11.10 am: Food bank (Tafel) in Karlstadt opens every Saturday

From today on (02.05.2020) the food bank (Tafelladen) in Karlstadt in the administrative district Main-Spessart opens every Saturday. Due to the corona virus it has been rearranged and the procedure at the counter was adjusted, so helpers and customers are protected as good as possible.

11.00 am: Weekly market in Aschaffenburg on a larger area

From now on the weekly market in Aschaffenburg takes place on a larger area, in order that there is more space between the stalls and people can keep distance to each other. Every Wednesday and Saturday, the market now stretches from Schlossplatz to the parking lots in the neighborhood.

7.19 am: EU starts fund-raising campaign to fight corona

Together with global partners the European Union starts a worldwide fund-raising campaign to overcome the corona pandemic and among other things to develop new diagnostic methods and a vaccine. The campaign starts on Monday at 3 pm with the goal of collecting 7.5 billion Euro. Donations from countries, international organizations, financial institutions, civil society and foundations will be registered on the website “Coronavirus Global Response”. A world map shows the amount of donations. Citizens may participate by making donations to the partner organizations such as WHO, Global Fund or the Bill & Melina Gates foundation. But, first of all, they are called upon to draw attention to the campaign in their environment.


10.01 am: Good results after one week of mask requirement in local public transport

Barely a week after inaugurating the mask requirement in public transport, the Bavarian Ministry of Transport sees good results. “The obligation to wear a mask is very well accepted”, said minister of transport Kerstin Schreyer (CSU). Feedback from transport companies showed that “the vast majority of passengers wears a mask, sometimes up to 98 or even 99 percent.”

9.00 am: Administrative district offices in Passau and Straubing-Bogen reopen on Monday


The administrative district office (Landratsamt) in Passau continues operations next week (Monday, May 4). Personal visits will be possible after making appointments by phone. The same applies for registration offices in Salzweg, Pocking and Hauzenberg. Having an appointment, vehicles can be registered without having a valid reason. For customers and employees a face mask is required. The administrative district office in Straubing-Bogen also reopens on Monday. There and in the vehicle registration center (KFZ-Zulassungsstelle) face masks are required too. One can only pay cash at the checkout.

9.00 am: In Passau parking fees have to be paid again

Starting on Monday, May 4, parking on fee required open-air parking lots in the city of Passau will no longer be for free. The remission of fees that Mayor Jürgen Dupper established at the end of March due to the corona pandemic is expiring.


6.07 pm: Decision on schools, day care centers and Bundesliga adjourned for next week

Next week the federal government and the state governments will make a decision on further openings of schools, kindergardens and day care centers. “On Wednesday we want to progress”, Merkel said with an eye to the next video conference with the prime ministers. A “parallel strategy” for different age groups could be possible. The decision about how to continue the Bundesliga season was also adjourned. But for the next conference with the prime ministers on May 6, Merkel promised a “very clear decision” for sports during the corona crisis.

Angela Merkel
Chancellor of Germany

5.25 pm: Playgrounds, zoos and museums are supposed to reopen

According to Merkel, church services will be possible again. That is what she agreed on with the prime ministers. Playgrounds, zoos, galleries and museums could also be reopened with some restrictions. The federal states will make the final decisions.

9.34 am: Federal government will help students with emergency loans

Minister of Education Anja Karliczek (CDU) wants to help students to get through the corona crisis with emergency loans. From May 8 students can apply for a zero interest loan from the KfW bank up to 650 Euro per month. International students may receive the loan as from July.

9.08 am: Head of Chancellery expects extension of restrictions

The current restrictions are expected to be extended for at least one more week until May 10. Until then the “essential package” will remain in effect, said Head of Chancellery Helge Braun in an interview with n-tv.

9.00 am: Back to normal in schools not yet in sight

According to Minister of Education Karliczek there won’t be normal lessons in schools until next year. Only after large parts of the population have been vaccinated, one can go back to normal, she said in an interview with the BR. Probably this will take another 12 to 18 months. Until then there will be a mix of lessons in classrooms and digital lessons.


3.00 pm: More corona tests in Germany

The federal government has approved a bill from Health Minister Spahn, that includes a significant higher amount of testings. In future, more people with higher risks, for example in nursing homes, could be tested.

2.55 pm: Lufthansa makes face masks mandatory

Lufthansa obliges all passengers to wear a face mask on board. This mask requirement will be valid from May 4 until August 31 on all flights with airlines from the Lufthansa group. Due to the corona crisis, the limited schedule for flights will be extended until May 31. According to Lufthansa, customers whose flights have been cancelled or who can’t take their flight, can keep their ticket and change their booking to a new travel date (by the 30th of April 2021 at the latest) and a new destination if needed.

Deutsche Lufthansa AG, commonly known as Lufthansa, is the flag carrier and largest German airline which, when combined with its subsidiaries, is the second largest airline in Europe in terms of passengers carried

2.35 pm: Holiday packages can be cancelled for free

The extension of the global travel warning is rendering holidays abroad almost impossible. “Until June 14, vacationers will benefit from legal security”, said Paul Degott to the German Press Agency. He is a travel law attorney from Hannover. Holiday packages for example can’t take place until mid June. If tour operators don’t cancel them by themselves, customers could cancel those bookings for free.

10.44 am: Worldwide travel warning extended until June 14

The federal government has extended the global travel warning until June 14. According to government circles the decision about summer vacation will follow afterwards. So far, the travel warning was valid until the beginning of May.

10.11 am: Federal government enacts bonus for geriatric nurses

Employees in geriatric care will receive up to 1.500 Euro as a tax-free bonus to compensate the unusual burden the corona crisis causes, the federal government has enacted. Employees who spend at least one quarter of their working hours with care work, will get up to 1.000 Euro and trainees 900 Euro. Other employees in geriatric care will receive up to 500 Euro.

8.40 am: Cancellation fee for artists

Government-funded cultural institutions will pay artists up to 60 percent of their fee, if the event had to be cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic. On condition that the contract had been signed until March 15. Fees up to 1.000 Euro have a cancellation fee of 60 percent. For fees above that, the cancellation fee is 40 percent. The cancellation fee will be limited to 2.500 Euro.


1.45 pm: Church services and protesting will be possible soon

According to Interior Minister Joachim Herrmann, church services will be possible again from May 4. But participants must be seated 1.5 meters apart from each other. Also outdoor protests will be allowed, but only for up to 50 people and also with a minimum distance of 1.5 meters between participants.

1.36 pm: Restrictions will be extended

The Bavarian government decided to extend the existing measures of protection until May 10.

1.30 pm: Private child care will be possible, government pays fees for after school centers

Prime Minister Markus Söder (CSU) has announced that it should be made possible to establish private child care groups. But in order to track possible infections, they must be registered. Besides, the bavarian government will pay fees not only for child care centers but also for after school centers.

1.25 pm: Schools start smooth but “no back to normal”

Graduating classes in Bavaria are back in school since Monday and Piazolo, the Bavarian Minister of cultural affairs, commends the return as “smooth”. According to him, it was well prepared and organized, the protection against infections was ensured. However, Piazolo has dampened hopes for a quick back to normal. “Until summer there won’t be schooling in the way we used to know.” Classes must be split, so it is already clear that not all of the teaching material can be taught.


9.07 pm: Corona infection rate has increased again

According to Robert Koch Institut the infection rate has slightly increased to 1.0. That means that every infected person infects another person on average. At the beginning of April the infection rate was 0.7, at the beginning of March is was 3.0. The RKI repeatedly emphasized that the infection rate must be below 1.0 for the pandemic to end.

6.30 pm: Large stores are allowed to reopen with immediate effect

Bavaria reacts to a resolution of the Administrative court concerning the controversial limitation to 800 square meters for stores. Large stores may reopen as of now, if they reduce their selling space to 800 square meters – with barriers for example.

3.59 pm: Munich Airport – Terminal 1 will be closed

On Wednesday passenger services at Munich Airport’s Terminal 1 will be withdrawn. Flughafen München GmbH has announced that, because the amount of flights is currently drastically reduced due to the travel restrictions in the wake of the corona pandemic, all departures and arrivals will be processed via Terminal 2 until further notice. From Wednesday on baggage claim for all flights will also be at Terminal 2.

3.58 pm: Domestic travel could be possible in summer

The Federal Government Commissioner for Tourism considers domestic travel to be possible in summer. Holiday apartments and cottages could probably open first, hotels follow later, says Thomas Bareiß. But beaches must not be crowded. Industry standards should now be defined. Travelling to other European countries or even long-distance journeys could follow later.

3.20 pm: More violations on weekends

On weekends the Munich police department registers most of the violations of the restrictions on movements, as an evaluation of BR24 shows. After Easter (Easter Sunday: 317 violations) most violations had been registered on two Saturdays (259 on April 18 and 281 on April 25). The smallest amount of violations since Easter occurred on Tuesday, April 14 (76). This day happened to be the coldest day in the city with highest temperatures of 8 degrees Celsius.

2.30 pm: Söder considers to allow visitors in nursing homes

After a CSU board meeting in Munich, Bavaria’s Prime Minister Markus Söder has announced that focusing on how to make life easier for families will be the next step in the corona crisis. According to Söder concepts for daycare centers, schools and nursing homes are currently being developed. To tackle the loneliness of the elderly, they are thinking about allowing few visits of one chosen person. Concerning schools, the goal is that every student goes to school at least once before Pentecost.

What applies today in Bavaria

  • All over Bavaria, masks are mandatory in shops and in local public transport – even at platforms and stops. It is mandatory for all people in Bavaria from the age of six. Anyone who violates the obligation must expect a penalty of 150 euros.
  • Shops with sale areas ​​up to 800 square meters may reopen today. This includes bicycle and car dealers as well as book stores.
  • Students who are about to take their final exams go back to school. Pupils and teachers with previous illnesses as well as pregnant teachers and over 60-year-olds are initially not required to attend.
  • More children are allowed to go to emergency care in daycare centers and schools. They can be supervised even if only one parent works in a systemically critical area. Tax and legal advisors, pastors, teachers and single parents are now entitled to call upon emergency care.


2:34 pm: More than 41,000 confirmed cases in Bavaria

The number of confirmed corona cases in Bavaria has risen to a total of 41,295 (as of Sunday, April 26, 10 am). According to the State Office for Health and Food Safety (LGL), this means an increase of 344 people since yesterday. The death toll has risen by 29 to 1,613 people since yesterday.

1.00 p.m: Most people comply with mask requirement in Rosenheim

A mask requirement has been in force in Rosenheim since Wednesday. Most people comply with the new obligation, reports the police president of the headquarters in Southern Upper Bavaria (Oberbayern Süd). The police is checking compliance with the rules. So far, almost no complaints have been necessary. Police President Robert Kopp appeals to citizens to continue to abide by the rules because they are a prerequisite if they want the restrictions to be further loosened. The city and district of Rosenheim are one of the corona hotspots in Germany. As of tomorrow, the mask requirement in shops and public transport will apply throughout Bavaria.

11.46 am: Emergency care in daycare centers will be expanded from Monday

In Bavaria, emergency child care will be expanded from Monday. The new regulation is primarily intended to relieve working single parents. They are entitled to emergency care, even if they do not work in a so-called systemically critical area. For couples, only one parent has to work in a critical area. As of Monday, teachers, tax and legal advisors as well as pastoral carers are also entitled to emergency care for their children. However, this only applies if the child can not be supervised by an adult in the household, the ministry emphasized.The necessary application forms are now available online.


2.00 pm: University Hospital Würzburg is looking for blood donations from those who have recovered

The Würzburg University Hospital is looking for blood donations from people who have overcome a coronavirus infection. Their blood plasma could help other COVID-19 patients. For this, people are sought between the ages of 18 and 60 who have overcome a corona infection and have no serious previous illnesses (such as diabetes, stroke, heart attacks). Those who are interested are asked to contact the transfusion medicine of the University Hospital Würzburg.

