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HEALTH

Will Switzerland be added to Germany’s quarantine list?

Currently, 22 of Switzerland’s 26 cantons meet Germany’s ‘high-risk’ quarantine threshold. German authorities will decide on Wednesday if these cantons - or all of Switzerland - be added to the list?

Will Switzerland be added to Germany’s quarantine list?
Photo: ODD ANDERSEN / AFP

German authorities will meet on Wednesday, October 13th, to make additions to their list of risk countries which have to quarantine on arrival, reports Swiss daily 20 Minutes

Due to a significant spike in infections, 22 of Switzerland’s 26 cantons are currently over Germany’s quarantine threshold. 

As it stands, only Geneva and Vaud are on Germany’s quarantine list. Fribourg was previously on the list but was removed on October 1st. 

Only Glarus, Aargau, Basel Country and Schaffhausen currently sit below the threshold, although each of these cantons are only slightly below the threshold. 

UPDATE: Everything you need to know about Switzerland's quarantine rules 

Switzerland as a whole has also breached Germany’s threshold. 

Germany considers a country or region high risk if it has recorded more than 50 infections per 100,000 residents over the past seven days. 

If large parts of Switzerland were to be added to the list, there would be “serious consequences” reports Swiss daily 20 Minutes

Cross-border working and shopping is prevalent between Switzerland and Germany, while many families have links on either side of the border. 

Unlike Germany, Switzerland has implied that border regions of neighbouring countries will not be added to its ‘high risk’ list. 

Currently only the major German cities of Berlin and Hamburg have been added to Switzerland’s quarantine list. 

Quarantine: How does Switzerland decide a country is 'high risk'? 

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TAXES

Masks, tests and jabs: Can I deduct Covid-related costs from my taxes in Switzerland?

Switzerland’s tax deadline is just around the corner. Are Covid-related costs tax deductible?

Masks, tests and jabs: Can I deduct Covid-related costs from my taxes in Switzerland?

March 31st is the deadline for filing taxes in Switzerland relating to the 2021 financial year. 

Over the past two years, the Covid pandemic has seen a change in our spending habits. 

While we may have saved on restaurants and travel, we laid out considerable costs on a range of new expenses, including disinfectant, masks and Covid tests. 

As some of these costs are required by law, can they be deducted from your tax?

In some cases, expenses directly related to the Covid pandemic can be deducted. 

Masks, for instance, can be deducted as medical expenses in some cantons, Swiss tax specialist Markus Stoll told 20 Minutes

This depends on the specific framework for tax deductions related to medical expenses in that canton. 

EXPLAINED: What can I deduct from my tax bill in Switzerland?

Generally speaking, any medical costs paid out of pocket can be deducted. However, most cantons impose a minimum percentage limit from which these costs can be deducted. 

In many cantons, this will start at five percent of your yearly income in total (i.e. including other out-of-pocket costs like dental or specialist visits), meaning you would need to purchase a significant amount of masks to beat the threshold. 

What about testing and vaccination?

Testing and vaccinations however were largely free as their costs were covered by the Swiss government, which means associated expenses cannot be deducted. 

Those tests which were not covered by the government – for instance for travel abroad or for visiting clubs – cannot be deducted, Stoll says. 

“Tests for travel abroad or to visit clubs are not deductible” Stoll said. 

For a complete overview of taxation in Switzerland, including several specific guides, please check out our tax-specific page here. 

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