Austria has ignored calls from some countries, especially Germany, not to open resorts amid a coronavirus epidemic.
The country has started opening ski resorts in Austria since today, with the third nationwide quarantine starting on 26 December.
Having refused to close the resorts, Austria imposed a number of restrictions for tourists and local skiers. First of all, in fact, all entertainment will only be available to locals and Austrians who will be there for the day without an overnight stay – resort hotels will remain closed and restaurants will only be allowed to sell takeaway food.
A mask will have to be used on the lifts. Lift operators resent the requirement, explaining that they cannot guarantee that people comply with the rule, but they are responsible in the event of irregularities and complaints.
It is worth adding that some resorts themselves have refused to open. In particular, one of the largest complexes, Salbach-Hinterglem, has decided that it will only open once the strict mask requirements have been relaxed. The resort of Ischgl, which in spring was the source of the first spread of infections to a number of European countries, decided to postpone the start of the season until January.