TODAY: Switzerland extends Covid certificate for entry to restaurants and bars

TODAY: Switzerland extends Covid certificate for entry to restaurants and bars
Good to go: young people show their Covid certificates. Photo by Andreas SOLARO / AFP
Starting on Monday, entry to many indoor venues in Switzerland will be open only to those who have been fully vaccinated, recovered from coronavirus, or tested negative, and have the certificate to prove it.

The decision to extend the certificate is based on the “extremely high” occupancy rates in Swiss hospitals, according to the Federal Council.

“The share of the non-immune population also remains too large to prevent another strong wave of infection”, the government added.

READ MORE: Why does Switzerland have the most Covid-related ICU admissions in Europe?

The certificate is now compulsory to access almost all indoor areas, including restaurants, bars, fitness centres, sports events, cultural facilities, as well as some gatherings such as weddings in private venues.

More specifically, “access to cultural and leisure facilities such as museums, libraries, zoos, fitness centres, climbing halls, swimming pools, water parks, spas, billiard halls and casinos is also limited to Covid certificate holders” the Federal Council said.

The government specified, however, that “to protect fundamental rights, religious ceremonies and political events for up to 50 people are exempt, as are self-help groups”.

READ MORE: EXPLAINED: How does Switzerland’s newly expanded Covid-19 certificate work?

The new measure will be in effect until January 24th, 2022, but the Federal Council noted it “is ready to extend the deadline if the epidemiological situation requires it”.

The fine for non-compliance with the new rules is 100 francs. The ultimate responsibility for enforcing fines and deciding penalties lies with the cantons. 

Authorities will announce on Tuesday how the new requirement will apply to tourists coming to Switzerland. Health passes or vaccination certificates issued abroad may not be valid in Switzerland, depending on what kind of vaccines are administered in other countries.

More travel-related information can be found here:

UPDATE: Which vaccines are accepted for entry into Switzerland?

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