Questions and answers on the most important rules and arrangements
Current corona rules and additional information
You will find the following information here:
- Contact restrictions: Who can I meet where?
- Private and public events
- Where do I have to wear a mouth-and-nose covering?
- What is a mouth-and-nose covering?
- Who is exempt from the mask requirement?
- Testing and quarantine: who can be tested where? When do I have to go into quarantine?
- Travel and overnight stays
- Leisure, culture and sport: what is allowed and what is not?
- What rules apply at school?
- What are the visiting rules and arrangements in hospitals and nursing homes?
- Services and shops: what is open, what is closed?
- Basic hygiene rules
The following rules and arrangements have been in force in Hesse since 1 December 2020:
Each and every contact with other persons increases the risk of getting infected! Especially in closed rooms and when distances are not adhered to. Therefore: Please reduce contacts to an absolutely necessary minimum. In public, you may only meet with members of your own household and one other household, but no more than 5 people.
From 1 December, the following contact restriction applies: In public areas, contacts are limited to 5 people from two households. Children from a household up to and including 14 years of age are excluded from this rule. Since homes are a particularly protected and private area, it is merely urgently recommended to limit contacts in the same way here.
Meetings and events involving personal participation which are not subject to an exception laid down in Art. 1 (2) or Art. 1 (2a) of the Corona Contact and Operating Restrictions Ordinance (CoKoBeV) are only to take place if there is a special public interest in such and with the permission of the authority in charge and in compliance with distance and hygiene rules. Events that serve entertainment purposes are not considered to be in the public interest and are therefore not permitted. It is strongly recommended to limit private gatherings with friends, relatives and acquaintances to one's own household and one other household, but in any case to no more than a maximum of five persons. Children from the respective households up to and including the age of 14 years are not included. Also, when meeting in private, care should be taken to maintain a minimum distance of 1.5 metres between persons of different household sizes and to observe general hygiene recommendations. The consumption of alcohol in public is prohibited between 11 p.m. and 6 a.m.
- In local and long-distance public transport, e.g. buses, trains, taxis, ships, ferries and aircraft
- In railway stations and airports as well as bus stops, underground stations and platforms
- In the public area of all publicly accessible buildings (especially public authorities and office buildings).
- In all areas of work and businesses; this does not apply at the workplace, provided that a distance of at least 1.5 metres to other persons can be safely maintained.
- When picking up food in restaurants, canteens and refectories until you have arrived at your seat
- In shops (wholesale and retail), petrol stations, laundries, bank and post offices, and wherever there is customer access
- At weekly markets, flea markets, etc.
- In all health facilities such as hospitals and doctors' surgeries
- In covered shopping centres and in covered streets and areas with shops
- In overnight accommodation establishments in all areas with public access
- At hairdressers and in medically necessary services wherever service providers and customers come very close to one another. The mask obligation applies to both.
- In schools outside the classroom. From class 5 onwards, masks are also compulsory in classes. These pupils may also take off their masks for a short time. These "mask breaks" are to be organised locally in schools.
- On busy streets and open-air squares if the minimum distance of 1.5 metres cannot be ensured. This applies in particular to pedestrian zones and car parks.
- In vehicles if persons from more than two households are in the same vehicle.
- In traffic areas, event rooms, meeting rooms and examination rooms at universities, vocational academies and music academies.
- For programmes in the area of child and youth work and youth social work in closed rooms.
- When taking part in meetings of religious communities for the joint practice of religion as well as at funerals and other meetings and events pursuant to Art. 1 (2b) of the Corona Contact and Operating Restrictions Ordinance (CoKoBeV), and when participating in educational programmes and courses which are held in closed rooms In addition, the wearing of a mouth-and-nose covering is urgently recommended if it cannot be ensured that the minimum distance of 1.5 metres to persons from other households will be respected.
Mouth-and-nose covering means any complete protection of the mouth and nose that is close to the skin of the face and that is capable of reducing the spread of transmittable droplets or aerosols caused by coughing, sneezing or normal speaking (singing). Certification is not required. Plastic visors are not covered by this; they are not a permittable mouth-and-nose covering. Nor are motorbike helmets a suitable mouth-and-nose covering.
Keeping a distance is still very important.
The contact restrictions and distance rules are not lifted by persons wearing a mouth-and-nose covering (community mask).
Children under 6 years of age and persons who cannot wear a mask for health reasons are not obliged to wear a mouth-and-nose covering.
