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​Czech government decides to tighten measures against the spread of Covid-19

As of 22 October 2020 further, stricter preventive measures against the spread of the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus will come into force in the Czech Republic. Based on unfavourable growth numbers for the Covid-19 disease, the government of the Czech Republic announced these following an extraordinary meeting on Wednesday, 21 October. There are fundamental restrictions on retail sales and services, the activities of public authorities and on the free movement of the population.

In view of the dramatic increase in the incidence of new cases of Covid-19, the government has adopted further measures to help improve the situation and to prevent the collapse of the health care system.

The government has therefore decided that as of Thursday, 22 October, from 6.00 am, for the duration of a declared state of emergency until 3 November inclusive, with certain exceptions the free movement of persons throughout the Czech Republic is prohibited. However, there are several exceptions to this ban, in particular for trips to work and in connection with business, for trips to see family, for the purchase of basic necessities and for trips to health-care facilities. People are allowed to go out to parks, into nature or go to their own holiday cottage, and to stay there. With the exception of members of a household, only two people are allowed to move about together in public places, participation in weddings and funerals is limited to ten people and the right of assembly to a maximum of one hundred people in groups of twenty. People are also allowed to travel abroad.

As a result of the crisis measures issued by the Government, it is not possible to travel to the Czech Republic for the purpose of tourism or visiting friends. This applies also to low risk countries that have previously not been subject to any restrictions. It is possible for foreigners to travel to the Czech Republic only for essential reasons, such as travelling to work and for business purposes, essential family travel or travelling to healthcare facilities.

With a few specified exceptions, from 6.00 on 22 October retail sales and the sale and provision of services in establishments are also prohibited. Exceptions include, for example, the sale of food, fuel, drugstore items and newspapers, tobacco and magazines; car repair workshops, dry cleaners, pharmacies, funeral services and florists are open. With a few exceptions, hotels and other accommodation facilities must also be closed. Hotels can only provide accommodation connected to business trips and other work related travels. This applies also to foreigners.

Since 6.00 on 22 October the government has also restricted the operation of public authorities and administrative bodies to the essential minimum necessary to ensure the operation of public administration. Office hours for these remain limited to five hours a day, two days a week, with the authorities always having to ensure they have lowest necessary number of employees in the workplace.