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Berlin Senate Eases Long List of Corona Rules

If there was a competition for easing Corona rules, Berlin would win it. No doubt. Starting on Friday, going to restaurants and shopping will be a lot easier. A week later, hotels are supposed to reopen.

Berlin, June 1st, 2021. Update: June 4th, 2021, 3:40 p.m. CEDT (The Berlin Spectator) — Starting on Friday, several Corona rules will not apply anymore. For instance, negative Corona tests will not be necessary for sitting down at outdoor restaurant tables. Meeting people will be facilitated. The Berlin Senate just took several decisions of this kind. Schools and hotels will be affected on June 9th and 11th, respectively.

Changes that Apply on Friday

These are the new rules that will be put in place on Friday, June 4th, 2021:

> Restaurants, bars and cafés may serve guests at indoor tables. Negative rapid Corona test result certificates are required here.

> In order to sit down at outdoor tables, Corona test certificates will not be necessary anymore.

> Up to ten persons from up to five households may gather outdoors.

> Up to six individuals from up to three households may meet indoors.

> Alcoholic beverages may be sold from 5:00 a.m. to midnight (one hour longer than before).

> Anyone may enter any shops, stores or malls without providing Corona test results.

> Flea markets are allowed to take place again.

> Public events with up to 500 people will be allowed outdoors, or with up to 100 persons indoors. Tests are mandatory from 11 persons (/indoors) or from 250 participants (outdoors).

> Cinemas, theaters, concert halls may reopen. Up to 100 persons may attend events. Venues that have expensive ventilating systems may welcome up to 500 people.

> Museums, galleries, memorials and libraries may reopen. Strict hygiene rules apply. But making reservations for time slots is not necessary anymore.

> Fitness studios may reopen.

> Kids may engage in sports activities in gyms in regular groups of up to 20 persons.

> Outdoor sports activities are not limited to a certain number of people anymore, but adults need fresh and negative Corona tests.

> For visitors of Berlin’s public outdoor swimming pools, Corona tests are not required anymore, but reservations for time slots still are, for now.

School Policies to Change

There is one change that applies from Wednesday, June 9th, 2021:

> All schoolkids may return to their schools for regular classes. They have to wear protective masks indoors and they need to be tested for Corona twice a week. If the parents decide against sending their kids to school, they will be within their rights until the summer vacations that commence on June 24th.

A compulsory school attendance will apply after the vacations. Originally, the Senate had intended to return to in-person learning for everyone later. A court decision forced it to change its approach on schools.

More educational events will take place at Berlin’s universities, including at labs.

Hotels to Reopen

There is another change that will kick in on Friday, June 11th, 2021:

> Hotels may give room to tourists or any other persons. Corona tests are required and strict hygiene rules apply. But as opposed to earlier reports, they will not be limited to 50 percent of their capacity.

The justification for the easing of this many Corona rules is the slumping number of new infections. At Berlin’s hospitals, the number of Corona patients is falling as well.

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