Further exceptions apply to
- Employees in shops or restaurants, for example, if additional protective measures are taken. These can be, in particular, separating devices made of acrylic glass.
- Customers in establishments and facilities of hairdressers and other authorised establishments providing body-care services and medical treatment, insofar and for as long as the service can only be used without a mouth-and-nose covering.
- Teachers at schools of higher learning, universities of cooperative education, music academies and extracurricular educational institutions and persons involved in examinations if a hygiene concept exists which at a minimum ensures that distances are observed and that there is a regular exchange of air.
- Participant in the compulsory state examination and the second state examination in law.
- Teachers and students during practical lessons with wind instruments.
Until 15 December 2020, travellers from risk areas can still use the test centre at Frankfurt Airport or other test facilities free of charge. From 16 December onwards, testing costs must be paid by traveller themselves (privately). A "free test" with a negative corona test is only possible from the fifth day after entering the country. Up until then, people entering the country from risk areas must go into quarantine.
If the corona test is positive, you must immediately go into quarantine. This applies as soon as the test result is available, even if the formal order from the health authorities has not yet been issued.
Anyone living in a household with a person who has tested positive must also immediately go into two-week quarantine. Exceptions are possible for matters that cannot be postponed, such as food shopping.
Violations of the quarantine order are subject to a fine of EUR 500.
Tests are also free of charge for patients with symptoms. Patients with symptoms can contact the medical on-call service at 116117 or their family doctor.
There are no travel or movement restrictions within Hesse. However, overnight stays in Germany are only permitted for necessary and expressly non-touristic purposes.
Institutions and facilities that are associated with leisure activities are to be closed. These include:
- Theatres, operas, concert halls and similar establishments
- Trade fairs, cinemas, amusement parks and providers of indoor and outdoor leisure activities, amusement arcades, casinos, betting shops and similar facilities
- Prostitution centres, brothels and similar establishments
- Recreational and amateur sports activities, with the exception of sports practised alone, in pairs or with one's own household, on and in all public and private sports facilities
- Swimming and fun pools, saunas
- Gyms and similar facilities.
Amateur and recreational sportsmen and women are allowed to do sports on and in all sports facilities, alone, in pairs or with members of their own household.
Training and competitions of top and professional sports as well as school sports are permitted if a comprehensive hygiene concept is submitted.
Museums, castles and chateaus, animal parks and zoos are closed. Memorials remain open.
Schools will remain open. From grade 5 onwards, masks are also compulsory in classrooms. Pupils can take off their masks during the breaks. These "mask breaks" are to be organised locally in the schools. Outside classrooms or outside rooms where instruction takes place, pupils must wear mouth-and-nose protection because groups mix together there.
Visits to hospitals, old people's homes and nursing homes remain possible subject to strict conditions. It is always to be ensured that the respective rules and arrangements do not lead to complete social isolation of the persons concerned.
Retail trade will remain open on the whole, subject to requirements relating to hygiene, access control and the avoidance of queues. It must be ensured that there is no more than one customer per 10 square metres of sales area in shops. Beginning on 1 December, the following applies: No more than one person per 10 square metre of sales area may be admitted to the first 800 square metres of sales area and no more than one person per 20 square metre to the first sales area exceeding 800 square metres.
Personal care services such as beauty salons, nail studios, massage studios (for wellness or Thai massages), tattoo studios and similar establishments are to be closed because physical proximity is essential in this sector.
Medically necessary treatments, for example physiotherapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, medical massages and manual lymphatic drainage remain possible. Hairdressing salons will remain open subject to the existing hygiene regulations.
If you follow the rules of hygiene, you can minimise the risk of infection for yourself and others. As a protective measure - including against influenza - citizens are urgently requested to observe the following:
- Wash hands frequently and thoroughly (this also applies to children and young people)
- Cough and sneeze only into a tissue or the crook of your arm (this also applies to children and young people)
- Use disposable tissues and dispose of them in a bin after each use
- No shaking hands, no hugs / kissing on the cheeks
- Do not touch your nose, mouth and eyes with your hands (especially after holding on to handles on buses or using door handles that many people touch, but also at home)
- Clean/disinfect your smartphone, mobile phone, tablet, etc. regularly
- Only use your own glasses and cutlery
- Avoid crowds of people as a rule
- Avoid social contacts for the time being
If you have any additional questions, the first step is to contact us at the e-mail address firstname.lastname@example.org. You will receive an answer as soon as possible. There is also a hotline available throughout Hesse. You can contact our experts at 0800-5554666.