On Monday, Lower Austria and Vienna allowed hairdressers to open up again after a month-long lockdown.
The rules in these two states now mirror those in all other Austrian states besides Vorarlberg.
Anyone wanting to get their hair cut or to use other so-called ‘close contact’ services – for instance tattoo parlours, cosmetic services or other similar services – will need to present a negative test to do so.
While non-essential shops will again be allowed to open in these states, a negative test is not required at the present moment.
What kind of tests are required?
There are two main types of tests: antigen tests and PCR tests.
In order to visit the hairdresser, only PCR tests and official antigen tests are allowed.
This means that the so-called antigen ‘self tests’ which you can do at home are not sufficient to visit close-contact services.
For an antigen test to be sufficient, it needs to be carried out by a doctor or medical professional.
This is set to change from May 19th, where antigen self-tests will suffice for visiting close contact services, reports Austria’s Kurier newspaper.
How long are the tests valid for?
PCR tests are valid for 72 hours – meaning that to visit the hairdresser you will need to have had the test within the past 72 hours.
Antigen tests are valid for 48 hours.