Austria is introducing additional corona tests for tourism

AOn Friday morning, when Christian Wildeis is allowed to reopen his hotel for visitors after weeks of closure, the first thing to come is the Red Cross. In the courtyard of the “Kirchenwirt” in Weißenkirchen in the Wachau, an hour’s drive north of Vienna, the lifeguards set up a tent next to the charging station for the electric cars. Under the eyes of the hotelier, dressed in beige trousers and a green jacket, they spread cotton swabs, disinfectants, plastic tubes and lists of names on tables.

Wildeis and his crew of 20 employees can be tested on Covid-19. You are avant-garde. Because Minister of Tourism Elisabeth Köstinger (ÖVP) wants to have all 65,000 employees in the Austrian accommodation industry tested for infection with the virus – every week.

There are great efforts in Europe to start tourism again. Turkey wants to test all guests for the virus, elsewhere visitors are expected to bring proof that they are not infected with the corona virus. Austria, on the other hand, tests its staff. Köstinger says: “So far, there is no other country.”

“Because the guests,” says Governor Johanna Mikl-Leitner (ÖVP), “should not only feel good, but also safe.” The head of government of Lower Austria, which includes the Wachau with its picturesque places and vineyards, is on this damp and cold morning also came to the Danube for the late season opening.


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