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NEWSLETTER

Which Covid-19 restrictions will Switzerland lift on Wednesday?

Swiss Federal Council is set to announce its decision on May 12th. Will some of the rules still in place be relaxed?

Which Covid-19 restrictions will Switzerland lift on Wednesday?
Will end to homr office obligation be announced in Switzerland? Photo by Anthony Shkraba on Pexels

After the government eased some of the restrictions from April 19th — including the re-opening of outdoor restaurant areas, as well as fitness clubs and other sports facilities — many in Switzerland expect it to loosen the remaining rules on Wednesday.

The government has not expressly stated which measures are being considered for relaxation. 

However, based on previous statements – along with the government’s own criteria for relaxation – these are some of the measures which could be wound back. 

Quarantine

Anyone entering Switzerland from a risk country has to be in quarantine for 10 or seven days.

The Federal Council said it would consider lifting the travel quarantine requirements for vaccinated people or those who recovered from Covid and are therefore immune.

The Federal Council could relax quarantine requirements for travellers, according to NZZ am Sonntag.

Switzerland could follow the example set by Germany, where the quarantine obligation was lifted on Saturday for people who were vaccinated or recovered from Covid.

“It seems unrealistic to abolish travel quarantines altogether. Everything relating to tracing, isolation and quarantine remains one of the pillars of the fight against this pandemic”, said Karim Boubaker, Vaud’s cantonal doctor.  

“But I think we can become selective in making decisions about people who are immune to coronavirus”, he added.

However, this may only happen once the immunity / vaccination certificate is launched, which is scheduled for the end of June.

Working from home office

Home work has been mandatory, whenever possible, from January 18th. This regulation has been much discussed within the Federal Council, and it is possible it will announce the end of the requirement on Wednesday.

“The mandate to work from home, which particularly harms small and medium-sized companies must now be dropped”, Fabio Regazzi, president of employers’ association told the 20 Minutes news portal.

What about the restaurants?

In the three weeks since outdoor spaces of restaurants and bars have been open, there has not been an increase in the number of infections. This positive development leads many in Switzerland to believe that the government will announce the re-opening of indoor spaces as well.

READ MORE:  ANALYSIS: Why are Switzerland’s coronavirus numbers falling so sharply?

This seems plausible, based on a three-phase re-opening plan that the government outlined in April.

If the epidemiological situation remains favourable, the Federal Council said it will consider re-opening of indoor restaurant spaces from May 26th.

READ MORE: EXPLAINED: What is Switzerland’s three-phase plan for ending Covid-19 restrictions?

However, Martin Ackermann, head of the Covid-19 Task Force cautioned that it is still too early for restaurants to fully re-open because “encounters indoors without masks represent the greatest risk of infection”.

Still, the task force has been under a lot of criticism lately for its “alarmist” predictions, so it is not sure whether the Federal Council will take this view under advisement

One thing we know is that more extensive relaxations will only be allowed after the bulk of Switzerland’s population is immunised, which will not happen before August, and only if the pandemic doesn’t worsen, authorities said.

Member comments

  1. Love is how to live this life in reality, please get vaccinated asap. God really loves you, please apply all the covid safety measures and take the vaccine also use the mask. Eat & exercise healthy to avoid clots. Others and I also love you! Luke 14 Forsake all everyone and yourself for J

    Luke 16 Work for J not pay$, then He will give you and your family the food and clothing if they follow too

    Matthew 25 & Luke 12 & 6 Sell everything and give to poor asap and keep all your giving in secret

    Mark 16 & John 17 Share the Truth to everyone working with others in love and peace

    Revelation 13 & 14 Don’t take the mark of the beast right hand or forehead only way to buy or sell *not vaccine or mask, but maybe implant or quantum technology

    Revelation 17 & 18 U.S may be the Babylon to be destroyed in one hour, with fire

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NEWSLETTER

Reader question: What proof of vaccination will Switzerland require for Americans and Brits to enter?

Starting on June 28th, vaccinated travellers from third countries, including Americans, will be allowed to come to Switzerland without having to show a negative Covid test or quarantine upon arrival.

Reader question: What proof of vaccination will Switzerland require for Americans and Brits to enter?
Vaccination in a foreign country can be proven with an official certificate. Photo: JAIME REINA / AFP

“In view of the positive developments in the epidemiological situation and the progress made in the field of vaccination, the Federal Council is proposing to greatly relax the prescriptions and health measures at the border for people entering Switzerland”, authorities announced on June 11th.

They specified, however, that final decision on this move will be made on June 23rd.

READ MORE: Switzerland set to reopen its borders to vaccinated Americans

However, if the number of infections, hospitalisations and deaths will remain the same as now — or, better yet, drop further — vaccinated tourists from outside the Schengen zone will be able to come to Switzerland before the end of June.

What proof of vaccination will those travellers have to show to enter the country?

Basically, the requirements for residents of third nations are the same as for people coming from the EU/EFLA states.

The proof showing you have been fully vaccinated should be an official document issued by a recognised health authority in your country of residence.

The document, which can be either on your smart phone or in paper form, must have your name and date of birth, dates when both doses were administered (or a single dose in case of a Johnson & Johnson vaccine), as well as the name and batch number of the vaccine.

READ MORE: Reader question: How do I prove in Switzerland that I’ve been vaccinated abroad?

Another important requirement is that the vaccine you received is authorised for use in the European Union and, therefore, in Switzerland.

So far, the European Medicines Agency has approved vaccines from Pfizer/Biontech, Moderna, AstraZeneca, and Johnson & Johnson.

In addition to these two, Switzerland will also accept the Chinese vaccines Sinopharm and Sinovac for entry. 

One thing to keep in mind is that the travel should take place at least 14 days after the second dose, which is when immunity to coronavirus is believed to fully kick in.

The same rules apply to people coming from the so-called “high-variant” countries (VOC) which at the moment include Brazil, Canada, India, South Africa, Nepal, and the UK.

They can enter Switzerland if fully vaccinated with proper proof.

Otherwise, they must present a negative PCR or antigen test taken no more than 72 days before arriving in Switzerland.

They will then have to quarantine for 10 or seven days.

However, Russia’s Sputnik V, as well as China’s Sinovac and Sinopharm vaccines have not received European or Swiss approval to date.

Does this mean travellers from Russia, China, and other countries that don’t use EU-approved vaccines can’t come to Switzerland?

They can still come, but will be required to present a negative PCR or antigen test taken no more than 72 hours before arriving in Switzerland.

They will then have to quarantine for 10 or seven days.

This rule pertains not only to foreign visitors, but also to Swiss citizens and permanent residents returning from abroad.

Will the Covid certificate be sufficient proof?

If it is internationally recognized, which means valid in the EU and Switzerland, then yes.

Switzerland’s certificate will be ready by July 1st. However, not all countries may have these immunity passports ready for use before you travel abroad.

If this is the case, then a proper vaccine document, as mentioned above, will suffice.

READ MORE: How to get Switzerland’s Covid-19 health pass

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