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Escape the quarantine with 2 negative PCR tests

December 18, 2020

Currently, there are different tests available. To escape the quarantine, you will need the “PCR tests”, that is, the molecular biological tests with nasal and oropharyngeal swabs (samples taken from your nose and throat). This type of test shows if at the time of taking the swab samples the coronavirus is or is not detectable in your body.

Where to get tested

You can get tested privately, for a fee, at a medical center of your own choice. There is list of available testing sites at the page of the National Public Health Center. Use the map to find the testing site closest to you, or browse the list below. For the actual address, you will need the item with the header “A mintavétel pontos címe”. Above the map, there is also an option to filter the list for centers where there is

  • testing for both adults and children
  • testing for only for adults
  • testing for only for children
  • an option for getting tested at home

The price of getting tested is fixed in HUF 19,500 per test (ca. EUR 55), but extra fees may apply e.g. for getting tested at home, during the weekend, or needing a result sooner.

If your regular clinic is not on the list, you might still be able to get tested by them. Contact them to see if their lab is listed under a different name, in which case they will still be able to provide you with a compliant test certificate.

However, since you are in quarantine, you are not allowed to leave your home, not even to get tested. So what to do?

Contact the Hungarian Police

Recently, Hungarian Police has taken over the task of coordinating quarantine permissions from local Public Health Departments. There is no processing fee anymore. You can learn more about the process on the dedicated page of the Police.

Applying for the permission is possible online, both in English or Hungarian. You should apply for the permission at least 24 hours before your test – so FIRST you need to make an appointment at the clinic of your choice and THEN you must apply for a permission to leave your home.

You will need to “file a new case”, and select “Submissions related to the epidemic control measures”. On the next screen, choose option 3: “Send information about the PCR test date”. On the next screen, there are two options, one for people who have access to e-government (“Ügyfélkapu”, or the “Client Gate”), and one for those who do not.

After a few clicks, you will arrive at a webform where you can fill in your personal and contact data, and the time and place of the PCR test.

Watch out! The form has “two pages”. If you want to go to page 2, you can use the option in the column on the left.

It helps the work of the Police if you also upload your quarantine order, and indicate the reference number on it in the form above. However, this is not mandatory.

Go and get tested

You are supposed to get some kind of confirmation, but the rule of thumb is that unless you receive a rejection letter from the Police, you can leave your home in order to get tested. One test will cost HUF 19,500.

Going to the testing center, you are allowed to take public transport, but it might be better to walk or take a car, even a taxi, to avoid contact with other people. You must wear a face mask all the time.

The two tests should be performed within 5 days, at least 48 hours apart.

Your test results will be sent to you in email, or if you have a registration at the national electronic administration portal, through that.

Ask for the withdrawal of the quarantine order

One you have your two negative test results, you have to forward them to the Hungarian Police and ask for the withdrawal of your quarantine order. You can do this on the same website, but after “Submissions related to the epidemic control measures” you will need to select option 1: “Send information on the results of PCR negative tests related to border crossing”. On the next screen, there are again two options, one for people who have access to e-government (“Ügyfélkapu”, or the “Client Gate”), and one for those who do not.

After a few clicks, you will arrive at a webform where you can fill in your personal and contact data, together with the data of your 2 negative PCR tests and the reference number of your quarantine order.

Watch out! The form has “two pages”. If you want to go to page 2, you can use the option in the column on the left.

Below the form, you must also upload your quarantine order, and the two negative PCR tests you refer to in the form in PDF.

24 hours after successfully submitting your application you can leave quarantine unless you receive a letter of rejection. You are free to go even if you do not receive a separate letter of withdrawal of the quarantine order.

FAQ

Do you already have a negative test when entering Hungary?

If you already have one negative test result in English or Hungarian prepared in a Schengen country, in the USA, or in Canada, when entering Hungary, you will need only one more test get done in Hungary. The second test must be prepared in Hungary.

Is testing available upon entry to Hungary?

According to the regulations, there is an option for testing centers to let you indicate your expected time of arrival to the International Airport in Budapest, and they can meet you at the airport to perform a test on you already there. This may shorten the time you must spend in quarantine whether this is the first or the second compulsory PCR test for you.

A testing center opened at Budapest Airport on 18 December 2020. Learn more here.

What is a quarantine order?

Upon entry to Hungary, if you are due to be quarantined based on current regulations, you will receive a quarantine order from the Hungarian Police. This is a temporary order, with instructions for not leaving quarantine, not even for testing. You will automatically get a “final” quarantine order from your local police station in a few days.

Upon entry to Hungary, make sure you provide your email address to the Police so they can send you the final quarantine order in an email.

What is a quarantine software?

If you are a Hungarian citizen and have a smartphone, you might be asked to install the official quarantine software on it that helps the Police check if you are complying with your quarantine without actually visiting you. The software will send you queries to confirm that you are at the required location by taking a selfie and enabling access to your location data. You can learn more here or download the app here.

What if I was sent to quarantine as a result of contact tracing?

If you were sent to quarantine as a result of contact tracing, you will not be allowed to get tested and escape the 10-day quarantine with your negative results.


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