• Last update: 03.12.2020 (10:02)

State of emergency

Currently until December 12, 2020

Emergency measures and restrictions to limit the spread of the virus are bound on the state of emergency, as set out in the new anti-epidemic system of the Ministry of Health. The measures will last until December 12 – the end of the state of emergency. After that, the measures will be repealed, loosened, or extended.

Emergency measures

Current risk index according to PES: 3

Valid from Thursday (December 3, 2020):

The government has decided that the Czech Republic will switch to the third stage of PES measures on Thursday. With restrictions, shops, services and restaurants will be able to open. These regulations are expected to remain in effect through Christmas.

Shopping

  • Opening of shops. All stores and shopping centres will be able to reopen. The area limit per customer – one customer per 15 square meters of operating space – will still apply (children under the age of 15 should not be included in the number of customers). At the same time, customers will have to keep two meters distance between each other. Clothing and footwear tried on by customers will not have to stay in isolation for 24 hours. Children’s corners will remain closed.

  • Shops may be open on Sunday. The move to the third level also means that the current Sunday sales ban is lifted. Outdoor Christmas markets can also take place.
  • Outdoor Christmas markets can take place. However, many Christmas markets have been already cancelled – including those in Prague.

Services

  • All services will be able to resume their operations. Staff will need to use a mask or respirator, double face protection, ie the use of a mask and a shield, is not necessary. A limit of one client per 15 square meters of operating space will apply (children under the age of 15 should not be included in the number of customers). 

Restaurants

  • Restaurants can reopen from 06:00 until 22:00. It will be possible to serve only seated guests, a maximum of four people can sit at one table. Businesses will be allowed to fill the capacity to 50 %.

  • Food courts in shopping centres will be able to open. Restaurants will only be allowed to serve food through the window to take away. 

Restriction of movement

  • Restrictions on free movement at night will be lifted. 

  • Mass events may take place with a maximum of 10 people indoors and 50 people outdoors.
  • The ban on alcohol consumption in public places will also end.

  • The obligation to wear face masks in all indoor areas and selected public places still remains.

  • Visits to social care facilities are still prohibited, but visits to health care facilities are allowed with some restrictions.

Schools

  • The release does not apply to schools. The Ministry of Education announced that the schools will operate under the current fourth stage of the anti-epidemic system from Monday (November 30).

Culture

  • Museums and galleries will be able to open partially after six weeks. Galleries and museums can operate only at 25% capacity. 

  • Libraries may also open. A limit of one client per 15 square meters of operating space will apply. So far, libraries could only operate as a takeaway window. 

  • Cultural sites and monuments may also open, but only groups of up to ten people will be allowed.

  • Cinemas and theatres remain closed for public and the restrictions on persons present at the tryouts still apply.

Sport

  • Fitness centres and gyms may reopen. They will operate in the same mode as set in the stores – one person per 15 square meters. Group fitness lessons will be in the 9 + 1 regime (nine participants, one instructor). All athletes will have to wear a face mask indoors, professional athletes who are regularly tested will have an exception. 
  • The regime of winter and ski resorts and has not been decided yet. At the end of next week, a manual should be prepared based on the development of the situation in Europe.

  • Professional and amateur sporting events may be held without spectators.
  • Recreational sports may be played by two teams outdoors and with a maximum of 10 people indoors.

Church

  • Church services may be held. the number of people at the services will be governed by the capacity of the church.

Others

  • Accommodation services may be provided without restrictions.
  • Casinos may reopen from 6:00 AM to 10 PM with the same restrictions as restaurants – 50% capacity, guests must be seated with a limit of four people at a table.
  • Restrictions on the operation of public authorities and administrative authorities still apply, including organizational and regime measures and office hours restrictions.

Valid from Monday (November 30, 2020):

  • Pupils from the first grade and the 9th grade of primary schools will return to school without any restriction. Other second grade classes will take turns at the school. The condition for the return is the approval of the transfer of the Czech Republic from the fifth to the fourth, ie a milder anti-epidemic degree of risk.

Valid from November 25, 2020:

  • Full-time teaching of final years and fourth years of six-year fields of education at the conservatory at secondary schools will return. In the same way, full-time practical teaching and practical training in groups of up to 20 pupils or students will be possible again. Students of the last years of university will be able to study in groups of 20 people. This applies to laboratory, practical or artistic teaching.

Valid from November 23, 2020:

In the Czech Republic, some restrictions imposed by the government against the spread of coronavirus have been eased since Monday. The reason is the improvement of the epidemic situation. The government evaluates it according to the anti-epidemic system PES.
  • Up to six people are allowed outside and inside the gathering instead of two.

  • The curfew starts at 23:00 instead of the current 21:00.

  • The opening hours of shops and restaurant take-away windows may also be extended until 23:00. Drinking alcohol in public places is still prohibited.

  • The maximum number of participants at weddings, funerals or services is increasing to 20 from the current 15.

  • Theatre performances and concerts can take place without spectators, for example for television recordings or internet broadcasts. The public still does not have access to theatre and concert halls, but also museums and galleries. 

  • You can pick up loans in libraries from the dispensers. So far it was only possible to obtain books without contact. 

