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Current information and guidelines on COVID-19 for guests and travellers

The Austrian Federal Government and the Government of Upper Austria have adopted far-reaching measures to contain COVID-19. Here is an overview of the most important information and regulations for a mindful coexistence.

 

Measures to protect us all

Measures from 10 March 2021:

Exit restrictions

Exit restrictions apply between 8:00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m.

  • During this time, you may leave the house for the following reasons in particular:
    • Necessary basic needs of daily life
    • Helping/caring for other people
    • Occupation and education
    • Testing
    • Contact with relatives, partners and important caregivers
    • Exercise in the fresh air
  • During the day it is possible to meet with another household (up to 4 adults plus 6 children)

 

Public places

As a general rule, in outdoor public places, keep a distance of two meters from all persons not living in the same household. In enclosed spaces in public places, an FFP2 mask must also be worn.

 

Tourist-Infos

Tourist information offices are also open again under the following conditions:

  • Opening hours between 6:00 am and 7:00 pm.
  • A maximum of so many customers may be in the customer area at the same time that 20 m² are available per customer; if the customer area is smaller than 20 m², only one customer may enter the customer area at a time.
  • A distance of at least two meters must be maintained from persons who do not live in the same household.
  • Customers must wear a respirator of protection class FFP2 (FFP2 mask) without an exhalation valve or a mask of at least equivalent standard.

 

Shopping

Stores have reopened. Opening hours are set from 6:00 to 19:00. Customers are required to wear an FFP2 mask. There is a restriction of 20m2 per customer for customer areas in the whole trade.

 

Personal services

  • All service establishments are open, but there are the following special hygiene requirements:
    • Customers must wear an FFP2 mask
    • 20 m2 restriction per client
    • Services may only be provided to as many people as are required to provide the service
  • Special regulations apply in some cases for service businesses close to the body (e.g. hairdressers, beauticians):
    • Customers must wear an FFP2 mask
    • 10 m2 per customer and access tests (proof of a negative test for SARS-CoV-2)
    • An access test is defined as a negative result of an antigen test for SARS-CoV-2 taken within 48 hours or a molecular biology test (PCR test) for SARS-CoV-2 taken within 72 hours.
    • Access tests must be from publicly authorized bodies (no self-tests). Exception: children up to the age of ten.
    • Reasonable protective measures must be taken if the distance falls below 2 meters (e.g., increased disinfection)
    • No administration of food and beverages
  • Services for education and training purposes may only be provided to one person at a time or to persons from the same household (e.g. individual tutoring).

Services for absolutely necessary professional training and further education purposes that cannot be carried out digitally can, however, still take place as exceptionally permissible events (subject to hygiene requirements).

 

Museums and libraries

Museums, libraries, libraries, archives, art halls and cultural exhibition halls are open again. There is an obligation to maintain the minimum distance of 2 meters and the obligation to wear a FFP2 mask. A restriction of 20 m2 per visitor applies to visitor areas. 

Theatres, cinemas and stages are expected to remain closed until the beginning of April. 

 

Recreational and leisure time facilities

Animal parks, zoos and botanical gardens are open again. There is an obligation to maintain the minimum distance of 2 meters. A restriction of 20 m2 per visitor applies to visitor areas.

 

Sports

Entering indoor sports facilities such as gyms, indoor swimming pools, etc. is still prohibited. Outdoor sports facilities such as cross-country skiing trails and ice rinks are open (but not for contact sports). The minimum distance of two meters must be observed and an area of at least 20 m² must be available per person.

 

Ski resorts

Cable cars, gondolas and lifts may be used for recreational purposes. The following protective measures are currently envisaged:

  • In principle, a distance of at least one metre from persons not living in the same household must be maintained in the entire ski area.
  • In closed or coverable means of transport (gondolas, cabins, coverable chairs) and closed access areas of cable cars, the wearing of an FFP 2 mask without an exhalation valve or an equivalent or higher standard mask is obligatory from the age of 14 (children from 6-14 years an mouth nose protection mask). A mouth nose protection mask must be worn from the age of 6 onwards in outdoor areas (in front of ticket offices or lifts) and in open cable cars (chair lift, T-bar).
  • In closed or coverable means of transport (gondolas, cabins, coverable chairs), a capacity restriction of 50 % must be applied. This does not apply if only persons from the same household are transported.
  • In ski areas, catering establishments that cannot be reached by guests by motor vehicle on generally public roads (no private, toll or forest roads) may not offer pick-up services.
  • Cable car operators must present a prevention concept.

 

Gastronomy

Catering establishments are expected to remain closed until the beginning of April.

 Collection of food and beverages is possible in the period from 6:00 AM  to 7:00 PM. An FFP2 mask must be worn during collection and a two-meter distance must be kept to persons from other households. Open alcoholic beverages may not be sold via pick-up. Food and beverages may not be consumed within 50 m of the premises. In skiing areas, catering establishments that cannot be reached by guests by motor vehicle on generally public roads (no private, toll or forest roads) may not offer pick-up service. Delivery service is permitted without time restriction. 

