Germany warned it may have to move to a full COVID-19 lockdown after Austria said it would become the first country in western Europe to reimpose the measure to tackle rising infections.
With concerns mounting that this could cause a recovery in the regional economy to falter, here is a snapshot of some of the measures in place or about to be imposed.
GERMANY – In places where hospitalisation rates exceed a certain threshold, access to public, cultural and sports events and to restaurants is restricted to those who have been vaccinated or who have recovered. On public transportation and at work, anyone who is not vaccinated must provide a negative test result. FRANCE – Since July France has required people to show a vaccination certificate to enter public places such as theatres or museums and broadened the rule in August to include restaurants and long-distance trains. President Emmanuel Macron has so far ruled out a new lockdown which he says is unnecessary because of the vaccination certificate.
ITALY – Since Oct. 15 it has been obligatory for all public and private sector workers either to show proof of vaccination, a negative test or recent recovery from infection. No other relevant restrictions have been imposed so far.
SPAIN – Has lifted almost all restrictions but a handful of regions have capacity limits on bars, and Catalonia requires customers to show a COVID pass at nightclubs.
NETHERLANDS – Bars, restaurants and shops have been ordered to close early until at least Dec. 4 and fans are banned from all sporting events until then. Proof of a COVID-19 jab, recent recovery from an infection or a negative coronavirus test is required for entrance to all bars, restaurants and other events, where attendance is limited to a maximum of 1,250.
AUSTRIA – As of Monday, a full lockdown with non-essential shops closed and the public only allowed to leave their homes for a limited number of reasons like going to work. (Until Monday a lockdown that only applies to people not fully vaccinated). BELGIUM – Belgians have to work four days a week from home and masks are mandatory indoors for all those aged 10 and over. COVID passes, showing vaccination, negative tests or recent recovery are required inside cafes and restaurants.
DENMARK – The “corona pass”, which verifies that the holder is vaccinated or has tested negative, was reintroduced nationwide in November for visits to restaurants, cafes, homes for the elderly and indoor events with more than 200 people.
LUXEMBOURG – COVID passes required inside cafes and restaurants and up to 10 people can meet indoors without having to wear masks and maintain social distancing.
GREECE – From next Monday, unvaccinated people will be barred from indoor spaces including restaurants, cinemas, museums and gyms, even if they test negative.
ROMANIA – Access to most non-essential public venues except food shops and pharmacies is allowed only for people who are vaccinated or who have recovered from the virus. Shops close at 9 p.m. and the unvaccinated must observe a curfew. CZECH REPUBLIC – From Nov. 22, only vaccinated people or those who have recovered from infection will be allowed to go to restaurants, or cultural and sports events. Companies must test unvaccinated workers regularly, schools will test children. Government recommends home working. Foreseen until February. SLOVAKIA – From Nov. 22, only vaccinated will be allowed to events, restaurants, non-essential shops and shopping malls. In the worst-affected areas, restaurants will only serve take-away and facilities such as gyms will be closed. Unvaccinated workers will have to test regularly or will not be allowed into workplaces. Measures planned for three weeks.
PORTUGAL – The EU digital COVID-19 certificate is required to enter nightclubs and big events, as well as to travel. SWEDEN – Having removed nearly all restrictions in recent months, authorities will require COVID-19 vaccination passes at indoor events with more than 100 people from Dec. 1.