On 4th December the Federal Government announced that ski resorts In Switzerland stay open for now subject to restrictions, and cantonal licensing from 22nd December.
Swiss ski resorts to stay open for now
Alain Berset, the Swiss Health Minister, announced on Friday that Swiss ski resorts shall not be closed at a federal level but that restrictions are to be imposed:
- Mask protection to be worn in all areas where social contact is unavoidable, in or on all lifts, stations, and holding/waiting/queuing areas, but not while actively skiing.
- Social distancing wherever possible, with a minimum separation of 1.5m, but not on lifts.
- All enclosed lifts (e.g. gondolas, funiculars, cable cars) to allow a maximum of 2/3 the normal maximum capacity.
- All other national restrictions are to be respected: masks when not sitting in restaurants (max 4 to a table except families), Max 1 person per 10 m2 in shops.
Cantons can and do have further restrictions as deemed necessary
For example in Grisons (Graubünden) which includes Flims-Laax, St Moritz, Davos-Klosters, and Arosa-Lenzerheide all restaurants and bars are to be closed for at least two weeks, take-aways permitted.
From 22nd December all ski resorts will have to obtain a special permit to operate from their canton, based on risk level, hospital & medical facilities and infection outlook. The federal government will continuously review the situation and will not hesitate to introduce further restrictions at any time should these be deemed necessary.
Currently all skiers and resort personnel appear to be adhering to the required discipline in and around ski areas. Fresh powder has been falling and the ski areas are generally very inviting and uncrowded.
However, be prepared for cancellation at short notice over the Christmas and New Year. This is especially so if you are booking to go to a hotel-restaurant without your own cooking facilities. Keep an eye on developing cantonal as well as federal restrictions. If you are crossing a national border there is always the risk of further quarantine restrictions either coming to Switzerland or returning to your country.
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