9.39 am: 2055 new infections and 179 corona deaths in Germany

According to the Robert Koch Institute, the number of corona infections in Germany rose by 2,055 to 152,438 within a day. In addition, 179 people died, bringing the total death toll to 5,500. Around 109,800 people with Covid-19 have recovered.

8.32 am: Most German food banks continue giving out food

Despite the corona crisis, most food banks in Germany continue to try to provide the needy with food. After interim closings, almost all of the facilities in the major cities are back at work.

6.15 am: Pediatricians: Parents go to the doctor too late with their children

Because they are afraid of becoming infected with the coronavirus, many parents no longer take their children to the doctor, according to doctors. Wolfgang Kölfen, chairman of the Association of Leading Pediatricians in Germany, told the “Rheinische Post” that this could have dangerous consequences. In addition, an early warning system for children from difficult backgrounds is missing due to the closing of daycare centers.


2.44 pm: Soon online application for compensation for loss of pay due to Corona

Anyone who suffers a loss of earnings due to the Corona crisis will be able to apply for compensation online in most federal states in the future. Starting next week, employers and self-employed should be able to provide all the necessary information and upload evidence on the website, as the Federal Ministry of the Interior announced. Bavaria has not yet appeared in the list.

Anyone who is quarantined or who is not allowed to work due to their own infection is entitled to compensation. Since the end of March, the regulation has also applied to people who have to look after their children because of daycare or school closures and therefore cannot work.

2.07 pm: Federal government negotiates with Apple on Corona app

The federal government is negotiating with the US company Apple about the requirements for a corona tracing app. It is about the company opening the interface to enable the use of an app, said deputy government spokeswoman Ulrike Demmer. The app is designed to show smartphone users whether they have come into contact with people infected with corona.

1.10 pm: From May 4, church services are allowed again in Bavaria

Despite the ongoing corona crisis, religious services in Bavaria will be allowed under strict conditions from May 4, announced State Chancellor Florian Herrmann (CSU) on Friday in Munich. The conditions include hygiene plans, wearing a face mask and keeping a minimum distance of two meters between worshipers.

11.55 am: Mask requirement starting Monday: Violations can cost up to 5,000 euros

Starting on Monday, wearing a mask is compulsory in Bavaria. People from the age of six must cover their mouth and nose in shops and public transport, as well as at bus stops and tram and train stations. According to the State Ministry of Health and Care, this obligation also applies to regional trains, but not to long-distance trains. Wearing a mask also is required in taxis. Anyone who does not adhere to the mask requirement must be fined 150 euros. If repeated, it can double to 300 euros. However, it becomes particularly expensive for shop owners who do not make sure that their staff wear a face mask: they can be get a fine of up to 5,000 euros.

With the “Empty Chairs” campaign, restaurant owners draw attention to impending bankruptcies

In several cities in Bavaria and throughout Germany, innkeepers want to draw attention to their threatening situation with the “Empty Chairs” campaign today. At noon, owners want to put chairs outside their establishments as a sign of protest. Many innkeepers fear bankruptcy if, due to the corona measures, restaurants have to remain closed over the summer. They demand a clear timetable from politicians of when their companies may reopen. In addition, they want higher subsidies and a higher short-time work allowance. This week, the grand coalition passed a tax relief for the gastronomy and catering trade: from July 1, the value added tax for food will be reduced to 7 percent. The regulation is valid for one year.

10:40 am: First Bavarian police officer dies of Covid-19

A 57-year-old police officer from the Munich airport inspection died on Sunday in an Ingolstadt hospital from Covid-19. This was confirmed by a police spokesman. In Bavaria, he was the first policeman on active duty to die from a corona infection. Nationwide, it is the second case.


Corona aid: Changes in short-time work and unemployment benefits

The grand coalition wants to increase the short-time work allowance. So far, childless employees have received 60 percent of the net income, employees with children received 67 percent. Those who work less than 50 percent will now receive 70 or 77 percent, respectively, of their net income from the fourth month of short-time work and 80 or 87 percent, respectively, from the seventh month.

Unemployment benefit (Arbeitslosengeld I) will be extended by three months – for those whose benefit would end between May 1 and December 31, 2020.

Corona aid: Support for students

In order to support schools and students with digital lessons at home, the federal government wants to provide 500 million euros. The money should be used by schools to grant pupils from low income families a contribution of 150 euros for the purchase of appropriate devices such as smartphones or tablets. In addition, the equipment of the schools should be improved so teachers can create and use professional online courses.

10:45 am: Ramadan during corona: Praying and breaking fast only possible within the family circle

Tonight marks the start of the holy month of Ramadan for Muslims. For one month, many Muslims refrain from eating, drinking, smoking and having sex during the period from dawn till sunset. Because of the corona pandemic, believers cannot observe it this year as usual: Praying together in the mosque and breaking fast with others are canceled. Mehmet Yalcin, the chairman of the “Suleymaniye Mosque Integration and Educational Association Kempten”, told the BR that people’s health takes precedence. According to him, many muslims will find it very difficult to celebrate Ramadan alone or only with the members of their own household. The Penzberg imam Benjamin Idriz also sees positive aspects in the current situation. Even if Ramadan seems different and mosques remain closed, the families would become much more important. “Maybe next year we will remember this Ramadan and miss the good things. The intensive time in the families, for example. How nice it was to cook and pray together.” Here you can find more information about Ramadan (article in German).

9:08 am: Merkel: Corona restrictions will remain for a long time

“We are not in the final phase of the pandemic,” said Chancellor Angela Merkel in a government declaration in the Bundestag, the German federal parliament. The population will have to deal with the virus and the restrictions in public life for a long time to come. The restrictions are “an imposition” for democracy. Making these relevant decisions were not easy for her, but necessary. Merkel warned loosening the restrictions too quickly: “Now let’s not gamble away what has been achieved and risk a setback.” It was necessary to act “wisely and carefully”.

07:26 am: Almost one fifth of German companies are planning to cut jobs

According to the ifo Institute for Economic Research, almost one fifth of German companies are planning to cut jobs in the wake of the Corona crisis. 18 percent of the companies wanted to lay off employees or not extend temporary contracts. Almost half of the companies wanted to postpone investments, just as many had applied for short-time work.


11.08 am: Asylum seekers and third-country nationals are allowed to work as harvest workers

Asylum seekers and third-country nationals who were previously banned from working in Germany are now allowed to work in the agricultural sector due to the shortage of personnel caused by the corona crisis. Third-country nationals are those who do not come from the European Economic Area (EU countries and Iceland, Norway and Liechtenstein). The regulation applies retrospectively from April 1 until the end of October, as the Federal Ministry of Agriculture announced. This could “attract more workers for seasonal work in agriculture without red tape”.

10.50 am: Bavaria’s final classes should learn in small groups

Before schools reopen for the final classes in Bavaria, Minister of Culture Michael Piazolo (Freie Wähler) explained the procedure at a press conference. From April 27, final classes will return to schools. From May 11 the classes that graduate next year or are about to be transferred to secondary school will follow. The goal remains to get all classes back to schools “this year”. Students should learn in small groups of “ten to 15”, there is a corresponding hygiene plan. Students with pre-existing conditions do not have to take part in face-to-face classes. Teachers who have pre-existing conditions, are pregnant or over 60 years old do not have to teach. The Abitur starts from May 20, the other final exams take place later: at middle schools (Mittelschulen) from June 6, at secondary schools (Realschulen) from June 30.


6.30 pm: State government rectifies: Mask requirement from the age of six

Starting on Monday, the mask requirement in shops, buses and trains will apply in Bavaria – for children from the age of six. The state government corrected its own statements since there was some confusion about the minimum age. At first, the government had stated that children only had to wear a mask from the age of seven.

5.40 pm: Bavarian government considers allowing more recreational sports from May

The Bavarian government is thinking about allowing other recreational sports from May. Among others, jogging, cycling, horse riding or water sports on natural waters such as swimming, sailing or rowing are currently permitted. “We want to allow people to do as many sports as possible. But we will keep a very close eye on the current infection process. In case of doubt, infection protection takes precedence”, explained Interior Minister Joachim Herrmann (CSU), who is also responsible for sports. The current exit restrictions allow sports and exercise in the fresh air. However, due to the risk of infection, sports clubs and gyms are currently closed.

2.20 pm: Fines planned for people who violate mask requirement in Bavaria

According to State Chancellor Florian Herrmann, anyone who violates the obligation to wear a mask in Bavaria faces a fine. The amount of the fine has not yet been determined. The Ministry of the Interior will incorporate it into the corona list of fines in the coming days. Herrmann emphasized that the police, but also the staff on buses and trains, were required to check compliance with the mask requirement. Starting Monday, a mask requirement applies to public transport and shops for all people from the age of seven in Bavaria.

12.57 pm: Bavaria agrees on 500 million euros corona aid package

In order to mitigate the impact of the corona crisis, the Bavarian state government has approved an aid package of up to 500 million euros. The money is earmarked for rehabilitation clinics that have made part of their bed capacities available for corona patients to cope with the crisis. Mother-child facilities, private clinics, youth hostels, social facilities, family counseling centers and associations for student affairs as well as sports clubs and sports facilities in need of money are also said to be entitled to the aid.

12.40 pm: Maas dampens hopes for summer vacation

Federal Foreign Minister Heiko Maas (SPD) has dampened hopes for a normal summer vacation. “There will be no normal vacation season with full beach bars and full mountain huts this summer. That wouldn’t be responsible,” he said in Berlin. Maas did not rule out that the borders would be opened to tourists again before the summer. A worldwide travel warning for tourists applies until May 3. What happens afterwards will be decided at the end of April.

The Oktoberfest is the world’s largest Volksfest. Held annually in Munich, Bavaria, Germany,

9.05 am: Oktoberfest cancelled

The Oktoberfest 2020 was canceled due to the corona crisis. “We have agreed that the risk is simply too high,” said Prime Minister Markus Söder (CSU) at a joint press conference with Munich mayor Dieter Reiter (SPD) in Munich. “As long as there is no vaccine and no medication, special care must be taken,” said Söder. The cancellation is serious for the economy: Last year, the “Wiesn” made more than 1.23 billion euros for the city.


3.04 pm: Sick leave by phone remains an option

Sick leave for slight colds can still be done by phone, declared Josef Hecken, the chairman of the Federal Joint Committee (Gemeinsamer Bundesausschuss). The exception was extended after all because doctors and experts had been highly critical of this step.

10.55 am: Artists will be supported

In his governmental statement Prime Minister Söder announced that artists will be paid 1.000 Euro per month by the Bavarian government for the next three months.

10.45 am: No fees for daycare centers

As daycare centers and kindergardens remain closed, parents won’t be charged for daycare for three months, Bavaria’s Prime Minister Markus Söder said.

10.34 am: Mask obligation in Bavaria

This week face masks are strongly recommended to be worn during shopping or in public transportation. But from next week on face masks must be worn in shops and in public transportation, declared Bavaria’s Prime Minister Söder in a governmental statement.

10.25 am: Keeping distance is still necessary

According to Bavaria’s Prime Minister Söder keeping distance to others is still the most important measure to fight the coronavirus. The restrictions on movement have been extended and remain valid until May 4.

9.17 am: Bavaria begins easing restrictions

From today on people in Bavaria are now allowed to spend time in public with a person who does not live in the same household. They can go for a walk or run together. This also includes children. They are allowed to meet one friend – but only outside. Besides that, construction markets, garden centers, nurseries and flower shops are allowed to reopen.

6.24 am: Construction markets and garden centers worried about rush demand

From today on construction markets, garden centers and flower shops are allowed to reopen in Bavaria. But the Bavarian Nursery Association (Bayerischer Gärtnereiverband) is worried about a rush of customers. “Please don’t come all on one day!”, said association director Jörg Freimuth towards the German news agency dpa. On Friday, the association sent around 10.000 face masks designated for customers and workers to his members, another 10.000 will be sent on Tuesday. As in supermarkets access will be restricted and there will be protective shields on the checkout.

