent need to travel.
Trade fair participants must then provide proof of their participation in the trade fair when applying for a visa or respectively when entering Germany:
The document to proof the trade fair participation is to be carried during travel and presented in checks by the air carrier or by border police officers.
Alternatively travelers from high risk areas can quarantine themselves upon entry and end quarantanization with a negative test result after five days of quarantine.
If trade fair participants from high risk areas are vaccinated or recovered from a COVID infection, quarantine obligations do not apply. Consequently their stay is not limited to 5 days.
For travellers from areas of variants of concern (currently worldwide no area) a 14 day quarantine is always mandatory, even if vaccinated.
Further information on travel regulations are also available at https://www.auswaertiges-amt.de/en/coronavirus/2317268.
last update: 17 September 2021
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