Many states dare to step out of lockdown | Free press


Berlin (dpa) – In the fight against the corona pandemic, EU countries have different approaches. Despite the sometimes high incidence, many European countries are already ringing in the summer. An overview:


In Belgium, stricter rules have applied in recent weeks. The shops have been open again since Monday and hairdressers are allowed to work again. Ten people with masks are allowed to meet outside. From May 8, restaurants and bars will be allowed to reopen their outdoor spaces after a forced break of months. Curfews are also being abolished. The number of new infections has recently leveled off to more than 400 per 100,000 inhabitants per day. Almost every third adult has been vaccinated at least once.


The shops have long since reopened and the streets are full of people. Cafés, restaurants and bars have been able to serve customers again for a week – but only indoors if the guests can demonstrate a negative corona test, a vaccination or a surviving infection via the app. It is striking that the Danish number of new infections has remained stable and low, with a seven-day incidence of less than 100, they have remained below the German values ​​for a long time. Denmark is the only EU country that does not use the Astrazeneca vaccine. Yet nearly 22 percent of the total population is vaccinated at least once.


If the situation permits, the movement restrictions will be lifted at the beginning of May. Currently, people are only allowed to move more than ten kilometers from their home for a valid reason. In addition, outdoor areas of restaurants and certain cultural institutions could reopen. There are also talks about relaxing the curfew, which currently starts at 7pm. However, the corona situation is still tense. Recently there were about 300 new infections per 100,000 inhabitants and for seven days. About a fifth of the population has been vaccinated at least once.

Great Britain

In Britain, the corona situation has now deteriorated significantly thanks to a long, consistent lockdown and the advanced vaccination campaign. More than half of the population has already been vaccinated, a quarter even completely. The seven-day incidence was recently about 25 cases per 100,000 population. In England and Wales pubs and restaurants can once again receive guests outside, and in Scotland even indoors. Shops, gyms, hairdressers and zoos have largely reopened. However, indoor gatherings and travel abroad will remain prohibited until at least mid-May.


Italy has recently undergone gradual relaxation. Where corona numbers are moderate, restaurants and bars are also allowed to serve outside at tables in the evenings. The exit ban applies from 10 p.m. Museums and cinemas in the so-called yellow zones are already open. You should be able to sit inside bars again from June 1. Italy is aiming for the start of the summer season on June 2. Traveling in the country is still partly subject to restrictions, but with a vaccination or a negative corona test it should soon be easier to drive to higher risk zones yourself. The incidence of seven days was last around 160. More than 22 percent of the population has been vaccinated against the corona virus at least once.


The island state wants to open up to international tourism from June 1. From 10 May, restaurants will be able to welcome visitors again and serve them at the table until 5 p.m. The special thing about it: more than 40 percent of the total population has received at least one vaccination so far. The government wants to lure vaccinated foreigners to the country with preferential treatment in the short term.


Despite persistently high corona figures, the Netherlands relaxed the first measures since the strict lockdown on Wednesday in mid-December. The curfew has been abolished, shops can again receive customers without an appointment and outdoor restaurants can again serve guests under certain conditions – at least from 12:00 to 18:00. At home you can meet two visitors a day instead of one. All public events, such as museums, cinemas and theaters, are prohibited. School children and students receive classroom lessons at least one day a week. The seven-day incidence was 317. About 30 percent of the population has been vaccinated at least once.


From 19 May, restaurants, hotels, stages and sports facilities may open their gates again. The government relies on access testing as a protective measure. Events are limited to 3000 people outside and 1500 people inside. There is currently an even stricter lockdown in and around Vienna, which means that most shops are still closed until Sunday. The 7-day incidence across the country has recently dropped to 168. About 28 percent of residents 16 and older have received at least one dose of vaccine.


Gradual openings are planned. Firstly, shopping centers and museums should be able to reopen under hygienic conditions, for example. Starting May 8, hotels will be able to accommodate guests up to an occupancy rate of 50 percent. Outdoor catering starts on May 15th. From May 29, indoor restaurants should be possible at half capacity. The Ministry of Health on Wednesday reported 8,895 registered new infections and 636 deaths within 24 hours, an incidence of seven days is not calculated in Poland. About 10.7 million people – 28.2 percent of the population – have been vaccinated at least once.


Shops, museums and libraries have reopened since the beginning of March, despite the increasing number of infections. Since April 19, the restaurant terraces, cinemas, theaters and fitness centers are back in operation. Open-air concerts and football matches can also take place again. Hygiene rules apply, such as limiting the number of people present or the mandatory wearing of a mask. Since Easter – four weeks after the opening of the shops and museums – the increase has been only very small. In contrast to other countries, an incidence of 14 days is calculated in Switzerland. According to the Federal Office of Health, it was 315 new infections per 100,000 inhabitants on Wednesday. According to the latest figures, almost ten percent of the population is fully vaccinated.


A week and a half ago, the stores reopened with strict hygiene and distance rules. Catering companies have been able to serve food and drinks in their outdoor area again since Monday. Since Tuesday, spectators are again allowed to attend professional sports events. The number of new infections is decreasing and, based on the number of inhabitants, is now well below the figures for Germany. According to official information, about 20 percent of the population had been vaccinated at least once on Wednesday.


The situation in Spain is relatively stable, the seven-day incidence on Wednesday was 108. So far, 23 percent of the population has received at least one vaccination. The Corona emergency will end on May 9 and may not be extended due to good development. This removes the basis for most measures, such as travel restrictions, curfews, meeting caps and restaurant closures. It is not yet clear how to proceed afterwards. All hopes of the country, which is extremely dependent on tourism, for a normal summer season again focuses on the digital vaccination certificate.