SHARE
COPY LINK

COVID-19

What are the Covid-19 rules and regulations in Austria now?

UPDATED: The rules you have to follow in Austria depend both on your vaccination status and which region you're in. Here's an overview of the restrictions in place in restaurants, shops, cultural venues and more.

A woman wearing an FFP2 face mask in an Austrian supermarket
FFP2 masks are compulsory in all shops and on public transport. Photo: Alex Halada/AFP

3G and 2G

The first thing to understand about Austria’s Covid-19 regulations is that they are based on 3 ‘G’s: Geimpft (vaccinated), Genesen (recovered), Getestet (tested negative).

As of November 8th, 2G (vaccination or recovery only) is the main rule in place, and it applies to everyone over 12, although 12-15-year-olds in most regions may enter 2G venues with a negative PCR test instead. The exception is Vienna, where 2G applies from the age of 12.

Proof of vaccination includes either Austria’s own Grüner pass, or an EU digital Covid-19 pass (if you have an EU pass with a QR code but live in Austria, you will be able to upload this to your Grüner pass) or other equivalent. The NHS Covid app is often accepted, for example.

In areas with a 2G rule, there is a four-week transition (until December 6th) during which proof of a first vaccine dose together with a negative PCR test is accepted for entry in 2G venues, to ensure everyone has enough time to get both doses.

You might also hear about the 2.5G rule, particularly in Vienna, which means that either proof of vaccination, proof of recovery, or a PCR test (but not an antigen test) are required.

Visiting restaurants, bars and cafes

There are no limits on opening times for food and drink venues.

A 2G rule is in place for entry, meaning that you must show proof of vaccination or recovery.

Previously, separate, stricter rules were in place for what’s called ‘night gastronomy’ (Nachtgastronomie in German, referring to bars, clubs, and some late-night dining venues), but with the introduction of the 2G rule there is no longer a distinction.

There is no mask requirement, unless you are visiting the business for take-away only (see below).

Take-away food

You can enter restaurants and cafes to pick up food to takeaway without proof of 2G. This also applies to street food stalls, for example.

However, you need to wear an FPP2 mask at all times while inside the venue or while ordering at street food stalls.

Hotels and cable cars

A 2G rule is in place in order to check in to hotels and cable cars.

There are exceptions for people who use cable cars as a form of public transport if they are local residents, and for hotel employees, who do not have to show proof of 2G to work but can use a negative test.

At work

At the workplace, a 3G rule (vaccination, recovery, or negative test) applies in any place where you cannot rule out contact with other people. This means people such as truck drivers are exempt, but even if you have a private office, you must have proof of 3G if you could come into contact with others in the reception area, a meeting room, or lunch space for example.

There is no requirement to wear a face mask.

Until November 14th, a transition period is in effect, during which people can wear an FFP2 mask if they are unable to show proof of 3G.

Visiting cultural venues (theatres, museums, libraries etc)

Here a distinction is made between venues like theatres and cinemas, which are based around events with audiences, and venues like galleries and museums, which people typically visit as individuals. In the former, the 2G rule applies, as well as the usual rules for events.

In the latter, there is no 2G rule but all visitors need to wear an FFP2 mask, regardless of vaccination status.

Shops and supermarkets

There is no limit on opening hours for shops, and you do not need proof of 3G or 2G to enter.

In all retail venues, FFP2 masks must be worn. Previously the rules on mask-wearing differed based on the type of business, the region and the individual’s vaccination status but as of November 8th this is no longer the case.

Note that staff members do not have to wear FFP2 masks. This is because they are at their workplace and therefore will have shown proof of 3G. 

Events

Nationwide, the 2G rule applies to events for over 25 people.

Events for over 50 people must notify local officials, appoint a Covid officer and come up with a risk reduction strategy, and events for over 250 people must receive official authorisation.

Going to the hairdresser or beauty salons

For this kind of service, where you need to have a close proximity to staff, the 2G rule applies. 

Face masks

In any situations where wearing a face mask is mandatory, you should wear an FFP2 mask, not a cloth mask or ordinary surgical mask.

You need to wear an FFP2 mask at all times while using public transport, regardless of your vaccination status.

You also need to wear an FFP2 mask inside all retail businesses, such as shops, supermarkets, pharmacies and malls.

Where can I find out more?

We do our best to keep this page regularly updated; you can see when it was last fact-checked and updated by checking the date in the top corner.

We also recommend the following websites:

If you have questions about the Covid-19 situation in Austria, please contact our editorial team at [email protected] and we will do our best to help.

Member comments

Log in here to leave a comment.
Become a Member to leave a comment.
For members

COVID-19 VACCINES

Austria recommends 4th Covid vaccine dose for everyone over 12

Austria's autumn Covid-19 plan includes a fourth Covid-19 dose to all those older than 12 and the Health Ministry doesn't rule out further measures, especially a return of the mask mandate.

Austria recommends 4th Covid vaccine dose for everyone over 12

Austria’s Health Ministry and the country’s National Immunisation Panel (NIG) have recommended a fourth dose of the Covid-19 vaccine to the general population ahead of autumn.

Health Minister Johannes Rauch (Greens) and physician Herwig Kollaritsch of the Immunisation Panel have requested people take the vaccination before the cold months, reiterating that the Covid-19 vaccine is safe and protects against more severe courses of the disease.

“You can do a lot before autumn. Don’t wait until the numbers rise. Get vaccinated, take the booster shots”, Kollaritsch said in a press conference this Wednesday, August 31st.

READ ALSO: LATEST: The Covid rules across Austria from August 2022

The previous recommendation was only for people older than 60 or those in risk groups. “After there was already the booster recommendation for the vulnerable and over 60-year-olds over the summer, all other groups are to get a booster in the coming weeks,” the health minister said.

Only 58.9 percent of the population is currently sufficiently vaccinated, as per the recommendation of the National Immunisation Panel (NIG) – which for the majority of the population is three doses – or if they’ve had Covid then two doses and a recent recovered status.

New measures ahead of autumn

The health minister stopped short of announcing new Covid-19 measures for autumn.

When he announced the end of the mask mandate in the country back in May, Rauch had said the suspension would be “temporary” and masks were likely to return after summer, depending on the pandemic, particularly on hospitalisation numbers.

Currently, masks are obligatory in the health sector and on public transport in Vienna.

“We evaluate the situation weekly by talking with the hospital heads in the states. We have a very good view of the Covid-19 data, and we don’t rule out bringing measures back in the future”, he said.

READ ALSO: Vienna extends stricter Covid-19 rules until late October

He added: “It is likely that in the autumn, compulsory masks will again be useful and necessary in certain areas such as public transport or supermarkets,”.

For now, though, the minister said he recommends people to get vaccinated, wear masks where social distancing is not possible, and get tested regularly – even if those measures are not mandatory.

When should you get vaccinated?

The fourth vaccination should come a minimum of four months after the third one (or after a Covid-19 infection) but not after six months of the third dose (regardless of whether or not the person has had an infection after the last vaccine), according to the NIG.

READ ALSO: Reader question: Which Austrian states will allow Covid-infected teachers in classrooms?

For children between five and eleven years of age, the basic immunisation – which consists of three vaccinations – should be completed by the start of school at the latest; no booster vaccination is currently recommended in this age group.

Austria expects vaccines adapted to the omicron variant to arrive in the country before the end of September, the health minister said.

SHOW COMMENTS