Travelers can look forward to the relaxation of the Corona rules. In line with the holiday season, the federal government is announcing further easing: on arrival in Germany, no proof of vaccinated, recovered or tested people has to be presented with immediate effect. At least for now.
Before the summer holiday season, relaxation of the Corona rules for traveling abroad will take effect: Holiday returnees and others no longer need 3G proof for vaccinated, recovered or tested persons when entering Germany. This emerges from an amended regulation of the Federal Ministry of Health, which came into force this Tuesday and is initially valid until August 31st. In view of the current development of the pandemic, the previous obligation to provide evidence for everyone over the age of twelve could be omitted, it was said as a justification. Statutory mask requirements in airplanes and other public transport continue to apply for corona protection.
The aviation industry welcomed the lifting of the 3G regulations. In view of the sharp decline in the number of corona cases and a low risk of infection in aircraft, this is the only right step, said the Federal Association of the German Aviation Industry. In addition, 3G regulations have expired in almost all areas of life for weeks. "That's also why it's proportionate and appropriate for air travel to be adjusted accordingly."
For travelers from countries where new variants of the corona virus are circulating, stricter rules will remain in place in summer - at least in principle. Because there is currently no country on the list of the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) that the federal government has classified as a virus variant area. Should this be the case again, people entering Germany from there must go directly to 14-day quarantine, even if they are vaccinated or have recovered. You must also have test evidence that is to be randomly checked.
The Ministry of Health explained that appropriate measures would continue to be available as an “emergency brake”. Department head Karl Lauterbach had made it clear that the 3G entry rules would now be "suspended" until the end of August. This covers the long school holidays in 11 of the 16 federal states - in Baden-Württemberg, Bavaria, Hesse, Rhineland-Palatinate and Saarland the summer holidays go until the beginning of September. How the entry rules will then continue is unclear for the time being. A follow-up regulation would be necessary, otherwise all specifications would expire.
The aviation industry is already pushing for further easing for passengers. In a next step, the federal government should now also change course when it comes to the obligation to wear masks on airplanes and - like many countries already - rely on it being voluntary, the federal association reaffirmed. The obligation to wear masks can no longer be explained to passengers in a comprehensible manner and is increasingly leading to unavoidable disputes. The association pointed to efficient ventilation systems and air filters in the machines.
In Germany, the nationwide mask requirement on airplanes and long-distance trains is legally stipulated until September 23rd. Carriers are obliged to monitor compliance through spot checks. The mask requirement, which the federal states are ordering, also applies to local transport with buses and trains. Since mid-May, the EU health authority ECDC and the aviation security agency EASA have no longer recommended the general obligation to wear masks in airports and airplanes. If masks are compulsory in traffic at the departure or destination, this should also continue to apply in machines.
The debate about further corona protection regulations for the fall has already flared up anyway - also in the traffic light coalition. Lauterbach is preparing a strategy for an expected increase in infections in the colder season. In addition to a new vaccination campaign, test rules and the use of medication, this should include renewed changes to the Infection Protection Act, which expires on September 23rd. The current instruments are not sufficient to be well prepared, he made clear in advance. It is about more than making it possible to wear masks indoors again. However, the FDP initially insisted on previously planned expert assessments.