Mask mandate eased across Switzerland

COVID certificate no longer required to access most public areas

Effective today [17 February 2022], Switzerland is removing the majority of requirements to wear face masks or provide COVID certificates in public areas, introduced in May 2021.

Switzerland’s Federal Council removed the sanctions originally adopted to contain the coronavirus which required facial coverings and C19 certificates to enter shops, restaurants, cultural venues and public settings and events. The loosening of protocols also applies to the wearing of masks in the workplace and enables employees to return to their office for work.

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“Only the requirements to isolate in the event of a positive test and to wear masks on public transport and in healthcare institutions will remain in place until the end of March to protect those at high risk, after which the situation status will return to normal,” the council said.

The authority said that due to the high level of immunity in the population to the virus, conditions are in place for a “rapid normalisation of social and economic life”.

Gondola, Mürren, Lauterbrunnen, Switzerland | Credit: Photo by Leila Azevedo on Unsplash

Voluntary capacity restrictions in the retail sector and in cablecars and gondolas will also be lifted.

For travellers, health-related measures for persons entering the country will be lifted meaning it will no longer be necessary to provide proof of vaccination, recovery or a negative test or complete an entry form.

Protocols for Australians

Switzerland Tourism does however remind travellers that border rules for people from Australia remains unchanged.

Because Australia is still classed as a “risk-country”, only fully vaccinated people (vaccinated within the last 270 days) may enter Switzerland. However, there is no longer a requirement to complete the Passenger Locator Form (PFL) or to apply for the Swiss COVID Certificate.

As all travellers from Australia need to be vaccinated, there is no test needed before or upon arrival in Switzerland.

“With the new rules in place, Switzerland has a clear advantage towards other (European) countries, and we look forward to welcoming our guests from Down Under to Switzerland,” said Livio Goetz, Director Australia & New Zealand for Switzerland Tourism.

Lead image: Bern, Switzerland | Credit: Photo by Alin Andersen on Unsplash 

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