6.07 am: RKI confirmed 1.775 new cases – 110 deaths

The Robert Koch Institut has confirmed 141.672 cases of infection with coronavirus in Germany – an increase of 1.775 cases compared to the day before. A further 110 deaths were confirmed, bringing the total of COVID-19 fatalities to 4.404. According to the RKI’s website 91.500 people have recovered, around 3.500 more than the day before.


Corona in Bavaria: What questions do you have?

It’s been a month since we’ve started our international news sites. We want to keep you up to date about the coronavirus in Bavaria. Do you have any suggestions or feedback? Or a specific question that we should answer? Write to us at, subject: International.

2:43 pm: No tests before the Abitur exams

Before starting the Abitur exams, high school graduates in Bavaria do not have to take other exams. This applies to grammar schools (Gymnasien) as well as technical and vocational high schools (Fach- und Berufsoberschulen). This would allow pupils to concentrate fully on their Abitur, says Minister of Culture Piazolo. The Abitur exams at Bavarian grammar schools start on May 20, at technical and vocational high schools they start on June 18.

11.47 am: Summer semester starts tomorrow – but only online

In Bavaria, the summer semester starts tomorrow. Science Minister Sibler asked students and university employees to continue to take the corona pandemic seriously. At state universities, universities of applied sciences, technical colleges and art colleges, lectures start exclusively online. Only exams and individual practical classes are possible in individual cases from April 27 under strict hygiene measures.

11.30 am: Crime rates drop during corona crisis

The number of registered crimes in Bavaria has decreased since the beginning of the corona crisis, according to Bavaria’s Interior Minister Joachim Herrmann. There have been fewer reports of burglaries, shoplifting, bodily harm, fraud and sex offenses. In the case of online fraud or domestic violence, the actual cases might be higher. Herrmann said that some of the victims might currently not file a complaint with the police in order not to leave the apartment. Official statistical figures are not available yet.


2:37 pm: Auto repair shops are allowed to change tires

Bavaria’s Interior Minister Joachim Herrmann points out that changing tires is permitted for safety reasons. “Changing from winter to summer tires or if you have worn-out tires counts as a valid reason to leave the apartment and go to an auto repair shop within the current restrictions on movement,” Herrmann is quoted in a press release. Auto repair shops are allowed to be open. You can also change your own tires on your own property. The TÜV recommends a tire change at the latest in April, because wear-off and fuel consumption with winter tires can be disproportionately high in the summer.

Where can I buy masks at the moment?

Masks should be worn at least during shopping and in public transport. At the moment, wearing masks in public is strongly recommended, but Bavaria’s Prime Minister Söder is also considering a mask obligation.

They are currently only sold in pharmacies. Not every pharmacy currently has masks, and there are not all types of masks everywhere. FFP2 masks that also protect against infection are rare and should be reserved for people in critical professions.

You can sew simple masks, so-called community masks yourself, order them from online shops or buy them again from April 27 in various shops – from then on, shops with a shopping area of up to 800 square meters will be reopened. If you have more questions about the new regulations, you can find the answers here.

10.20 am: Federal Constitutional Court overturns demo ban

The Federal Constitutional Court granted an urgent request against the ban on a demonstration in Stuttgart this Saturday. The city had not even sent a negative decision to the applicant and his lawyer, according to them. A city’s employee said on the phone that meetings are currently not being decided because their prohibition results directly from the Corona regulation. This proceeding violated the plaintiff’s fundamental right to freedom of assembly, the Karlsruhe judges decided. The demonstration may take place.

10.00 am: Söder refuses to cancel the summer vacation for students

In an interview with Bayerischer Rundfunk, Prime Minister Söder made it clear that there would be no cancellation of the summer vacation for students in Bavaria. The grading should take place later this school year. Nobody should repeat a class because of Corona. Whether one can move up to the next grade on probation will be decided much more generously, curricula will be adjusted. In order to reduce the size of the classes, for example, lessons could take place at different times or over different days.


03.50 pm: Corona app at the earliest in May

It was the Ministry of Health’s plan to launch a smartphone app to warn people about a corona infection at the end of the Easter holidays. Federal Minister of Health Spahn now says that people in Germany still have to be patient, probably for four more weeks.

Spahn emphasized that the app had to meet three different requirements: data security, data protection and the actual purpose, to contain the spread of the epidemic. A Corona warning app for Germany has been under discussion for weeks. According to a survey on Monday, 56 percent of Germans would be prepared to use it. It builds on the concept of the European consortium PEPP-PT, Bluetooth radio technology should be used.

01.45 pm: Sick leave: From Monday no longer by phone

For sick leave for mild respiratory complaints, workers must go to the doctor again next week. An exception introduced in the corona epidemic that this could also be done after consulting the doctor by phone will not be extended.

What’s next for day care centers?

The daycare centers in Bavaria have been closed for five weeks – and will remain closed until further notice. According to the state government, the risk of contracting the corona virus would be too high. Adults in Bavaria are now allowed to spend time in public with a person who does not live in the same household. But children still are not allowed to do so, says Social Affairs Minister Carolina Trautner. “Unfortunately, this is forbidden. Children still should not play with others,” the minister said. The reason: Children were not yet able to comply with hygiene rules.

Expanded emergency care in daycare centers

At least, emergency care will be expanded. From April 27, emergency care for children will be available even if only one parent works in critically relevant sectors. According to the Ministry of Social Affairs, there will be another exception for single parents. These do not have to work in a critically relevant sector, they just have to be employed.

Can I stop paying for daycare?

So far there is no general regulation for dealing with fees from kindergartens, daycare centers or after-school care centers. The city of Munich has announced that it will retroactively refund the paid fees to parents from mid-March – for the city’s facilities. However, the absolute majority of care facilities are operated by independent organizations, churches or welfare organizations. According to them, they cannot easily repay contributions because they have to pay running costs.

Summer vacation abroad “rather unlikely” because of corona

Bavaria’s Prime Minister Markus Söder (CSU) considers summer vacations abroad to be “rather unlikely” this year. Söder emphasized on Thursday that among the popular travel destinations of many Germans are precisely the countries most affected by the corona pandemic: Italy, Spain, Turkey or France. Since vacation abroad is unlikely this year, the local catering and hotel industry can count on a “rush”, according to Söder. He expects people are more likely to go on vacation in Germany than abroad. At the same time, Söder hopes that domestic restaurants and hotels could reopen from the beginning of June. Should there be signs of a relaxation of the corona crisis by Pentecost, there is a “glimmer of hope” for restaurant visits.

3.51am: Infection rate drops to 0.7 per capita

The infection rate of the coronavirus has dropped to 0.7 in Germany. The indicator communicated by the Robert Koch Institute indicates how many people infected a sick person on average. At the beginning of March, the key figure was three. Consequently, the number of new infections is declining.


05.13 pm: Bavarian retailers disappointed by Söders course

Bavarian retailers have criticized the delayed opening of stores in the Free State. “We are disappointed,” said the managing director of the Bavarian trade association, Bernd Ohlmann, on Thursday. There is a lot of “anger and lack of understanding” because the Free State loosens the restrictions a week later than the other federal states. In Bavaria, shops reopen only from April 27. Many traders “struggle to survive, every day counts,” said Ohlmann. A week without sales would mean a loss of 1.1 billion euros for Bavarian retailers – except for grocery stores. It is arbitrary that stores with more than 800 square meters of sales area remain closed. A furniture store with 2,000 square meters could comply with distance rules just as well as a small supermarket, said Ohlmann.

01.02 pm: Regulations that now apply in Bavaria

Bavaria minimally loosens its restrictions on movement: Starting next Monday, contact with a person outside of your own household is permitted outside.

From April 27, final classes at high schools (Gymnasien), junior high schools (Realschulen) and middle schools (Mittelschulen) will be the first to return to schools, as well as master classes. From May 11 at the earliest, the classes that will graduate next year will follow at these schools. It is therefore still unclear when all the other classes can go back to school. Daycare centers and preschools should also remain closed for the time being.

Bavaria is allowing the reopening of smaller shops one week later than the federal government: Shops with a sales area of up to 800 square meters may reopen from April 27. Car dealers, bike dealers and bookstores are exempt from the square meter limit. Hardware stores and garden centers can open again from April 20.

In shops and in public transport, people in Bavaria should wear protective masks over their mouths and noses, so-called “community masks” are recommended.

05.42 am: Straubing folk festival canceled, Söder: “Oktoberfest is on the brink”

After the federal government banned all major events until August 31 due to the corona pandemic, Bavaria’s second largest festival, the Gäubodenvolksfest in Straubing, has also been canceled. The Gäubodenvolksfest 2020 should have taken place from August 7th to 17th this year.

A cancellation of the Munich Oktoberfest has been under discussion for some time. On Wednesday evening, Bavarian Prime Minister Markus Söder (CSU) said in an interview with the BR that the Oktoberfest was on the brink. In the next two weeks, he would exchange ideas with Munich’s Mayor Dieter Reiter (SPD). The Oktoberfest should take place from September 19th to October 4th.


06.00 pm: Contact restrictions extended until May 3

The federal government and the federal states have agreed on how to gradually normalize public life in the Corona crisis. Many shops reopen from Monday, schools gradually reopen from May 4. In Bavaria, some measures will be loosened more slowly. Find more information here.

10.52 am: Confederation apparently wants to extend contact restrictions until May 3

The federal government wants to suggest to the federal states to maintain the existing contact restrictions for citizens until at least May 3. The German press agency dpa learned this yesterday after a video conference between the chancellery and the heads of state chancellor of the federal states. This afternoon, chancellor Angela Merkel wants to talk about loosening the corona restrictions with the Prime Ministers.


12.47 pm: 200 soldiers deployed to fight against corona in Bavaria

Around 200 Bundeswehr soldiers are currently deployed in Bavaria to combat the corona virus. A little more than 100 of them are used to assist, for example, in nursing and old people’s homes, said spokesman Carsten Spiering from the State Command in Bavaria. A further 100 active soldiers and reservists advise civil authorities and agencies. These include crisis teams in cities and counties, for example. An additional almost 100 soldiers were ready for deployment, according to Spiering. In addition to logistical support in nursing and old people’s homes, the soldiers help with the operation of corona test stations, the distribution of medical protective equipment or with guidance in medical issues.

11.25 am: Söder warns against “bidding competition” in the corona exit

On Wednesday, the Prime Ministers will discuss exit strategies out of the anti-corona measures with Chancellor Angela Merkel. Bavarian Prime Minister Markus Söder has now warned against a bidding competition that could unsettle citizens. “We need a safe and prudent way out of the corona crisis,” wrote the CSU politician on Twitter. “Our measures are working, but we mustn’t risk a setback.” Cautious loosening of the measures could only be achieved with additional protection. On Wednesday, there would be talks about a “coordinated concept”. According to Söder, it was worthwhile to read and evaluate all arguments and expert reports carefully. On Monday, the national science academy Leopoldina had pleaded for a “realistic” schedule to go back to normal. The scientists recommended that primary schools as well as lower and middle grades be reopened as soon as possible.

9.20 am: Auxiliary hospital set up in Dachau

An auxiliary hospital has now been set up in a Dachau hotel. It is available in case hospital capacities are no longer sufficient. However, no patients are currently accommodated there, as the district office announced. There are almost 100 beds available for corona patients who are supplied with oxygen but do not need ventilation. The Helios Amper Clinic Dachau would provide medical care.

9:02 am: Bavaria plans aid package for sports clubs

According to Interior Minister Joachim Herrmann (CSU), the Bavarian cabinet wants to discuss an aid package for sports clubs. These had complained of losses of 200 million euros. Herrmann said in an interview on Bayerischer Rundfunk in the morning: “I want to make sure that our clubs don’t go bankrupt.” Proposals would be drawn up next Tuesday. In the next few weeks, the possibility of holding so-called ghost games that are shown live on television would be discussed. Depending on the infection situation, it is conceivable that spectators will return to the stadiums in autumn.


