Masks and gatherings: Germany strengthens regulations


August 29, 2020

Germany recently strengthened regulations intended to fight the spread of COVID-19. A joint federal and state resolution was released that included new guidance in three key areas.

Mask requirements

  • It is now obligatory to wear a mask in shops and on public transport. Not wearing a mask in these areas will be punishable by a minimum fine of 50 euro.
  • Health officials also stress the importance of wearing a mask in all other public areas.

Large events ban extended

  • A ban on all “major events” has been extended until Dec. 31. This applies largely to events like professional soccer matches, which had been slated to allow live audiences at the end of October.
  • For smaller celebrations, the German government urged individuals to “weigh each instance critically.” However, most states and all military commands (for U.S. service members) have specific rules in place that need to be followed.

Returning to Germany?

  • Rules on returning from high-risk areas remain, including a mandatory quarantine period and COVID testing.
  • Free testing will no longer be offered to those returning from areas not classified as high-risk.
  • The Robert Koch Institute, Germany’s federal agency for disease control and research, has an updated list of high-risk areas.

USG employees: check for further guidance

For U.S. government employees, including service members, remember to always follow command regulations, which may be different than host nation policies. More information is available from Ramstein Air BaseUSAG BavariaUSAG Rheinland-PfalzUSAG Stuttgart, and USAG Wiesbaden.


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