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Duty to quarantine at home: About 2000 Bonn people have returned from risk regions so far

Duty to quarantine at home : About 2000 Bonn people have returned from risk regions so far

The city of Bonn has counted almost 2000 travel returnees from risk regions since 26 June. Strict rules apply to them during the obligatory domestic quarantine.

The holiday season in NRW is slowly coming to an end. Next Monday the last week of the summer holidays begins. In times of the corona pandemic, everything is different for holiday returnees: According to the current Infection Protection Act, anyone returning from a risk region must go into 14-day domestic quarantine unless they present a negative corona test. "Almost 2000 people returning from risk regions have reported to the Bonn health authority since 26 June", reports Monika Hörig, press spokeswoman of the city of Bonn.

Until the test result is available, travel returnees would have to go to the domestic isolation ward. Those who receive a positive test result must stay there for 14 days. If a person violates the quarantine obligation and does not practise social distancing despite a positive test result, a fine might be imposed. "This is an administrative offence which would be punished if it became known", says Hörig. Those who go into quarantine should also separate themselves from their own family: "Contact with family members should be kept to a minimum. If bathrooms and kitchen are shared, clear time intervals should be observed and the rooms should be ventilated a lot", says Hörig.

According to the city of Bonn, the percentage of positively tested travel returnees from risk areas is very low. However, the number of Bonn citizens obliged to go into quarantine is likely to be low, as most of them have remained cautious: For the summer holidays, Bonn's travel agencies have received hardly any requests for trips to countries that have been declared risk areas. And demand for other European holiday destinations has also remained low this summer. "For a short time there was demand for Spain and Majorca, but that subsided as soon as compulsory face masks were introduced there as well," reports Franz Bäuml, owner of the travel agency on Weidenbach. Also the demand for Croatia has immediately decreased again, after all bordering countries have been declared a risk area. "For a short time there was confidence in the areas, but then came the reports in which warnings were issued," said Bäuml.

The travel agency is currently not even offering holiday trips to already designated risk areas such as Turkey. "We do not do that, since such journeys are not accomplished overall by the organizer , say Bäuml. If the destination is declared a risk area during the holiday, the return is guaranteed: "In that case, the tour operator would be obliged to look after its guests," explains Bäuml.

Even the travel agency "Via Verde Entdecken und Reisen" in Bad Godesberg, which specialises in walking study tours and individual trips to the Southern Caucasus and Africa, does not even offer trips to risk areas: "We had some enquiries as to whether it would now be possible to travel to the countries we offer again. We first inform the customer in detail about the situation on site. If the desired country is advertised as a risk area, we would advise against travelling there in any case", says Birgit Heinichen from the travel agency.

(Original text: Sebastian Flick; Translation: Mareike Graepel)