Interior Minister is satisfied about the Easter weekend

In Bavaria, the police carried out around 78,000 checks during the Easter weekend because of the current restrictions on movement. According to Interior Minister Herrmann, the police registered around 10,000 violations. The CSU politician, however, said that the people in the Free State were “very exemplary” in the face of the Corona crisis. Despite the beautiful Easter weather, most citizens had followed the protective measures in force. There was only little excursion traffic. Only a few hikers were out in the mountains, and the local recreation areas were used by many. Herrmann said he was grateful to the people in Bavaria for their discipline.

BR24 survey: 56 percent of Germans would use a corona app

To contain the corona pandemic, experts and politicians also want to use a smartphone app. BR24 has therefore carried out a survey with the polling institute Civey. When asked whether they would voluntarily install an app to combat the corona pandemic, 36.1 percent of those questioned answered “yes, definitely” and 20 percent said “rather yes”. Many also expressed concerns. A quarter of Germans (24.2 percent) categorically rule out using a tracing app. Find more information on the poll and the app here.

8.45 am: New RKI figures: More than half of those infected in Germany have recovered

According to current figures from the Robert Koch Institute, more than half of those infected with the coronavirus have recovered in Germany. 123,016 people have demonstrably contracted the new corona virus – 2,537 more than the day before. 64,300 people are back to health, which is an increase of more than 4,000 within 24 hours. The number of patients who died from a coronavirus infection increased by 126 to 2,799.


4:01 pm: Burglary in Corona party apartment in Bayreuth

A host of several corona parties was arrested by the police in Bayreuth for violating the restrictions on movement. According to police, the 18-year-old resident had celebrated his birthday together with five guests aged 14 to 20 in the early Sunday morning. A neighbor reported the party to the police. Since the host had previously violated the restrictions and was not remorseful, the officials took him into custody. The police ended the party shortly after 3 am. Two of the party guests returned around 4 am, broke into the apartment, and reportedly stole a TV and laptop. Then the two men fled. Finally, police officers found them. The host must remain in police custody until the end of the exit restriction next Sunday, a judge decided.

9.20 am: Von der Leyen: Do not book your summer vacation yet

In view of the corona pandemic, EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen advised not to book the summer vacation yet. “I advise you to wait with such plans. No one can make reliable predictions for July and August at the moment,” she told the newspaper “Bild am Sonntag”.


6.55 pm: Söder asks for patience

Prime Minister Markus Söder continues to ask the people of Bavaria to be patient in coping with the Corona crisis. “Even after the Easter holidays, things will not just go back to normal,” said the CSU politician in a TV speech. Söder warned: “If we loosen the measures too soon, we risk relapse”. As long as there is no vaccine or medication, caution should be exercised. “We must continue to be careful and prudent.” The government is constantly evaluating whether all the restrictions are still appropriate and proportionate. In some areas, loosening the rules could be quicker, in others it will take longer.

6:05 pm: Sales increase in Bavarian trade

On Maundy Thursday, Bavarian retail sales were 20 to 30 percent higher than in the previous year, on Saturday 30 to 40 percent, according to Bernd Ohlmannn from the Bavarian Trade Association. The reason is that customers’ shopping carts were much fuller due to the Corona crisis. Barbecue utensils were purchased particularly frequently.

2:53 pm: 31,773 infected in Bavaria

The State Office for Health and Food Safety (LGL) has published the latest figures for Bavaria on its website. As of today, on April 11, 31,773 people are infected with the coronavirus. The number rose by 911 from yesterday. So far, 760 people who have contracted the virus have died in Bavaria. That is 39 more than on April 10. 11,970 people are considered recovered. This number is based on estimates by the Robert Koch Institute. According to the Institute, people are considered to have recovered if their registration date was more than two weeks ago, there was no hospital stay without a known discharge date and no death was reported.

8:00 am: Bavaria has started a Corona hotline – information at 089/122 220

There is now a Corona hotline in Bavaria. It can be reached daily from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. on 089/122 220. The hotline serves as a single point of contact for all citizens’ questions about the corona situation. Questions on health issues, restrictions on movement, childcare and school should be answered as well as emergency aid and other support for small businesses and freelancers. The hotline is also reachable on public holidays.


Corona bans at Easter: What’s allowed and what’s prohibited?

Easter is right around the corner. The longing for family and friends is great after three weeks of corona lockdown. But the exit restrictions also apply over the holidays.

Can I visit my family?

Trips to people who do not live in the same household are not permitted. There is an exception for life partners and separated parents, whose child lives sometimes at one parent, sometimes at the other’s.

Can I have a barbecue?

Barbecues only allowed on your own property and not in public.

Can my children have an Easter egg hunt?

The Easter egg hunt is best done in your own backyard. If you don’t have one, you can go out and hide the Easter nests in the forest or a meadow. Attention: Easter bunnies and egg hunters must keep distance from each other.

Can I go to the mountains?

Excursions into the mountains are still legally permitted, although the German Alpine Club strongly advises against this. There is too much concern that there will be emergencies, which will further burden rescue workers and hospitals. Some municipalities in the Munich area have already blocked their hiking parking lots.

Water sports not recommended – motorcycle tours prohibited

Sports boat harbors, water ski and wakeboard facilities and the rental of water sports equipment are closed. Sailing and rowing are allowed, but riding motor boats is not. The water rescue service points out that emergencies can occur during boat trips or swimming that tie up rescue workers. Accidents can also occur on the way to destinations, says Peter Schall, State Chairman of the Police Union (GdP) Bavaria. Therefore, unnecessary motorcycle or car tours, i.e. driving around as a leisure activity, are prohibited.

Police will intensify checks

Many police officers are on duty because they are not needed at other places at the moment: less traffic, fewer burglaries, no major events. Peter Schall: “We have time for these checks.” In addition to parks in cities, popular excursion regions are also monitored.


1.40 pm: Church services with visitors remain prohibited

The Bavarian Administrative Court has rejected an emergency petition from a Munich lawyer against a general ban on public church services. Prior to this, senior Bavarian church representatives had supported the temporary ban. The applicant had tried to fight for the right to freedom of religion. He questioned the proportionality of the measures against the corona virus. The court rejected the argument. However, it emphasized that in the event of religious gatherings it was ultimately necessary to check whether “an exceptional permit could be granted in individual cases”.

Postponing vacation in Corona times

The corona virus is currently thwarting any vacation plans. In the current situation, it would probably make more sense to simply postpone the vacation to autumn. Many employees wonder whether they can cancel approved vacation days. The employer is not obliged to take back days off that have already been approved. It is his decision whether to accommodate the needs of the employee. The companies fear that many employees want to postpone their vacation and that there will be a lack of staff in late summer or autumn. Labor lawyers advise employees to speak to their employer. On the other hand, the employer cannot simply oblige employees to take vacation because production cannot take place. He has to consider the wishes of the employees. There is one legal exception to cancel an approved vacation in the HR department: an illness confirmed by a doctor. Anyone infected with corona could rely on this right.

Sitting on park benches and sunbathing allowed

Sitting and reading a book on park benches is allowed in Bavaria, Bavaria’s Interior Minister Joachim Herrmann (CSU) explained in a written communication. In his statement, Herrmann responded to complaints that the Bavarian police were too strict about the exit restrictions. A Twitter user had asked the Munich police if they could read a book outdoors. The Munich police had replied that it was not allowed. As a reaction, many Twitter users were bewildered. Herrmann wrote that there was nothing to be said against it “if someone took a walk in the sun sat on a park bench in between.” It doesn’t matter whether someone sits on a bench while reading a book or a newspaper or eating ice cream, for example. Sunbathing in the park or in a meadow is also allowed, as long as people don’t gather in groups and stay at least 1.5 meters away from others.

Majority of Bavaria in favor of exit restrictions even after Easter

There are currently strict rules in the fight against the corona virus. These are valid until April 19. 55 percent of people in Bavaria are in favor of extending the restrictions even furter after April 20. This is the result of the survey “BR-BayernTrend” carried out by the opinion research institute Infratest dimap.

Another result: 42 percent of citizens are afraid that they themselves or a family member may be infected with the corona virus. At the same time, trust in the Bavarian health system is high: 84 percent say they have great confidence that hospitals and doctors can cope with the epidemic.


4:08 pm: Constitutional Court rejects emergency petition against Bavarian exit restrictions

A plaintiff had submitted an urgent request to the Federal Constitutional Court in Karlsruhe against the Bavarian exit restrictions. He considered the rules, such as the bans on meeting friends or demonstrating, too extensive. The Federal Constitutional Court rejected the application as unsubstantiated. Their argument: The dangers caused by the corona pandemic outweighed the restrictions on personal freedom.

3:01 pm: World Trade Organization (WTO) anticipates “worst recession in a lifetime”

The World Trade Organization anticipates a massive decline in trade volume. In the worst case, world trade could drop by up to 32 percent, the WTO announced on Wednesday. The organization describes a decline of 13 percent as optimistic. Economic research institutes have also anticipated a recession for Germany. The experts anticipate that the gross domestic product will shrink by 4.2 percent this year. Unemployment will also increase significantly. Nevertheless, experts are optimistic for next year: They predict economic growth of 5.8 percent for 2021.

Improving short-time work allowance is allowed

Around 64,000 companies in Bavaria have applied for short-time work (Kurzarbeit). For employees, this can mean earning significantly less. Because of the corona crisis, however, short-time workers have recently been able to make an additional income in system-relevant industries. Additional personnel is needed in agriculture, the food retail the health and care area. So if you are willing to replenish shelves in the supermarket, for example, you can increase your short-time work allowance to up to 100 percent of the original net income. The Bavarian Trade Association advises to check with supermarkets in the vicinity whether staff is still needed. There is currently a great need for helpers in agriculture, too. Farmers and helpers can get in contact via the platform “Das Land hilft” (“The Land helps”). You can also work in hospitals, care facilities or emergency services without deductions. But these areas need, above all, employees with prior nursing skills. The online platform “Pflegepool Bayern” (“Nursing Pool Bavaria) is looking for nursing assistants or medical assistants.


1:50 pm: Prime Minister Söder: “Patience saves lives”

The Bavarian cabinet met today via video conference. “Fortunately, the positive trend in Bavaria over the past few days has continued”, said Prime Minister Markus Söder in a press conference. At the moment, the number of infections doubles every 8.6 days. “The measures are working,” said Söder. It was important to take the measures consistently and in timely manner. After Easter, things will not just go back to normal. Söder did not give a specific date for loosening the measures. The neighboring country Austria wants to starts slowly loosening the measures on April 14th. Events are still canceled there until June. Austria is about three weeks ahead of Germany, said Söder. This gives an idea of ​​how long the exit restrictions will be maintained here. An obligation to wear masks is “most likely”. In addition, the Bavarian cabinet has decided to reward all nursing staff in Bavaria with € 500.

10.45 am: RKI President sees no relief from the situation

The President of the Robert Koch Institute, Lother Wieler, has stated that the Corona crisis is not eased yet. In the meantime, 33,000 people have recovered and that is “an encouraging number”. However, one has to wait and see in the next few days whether a positive trend is emerging. The number of reproductions is currently between 1.2 and 1.5. This means that an infected person infects 1.2 to 1.5 other people. If the number of reproductions drops below 1, virologists assume that a pandemic has been contained.

Should I use a face mask?

For a long time, the Robert Koch Institute recommended only people with acute respiratory diseases to wear a mask. The institute changed its opinion last Thursday: It makes sense if people without symptoms wear a mask as a precaution. You cannot protect yourself with such a mask. However, the mask can protect others if you sneeze or cough. Masks are particularly useful in closed rooms where it is difficult to keep distance from other people, for example at work or in the supermarket. There are many instructions on the Internet for making fabric masks yourself. These “textile barriers” should not be confused with surgical mouth and nose protection or medical respirators. However, they serve their purpose for private use. Virologists emphasize, however, that a mask does not replace washing your hands regularly or keeping a minimum distance of 1.5 meters from other people.


3:22 pm: Around 50,000 violations of corona rules in Bavaria

Since the beginning of the nationwide exit restrictions, there have been around 411,000 police inspections in Bavaria. Between the start on March 21 and April 6, the police registered around 50,000 violations. This was announced by the Ministry of the Interior in Munich.