  • Where stores require one shopping cart per person rule to comply with the rule, an exemption will apply to mothers and fathers with prams. The capacity of the store will also not include children under the age of six. Inside the stores, the customer must still have 15 square meters of operating space, and the ban on sales on Sundays and public holidays still applies.

  • Stores with weapons and ammunition have a new exception and can open due to the necessary shooting of feral pigs, especially in the north of Bohemia, where there is a risk of transmission of African swine fever from Germany or Poland.

  • Driving schools can again organize theoretical and practical final tests. Training rides are still prohibited.
 

Valid from November 18, 2020:

  • Pupils of 1st and 2nd year, preparatory classes and pupils of special schools return to schools. According to Minister of Education Robert Plaga, return conditions include splitting kids into homogeneous groups, mandatory face masks in all premises, and frequent ventilation in classrooms. After-school groups and school meals are in operation. At primary and secondary schools, individual consultations (1 + 1) for those in need are possible. Linguists, art schools and secondary schools (high schools) remain closed.

  • Stores must limit the number of shoppers. Each customer must have an area of 15 square meters for themselves when purchasing. Vendors are required to manage queues inside and in front of the stores and to monitor compliance with two-meter spacing between people. At the same time, the closing time is extended from the current 19:59 to 21:00, when the curfew begins to apply.

  • Take-away windows can be open longer. The current interval for restaurants, bars and pubs has been extended to 5:00 to 21:00. At this time, hotels and similar facilities can serve guests in their restaurants.

  • Sporting on outdoor sports grounds is allowed. The possibility of free movement for the purpose of sports on outdoor sports grounds has been added to the current exceptions from the ban on the free movement of people during the day.

  • More people are allowed to attend the wedding. As of Wednesday, 15 people are allowed to attend weddings, funerals or services (so far it has been 10).

  • Dog and cat salons are opening. The government has allowed the operation of establishments providing the service of animal grooming. 

Valid from November 9, 2020:

  • New conditions for entry into the Czech Republic apply, marking almost all European countries at least in orange at the so-called travel traffic light. Further information can be found here.

Valid from November 2, 2020:

  • Prague public transport will end its daily operation at 22:00. The reason is the restriction on movement after 21:00, ordered by the government from Wednesday, October 28. In public transport, the obligation to wear face masks in vehicles and at stops is currently in effect, the first doors are closed and the sale of tickets from drivers is cancelled.
  • Schools for children with special needs must temporarily close. Teaching in special schools must take place remotely from Monday.

Valid from October 28, 2020:

  • Restrictions on movement in public from 21.00 to 4.59. Only travelling to work, to the doctor and back home are allowed. Exceptions will also apply to people providing basic infrastructure, public transport or delivery services, as well as public officials and constitutional officials. After nine o’clock in the evening, those who walk the dog can leave the house, but only within 500 meters from their place of residence.

During the day, walks in nature and parks, stays in cottages and chalets are still allowed, with a maximum number of two people, with the exception of household members and co-workers. The same number of people applies when shopping.

  • Change to a home office if possible. The so-called home office is to be ordered, where possible, including private, public and state enterprises. The scope of work from home should be decided by the management according to the possibilities of the company.
  • Prohibition of retail sales on Sundays and restrictions on weekdays and Saturdays between 20.00 and 5.00. Exceptions include petrol stations, pharmacies, shops in busy places, such as airports or railway stations, shops in medical facilities and restaurants, which operate in the form of delivery service. Restrictions have recently been introduced for florists, where only two customers can be in the establishment at the same time.  Bookmakers/sportsbooks are not allowed to stay open.

  • Restrictions on farmers’ markets. The government has banned sales in markets or mobile establishments. Exceptions were given to mobile shops going to municipalities where there is no basic food store and drugstore, as well as stallholders selling fresh and locally processed fruits and vegetables, meat and meat products, eggs, bakery products and honey from domestic production. It will not be possible to consume the purchased products on the markets, the stallholders must be at least 2 meters apart and there must not be more than 20 people per 400 square meters at any one time in the market area.
  • Spa rehabilitation care will be open only for people whose stay is at least partially covered by public health insurance.

Valid from October 22, 2020:

  • As of 6:00, the government restricts free movement and contact with other people throughout the Czech Republic except for trips to work and shopping. Public gatherings of more than two people (that do not share the same household) are banned. Movement in nature is allowed and highly recommended (for up to two people).

This restriction does not apply to travel to and from business and other similar activities and activities; tthe duties of a public official or constitutional official; necessary trips to family or close relatives; the necessities necessary to procure basic necessities of life (eg the purchase of food, medicines and medical devices, hygienic goods, cosmetics and other drugstore goods, feed and other needs for animals), including the needs of relatives and relatives; provision of child care; provision of animal care; use of necessary financial resources and postal services; refueling; waste disposal; the routes strictly necessary to meet the needs and services for another person (eg volunteering, neighborhood help); trips to medical and social services facilities, including the provision of the necessary accompanied by relatives and close persons; trips to veterinary care facilities; journeys to deal with urgent official matters, including the provision of the necessary accompanied by relatives and close relatives; the pursuit of a profession or activities used for reinsurance a) security, internal order and crisis management, (b) health protection, the provision of health or social care, including voluntary services and activities, c) individual spiritual care and services, d) public transport and other infrastructure, e) services for the population, including supply and distribution services, f) veterinary care; trips for the purpose of staying in nature or parks and staying there and trips to your own recreational facilities and stay in them; journeys for the purpose of departure from the Czech Republic; attending the wedding and the funeral (not exceeding the maximum of 10 people), and visiting the cemetery; journeys back to your place of residence.

