Confusing regulation – holiday chaos around entry

The new entry regulation of the Ministry of Health presents challenges.

The new entry regulations mainly concern returnees from countries at risk. 
EU and EEA citizens and Swiss nationals can enter Austria without any restrictions. Austrians returning from EU countries or Switzerland are also not subject to any restrictions.

Risk countries: PCR test for domestic citizens
Austrian citizens or EU citizens entering Austria from risk countries – i.e. countries where covid infections are high – are subject to restrictions. They must show a PCR test (not older than 72 hours) or go into home quarantine and repeat the test within 48 hours. One must remain in voluntary home quarantine until a negative test result is obtained. After that it is not necessary, although the incubation period is 14 days.

Quarantine: Non-EU citizens from risk countries
Third-country nationals who enter the country from the same risk countries as Austrians are obliged to present a valid PRC test on entry. This also applies to third-country nationals who do not come from a risk area.
Without residence – quarantine or no entry.

Third-country nationals without residence are currently subject to an entry ban, unless they come to Austria via the Schengen area with a valid negative PCR test. After entry, however, these persons must enter a ten-day quarantine. A “free test” is not possible here. There are exceptions for nursing staff, seasonal workers and diplomats.

According to the Austrian Interior Ministry, there is the threat of a penalty of up to 1,450 euros if one does not comply with a PCR test and quarantine regulations. 

  • Hector Pascua, Sources: Interior Ministry und Health Ministry, Austria

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