From holidays to nightclubs: What you need to know about CoronaCheck
As more coronavirus restrictions are lifted and Europe gradually reopens borders for travel, the Dutch government’s CoronaCheck app becomes more and more useful. But what is the app, and what does it do? Here’s everything you need to know about CoronaCheck, and how it could help you do all the things you’ve missed doing over the past year.
Why did the government launch CoronaCheck?
The CoronaCheck app was designed and launched in order to allow certain aspects of society to reopen, even while coronavirus continues to circulate in the Netherlands. Through the app, members of the public can show, via a QR code, that they recently tested negative for coronavirus.
The app launched at the start of June, and can be used to gain access to events and festivals, or even cinemas and restaurants. When the app and access test law came into effect, the government did say that using the app and asking customers for a recent negative test was not mandatory, so many businesses and establishments opted not to make use of the app.
But, at the press conference on June 18, Prime Minister Mark Rutte said that access tests would be mandatory for anyone visiting a nightclub from June 26.
How does it work?
If you would like to go somewhere that makes use of so-called access tests, the first thing you need to do is download the CoronaCheck app on your smartphone. Then, book an appointment via testenvoortoegang for within 40 hours of your planned outing.
Once tested, you should receive your results within the hour via email. If you’ve tested negative, submit the code you received via email into the CoronaCheck app. This unique code can then be converted into a QR code, which can be scanned by businesses or event organisers.
Don’t have a smartphone? That’s fine too, you can print out a paper copy of your QR code. Once you’ve received the email with your results and unique code, go to coronacheck.nl and convert it into a QR code which you can then print out. Whether using a digital or paper QR code, make sure you have your ID (passport, driving licence, or ID card) with you, as the information from your certificate will be compared to the information on your official ID.
I’m vaccinated, do I still have to get tested?
From June 24, you will be able to convert proof of vaccination into a QR code in the app or via the site. Furthermore, if you’re not vaccinated but recently had coronavirus, you will also be able to convert proof of recent recovery into a QR code via the app or website.
Your vaccination data should be automatically collected and uploaded by the National Institute for Public Health and Environment (RIVM) or GGD, but if CoronaCheck doesn’t register your vaccination, you can manually create your vaccination certificate via the app.
If you can present proof of vaccination or recovery, you will not have to get tested before being granted entry to an event or nightclub.
Using CoronaCheck to travel abroad
From July 1, the EU COVID-19 Certificate (also known as the Digital Corona Certificate / DCC in the Netherlands) comes into effect. This means that, from July, you will be able to use the CoronaCheck app to travel within the EU.
Using the app, you will be able to create an internationally recognised QR code to present proof of your recent negative test result, recent recovery, or your vaccination against COVID-19.
With this QR code, you can travel within the EU, or to Norway, Iceland, or Lichtenstein, but the government does recommend always keeping an eye on the official travel advice for the country you hope to visit so you know which requirements you will have to meet (each country can set their own).
The certificate will be available to everyone over the age of 12, and the QR code will also be available to print if you don’t have a smartphone. Note that these rules only apply to the EU, and other countries will set their own entry requirements.
Where can I find more information?
For more information about access tests or the CoronaCheck app, visit the Dutch government's website or coronacheck.nl. You can also find more information about the EU COVID-19 certificate here.
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