German tourism commissioner: travel hardly possible before May 2021

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Vacation travel during the Easter vacations will continue to be very limited in the view of the German government’s tourism commissioner, Thomas Bareiß (CDU), because of the pandemic.

“I think that travel is something that is still very difficult to imagine for the next two or three months,” he said today on RTL and ntv’s “Frühstart” program. He does not expect things to improve until the second quarter, he said. “From Pentecost onward, it will be better again. And I hope that then the summer will be a very big travel period.”

For the summer, Bareiß expects that vacations could be possible not only in Germany, but – depending on the situation – even in faraway countries. “If we really have vaccinated most people in Germany in the second quarter, there will be security for traveling in the summer,” he told the station.

But Bareiß said the German government has made it clear that there should be no two-tier society when it comes to travel, such as on airplanes. “We want everyone to be treated normally, whether vaccinated or not.”

German tourists drop out in domestic winter
First, however, the government plans to tighten entry rules for returnees from areas with particularly high numbers of cases or coronavirus mutations, according to Bareiß. An amendment to the corresponding regulation could be decided by the cabinet on Wednesday, Bareiß said.

Thus, a quarantine requirement would still apply when returning from countries or regions with more than 50 new infections per 100,000 inhabitants within seven days. This would mean that German tourists are unlikely to return to Austria this winter season.

There will be an additional testing requirement for entry from high-risk areas with more than 200 new cases per 100,000 inhabitants in seven days. For regions with dangerous virus mutations, such as those that have occurred in Great Britain and South Africa, the remaining exemption rules for entrants are to be “greatly reduced,” Bareiß announced.

Source: orf.at/picture: pixabay.com

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