Germany has again included Austria in the list of high-risk areas. According to German Health Minister Jens Spahn, this status will apply from Sunday. People who have not been vaccinated and have not recovered must therefore be quarantined after entering Germany – this also applies to children under the age of twelve. Already from Saturday, stricter entry rules for Austrians also apply in France.
This segregation lasts ten days, after five days you can get rid of with a negative test. For under-twelve-year-olds, the quarantine lasts at least five days. In addition to Austria, the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) also classified the Czech Republic and Hungary as high-risk areas. For Austria, some municipalities, including Mittelberg, Jungholz, Rißtal in the municipality of Vomp and in Eben am Achensee, are to be exempt from the tightening.
Vaccinated and convalescent persons also do not have to go into quarantine. In the future, they will be required to register digitally before entering Germany, uploading their vaccination or convalescence certificate. When entering the country, the confirmation of the registration must be carried along.
Countries and regions with a particularly high risk of infection are considered high-risk areas. Criteria for this include not only infection numbers, but also how quickly the coronavirus spreads, the burden on the healthcare system, and poor CoV data.
The rapid rise in new infections in Austria has now apparently prompted Germany to respond. Austria had already been declared a high-risk area last fall – initially only individual provinces, then all of Austria as of Nov. 1. It was not until June that Germany removed Austria from the list again.
The classification as a high-risk area is automatically accompanied by a travel warning from the German Foreign Office. It makes it easier for tourists to cancel trips that have already been booked free of charge, but does not mean a travel ban.
Quarantine also for under twelve-year-olds
Walter Veit, vice president and regional chairman for Salzburg in the ÖHV, feared that other countries could follow suit. He expects a “wave of cancellations by families over Christmas and New Year’s Eve.” In total, he expects about 50 percent fewer guests coming to Austria and Salzburg. The industry fears high losses.
Because even if the restriction mainly affects unvaccinated guests, children under the age of twelve would also have to undergo a five-day quarantine in Germany – regardless of the measures that apply to parents. Families with children under twelve make up more than one-fifth of German guests, according to a study by Österreich Werbung.
France also tightens entry rules
Meanwhile, France also tightened its entry rules for Austria. As of Saturday, unvaccinated people aged 12 and older must show a negative PCR or antigen test taken less than 24 hours before departure, according to a decree published in the Official Gazette. Previously, test results could be no more than 72 hours old. Also affected by the tightening are entrants from Germany and Belgium.
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