3:15 pm: Strict curfew to be lifted in Mitterteich

The strict curfew for the city of Mitterteich in the Upper Palatinate (Oberpfalz) will be lifted from Tuesday, April 7th. The increase in infections has slowed significantly, said the district office. However, as in the rest of Bavaria, leaving your own apartment is only allowed for valid reasons. Measured by the number of inhabitants, the city of Mitterteich is considered a hotspot of Covid 19 diseases throughout Germany. Mitterteich was the first city in Germany to impose a curfew. No one was allowed to enter or leave the city without a special permit.

2:25 pm: Berlin does not specify a deadline for the end of the corona measures

Austria wants to loosen its strict measures in the fight against the corona virus after Easter. The German federal government, however, does not yet set a deadline. Government spokesman Steffen Seibert said that most people did adhere to the restrictions in force. However, he agreed with Chancellor Angela Merkel. In her weekly podcast, she said it would be irresponsible to name a specific deadline if she could not keep the promise, if the the infection numbers did not allow it.

11.55 am: Those who return from abroad are to be quarantined for two weeks

If Germans, EU citizens or people who have lived in Germany for many years return to the Federal Republic after spending several days abroad, they should be quarantined for two weeks from now on, recommends the Federal Government’s Corona Crisis Cabinet. The Federal Government wants to prevent the corona virus from spreading further through travelers. There are exceptions for medical staff, commuters and diplomats. People who transport people and goods across borders, such as truck drivers, are also allowed to enter the country without quarantine.


2:13 pm: More than 24,000 cases in Bavaria

As of today, April 5, the number of confirmed corona infections in Bavaria has risen to 24,350. This was announced by the State Office for Health and Food Safety (Landesamt für Gesundheit und Lebensmittelsicherheit) on its website. This is 1,301 more confirmed cases reported than on Saturday. A total of 411 people have died from the virus in Bavaria. The State Office for Health and Food Safety estimates that 5,190 of those infected have now recovered. The district of Tirschenreuth is most affected. Other regions that are badly affected are the districts of Wunsiedel, Neustadt an der Waldnaab, Rottal-Inn, Rosenheim, Miesbach, Freising and the cities of Rosenheim, Straubing and Weiden. More than 320 Corona cases per 100,000 inhabitants are reported there.

4:30 am: It is still unclear whether the Oktoberfest will take place this year

The Oktoberfest construction usually starts in early July. At the moment it is still unclear whether the world’s largest folk festival can take place due to the corona crisis. According to Munich Mayor Dieter Reiter (SPD), this decision must be made “at the end of May, beginning of June at the latest”. The beginning is planned for September 16, and the festival is to last until October 4.

00:46 am: Söder warns: Do not loosen the corona measures too soon

Bavaria’s Prime Minister Markus Söder (CSU) warns against loosening the measures to combat the coronavirus crisis too soon. “If we talk too quickly about returning to everyday life, we trivialize the situation and risk a strong relapse. I don’t think that is responsible,” said the politician to the newspaper “Bild am Sonntag”.

“Without these measures, according to experts, we would risk countless more deaths and conditions like in Italian clinics. Therefore, the measures are appropriate and proportionate. We just have to withstand now.” Nobody should think, that after April 20, everything will aoutmatically go back to how it was before the crisis, said Söder.

In addition, he expects increased use of face masks: “I am not an opponent of the obligation to wear a mask. There are many good reasons to wear masks,” said Söder. However, a simple face mask cannot be an equivalent replacement for an exit restriction or contact block.


8:00 pm: Most Bavarians comply with the Corona regulations

Bavaria’s Interior Minister Joachim Herrmann is satisfied with the compliance with the corona regulations in the Free State. Herrmann said that the vast majority of citizens abide very well by the regulations. Despite the good weather, there was no major excursion traffic in Bavaria on Saturday. However, the police registered many violations of the Infection Protection Act.

4:15 pm: No new inhabitants accepted in homes for the handicapped

After having nursing homes in Bavaria stop accepting new patients, the government extends these measures to homes for the handicapped, too. Exceptions are possible for homes where new inhabitants can be taken in quarantine for 2 weeks.

3:00 pm: 23,049 Corona Cases in Bavaria – 370 dead

According to the Bavarian State Office for Health and Food Security (LGL) the number of confirmed Corona cases in Bavaria so far is (as at today) 23,049. Taken altogether, 270 people have died of the virus, according to the LGL. 4,540 of those infected have now been considered cured, as the LGL estimates referring to criteria of the Robert Koch Institute.

11:40 am: Interest group for the socially disadvantaged criticises nursing homes for not accepting new patients

Verena Bentele, president of the interest group representing the socially disadvantaged, VdK, criticises the fact that nursing homes in Bavaria have to stop accepting new patients. This would cause almost irresolvable problems for those in need of care and their families, she said in an interview with the Bayerischer Rundfunk.

9.57 am: Bavaria installs supporting hospitals

Bavaria is preparing for a possible massive increase of serious cases of Covid-19 by installing supporting hospitals. It was said that already existing health clinics or other facilities with sufficient infrastructure would be particularly suitable in order to create additional capacities.

Clinical trial for Covid-19 in Munich

As of April 5th blood samples will be tested for the Corona virus in Munich during the following 4 weeks. The scientists hope to be able to check about 4,500 people. A computer has randomly selected 3,000 households. Only those who have been randomly selected can take part in the trial. So once the scientists ring your doorbell you have the choice whether to take part or not. In order to avoid fraud, the researchers are always accompanied by policemen.

5:10 am: Corona bonus for nursing staff under discussion

Given the strains of nursing staff during the Corona crises, the public health care and employers seem to be willing to pay lump-sum bonuses of up to 1,500 Euro.


9:19 pm: As of Saturday: nursing homes in Bavaria are not accepting new patients

As of Saturday, nursing homes in Bavaria are not allowed to accept new patients. There is an exceptional rule for those homes, where new residents can be put in quarantine for 2 weeks. After being hospitalised, patients may only return to their nursing home if they can be isolated for 2 weeks and if protective equipment is available.

Easter and limitations of movement: What is allowed in Bavaria?

“Please stay at home, even though it might be hard.”

Joachim Herrmann, Bavarian Minister of the Interior

This weekend, the Bavarian police will intensify checks as to whether the rules and limitations are being obeyed.

Strolls and sports in the park: yes. Picnics: no.

Strolling, jogging or cycling in the park is allowed, at least on your own or with people of your own household. Longer stays in the park (for example picnics) are not allowed, not even if you are on your own.

No BBQ in public

Barbecues are only allowed in your own garden or balcony, not in public.


Violations can result in fines starting from 150 Euros. They double in case of repeated violations. Fines can be up to 25.000 Euros.

Trip to the mountains allowed, but not recommended

From a legal point of view, it is still allowed to do trips into the mountains, but the German Alpine Association strongly advises not to do it.

It is also recommended not to do any water sports (for example swimming).

No family visits over Easter

The limitation of movement also means that family visits as usually paid over Easter will not be possible. It is not allowed to visit people from a different household, not even over Easter.

Couples and parents living apart from each other are allowed to visit

Couples who live apart from each other are excepted from this regulation. The same applies for split parents whose child sometimes lives at one parent’s, sometimes at the other’s.

2:17 pm: State examination in medicine in Bavaria postponed to next year

The Bavarian state examination (Staatsexamen) in medicine will be postponed. The so-called M2 examinations (Zweites Staatsexamen) will only take place in April 2021. Instead of their M2 examinations, students are supposed to bring their practical training forward.

11:18 am: Robert Koch Institute registers first signs of improvement

The Robert Koch Institute (RKI) deems the contact bans to be successful. It considers the curbing of the Corona epidemic during the next few days as a possibility. The director of the RKI, Lothar Wieler, said that during the last few days they had registered that each infected person only passed the virus on to one other person. “This seems to be stabilising.” 
The goal is now to reduce the contagion rate even further. Wieler said that the limitations decreed by the government have been successful. That is why he hopes that this trend will continue in the next few days.


4:56 pm: Immigration freeze for season workers will be loosened

Federal Farming Minister Julia Klöckner (CDU) and Interior Minister Horst Seehofer (CSU) have come to the agreement that a limited number of urgently needed season workers will be allowed to enter the country. In April and May up to 40,000 season workers will be allowed to enter the country each month, however, under strong conditions. They will only be allowed to enter and leave the country via plane. Also, a health check will be done.

4:30 pm: Robert Koch Institute changed opinion on face masks

The Robert Koch Institute has changed its opinion on wearing face masks. The federal agency said that if people – even without symptoms – wore face masks for reasons of precaution, this could actually minimize the risk of transmitting the virus to others.

2:41 pm: 2,002 new infections in Bavaria

Up to now, 19,153 infections with the Corona virus have been reported, 2,002 more than on Wednesday. So far, 277 people have died of the pandemic in Bavaria, stated the Bavarian State Office for Health and Food Security (LGL). 2,910 cases count as recovered.

Munich Airport

2:28 pm Munich airport in short-time work as of now

The Munich Airport ltd. has introduced short-time work. The Munich airport has reacted to the massive decline of air traffic and loss of profit as a consequence of the Corona crisis.

11:55 am: Bavarian prison inmates sow face masks

According to Minister of Justice Georg Eisenreich, prison tailor shops in Aichach, Amerber, Kaisheim and Munich will produce 150,000 face masks in the near future. Once finished, the masks will be sent to the state-owned centre of distribution.

10:40 am: Hospital in Munich closed due to high numbers of Corona cases

The Helios Hospital in Munich-Pasing has had to stop its daily practice, because too many patients and staff had been infected with the Corona virus. So far, 14 patients and 2 members of staff have tested positive for the Sars-CoV-2 virus. A spokesperson said: “All patients we have now will remain here.” However, they wouldn’t take any new patients, nor would any patients be discharged.

08:45 am: Hospitals in Bavaria consider themselves well-prepared

The Hospitals in Bavaria consider themselves well-prepared for the rising number of Corona patients. The director of the Bavarian Hospital Association, Hasenbein, said in an interview with the BR that there were currently 4,000 beds in intensive care units available all over Bavaria.

7:10 am: Kaniber expects higher prices for fruit and vegetables

Fruit and vegetables might run short this year, due to the lack of seasonal workers in Bavaria. Farming minister Michaela Kaniber (CSU) therefore expects prices for certain sorts to rise.


Corona virus: From Ischgl across Europe

Hundreds of tourists might have contracted the Corona virus in the Tyrolean ski resort of Ischgl. A BR data evaluation now shows how the virus might have spread to Germany and the rest of Europe.

6:53 pm: Health minister Huml: “Up to 13,000 tests per day”

Bavaria has extended the capacities for tests massively. Health minister Melanie Huml pointed out: “Our aim is to gain clarity about suspected cases. This is very important in order to curb further infections.” About 13,000 tests per day are supposed to take place in Bavaria in the future.

4:24 pm: Contact limitations to be maintained over Easter

Citizens ought to respect the contact bans also during Easter. As the Federal Government as well as the States decided in Berlin, each and everyone must reduce their contact to people outside their own household to an absolute minimum.

“A pandemic knows no holiday.”

Angela Merkel, Chancellor

4:15 pm: Service line and shopping aid in Munich

The Munich Social Welfare Department (Sozialreferat) reminds Munich citizens of the service line for social concerns and the shopping service for the elderly. With the phone number 089-233-96833, the Social Welfare Department offers a first contact point for Munich citizens. Elderly people in particular can contact the department responsible for them, in order to use the shopping service.

3:15 pm: Number of Corona deceased in Bavaria rises to 241

So far, 17,151 Corona infections have been reported in Bavaria. That means 1,646 more cases than yesterday. 2,230 cases of them count as recovered. 241 people have died of Covid-19 in Bavaria.

2:50 pm: Botanical Garden in Hof reopens

Traditionally, the Botanical Garden in Hof always opens its doors on April 1st, and so it does today, too. However, town authorities ask people not to build groups and to keep distance. Similar applies to the Botanical Gardens in Bayreuth and Bamberg.

