Travel: Switzerland proposes end to Covid entry rules

The Swiss government’s proposal to end Covid measures includes the scrapping of the entry form and testing rules. Here’s what you need to know.

A Swiss airlines plane takes off while another can be seen on the tarmac in Switzerland
Arriving in Switzerland is set to be easier under new rules being proposed by the Swiss government. Image: Pixabay.

NOTE: Switzerland updated its travel rules on February 17th, removing all Covid-related restrictions. Click here for more information. 

The Swiss government on Wednesday afternoon announced the relaxation of some Covid measures, along with a plan to end most remaining measures by the start of March. 

The specific measures that have been relaxed – as well as the future plans – are laid out at the following link. 

READ MORE: Switzerland announces plans to relax all Covid measures

The Swiss government has also proposed further changes to travel rules, which will also be decided on by the cantons as part of the consultation process. 

This includes removing all Covid-related entry rules in place in the country. 

The requirement for people who are unvaccinated or not recovered from the virus to be tested on arrival would be dropped. 

The requirement to provide contact details in Switzerland’s entry form would also be dropped. 

Tourists would no longer need to get and show Covid certificates, as these would not be in use in Switzerland. If they remain in use, i.e. for larger events as laid out in path two above, then tourists would still be required to show certificates at these events. 

The Swiss government did however say that the overall Covid certificate would not be scrapped even if it was no longer required domestically as this may need to be shown abroad, i.e. for travel or entry to certain venues. 

The consultation is set to end on February 9th, with the changes to be put in place from February 17th onwards. 

Stay tuned to The Local for more information when it becomes available. 

Click here for the official government press release. 

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Basel to Berlin for 10 francs: Flixtrain expands to Switzerland

German transport provider Flixtrain has announced it will launch in Switzerland from June 23rd. The low-cost provider is offering 10 franc (10 euro) tickets from Basel to Berlin, among other cheap fares.

Basel to Berlin for 10 francs: Flixtrain expands to Switzerland

The low-cost company, which has been establishing itself Deutsche Bahn’s major competitor Germany over the past few years, runs long distance bus and train services. 

The lines to and from Basel run from Thursday to Monday. The new line is part of an expansion of services which is set to include around 70 destinations in Germany. 

As yet, Basel will be the only Swiss destination. The other two new routes are Stuttgart to Hamburg and Berlin to Weisbaden. 

REVEALED: How to find cheap train tickets in Switzerland

In addition to the 10 franc (10 euro) ticket from Basel to Berlin, other journeys within Germany will start at 5 francs (5 euros). 

As the fares are likely to be promotional, it is unclear how much they will cost once the service is up and running. 

Currently, tickets between Basel and Berlin can cost as high as CHF150 or 160 euros from Switzerland’s SBB or Germany’s Deutsche Bahn respectively. 

Flixtrain boss André Schwämmlein hit out at the German government’s 9 euro ticket for local public transport as “immature”, telling the Stuttgarter Nachrichten newspaper it would lead to a risk of “completely overcrowded trains all over Germany”. 

READ MORE: What tourists visiting Germany need to know about the €9 ticket

Image: Flixmobility

Who is Flix and what do they do?

Flixtrain is a part of Flixmobility, which is headquartered in Munich, Germany. 

The company was founded in 2011 and has since rolled out bus routes across Germany and much of Europe. 

Flixtrain was launched in 2017. Compared with Deutsche Bahn, however, its offering is still small: With nine token bright green trains, the private company competes against more than 300 high-speed (ICE) trains.

As Flixtrain is a private service, it will not be a part of the 9 euro fare network.