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FINES

REMINDER: What are the fines for breaking shutdown rules in Switzerland?

From failing to wear a mask or taking part in an illegal protest, here's how much you'll be fined for breaching coronavirus measures in Switzerland.

REMINDER: What are the fines for breaking shutdown rules in Switzerland?
Mask requirement is one of many in effect in Switzerland. Photo by AFP

PLEASE NOTE: The fines have since been partially relaxed. Please click here for more information. 

The rules went into effect on January 18th in an effort to rein in the spread of coronavirus infections, including those with the mutated strains, which have been on the increase in recent weeks.

These measures include the closure of bars, restaurants, and all non-essential businesses. Also, there is a limit of up to five people for public and private meetings, along with the working from home order whenever possible.

“Anyone contravening the measures to fight the epidemic will be committing an offence; persons who fail to comply with the rules may be fined between 50 and 200 francs, depending on the offence”, the government said. 

READ MORE: EXPLAINED: What are the details of Switzerland’s coronavirus restrictions? 

So what are the penalties for violating the above rules?

  • Organising a private event attended by more than five people: 200 francs
  • Gathering of more than five people in public space: 50 francs
  • Participating in an illegally organised event: 100 francs
  • Not wearing a mask on public transportation or in an airport: 100 francs
  • Not wearing a mask at public demonstration: 100 francs
  • Standing up while consuming in a bar or restaurant: 100 francs
  • Not complying with a quarantine requirement: up to 10,000 francs

Hundreds of fines have already been handed out for breaking Covid-19 rules.

For example, the police in the canton of Zurich imposed around 100 fines in the first week of February alone. Vaud handed 106 fines, while in Geneva, Valais and Thurgau, between 30 and 40 fines were issued in the first days of February.

Most fines have been imposed for exceeding the limit of five people for both public and private gatherings, cantonal police departments report.

READ MORE: Here’s how much you’ll be fined for breaching Switzerland’s coronavirus measures
 

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COVID-19

Switzerland’s Montreux Jazz Festival cancels concerts of unvaccinated British artists

Switzerland’s Montreux Jazz Festival announced on Friday that it was forced to drop the acts of four UK-based artists from its summer program because they haven’t been fully vaccinated yet.

Switzerland's Montreux Jazz Festival cancels concerts of unvaccinated British artists
British singer-songwriter Rag'n'Bone Man was dropped from Montreux Jazx Festival. Photo: GUILLAUME SOUVANT / AFP

The move was done in order to comply with current Covid-19 entry rules into Switzerland, which state that from June 26th, travellers from outside the Schengen zone, including Brits, will only be allowed to enter Switzerland if they have been fully vaccinated or have recovered from the virus. 

READ ALSO: Switzerland relaxes travel rules for vaccinated Americans and Brits: What you need to know

British soul singer Rag’n’Bone Man who was one of the headliners for the 2021 edition of the festival, which starts on July 2nd, will now no longer be able to attend due to not being fully vaccinated.

Other unvaccinated acts based in the UK who were also dropped because of the new entry rules include Inhaler, Alfa Mist and the Yussef Dayes Trio.

The artists have already been replaced with other performers from around Europe including Italian singer Zucchero, Woodkid, Dutch songwriter Benny Sings and Danish jazz trio Athletic Progression.

In a statement on June 25th, festival organisers said they were trying to make sure that the concerts of the other UK artists would continue to go ahead, however it is tricky because of fears over the Delta strain of the Covid virus, which has now become dominant in Britain.

“Whether or not these artists can come depends on their vaccination status and that of their touring entourage, as well as their ability to quarantine at the start of their European tour or before their concert at Montreux,” they said.

The Montreux Jazz Festival is one of just a small handful of big music festivals in Switzerland that will still go ahead this summer. Other music events such as St Gallen Open-Air, Paléo and Bern’s Gurten festival have been cancelled for the second year in a row, due to ongoing fears over the Covid-19 virus.

READ ALSO: UPDATE: What rules do European countries have for travellers from the UK?

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