No more masks in restaurants, hairdressers, gyms or the cinema
More details on relaxation of the Covid-19 rules in July 1st were announced on Monday. There were few surprises.
The main change is that people will no longer have to wear masks in places where they have shown proof of being vaccinated, recovered or tested for Covid-19.
This includes, for example, restaurants, fitness studios and cinemas, along with pedicure salons and other “body hugging” services.
Masks are still required in public transport, museums and shops.
As The Local has previously reported, there will no longer be a curfew in Austria, which means that night clubs can also reopen.
However, these will only be allowed to operate at 75 percent capacity. There will also be no more square meter restrictions for this in retail. The “3-G rule”, meaning proof of having been vaccinated, tested or recovered, remains in place for restaurants, hotels, hairdressers and in leisure facilities and on coaches and excursion boats.
No more Ninja pass
One change which parents may notice which will also come on July 1st, is that children under the age of 12 will no longer need to show a test result to access events or services.
As schools close, the Ninja card will be retired until further notice.
No more FFP-2 masks needed
From July 22nd, FFP-2 masks will no longer be obligatory in hospitals and care homes, unless the individual institution asks that they be worn. People will still have to wear a MNS mask (one which covers your mouth and nose) on public transport, in workplaces with customer contact and when visiting or working at a retirement and nursing homes.
If Austria’s infection rates continue to fall, masks may no longer be obligatory in shops and on public transport from July 22nd. However this is still not decided and will depend on the infection situation.
Seven day incidence is 8.4
The seven-day incidence, or the number of new infections with the coronavirus in the past seven days per 100,000 inhabitants, is 8.4 in Austria. No federal state has a value above 20, many have a value below 10.0, and the trend has recently been falling. Carinthia (2.1) has the lowest, Vienna with 19.2 is the highest.
Vienna microbiologist warns of “mini-epidemic” in autumn
The microbiologist Michael Wagner from the University of Vienna warned of “mini-epidemics” in a “Vienna today” interview. He argues even if 80 percent of Austrians are vaccinated, there will still be over a million people who remain unprotected in the autumn.
In Vienna, around 48 percent of the total population are currently vaccinated, but the under-25 age group is only around five percent jabbed, broadcaster ORF reports. There is currently no vaccination available for children under twelve.
Industrial boom underway
An “industrial boom” is underway in Austria following the pandemic, according to Der Standard newspaper, as the Austrian Institute for Economic Research (Wifo) predicts an industrial production increase of 9.2 percent this year and another 4 percent the following year.
Christian Helmenstein, chief economist at the Federation of Industrialists, tells the paper that this is likely due to attempts at a post-Covid catch-up.