The Corona situation is getting tougher: In view of the sharp rise in the number of infections, stricter measures will be introduced in Austria from Monday, November 8, 2021. From now on, only vaccinated and recovered persons will have access to many areas such as gastronomy, hotels, events, but also hairdressers. "2G" will also be mandatory for the use of cable cars from November 15.
7-day incidence already at 599
The number of infections in Austria is exploding (7-day incidence: 599, and rising!) and the Austrian government must act as quickly as possible to reduce the number of clinics again and also to be able to save the upcoming winter season. The fear of travel warnings is huge.
At a crisis meeting on Friday evening, the chancellor and the provincial governors agreed on a strict course of action: from Monday, everyone over the age of 12 will apply the 2G-Rule (vaccinated or recovered) for gastronomy, hotels, cultural events, Christmas markets, nightclubs and discos, après-ski, body-related services as well as sports and leisure facilities. Only a few areas such as commerce, the workplace and also public transport are exempt. In the workplace, however, all Austrians are subject to a 3G obligation (vaccinated, recovered, tested).
FFP2 masks will also become standard again for everyone in Austria. Among other things, they must be worn everywhere in trade. But there are exceptions for facilities with 2G (vaccinated, recovered): here, a mask no longer has to be worn indoors.
New rule for lifts from 15 November
From 15 November, only vaccinated and recovered winter sport fans will have access to ski lifts and gondolas. Children up to the age of 12 are exempt from the 2G rule. There is also an exception for Austrian schoolchildren up to the age of 15, who have a "Ninja Pass" through their school examination and are thus also allowed into the ski areas as well as into restaurants and hotels. The federal government has not yet commented on an exception for non-Austrian children between the ages of 12 and 15.
Until mid-November, the FFP2 mask requirement will remain in effect in the ski areas that are already open, as the only requirement for entering the cable cars. Only in the ski huts will a vaccinated or recovered certificate have to be shown as of Monday. The mask requirement will be abolished in all ski areas in mid-November, when only 2G will be permitted.
Full vaccination only valid for 9 months
Austria has also introduced a change in the period of validity of the vaccination. Thus, the validity of a complete vaccination expires after nine months and a booster vaccination is necessary. This has already led to a large number of people coming to the Austrian vaccination centres at the weekend to get the necessary booster. But also first and second vaccinations were counted significantly more than in the last months. The government has also created an additional incentive for this: In the next four weeks, everyone with a first vaccination can also take advantage of the "2G offers" if they also take a (free) PCR test.
This is the situation in the neighbouring countries
While in Austria only vaccinated and recovered people will soon be allowed on the slopes, in Switzerland and also in France people are starting the new ski season completely without a certificate for lifts. Only the mask requirement must be observed in closed cable cars and indoors. In Italy, there will be a rule for vaccinated, recovered and testes persons to use the cable cars.
The situation is different in Germany: Here, the numbers are currently exploding in many regions, including large winter sports regions such as Upper Bavaria, the Bavarian Forest, the Erz Mountains and also the Black Forest. Almost everywhere, the operation of summer cable cars is now only permitted with a 2G certificate (vaccinated or recovered). The next few weeks will show whether this will remain the case until the start of the ski season in December. The ski resorts are still waiting for the relevant ordinances from the responsible state ministries.