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No more Hungarian immunity cards from March 2023

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No more Hungarian immunity cards from March 2023

After pandemic related restrictions have been phased out (and have not been reintroduced over some time), the Hungarian government has determined that there is no more need for immunity cards, so they will not print any more of them. If you have one, you can keep it, and certificates of your vaccination continue to be available in the EESZT app.

Covid immunity cards in Hungary

The Hungarian immunity card, which was later renamed to vaccination card, is a plastic card that contains the full name of the holder, together with the registration number of one of their ID documents (Hungarian ID card or passport) and the date of their vaccination. The card also contains a QR code that lets third parties confirm online that the holder should be safe to spend time with.

The immunity card was first introduced back in the spring of 2021 when strict restrictions were still in place to slow down the spread of the coronavirus, and it granted holders access to various facilities. Over the last two years, however, the restrictions have been phased out; in January 2023 even the dedicated coronavirus website was deleted, and the url now redirects to the news portal of the government. Currently there is no practical use to the immunity card in Hungary.

No more plastic immunity cards

As a result, the government decided to stop issuing immunity cards. The decree was published on 10 March, and it will come into effect on 25 March 2023. Any physical cards printed by then will still be delivered, but ongoing cases will be canceled.

From then on, immunity and vaccination status can be verified primarily through the EESZT application that lists your relevant data in a way that is in line with EU standards.

Existing immunity cards remain valid

Of course, you do not have to throw away your existing card. Third parties will still be able to read the relevant data from the QR code on the card. If your ID document listed on the card expires, you will not get a new card, and the old card will remain valid with the new document.

You can also continue to use the Hungarian immunity card when you travel in countries where it is accepted, in line with the mutual agreements Hungary made with these countries.

EU digital covid certificate remains valid too

The verification of your vaccination that you see in the EESZT app is in fact the Hungarian version of the EU digital covid certificate. This was created to facilitate travel in the EU during the pandemic by showing host countries that they can receive holders safely. The EU certificate was supposed to remain in place until 30 June 2022, but it got extended until 30 June 2023. In line with this, the data in the EESZT app will also remain accessible at least until then.

Very little actual change

Since the immunity card (or vaccination card) is currently not in active use, the fact that they will not print any more of them brings little actual change to holders. You can keep your card while also using the mobile app for verifying your immunity status, same as before. If you decide to get rid of the card, make sure to make your personal data illegible on it first, or cut the card up to prevent abuse of your data.

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