The European Union’s border restrictions because of the coronavirus pandemic has left binational unmarried couples in limbo, but more European countries are making exceptions so those couples no longer have to remain separated.
Since March, European countries have shut their borders to noncitizens, essentially separating citizens of the EU from their foreign partners.
Last week, the European Commission asked all 27 member countries to open their borders to such couples, and so far 10 have done so.
A social media campaign with the hashtags #LoveIsNotTourism and #LoveIsEssential has been pushing other EU countries to act.
Requirements vary among 10 countries that have made the exception for binational unmarried couples; some require documents that prove the existence of the relationship, and others basically take the couple’s word without supporting documentation. Some countries require a quarantine or a COVID-19 test.
Denmark allows entry for the spouse, live-in partner, fiance or sweetheart of a Danish national resident, according to Danish police.
However, anyone who’s not a citizen of an EU country or the United Kingdom must present proof of a negative COVID-19 test taken no more than 72 hours before entry.
Anyone who wants to visit an unmarried partner in Norway must submit a form on entry that requires the name and address of both partners, address during quarantine upon entry and a declaration that the relationship has lasted at least nine months.
The Dutch government has an extensive list of requirements for unmarried couples, namely that the noncitizen partner is restricted to a maximum visit of 90 days.
The couple must have been in a relationship for at least three months, and sign a statement declaring so. The foreign partner also must present proof of a return ticket.
Couples wanting to reunite must submit a solemn declaration of their relationship and supporting documents, such as a joint lease, a joint bank account or a birth certificate for a child they had together.
Cohabiting partners of Icelandic citizens can submit a confirmation of exemption from the travel restrictions to the country’s directorate of immigration, along with supporting documents that prove cohabitation.
A young couple with face masks kisses goodbye at the airport in Frankfurt, Germany, Aug. 3, 2020.Germany
Unmarried couples must produce an invitation from the German partner, a declaration of the existence of the relationship signed by both partners and proof of previous visits, such as passport stamps, travel documents and airline tickets.
Anyone with a partner in Switzerland can enter if they can provide proof of the relationship, proof that the couple has been together for some time and proof of regular contact, including letters and emails, passport stamps and photographs.
People from countries and regions with increased risk of infection will be required to quarantine.
Austria allows entry for “life partners,” regardless of how long the relationship has existed or whether the couple live together.
According to the Finnish Border Guard, “persons arriving in the country on the basis of a relationship are also considered persons traveling for family matters. In practice, a relationship refers to a romantic relationship. Fundamentally, border inspectors trust the words of travelers. More detailed information may be inquired in isolated cases.”
France’s top tourism official, Jean-Baptiste Lemoyne, tweeted last week, “France is setting up a specific system for life partners separated by the closing of borders. From this week, an application for a laissez-passer can be submitted to the consulate the closest.” A laissez-passer is an exemption to the travel ban.
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: 10 EU countries allow unmarried non-Europeans to visit partners