Polish borders are open for all EU citizens and operators are relaunching international travel services; already in June we can travel by buses and trains, while flights to select Schengen Area countries will be allowed from July.
On the night of 12-13 June Poland put an end to temporary controls at the internal EU borders, following the recommendation of the European Commission to lift controls by June 15. This means that EU citizens are now allowed to travel from one EU country to another. Travellers have regained the right to freely enter, exit and transit through the territory of the Republic of Poland. Poles are no longer subject to mandatory quarantine upon arrival to the country and EU citizens will be able to enter Poland without any obstacles. Border services are now back performing random checks only, as was the case in pre-covid times and before additional border crossing restrictions were introduced in Poland.
The FlixBus bus service has already resumed its operations to Germany, Austria, Czech Republic, France, Belgium and Netherlands in June. Passengers should expect successive destinations to be made available and check the company’s website if a given city has been added to the network. To make the booking process easier and simultaneously maintain a sense of comfort and safety, Flixbus introduced a tool making it possible to verify the number of bookings made on a given route. As a result, passengers can use information about available seats to decide in advance if they want to book a connection or choose an alternative one. To guarantee highest hygiene standards and an optimally safe travel, passengers are obliged to wear a mask or cover their mouth and nose during check-in and while on board.
Among domestic bus operating companies, Polonus will handle summertime routes to Gdańsk, Władysławowo, Jastrzębia Góra, Karwia, Łeba, Krynica Morska, Mielno, Giżycko, Mrągowo, Mikołajki and Ruciane Nida. All buses will be subject to travel-related safety regulations, with passengers required to wear face masks and vehicles regularly disinfected with professional electrostatic cleaning devices and ozone sterilization.
On 22-23 June PKP Intercity will reopen international routes, with the following connections to be successively launched: Warszawa Wschodnia – Berlin, Vienna, Ostrava, Bohumin and Prague; Kraków – Prague; Katowice – Vienna; Przemyśl – Ostrava and Graz. In the summertime (starting with 26-27 June) the company will operate routes from Gdynia to Žilina and from Kołobrzeg, Świnoujście, Hel and Łeba to Bohumin. Routes directly linking Terespol with Budapest, Terespol with Prague and Kraków with Budapest will be launched in July.
Polish Airlines LOT is resuming regular international routes on 1 July, for the first time since their suspension on 13 March. Passengers will now be available to fly to select Schengen Area destinations, including Germany, Czech Republic, Belgium and Norway plus plan their summer holidays in Greece, Croatia, Bulgaria or Spain. Every week the network of 20 European cities will encompass 7 flights to Prague, Dusseldorf, Vilnius and Budapest; 6 flights to Berlin; 5 flights to Vienna, Brussels and Kiev (Boryspil International Airport), 4 flights to Amsterdam and Bucharest, 3 flights to Barcelona, Tbilisi and Oslo; 2 flights to Split and Dubrovnik, as well as at least 1 flight to Zadar, Podgorica, Corfu, Chania and Varna. Until 14 July all international flights will be handled by the Chopin Airport in Warsaw. In addition, LOT’s resumed network will also encompass two weekly flights from Budapest - to Varna and Dubrovnik - on weekends. Besides international flights, LOT will maintain its network of more than 30 domestic routes a day, allowing passengers to have a convenient layover in Warsaw before embarking on any of the international routes.
Rafał Milczarski, CEO of Polish Airlines LOT, summarises the carrier’s plans: “The network of LOT’s international flights for the first two weeks of July was scheduled with the safety of our passengers in mind. The latter has always constituted our priority along with a comfortable travel experience. Located in the Schengen Area, most of the launched destinations are distinguished by a stable epidemic situation. Furthermore, they have lifted quarantine and remaining restrictions for travellers arriving from other EU countries. In other words, our passengers can now relax and plan their summer holidays, short getaways or business trips, knowing that they will be able to fully enjoy international journeys. At the same time, we are seeking to reopen successive routes and increase flight frequency. For this purpose, we are analysing, for example, the option of launching regular passenger flights to the United States, where we currently handle cargo transport”.
All the domestic and international LOT flights will continue to be operated in accordance with the #BezpiecznyLOT procedure intended to guarantee the safety of all travellers and flight crews. The list of key restrictions valid both in airports and on board involve maintaining social distancing while boarding and in-flight, passengers required to wear masks for the entire duration of the journey, and modified on board service matching the idea of limited contact between travellers and crews.
An additional convenience for the passengers, the FLEX PLUS rate has been made available on 17 June. As LOT’s answer to passengers’ growing need to manage and change flight bookings, this option gives passengers the freedom to cancel their flight within 24 hours from booking, modify the name on their booking, reschedule free of charge - as long as seats are available - and to preferential refund options.