Furthermore, company restaurants and canteens for company employees as well as catering establishments in hospitals and convalescent homes, nursing homes for the elderly and disabled, schools and kindergartens are exempt from the ban on entering. Guests must wear an FFP2 mask unless they are at the dining area. The two-meter distance must be kept to persons from other households. Food and beverages may only be consumed while seated. 

 

Accommodation establishments 

Accommodation establishments are expected to remain closed until the beginning of April. 

There are exceptions, for example, for urgent professional reasons or to satisfy an urgent need for accommodation. Guests who are according to the exceptions allowed to spend the night in accommodation establishments must wear an FFP2 mask in the generally accessible areas. A distance of at least two meters must be kept to persons who do not live in the same household or do not belong to the group of guests in the common accommodation unit.

The ban on entering gastronomic facilities in accommodation establishments does not apply if food and beverages are served exclusively to accommodation guests and are preferably consumed in the accommodation unit (i.e. in the room).

The first opening steps of museums are envisaged for February 8, 2021.

 

Events

Events are prohibited. This includes cultural and sporting events, wedding and birthday parties.

 

Carpooling and taxis, public transport

Carpooling and the use of taxis is only permitted if there are only two people per row of seats (including the driver). In addition, an FFP2 mask must be worn. Exceptions are made for the transport of kindergarten children or for the transport of people with disabilities, if this is necessary due to the number of passengers and when boarding and alighting. 

Public means of transport may be used. An FFP2 mask must be worn in the means of transport and at all stops (including outside) and a minimum distance of 2 metres must be maintained.

 

Restriction of contact

Please avoid social contact unless absolutely necessary. 

 

Travel to Upper Austria - are there any restrictions?

Obligation to register before entering Austria

The electronic registration before entering Austria is mandatory (Pre-Travel Clearance - PTC). Please find here the PTC registration form in German and English.

Electronic registration is now only required once every 28 days for commuters.  Exemptions from the registration requirement include transit travelers, as well as persons entering the country for unforeseeable reasons meriting special consideration within the family circle. For more information on the exemption rules, please visit the website of the Federal Ministry of Social Affairs, Health, Care and Consumer Protection.

 

Quarantine and negative test

When entering Austria, a negative PCR or antigen test must be presented. In the case of a PCR test, the time of the smear test must not be older than 72 hours, in the case of an antigen test only 48 hours. The test can be repeated in Austria within 24 hours. Commuters (for work, family, school, study purposes or to visit their partner) entering Austria from countries that are not classified as high-incidence countries (e.g. Germany) require a negative PCR or antigen test that is not older than 7 days (applies to both molecular biology and antigen tests). When entering from high-incidence countries (Bulgaria, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Estonia, France, Hungary, Italy, Malta, Poland, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden), the negative PCR or antigen test must not be more than 72 hours old. 

Persons entering Austria from countries for which a travel warning is in effect due to the COVID-19 pandemic must immediately enter a 10-day quarantine after entering Austria. Currently, all countries except Australia, Iceland, New Zealand, Singapore, South Korea and the Vatican are considered risk areas.  The prerequisite for entry from these countries is that you have stayed exclusively in the countries mentioned in the last 10 days before entry. 

Free testing: Early termination of quarantine by means of a negative PCR or antigen test is possible at the earliest on the 5th day after entry at one's own expense.  It is allowed to leave the quarantine site to perform the test.

Entries for professional reasons are exempt from quarantine. These persons may enter the country without the obligation of quarantine upon presentation of a negative PCR or antigen test. The time of swabbing may be a maximum of 72 hours in the case of a PCR test, as before, and only 48 hours in the case of an antigen test. 

The form for the health certificate can be downloaded here in German and here in English. In addition, the professional nature of the trip must be proven. For more information on the exemption rules, please visit the website of the Federal Ministry of Social Affairs, Health, Care and Consumer Protection

 

Current travel, border and traffic information

Current travel, border and traffic information can be found on following pages:

 

Can I cancel my holiday?

In the event of cancellation or if you decide not to make your trip, the standard cancellation conditions of the respective accommodation company generally apply. Please contact your accommodation provider or your travel insurance company directly for further information.

 

Where can I find up-to-date and official information on the current situation around COVID-19?

The Austrian Ministry of Health provides information on its website regarding the current spread of the virus worldwide and on the current situation in Austria. You can also find daily updated information from the Agency for Health and Food Security (AGES) and the Federal government of Upper Austria.

 

How can I protect myself against potential infection?

Wash your hands several times each day with soap and water or use an alcohol-based disinfectant, cover your mouth and nose with a paper tissue (not your hands) when you cough or sneeze and avoid direct contact with people who are ill. Keep a safety distance of at least 1 meter. In addition, nose and mouth protection must be worn in shops and public means of transport.

For information on transmission, symptoms and prevention, you can also call Austria’s national health number on 1450 or contact the dedicated AGES coronavirus info line 0800 555 621.

 

If infection is suspected

If you have symptoms or the suspect that you have become infected, put yourself in quarantine and call the health hotline 1450 for further instructions.