Shops and some services should open May 3, rules for other relaxation 'packages' outlined

The govt. has set up six rule relaxation ‘packages’ that will be triggered by a drop in the number of newly infected people per 100,000.

Raymond Johnston

Written by Raymond Johnston Published on 22.04.2021 19:39:00 (updated on 22.04.2021) Reading time: 3 minutes

The government will likely end restrictions on the rest of the shops, markets, and some selected services from May 3, given the continuing favorable development of the epidemic situation, Industry and Trade Minister Karel Havlíček said at a press conference after an extraordinary government meeting.

The proposal to end these restrictions on May 3 will be made by the government on Monday, April 26, and confirmed on Thursday, April 29, if there is a sufficient improvement in the Covid pandemic numbers.

Selected services connected with body care, animal care, or spa health care will be able to start operating on May 3 under strict hygienic rules. However, the condition for entry will be a negative antigen or PCR test taken at one of the standard testing places. Exceptions apply for those who are already vaccinated or who have antibodies. Body care services will be allowed for one customer at a time.

According to Havlíček, the government has prepared six packages for relaxing rules. The number of infected will determine when each step will take place. The release will be specified every Monday, and it will be confirmed on Thursday, Havlíček said.

The key factor will be the number of people infected per 100,000 inhabitants in the last seven days. According to him, it is necessary to reach the value of 100 new cases per 100,000 inhabitants per week. The number is now 177, Havlíček said.

The government will always specify rules for dismantling for the next week on the previous Monday, and on Thursday it will determine on the basis of current epidemiological data whether it can really relax the restrictions. Health Minister Petr Arenberger added that this does not mean that more rules will be relaxed every week.

Package one concerned last week’s relaxation, when children's clothing and footwear stores, stationery, services such as locksmiths and dry cleaners could start operating again. Zoos and botanical gardens could open outdoor spaces. Outdoor exhibitions or gardens and parks associated with monuments could open.

This phase also included some grades of primary school and pre-school opening on a rotating basis as of April 12, with twice-weekly Covid testing. Education Minister Robert Plaga today said that from April 26 kindergartens in the Karlovy Vary, Hradec Králové, and Plzeň regions can operate without restrictions. In those regions only, children will not be tested and will not have to wear masks. The government on April 26 will decide on opening primary schools on a rotating basis in the three regions with the lowest number of infections.  

Graphic of the relaxation packages. (Photo:
Graphic of the relaxation packages. (Photo:


Package two concerns the announced relaxation on May 3, when selected services related to body care, animal care or spa health care can reopen. If the nationwide newly number of infected people is less than 100 per 100,000 inhabitants, they will be able to open the remaining shops and outdoor markets. In regions where the number of infected people is below 100, galleries, museums and monuments will be able to start operating. Group tours will not be possible.

Pupils of the second level of primary schools and lower levels of multi-year grammar schools and eight-year conservatories could also return to schools in rotating classes, in regions where the incidence of new cases does not exceed 100 per 100,000 inhabitants per week. This means that not all regions in the country will start at the same time. Classes will only resume in regions where the specified infection rate is met.

Additional packages will depend on further decreases in the number of newly infected. In the third package, additional services could be opened, and there could be 30 participants at weddings and funerals. In the fourth package, the gardens of restaurants, hotels, and guesthouses could start operating at 25 percent of capacity. Under strict conditions, people could once again go to indoor sports grounds.

There are no cultural institutions in the third package. In the fourth package there is a possible opening of theaters and concerts in the open air, with a strict hygienic regime and if the number of newly infected people is below 75 per 100,000 inhabitants. The fourth package also states that castles and chateaux could be opened under strict conditions.

The fifth package would allow indoor entertainment such as theaters, concerts, and cinemas, indoor dining, indoor sports,and use of pools and saunas, but only with strict hygiene conditions. In most cases with an antigen test or vaccination will be required for entry, but theaters and concerts will be an exception. The sixth package would include relaxing everything that hasn't occurred so far, but some restrictions such as face coverings could still apply.

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