1:10 pm: Beginning of State Garden Show (Landesgartenschau) to be postponed

The opening of the State Garden Show in Ingolstadt is supposed to be postponed to the end of May. Originally, it would have been opened on April 24th.

12:37 pm: Health personnel can use taxis for free in Munich

Doctors, nurses and caretakers can now use taxis for free in order to get to or back from work. The Munich Taxi Association thus wants to support medical staff during the Corona crisis. However, users must prove that they work in the health sector.

11:05 am: Armed Forces help test Corona app

The German Federal Armed Forces support the Fraunhofer Institute in testing a smartphone app, which is supposed to detect contacts to Covid-19 patients. 50 soldiers test indoors and outdoors whether the app is actually able to locate contacts in a specific chronological and territorial intensity.

9:13 am: Archbishopric Munich postpones Confirmation and First Communion

Confirmation and First Communion in the Archbishopric of Munich and Freising have been postponed to Whitsun due to the quick spread of the Corona virus.

3:28 am: Clinical trial: loss of taste and of sense symptoms of Covid-19

The loss of both gustatory and olfactory sense can be a strong indicator for an infection with the Sars-CoV-2 virus. According to a British clinical trial, almost 60 per cent of the patients who tested positive for Covid-19 afterwards, had spoken about losing both senses.


8:48 pm: Söder: Do not underestimate situation

For Bavarian Prime Minister Markus Söder, providing protective material is of highest priority during the Corona crisis, as he points out in an interview with the BR. He considers a discussion on loosening the limitations of movement inappropriate. The peak of the wave of infection hasn’t been reached yet. It is important, he claims, to buy more time, also in order to overcome supply shortfalls, e.g. of high quality face masks.

Emergency aids without using private assets

Prime Minister Söder announced that he was going to abstain from having small and medium-sized enterprises use up their private liquid assets before getting emergency aids. Emergency aids will be paid according to the loss in revenue.

How Social Distancing works

The number of people infected with the novel coronavirus is increasing rapidly, as each infected person potentially spreads the virus to a number of other people. The fewer people infected, the better. How can we achieve this? Our simulation shows that social distancing is key.

3:50 pm: First Corona case in Greek refugees camp

A woman from a refugees camp in Greece has tested positive for the Corona virus after her child was born. Those who had been in contact with the woman originally coming from Africa, have been isolated.

2:45 pm: Football league stops until April 30th

There won’t be any matches in the German football league before April 30th or perhaps later.

2:08 pm: So far 15,505 Corona cases and 191 dead in Bavaria

Up to now, 15,505 people have tested positive for the Corona virus Sars-CoV-2 in Bavaria. This is what was reported on the website of the State Office for Health and Food Security in Erlangen on Tuesday (as at 10:00 am). According to them, so far, 191 patients who had caught the Corona virus, have died.

2:02 pm: Spain reports almost 850 dead within 24 hours

On Tuesday, Spain reported the highest death toll so far: 849 body counts within 24 hours. According to the government, 8,189 people have died from Corona in Spain so far.

1:20 pm: Spahn expects higher number of serious cases

German health minister Jens Spahn expects a raise of severe Corona cases in Germany. He said that hospitals would prepare for them. 45 per cent of beds in intensive care units in Germany have been vacated.

1:07 pm: 20,000 BMW employees on short time

BMW has reported almost 20,000 employees for short-time work to the Employment Agency. BMW production lines will be standing still until April 19th. According to the latest plans, the production will start again afterwards, a BMW spokesperson has said.

11:39 am: Home Secretary calls for social control

In an interview with RTL, Bavarian minister of the interior, Joachim Herrmann (CSU) called for citizens to address violations of the contact limitations directly or, should it be necessary, to inform the police. “If, for example, you are queueing in a supermarket and you realise that someone does not keep the necessary distance, you can tell them to observe the rules”, Herrmann said. In cases of serious breaches it would be right to inform the police.

10:10 am: RKI president: pandemic will carry on for months

The president of the Robert Koch Institute (RKI), Lothar Wieler, dampened hopes for the Corona pandemic to be over soon. It would carry on and would last for a couple of weeks and months, Wieler said. 
At the same time, he asked everyone to take the disease seriously. Many people would still think it was all a media hype.
In general, Wieler is optimistic that the measures taken are working. He thinks that concrete figures, which enable statements on a trend, will be available by Easter.

9:54 am: Number of infected risen by 4,615

According to the latest figures of the Robert Koch Institute, the number of Corona cases has risen by 4,610 since yesterday. Nationwide, the figure is now 61,913. By now, 583 people have died of the Corona virus in Germany. In Bavaria, the number of death cases is 162. 14,810 people have caught the virus in Bavaria.

6:11 am: WHO: epidemic in Asia far from over

The Corona epidemic in the Asia/Pacific region is “far from over”, warned WHO official Takeshi Kasai.

1:40 am: Immigration freeze for Europeans into USA to be prolonged

The immigration ban of the US-government for visitors from Europe is supposed to be prolonged. Since middle of March, people from the Schengen area, Great Britain and Ireland cannot travel to the USA anymore. Only exceptions are US citizens, certain diplomats and Europeans with a “Green Card” and their next of kin.


8:55 pm: Limitations of movement in Italy extended till April 12th

Italy has prolonged the regulations of movement until Easter. With 11,591 victims, Italy is leading the list of Corona deaths.

6:16 pm: Incidence rate in Italy declines

The official numbers in Italy suggest a clear decline of the incidence rate with Corona. A WHO expert said that the situation could become stable soon.

5:40 pm: WHO against general obligation to wear face masks

In the fight against the Corona virus, the World Health Organisation (WHO) does not see any benefit in everyone wearing face masks.

5:23 pm: The immune should be able to work

The German Medical Association (Bundesärztekammer) argues for loosening the contact ban for people who have already overcome an infection with the Corona virus. For that it would be good to test as many people on antibodies as possible.

4:53 pm: Areas in 18 Turkish under quarantine

Turkey has put several housing areas in 18 provinces under quarantine. As of Monday afternoon, 39 areas, including a small town and 28 villages are locked down. The ministry of the interior did not, however, tell names.

3:55 pm: 7,000 Covid-19 patients in German hospitals

At the moment, about 7,000 people with Covid-19 are being treated in German hospitals. About 1,500 of them are patients in intensive care, of whom about 1,100 are given artificial respiration.

2:51 pm: Higher financial emergency aids for small and medium-sized businesses

The government wants to raise immediate emergency aids for small and medium-sized businesses in financial trouble. “As of tomorrow, all rates will be raised once more”, said minister of finance, Hubert Aiwanger. Companies with a number of employees between 50 and 250 can apply for an emergency aid of 50,000 Euros (instead of 30,000 Euros so far). One-person operations can apply for a 9,000 Euros subsidy, instead of 5,000 so far.

2:29 pm: 20 million face masks delivered

So far, Germany has procured over 20 million face masks, and there are more supposed to come. The masks, however, do not seem to arrive everywhere they ought to: According to the Bavarian Association of SHI Physicians (Kassenärztliche Vereinigung), by end of last week, 60 medical practices have closed due to lack of face masks.

Asked whether private citizens should wear face masks too, the government made clear that this would be voluntary.

2:01 pm: Olympics in Tokyo will start July 23rd 2021

The Olympic Games in Tokyo, which have been postponed due to the Corona pandemic, will take place from July 23rd to August 8th 2021.

12.45 pm: Limitations of movement in Bavaria extended

The limitations of movement, which came to effect in Bavaria on March 21st due to the Corona virus, will be prolonged until April 19th, which marks the end of the Easter holidays.

11.27 am: Obligation to wear face masks in supermarkets

In order to fight the spread of the Corona virus, people in Austria will have to wear a face mask in future, when they go shopping.

10.37 am: Prices for groceries remain stable, despite Corona crisis

Despite panic buyings, the Corona crisis has not lead to broad rises in prices in Bavaria so far. Pasta, for example, was even cheaper by 3,6 percent in comparison to February.

10.13 am: RKI defines further regions at risk

The Robert Koch Institute (RKI) has updated its list of regions at risk for the Corona virus. Now, all of Austria has been declared region at risk (before, it was only Tirol). In France, it’s the regions Île-de-France (including Paris) and Grand Est (incl. Alsace, Lorraine and Champagne-Ardenne).

Further regions at risk, according to the RKI: Italy, Iran, Egypt, parts of Switzerland (cantons Ticino, Vaud and Geneva), parts of Spain (regions Madrid, Navarra, La Rioja and Paìs Vasco) as well as parts of South Corea (Daegue and the province of Gyeongsangbuk-do/North Gyeongsang).

Regions at risk in the USA: the states of California, Washington, New York and New Jersey.

China is no longer on the RKI’s list of regions at risk.

6.23 am: Toilet paper scarce in parts of Germany – pipes might be plugged

In some parts of Germany, toilet paper is running scarce. Some users use wet wipes, paper towels or paper tissues instead. These, however, can block sewage pipes. “Do not throw alternative sanitary products in the toilet, but dispose of them in sealed rubbish bags in the gray bin,” the Alliance of Public Water Management asks.


6.23 pm: Rise of Corona cases in Italy slowing down

The rise of new infections in Italy has been clearly slowing down. There were still, however, hundreds of cases of death on Sunday. The number of those deceased of Corona has risen from 756 to 10,779. This is the highest number worldwide.

Violations of exit restrictions peak

The beautiful weather made numerous people go outside on Saturday. Many have not adhered to the currently applicable rules. The police were working constantly. At the moment, people in Bavaria are only allowed to leave the apartment “for important reasons”: for work reasons, for necessary shopping, visits at the doctor or walk and exercise in the fresh air. This is allowed only alone or with the people who live in the same apartment. You should also keep a distance of at least 1.5 meters from other people. Picnics and lying in the sun are not allowed. Jaunts by car or motorcycle are also prohibited. If you do not comply with the rules, you can expect a fine of 150 euros or more. In Munich alone, the police carried out more than 7,000 checks from Saturday morning to Sunday morning. There were 324 violations of the current exit restrictions. The police also had a lot to do in the other government districts. The police in Upper Bavaria north (Oberbayern Nord) deployed 150 times, 140 times in the Upper Palatinate (Oberpfalz).

11:57 am: More than 13,000 people in Bavaria infected with Corona

In Bavaria, 13 263 people have now been tested positive for the corona virus. This was announced by Bavaria’s Minister of Health Melanie Huml in Munich on Sunday. According to the information, 110 patients infected with the coronavirus have died in Bavaria.

How can I protect myself against the corona virus?

80 percent of all infectious diseases are spread by hands. On average, we touch our faces every four minutes. Often with unwashed hands. The most important protective measure against viruses and bacteria of all kinds is therefore: wash your hands often and thoroughly, for at least 20 seconds. A mnemonic device is to sing “Happy Birthday” twice in your head. Don’t forget to soap your fingertips, the back of your hands, and your thumbs. In order to protect your skin from getting dry, you should also apply moisturizer from time to time. Sneeze and cough in the crook of the arm and not in the hand. If you have a cold, use disposable tissues and not cloths. Dispose of the tissues in a trash can with a lid. Keep at least 1.5 meters away from people with whom you do not live.


8:01 pm: More than 30,000 coronavirus deaths worldwide

Worldwide, more than 30,000 people have died of coronavirus infections. The prestigious Johns Hopkins University in the United States registered 30,248 deaths on Saturday. According to the information, 649,904 people have been shown to be infected with Sars-CoV-2. Experts assume that the number of unreported cases is high.

Sunbathing in parks prohibited

According to the Munich police, sunbathing on a towel or having a picnic in a public green area is not allowed. Not even if distance is kept. Doing sports outside and going for a walk, however, is allowed.

3:00 am: April 20th day due for further measures

Until April 20th all measures remain: shops, restaurants, schools and universities remain closed. Movement is still limited.


10:27 pm: First laboratories able to do antibodies test

In Germany, first laboratories are able to do tests for antibodies. Thus, they know whether a person has been infected by the Corona virus or not. The Krone laboratory has announced to do its first tests for antibodies on Monday.

