The good news for yacht owners and charter skippers: From Thursday on quarantine in Austria will be dropped – borders open again

Freie Fahrt nach Kroatien Österreich beendet Quarantäne und öffnet Grenzen.
Viele Buchten und Ankerplätze blieben über Pfingsten verwaist, weil Touristen aus Österreich wegen der anschließenden häuslichen Quarantäne lieber im eigenen Land blieben. Hier ein Foto einer beliebten Bucht auf der Insel Krk an Pfingsten, 2020.

Good news for all travellers who want to go to the Adriatic Sea or to Austria: the quarantine obligation on return trips has been abolished. “We have worked hard to ensure that the borders with Germany and our other neighbouring countries, which have similarly good health data, are opened as quickly as possible. From tomorrow, Thursday (4 June 2020, amnesty), the borders with all neighbouring countries – except Italy – will be opened without any testing or quarantine obligations”, announced Austria’s Minister of Tourism Elisabeth Köstinger.

Source: Current measures of the Federal Government (see “Section UPDATE: Entry Restrictions”)

Only 15 June, then 4 June

However, one question remains: On 28.5. 2020, the SeaHelp editorial team asked the Federal Ministry of Social Affairs, Health, Care and Consumer Protection, Cabinet of the Federal Minister, an official press enquiry on the subject of “domestic quarantine in Austria”. The answer to this question: “Austria is in constant exchange with its neighbouring countries and has announced further easing of travel restrictions with Germany for 15 June.” This means in plain language: Tourists from Bavaria, whose two-week Whitsun holidays end on 14 June, most likely stayed in Germany or travelled on to Croatia or Slovenia. The necessary income for the Austrian catering industry, which was already badly affected by the COVID 19 pandemic, could not be generated at all or was drained.

Turnaround after last minute quarantine

After the last-minute quarantine extension, now the next turnaround: Shortly after Whitsun, the quarantine regulation will be overturned, which means that Austrians can return from their Adriatic vacation without having to be in quarantine at home, and Germans could enter Austria again without any problems. However, the emphasis is on the “could” option, because most guests who wanted to spend their Pentecost holidays in the Alpine Republic will probably have cancelled or rebooked to other countries. And only in passing: The epidemiological situation has by no means changed dramatically over Pentecost. On the contrary, due to some larger centres of infection, the reproduction rate in the neighbouring country Germany even rose again above the critical factor 1.

Italy not yet without quarantine

But all this is now a thing of the past, boat owners and charter guests can now travel freely to the Adriatic Sea again, with the exception of Italy. It is not yet clear when this will change.

“D-Day” in Croatia?

In Croatia the marinas are already preparing for “D-Day”, as the big rush of tourists is called in tourist circles in reference to the storming of Normandy by the Allies. Disabled Pentecost vacationers who stayed at home for fear of the subsequent quarantine will probably now make their way to their boats, hotels and apartments.

Despite euphoria: pay attention to infection protection

Despite all the euphoria about the newly acquired freedom to travel, one should not forget: The COVID-19 pandemic is not yet over, just because the borders are open again and domestic quarantine after returning from abroad is no longer necessary. With a little common sense, you can also protect yourself well on the Adriatic: Keeping your distance, disinfecting your hands and wearing masks help to protect yourself just as well on the Adriatic as in Austria or Germany. One should also avoid narrow rooms such as konobas, where guests are crowded around their tables to eat their meals. But you should also sit outside, where there is much less risk of infection.

SeaHelp: Some missions even at Whitsun

With this in mind, SeaHelp again points out that it is still possible to renew permits and tourist taxes through SeaHelp to avoid unnecessary contact and possible long waits with the port captain and depository agents.

Außerdem: Also, you could count on SeaHelp in the past: At Whitsun, the emergency forces had to be deployed several times again to tow skippers into the marinas because the engine went on strike.

Update on this article:

The good news for yacht owners and charter skippers:
From Thursday on quarantine in Austria will be dropped – borders open again

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