The Austrian government is allowing the country’s operators of ski facilities to re-open them on Dec. 24, in contrast with a ban ordered by the German, Bavarian and French governments. Their drastic measures are in principle supported by the Italian government, in response to German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s call for uniform guidelines throughout the European Union, but no final decision has been made. A couple of regional governments in Italy have proposed to leave the ski resorts open while closing the restaurants to avoid contamination.
The Spanish region of Catalonia and the government of Andorra had previously allowed the local ski facilities to operate from Dec. 9, with the local hotels and restaurants operating at half of their capacity, but the situation has become more uncertain lately. It seems in fact, that residents in Barcelona will not be able to go skiing in the neighboring mountains.
Austrian authorities point out that hotels and restaurants will remain closed until Jan. 7, thus indicating that their decision is meant to allow the local residents to ski,. Strict anti-contamination measures will be enforced. Foreign tourists coming from high-risk countries may be tested and placed on quarantines.
The Swiss ski resorts should stay open like now during the Christmas and New Year vacations, along with the related hotel facilities, with some restrictions on the number of guests. The French government is threatening to test and confine its residents when they return from Switzerland and Spain.
Backed by their regional governments, the French ski resorts have asked the country’s State Council to overturn the French government’s decision to block their ski facilities until mid-January. In general, the situation remains very fluid. We’ll continue to update it on this website from time to time.
Photo by Simon Berger via Unsplash