4:27 pm: Bavaria enacts schedule of fines

A fine of 150 Euros will be imposed upon anyone who transgresses the limitations of movement in Bavaria. Entering a hospital or nursing home without permission even means a 500-Euro fine. Owners of shops or restaurants who open without permission will have to pay a fine of 5,000 Euros.

7:45 am: Plea: people should abide by contact ban

The president of the German Hospital Association (Deutsche Krankenhausgesellschaft), Gerald Gaß, calls on the people to abide by the contact ban in order to contain the Corona virus. “I am confident that we will be able to avoid Italian conditions, at least during the next two weeks, so that our ventilator capacities will definitely suffice for the two weeks coming”, says Gaß on ZDF. But: “The other side must be functioning as well. We have to make sure that the curve is flattening in the beginning or in the middle of next week, so that the number of patients does not grow endlessly, for then, even a health system as good as the one in Germany, would then be overstrained, despite the effort of all hospitals.

6:00 am: Conservatives: check infection chains with app

In the fight against the quick spreading of the lung disease Covid-19, politicians of the conservative parties would like to use an app as soon as possible, which citizens could download to their smartphones by choice. It is supposed to work like a digital diary and – in case its owner has been tested positively to the Corona virus – to automatically send anonymous notes to all those who have been in contact with the person during the last two weeks. “Each person could contribute by downloading the app”, said CSU politician Michael Kuffer.


13.12 pm: Spahn expects further burdens

Health Minister Jens Spahn has once again painted a serious picture of the situation in Germany. “We are still at the beginning”, he said at the federal press conference at noon. No one could say exactly what will come in the next few weeks. Therefore, it was still necessary to slow the spread of the corona virus. At the same time, the capacities in the clinics would also have to be increased with intensive care beds. Spahn anticipates that burdens for hospitals and medical practices in the corona crisis will continue to rise.

But he also confirmed that Germany was able to start preparations early because of a lot of tests. The capacity is 300,000 to 500,000 tests per week, which is very high in international comparison.

Politicians are now concerned with the “time after Corona” during which the virus has further to be fought , but public life will gradually normalize. The Federal Government and the Prime Ministers want to discuss this after Easter.

10 am: Federal President Frank-Walter Steinmeier calls for solidarity

In a video statement, Steinmeier says the imperative of the hour is “keep your distance”. But people can still be close to each other and get involved.

I see and hear: Many, very many of you are helping each other. You go shopping for your older neighbors. You hang bags of food for the homeless on ‘donation fences’ … All of you, you are the heroines and heroes in the Corona crisis. I spoke to some of you on the phone this week: the store manager, for example, in the supermarket, who works 12-hour shifts with her team so that the shelves don’t stay empty, or the elementary school teacher who teaches educational videos for her students in the attic. The social worker who organizes a telephone chain for people who feel lonely, and the doctors, nurses and pharmacists who do their life-saving job beyond exhaustion. And solidarity also means that our gaze must go further than to the next border fence. It’s tearing our hearts when we see the pictures from Italy. I am glad that hospitals here in Germany also treat seriously ill Italian and French patients. I would like more concrete solidarity in the European spirit.

President Frank-Walter Steinmeier


8:45 pm: Deutsche Bahn reduces offer

Deutsche Bahn has reduced its offer due to the corona crisis. The company announced that 75 to 80 percent of the trains are still running. In this way, the company wants to protect employees and the fleet. Most international connections have been canceled. Some ICE or IC connections are cancelled or run with fewer wagons. There are also some restrictions in local transport. The Deutsche Bahn responded to criticism from the train drivers’ union GDL. It had demanded that the capacities be reduced to 50 percent in view of the low number of passengers.

11.42 am: Bavarian Parliament votes for Infection Protection Act

The MPs in the plenary session of the state parliament passed the new Bavarian Infection Protection Act with the votes of all political parties. It enables measures to contain the corona pandemic. These can limit the rights of citizens significantly . For example, the Act allows the seizure of medical material, i.e. respirators and protective clothing. It is also about how the state can access personnel such as doctors and nurses. The law is limited until the end of the year.

11:27 am: Seasonal workers are no longer allowed to enter

In order to slow down the spread of the corona pandemic in Germany, the Federal Ministry of the Interior has ordered an entry ban for seasonal workers. Foreign harvest workers and other seasonal workers will be denied entry this Wednesday at 5 p.m. as part of the existing border controls.

10.46 am: Sick leave for two weeks is possible by telephone if there is suspicion of corona

The sick leave rules in Germany are further loosened. From now on, doctors can issue a medical certificate for a maximum of 14 days to patients with mild diseases of the upper respiratory tract or suspected corona. Patients do not have to go to the doctor’s office for sick leave. The regulation is valid until June 23.

For companies and freelancers: How do I get emergency help?

The Bavarian government has set up an emergency aid program for companies and freelancers who encounter financial problems as a result of the Corona crisis. All companies with up to 250 employees and whose permanent establishment is located in Bavaria can apply. Depending on the size of the company, between 5,000 and 30,000 euros are granted. According to Bavarian Minister of Economy Hubert Aiwanger, the money will be paid into the applicant’s account within the next eight to ten days. The emergency aid does not have to be repaid.

With this application, the money can be applied for quickly and unbureaucratically (unfortunately only available in German).

Important: Applications should NOT be sent to the Bavarian State Ministry for Economic Affairs, Regional Development and Energy. The locally responsible licensing authorities are responsible for processing, which means: In the case of Munich, it is the state capital. Otherwise, the district governments are responsible.


12.40 pm: Aid organizations: Please only call 112 in an emergency

The Bavarian aid organizations ask citizens to only dial 112 in the event of an emergency. At present, the number is often dialed for advice related to the corona virus. However, the lines must be kept free for emergency situations such as heart attacks, fires or car accidents. If you suspect corona infection, dial 116117. For other specific questions about the virus, call the hotline of the State Health Office of Bavaria: 09131 6808 5101 (consultation in German and English).

What are the symptoms of Covid-19?

Here in Europe, the symptoms of the disease mostly resemble a harmless cold. Symptoms include: fever, cough, shortness of breath, muscle pain and fatigue – sometimes including sputum, headache and diarrhea. A minority suffer from viral pneumonia, the severe course of Covid-19. Warning: Many people with corona have no or only mild symptoms. Nevertheless, they can transmit the virus.

What should I do if I think I am sick?

Call your family doctor. Do not go to the doctor without first informing them. If you have had contact with an infected person, you should report to your health department regardless of the symptoms: You can do this via the emergency medical service 116 117.

Who is at risk?

According to current knowledge, the gender, age and state of health of a patient play a decisive role in whether one gets the severe form of Covid-19. It is believed that older people in particular – and more likely men – are affected, and people with pre-existing conditions such as lung diseases or diabetes. Long-term smokers also have an increased risk of developing Covid-19. Children and pregnant women are less at risk.

07.15 am: Huml calls ex-nurses for support

Bavaria’s Minister of Health Huml wants to bring former nurses back to work in the fight against the corona virus. Since it is impossible to predict how the pandemic would develop, Huml asked all nurses, all nursing assistants, as well as medical technical assistants and medical assistants who were not currently working in this profession and did not belong to any risk group, for support. Volunteers could register on the specially created online platform “nursing pool for Bavaria” (unfortunately only available in German).


7.15 pm: Minister expects more domestic violence

Federal Family Minister Franziska Giffey (SPD) anticipates an increase in domestic violence due to the restrictions of movement in Germany. The fact that many people are currently at home and that family members spend a lot of time together in a confined space can lead to aggravated domestic conflicts. Those affected can find help at this number: 0800 116016. With the help of interpreters, telephone advice is available around the clock in 17 languages.

1:22 pm 50 billion emergency aid for self-employed and freelance workers

Federal minister of finance, Olaf Scholz (SPD), and federal minister of economic affairs, Peter Altmaier (CDU), have agreed to “quick and unbureaucratic emergency aid” for micro enterprises, solo self-employed and freelance workers during the corona crisis. Both ministers explained after the extraordinary meeting of the cabinet on Monday that up to 50 billion Euros were at disposal for that. Scholz underlined that none of it would have to be paid back.Micro enterprises from all economic sectors, solo self-employed and freelance workers with up to five employees would hence be able to get a single payment of 9,000 Euros for three months; those with up to ten employees 15,000 Euros.

12:09 pm General Practitioners’ Association wants to restrict patients’ contacts drastically

The Bavarian Association of General Practitioners (Bayerischer Hausärzteverband) want to reduce patient-centered care in doctor’s offices due to the Corona pandemic to a minimum. As the association told on Monday, in future, patients should not visit their general practitioner anymore without previous notification by phone.

“Contacts between doctors, office staff and from patient to patient are to be reduced to a minimum level, and procedures must be reorganized accordingly”, has been said in an information by Markus Beier, the regional leader of the GP’s association, to resident doctors. “In the face of restrictions of movement and foreseeable lacking laboratory capacities, it is absolutely necessary to bundle staff resources for serious cases and ask patients not to go and see their GP, even in suspected cases of Corona!”


7:00 pm: The federal and state governments agree on a contact ban – Bavaria will stick to its own rules

In the fight against the spread of the corona virus, the federal and state governments want to adopt a comprehensive contact ban. Chancellor Angela Merkel (CDU) and the state premiers agreed at a conference call to fundamentally ban groups of more than two people. Spending time in public space is only allowed on your own, with people living in the same household (partners, children or flatmates in a shared apartment) AND with another person who does not live in the household. Bavaria sticks to its own rules. These are stricter: In Bavaria, spending time outdoors is only allowed on your own or with members of your own household. An exception applies to the life partner. According to the State Chancellery, the accompaniment of older people who need help will continue to be allowed. Markus Söder thanked the population for their understanding: “I thank the population very much for sticking to it so well. Bavaria is holding together really well.”

What is short-time work (“Kurzarbeit”)?

If a company has little to do due to a poor order situation, it can apply for short-time work – that is the case in the current corona crisis. The idea: The employees work less or not at all and therefore receive less wages. The advantage: Nobody loses their job. In order to at least partially compensate for the loss of wages, the Federal Employment Agency (Bundesarbeitsagentur) pays part of the salary, the short-time allowance. Short-time allowance is paid only for the lost work hours and is 60 percent of the net salary for employees and 67 percent for employees with children. The employees remain in the statutory social insurance and occupational accident insurance. Short-time work benefits are granted for a maximum of 24 months.

Questions and answers on the restrictions of movement in Bavaria

Can I do administrative work, e.g. go to town halls, the foreign office and other authorities?

Most town halls and other authorities are closed to the public. Think about which administrative procedures can be postponed and which are really urgent. Please inform yourself on the respective homepage of your municipality or authority if you can reach them via phone or e-mail. You will be advised whether it is an urgent matter that cannot be postponed and can only be dealt with in person. Many matters can now be dealt with online.

Do I have to go to work? I am in close contact with many people there.

The question of whether you have to work has to be answered by your employer. However, employers are required to ensure the minimum distance of 1.5 metres between two people at work. In addition, employers should take advantage of home office opportunities as far as possible.

Do I have a right to work from home?

There is no general legal right to a home office. In some companies, home office arrangements may be included in company or collective wage agreements.

Can I visit my parents and grandparents?

Everyone is encouraged to keep contact with other people outside of their own household to an absolute minimum. Therefore, a visit to the parents and grandparents should be very carefully considered and is only recommended if they need support, for example if they need help with shopping. Visits to older people generally have to be kept to an absolute minimum due to the high risk of infection. Please refrain from casual gatherings and prefer to use the phone or Skype to stay in touch.

Can I visit my life partner?

Yes, this is covered by the rules, you can go to your life partner, even if you are not married to him or her. Visits, and thus going for a walk together, are allowed.

What happens if there are violations?

Anyone who violates the rules can expect high fines up to € 25,000. In addition, according to Section 74 of the Infection Protection Act, up to five years in prison can be imposed in the event of an intentional violation, if someone is infected.


