Cross-border commuters working in crucial sectors can get vignette to pass Belgian border with priority
From 22 March cross-border commuters who work in crucial sectors can download a special vignette to place behind their car windscreen. This vignette will allow them to cross the border between the Netherlands and Belgium more quickly. It may not be used by others. The aim is to prevent cross-border commuters working in crucial sectors (key workers) from being delayed at the border. The vignette can be downloaded from the website of the Belgian Crisis Centre.
On Wednesday 18 March Belgium imposed a ban on all non-essential travel to other countries, including the Netherlands. The border remains open for trade in goods and services. Cross-border commuters and others for whom crossing the border is essential may continue do so, but specific rules apply:
- People who do not work in a crucial sector must present a declaration from their employer, stating that they need to cross the border for work purposes.
- The Belgian authorities are providing a special vignette for cross-border commuters who work in crucial sectors (key workers). It can be downloaded from the website of the Belgian Crisis Centre. This will allow them to cross the border without delays.
- Travelling between two points in the Netherlands via Belgium is not permitted. This also applies to commuting. However, an exception has been made for key workers with a vignette who are travelling for work purposes.
The Belgian authorities are carrying out border checks and several border crossings have been closed. The special vignette has been introduced in order to prevent key workers being held up at border checks. It is the result of consultations between Dutch justice and security minister Ferd Grapperhaus, Dutch interior minister Raymond Knops, and Belgian interior and security minister Pieter De Crem.
Violation of the ban on non-essential travel is an offence. The Belgian authorities are actively enforcing this ban. Using a vignette on the grounds of false information is forgery. This is also an offence.