Citizens of Berlin are required to take COVID-19 tests in order to visit stores

Since March 31, Berlin is tightening restrictive measures due to the spread of the coronavirus: visits to non-food stores, hair salons and museums are only possible with a negative test for the coronavirus. The decision on these measures was taken at a meeting of the Senate (city government) on March 27.

All shoppers must present a negative coronavirus test every day before entering retail stores that do not sell “basic supply” items starting March 31. Owners of major malls have been advised to “arrange a testing option” for visitors. Hairdressing services will be accessible only by appointment and after a negative test for COVID-19, and the same requirement will apply when visiting cultural institutions: galleries, museums and memorials.

Indoor events in which more than five people are present will be admitted if they can present a negative test for the coronavirus. This applies to a variety of gatherings, but does not apply to religious ceremonies, demonstrations, government and parliamentary work, or law enforcement, the Senate decision noted.

Employers will be required to provide their employees with a free Point-of-Care (PoC) antigen rapid test or one self-administered test at least twice a week under supervision.

Special FFP2-type medical masks will have to be worn indoors. The rule also applies to people on public transportation, including airports, train stations and ferry terminals, in hospitals, and to visitors to retail stores of all kinds, pharmacies, educational and cultural institutions. Citizens are urged to wear medical masks or FFP2 masks during face-to-face meetings as well.

On March 22, it was reported that German authorities have banned gatherings of more than two people in public places as part of measures to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. Exceptions were made only for families of more than two people.