9:00 pm: Corona Disaster Staff extends emergency care in Bavaria

In the wake of the Corona crisis, the disaster relief team in Bavaria expanded emergency care for particularly affected groups. As announced by the Ministry of Family Affairs, from Monday employees working in health care or nursing can also take advantage of emergency care in schools and daycare centers for their children if only one parent works in these areas. The Ministry of Culture emphasizes that the measure is also aimed at all employees “who serve to maintain the company”. This includes, for example, the cleaning staff and the clinic kitchen. The prerequisite still is that the affected parent is prevented from childcare due to business or operational necessities, said Bavaria’s Minister of Family Affairs Carolina Trautner. Until now, emergency care was only available if both parents worked in these areas or if a single parent was employed there. The Bavarian Family Ministry provides further information here.

Also younger patients in intensive care units

So far it has been said that especially the elderly and people with an underlying health condition are in danger of contracting the Corona virus. The lung disease, however, can also strike younger ones massively, underlines Prof. Clemens Wendtner, head physician at the Munich Schwabing Hospital.

The number of young people with Corona treated in intensive care units is rising. This has been seen in Italy and “this is also something we see in Germany. The youngest of the Covid-19 patients showing symptoms were in their early twenties,” said the physician.

According to Prof. Wendtner, it is – along with the elderly and the ill – especially generally healthy patients with a damaged lung, who are in danger, such as long-term smokers or patients with asthma. But also diabetics and people with high blood pressure.

The timespan from an infection to the outbreak of the disease is, according to the medic, between five days and two weeks. The figures would double every three days if there were no interventions, says Wendtner. An end of the crisis would not be foreseeable. “At the moment, no-one can seriously predict how long the proceedings will take altogether”, says Wendtner. He considers, however, a period of several months realistic, until late summer.

11:03 am: Tenants not to be given notice during crisis

According to a common legal bill of the ministry of justice, the Home Office and the Department of Trade and Industry, tenants are supposed not to be given notice due to rent arrears during the Corona crisis. This refers to rent arrears in the period of April 1st to September 30th 2020. The tenants’ obligation to pay their rent, however, persists in principle. Also, other parties liable, who are not able to fulfill their contractual duties due to the Corona crisis, will, according to the bill, not have to fear legal consequences. As for loans, a legal settlement for delay of payment will be installed. The bill is supposed to pass the Federal Cabinet (Bundeskabinett) on Monday and the Federal Parliament (Bundestag) on Wednesday.

6:22 am: Citizens in Bavaria abide by restrictions

The restriction of movement, which was installed all over Bavaria last midnight, has largely been abode. The police in Swabia, however, had to disperse several groups of young people celebrating and gave them dismissals.

Am I still allowed to visit family members?

Since yesterday, leaving one’s flat in Bavaria is only allowed for “good reasons”. Within the family circle you are allowed to: visit your partner, the elderly, the ill or disabled (outside facilities) and to do child custody in the private sector. Furthermore, it is allowed to accompany persons who need help, to accompany minors, to accompany the dying, as well as to participate in funerals within the inner family circle.

21st March 2020

4:03 pm: Train traffic in Bavaria continues to run normally for the time being

Train traffic in Bavaria continues to run normally despite the impairments in public life in the fight against the corona virus. A radical reduction of train traffic is currently not appropriate, said Minister of Transport Kerstin Schreyer (CSU). Nevertheless, train journeys should only be undertaken if there is good reason. Buses and trains in the municipal transport associations are already partly running with a reduced schedule. Deutsche Bahn is accommodating in the event of cancellations: Passengers can postpone their travel for all tickets purchased until March 13 with travel dates between March 13 and April 30 and use the ticket flexibly for the booked route until June 30. Travelers who no longer want to travel due to the corona virus can have their tickets purchased until March 13, 2020 for travel days until April 30, 2020, converted into a voucher for the value of their ticket. This also applies to “Super Sparpreise” and “Sparpreise”.

12.30 p.m .: “We don’t lock Bavaria in, but we shut down public life almost completely”

The infections in Bavaria continue to rise. Therefore there will be exit restrictions starting on Friday night at midnight. The Bavarian Prime Minister Markus Söder announced this in a press conference on Friday afternoon. He appealed to the population to stay at home.

What is allowed?

Going to work, to the doctor or buying essential items is allowed. Sport or walking outdoors is possible, but only on your own, with the family or with pets. Group formations and gatherings of people are prohibited. Parents who live separately from their children can visit them.

What is forbidden?

Visits to nursing homes and old people’s homes are prohibited and only allowed for the dying. Visits to the hospital are prohibited, there are three exceptions: dying, children and parturients and newborns may be visited by their closest relatives. Hairdressers, DIY stores and garden centers remain closed. Restaurants of any kind may only sell or deliver food to-go. Söder said: There is no reason for panic buying. The banks will also remain open. Citizens do not need written permits to leave the house, such as in France. The restrictions are controlled by the police. Anyone who violates the rules must expect high fines. The restrictions apply temporarily for 14 days.


Daily Life Tip: What restrictions apply to Bavaria?

So far, a curfew has been imposed at two locations in Bavaria: in the city of Mitterteich and in the district of Wunsiedel. Here people can only leave the house to do important shopping, go to work and help people in need.

The following rules apply in the rest of Bavaria:

  • Meetings: All events and gatherings are prohibited. This also includes services and meetings in churches, synagogues and mosques.
  • Leisure facilities are closed: These include museums, cinemas, sports halls, pubs and gyms., amongst others.
  • Gastronomy: Diner and canteens are only open from 6 a.m. to 3 p.m. Outside of these times, take-away meals can be served and delivered.
  • Limited retail: stores must remain closed. Exceptions are grocery stores, beverage stores, banks, pharmacies, drug stores, medical supply stores, opticians, hearing care professionals, branches of Deutsche Post AG, pet supplies, DIY and garden centers, petrol stations, dry cleaners and online retail.
  • Parks and green areas: The police check whether park visitors keep a minimum distance of 1.5 meters from each other
  • Schools, kindergartens and day-care centers: For now, they will be closed until April 19. Emergency care is only available for children whose both parents work in “areas of critical infrastructure”, such as care and medicine, in supermarkets or the police or fire service.
  • Service providers and craftsmen: They should generally be able to carry out their work. However, a minimum distance of 1.5 meters between customers must be maintained in service companies.
  • Right to visit clinics and nursing homes: To protect older or immunocompromised people, each patient or carer may only receive one visitor per day for one hour. Exceptions are possible in an emergency or for the dying.

9.47 a.m .: Ten deaths in Bavaria

According to Prime Minister Markus Söder, 2,282 people in Bavaria had already been infected with the corona virus by Thursday morning. As a result, ten people have now died. “The cases are increasing daily and the infection chains are becoming increasingly difficult to track. In the current statistics, Germany is now ahead of South Korea in infections,” said the CSU chief in his government statement in the state parliament in Munich. He also does not consider Bavarian curfews to be excluded. At the same time, in view of the Corona crisis, Söder asked the federal government to provide a package of aid worth at least 100 billion euros to alleviate the economic consequences.


4:17 pm: Mitterteich imposes curfew

The town of Mitterteich in the Oberpfalz, which has a population of just under 7,000, has become a Corona focus in the past few days, said District Administrator Wolfgang Lippert in a press conference in Tirschenreuth. Therefore, there is a curfew until April 2, 2020. Leaving the house is only allowed to drive to work, do groceries, drive to the doctor, take a walk with pets, or help people in need. The curfew is monitored by the police. Failure to stay inside may result in fines and up to two years in prison.

12:05 pm: Federal government makes no legal preparations for curfew

The Federal Ministry of Justice denies a media report that the federal government is working on the legal preparations for a curfew in Germany. “There is nothing there. We deny,” said a spokesman for the Ministry of Justice on Wednesday afternoon. Frank Ulrich Montgomery, the president of the World Medical Association, also spoke out against a ban on going out. „You can’t keep schools and daycare centers closed until the end of the year – and it will take at least that long to get a vaccine“, he said. Armin Laschet, Prime Minister of North Rhine-Westphalia, had previously not ruled out a curfew for the future. But everyone still has the chance to prevent a curfew by staying at home and keeping a distance from other people, he said.

Daily Life Tip: Can I still meet my friends?

Because of the coronavirus, you are no longer allowed to go to the movies, theaters and school. It is up to you whether or not you should meet with friends. The method of social distancing in order to slow down the spreading of the virus only works preventively, that is: before showing symptoms. Some experts suggest behaving as if you were already ill. That would mean reducing any social contact.

If you still have to meet:

  • outside is better than inside
  • fewer people are better than many people
  • prefer meeting the same friends than meeting someone else every day
  • wash your hands regularly
  • do not shake hands, kiss or hug
  • keep at least two metres of distance apart
  • consider if you can replace the meeting with chats or telephone


8.00 pm: Germany implements entry ban for non-EU citizens

Federal Interior Minister Horst Seehofer has ordered entry restrictions for non-EU citizens in Germany. The entry ban applies to international air and sea transport for trips that start outside the European Union. There are exceptions for nationals of third countries (e.g. Norway, Switzerland, Great Britain) with a long-term right of residence in an EU country. The limitation initially lasts for 30 days.

1.33 pm: Flixbus stops operating at midnight until further notice

The bus operator will suspend all national and cross-border connections to and from Germany from March 17, 2020, midnight, the company said on Tuesday in Munich. Affected passengers will be informed and receive a voucher for the entire ticket price without a cancellation fee to the email address provided when booking. The long-distance bus company Blablabus will also stop operating tomorrow morning. The Blablacar rideshare service, through which customers can create ridesharing opportunities, remains unaffected. The Blablacar platform will “continue to be available to those who absolutely need to travel,” it said.

9.28 am: Clients should call employment agencies only in emergencies

The federal employment agency „Bundesagentur für Arbeit“ asks clients to call them only if absolutely necessary. Clients do not need to cancel appointments. There won’t be any disadvantages such as reductions on Hartz-IV-payments. Deadlines will be suspended for the time being.

9.21 am: Federal government of Germany proclaims worldwide travel warning

Due to the corona crisis, the federal government of Germany has advised against all kinds of touristic travel. According to dpa, foreign minister Heiko Maas proclaimed this warning on Tuesday morning in Berlin. Until this point, the Federal Foreign Office had only advised against unneccessary trips abroad.

8.56 am: On Saturday, Volkswagen will stop production to a great extent

Due to the corona crisis, Volkswagen will stop its production in most of its factories in Germany and Europe. The company will announce during the morning that on almost all of its factories, the last shift will be due on friday. This was confirmed by both news agencies dpa and Reuters. In the past few days, there have also been first confirmed cases of infections with the causative agent of the lung disease Covid-19 in VW’s German plants.


7.30 pm: The Federation decides on extended limitations

In order to slow down the spreading of the coronavirus, the Federation has decided to close a variety of shops, cultural, sports and leisure venues. Supermarkets and other essential stores will stay open. An agreement with the federal states also says for restaurants to stay closed between 6 p.m. And 6 a.m. Overnight stays in hotels etc. will only be allowed for necessary and non-touristic purposes. Church services of all kinds of churches and religions will be prohibited.

10.16 am: Supermarkets in Bavaria will stay open longer

In order to ensure the basic supply with groceries and other important goods, Bavaria will expand opening hours of certain stores: supermarkets, grocery stores, drug stores, pharmacies, gas stations, banks and some other stores will be able to remain open until 10 p.m. during the week and on Sundays until 6 p.m.

9.15 am: Bavaria declares disaster

Pubs, clubs, toos and swimming pools have to close from Tuesday. From Wednesday, the opening hours of shops and restaurants will be restricted. Pharmacies, super markets and other grocery stores will remain opened. The state of disaster will remain for at least 14 days.


3 pm: Bavaria restricts public life

Because of the coronavirus, Bavaria is planning to reduce the opening times of shops and restaurants. The BR also learned from government circles that there would be extensive closings of bars, clubs, swimming pools and cinemas.


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