For members


Everything that changes in Austria in August 2021

From mandatory PCR tests for returning travellers to new requirements for ID cards, there are some important changes taking place in August.

Everything that changes in Austria in August 2021
Here is what is set to change in Austria in July. Photo by Majid Rangraz on Unsplash

Here’s what you need to know about changes in Austria in August 2021.

Mandatory PCR tests for some returning travellers

From Tuesday 3rd August, travellers returning to Austria from the Netherlands, Spain and Cyprus will have to present a negative PCR test on arrival.

Fully vaccinated and recovered people – i.e. people who have had the virus recently and who have recovered – with at least one vaccination are excluded, the Austrian press agency APA reports. 

Travellers that don’t have a negative PCR test, are not vaccinated or recovered will have to take a PCR test at the airport.

UPDATED: Austria to require mandatory PCR testing for travellers from Spain, Cyprus and the Netherlands

Health Minister Wolfgang Mückstein said: “Around a third of new infections can be traced back to travel, and numerous infections are spread by people who return to travel.”

The new rule applies to Austrian citizens and residents, as well as people who are citizens or residents of other countries. 

Two doses of Covid-19 vaccine for 3G rules

From Sunday 15th August, the 3G (tested, vaccinated or recovered) rule in Austria is changing.

From this date, only a full course of a Covid-19 vaccination will be accepted as proof of the 3Gs.

This means two doses of an AstraZeneca, Pfizer or Moderna vaccine have to be received before the vaccination certificate can be used for 3G. The date of validity for the certificate is the date of the second dose.

FOR MEMBERS: How is Austria using Covid certificates compared to the rest of Europe?

For those that receive the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, the certificate is valid 22 days after the dose has been administered.

The 3G rule is currently required to access certain places in Austria like bars and restaurants, as well as for travelling overseas.

Fingerprint requirement for ID cards

The highly controversial new fingerprint requirement for ID cards in Austria will come into force from Monday August 2nd.

It means all new cards issued from this date will contain a chip with two fingerprints.

The new rule is compulsory, but old ID cards remain valid until their expiry date.

The reform is a requirement of the EU with the aim to tackle identity fraud, but the move has been criticised by data protection groups.

E.ON Energie takes over E wie Einfach

From Sunday August 1st, energy company E.ON will take over its subsidiary E wie Einfach, including any existing customer contracts.

However, E.ON promises that nothing will change for customers except for the name of their provider.

E.ON has a strong focus on regionality, sustainability and renewable energy.

Travel to the UK to become easier

For British citizens living in Austria, the announcement that fully vaccinated travellers to the UK will no longer have to quarantine is the news they have been waiting for.

The new measure applies to amber list countries (as defined by the UK government) – including Austria.

From Monday August 2nd, people arriving in the UK from amber countries will have to show proof of full vaccination to avoid a 10-day quarantine.

However, travellers will still have to present a negative Covid-19 test on arrival and take another test on day two.

READ MORE: UK to allow fully vaccinated travellers from Europe to skip quarantine (but not tests)

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For members


Everything that changes in Austria in July 2022

From travel issues and the end of the mandatory vaccination law, here are some of the most important changes you need to be aware of in Austria in July.

Everything that changes in Austria in July 2022

A summer with travel chaos

Austrian airlines and airports have tried reassuring travellers that the country has enough workers on the ground to keep travel running smoothly. However, sector representatives also warned they couldn’t influence what happens abroad.

Budget airlines have already announced strikes in locations including Spain, France, Italy, and Portugal, as The Local reported. German airline Lufthansa has also cancelled more than 3,000 flights during the summer holidays at the hubs of Frankfurt and Munich.

READ ALSO: Strikes and queues: How airline passengers in Europe face summer travel chaos

But it’s not just air travel that has been affected by growing tourism and a shortage of personnel, among other factors.

The increased demand for train travel has also caused people to be “bumped” from overcrowded trains in Austria. Holidays are also the time when car traffic becomes more intense, with expected heavy traffic as summer vacations arrive.


Covid-19 mandatory vaccination law to be abolished

Austria will cancel its mandatory Covid-19 vaccination law, as The Local reported. The announcement was made in June, but a motion to formally abolish the controversial law should pass in parliament early in July.

The rule allowed police to check people’s vaccination status and issue fines to those that could not show a valid “green pass”, indicating they had all necessary vaccines or had recently recovered from the disease. It was suspended in March before any checks or fines were issued.

The federal government said the new, “milder” variants did not justify the strict regulation. They also acknowledged that the mandate didn’t incentivise people to get the jab.

READ ALSO: Covid-19: European summer holidays threatened by rise of subvariants

End of the failed ‘Kaufhaus Österreich’ project

The “Kaufhaus Österreich” project launched in 2020 under the former Economics Minister Margarete Schramböck (ÖVP) is to be brought to an end on July 1st.

It was initially intended as an online retailer directory designed to bring online sales to local businesses when shops were closed during the pandemic. Then the page was changed into an information platform for traders.

The Digital State Secretariat estimated the cost of the failed project at almost €950,000, Der Standard newspaper reports.

School’s out!

The school summer vacations start in July and last until early or mid-September, depending on the state.

In Burgenland, Lower Austria, and Vienna, the holidays start on July 2nd. The remaining states start a week later, on July 9th.

READ ALSO: The best Austrian wineries to visit this summer

There are no national bank holidays during July in Austria.

Festivals and events

Summer is full of events and with Covid restrictions lifted, Austria is ready to host some of its largest festivals again. 

In July, people can look forward to River Days and Mid Europe Music Festival in Styria, the Wetterleuchten Festival in Innsbruck, several open-air cinemas and Vienna’s Rathaus culture and culinary festival, among others.

READ ALSO: The best festivals and events to enjoy in Austria this summer