  • All retail stores and services must close as of 6:00 on October 22, 2020. This does not apply to grocery stores, drugstores, pharmacies, and other shops providing essential goods. Wholesale stores remain open without limitations. In large shopping centres, only groceries, drugstores, pharmacies and other stores listed in the exception can remain open. Restaurants may still operate take-away windows and delivery.

The exception involves namely food shops, drugstores, pharmacies, gas stations, shops selling hygienic supplies, cosmetic stores, medical supply stores, pet stores, animal feed retailers, newspapers and magazine retailers, opticians and similar shops, retailers of tobacco products, gardening supply stores, laundromats, dry cleaners, car repair shops, towing services, pick-up points for packages, funeral services, florists, tailors and other clothing services, IT and consumer electronic services, real estate brokers, tax and accounting consultants, household repair and installation services, car washes, household goods and DIY stores, and composting and material collection services.

  • Public office hours will be reduced to 5 hours, two days a week. All visitors are required to make an appointment and choosing written, electronic or telephone contact before personal in all cases is strongly advised for. Furthermore, all companies that are able to utilize the home office are urged to do so.
  • Restrictions on tourism and entry of foreigners to the Czech Republic. Hotels and accommodation facilities have been prohibited from accepting travel for tourist purposes, though they may still accommodate business travellers. Travelling to the Czech Republic is allowed only for essential reasons, such as travelling to work and for business purposes (including cross-border workers), essential family travel, travelling to healthcare facilities, and attending a wedding or a funeral. However, Czech borders are not closed at the moment, nor are authorities conducting border controls at any locations. 

Valid from October 21, 2020:

  • Wearing a face mask is mandatory in outdoor locations where people are less than two meters apart and for drivers and passengers in cars. This does not include families travelling together. Face masks are not mandatory for athletes while participating in sports activities. Masks are also not required in remote areas outside of cities, towns, and villages.

Valid from October 14, 2020:

  • Gathering restrictions with a maximum limit of 6 people.

  • The requirement to wear a face mask is extended to all public transport stops, including train, tram, and bus stations.

  • All restaurants, bars and pubs in the Czech Republic must close. Restaurants may still operate take-away windows and delivery. The sale through the windows is allowed from 6:00 am to 8:00 pm. The hotel restaurants can be open until 8:00 pm.

  • Prohibition of alcohol consumption in publicly available places.

  • All schools with the exception of kindergartens must switch to distance learning if they have not already done so. 

Still valid:

  • restrictions on activities in offices
  • ban on patient visits to medical and social care facilities
  • preventing people from gathering in front of elevators, escalators, toilets, etc.
  • ban on public participation in meetings of municipal and regional self-government

Issued measures that apply in the City of Prague:

  • Wearing face masks (or other respiratory protection) is mandatory in public transport, including intercity connections, in the interior of the metro stations and railway areas.
  • Wearing face masks (or other respiratory protection) is mandatory in all interiors of buildings outside the residence.
  • It is mandatory for all indoor facilities, including restaurants, retail stores and services, to provide disinfection equipment for the customers.
  • Admission of new persons by all providers of social services and users of social services is banned, as well as the admission of new persons by providers of aftercare.

 

Covid-19 information: where to find it?

Knowing where to find reliable Covid-19-related information during the times of information overload and fake news might be sometimes overwhelming. The Expat Centre Prague gathered available information and created a list of trustworthy English sources. The websites below provide information about the current situation, state of emergency, government measures and other subjects related to Covid-19.

Central coronavirus information line 1221

Line 1221 is designed for public inquiries related to the COVID-19 pandemic. It is open every weekday from 8:00 to 19:00, on weekends from 9:00 to 16:30. Inquiries from the public will be answered by trained medics. In regular shifts, almost a hundred of medically trained staff take turns on the line.

The operators of this line will give you answers to questions from the following areas:

  • Travel
  • Results of my tests
  • Health problems
  • Risk contact
  • Quarantine
  • Emergency measures currently in force

Hygienic station Prague

WEBSITE (Czech only) – PHONE NUMBER: 227 272 065

Praha.eu

WEBSITE – IMPORTANT NOTICES

The official portal of the City of Prague gathered essential information regarding the Covid-19 disease, including important news, contact numbers and tips on prevention.

Prague for all

WEBSITE – FACEBOOK PAGE

Prague for all, a website dedicated to migrants living in Prague, provides up-to-date information and recommendations on coronavirus and the current situation. The website is available in several language versions: Czech, English, Russian, Vietnamese and Ukrainian.

Covid portal

WEBSITE

A new information portal launched at the beginning of November 2020 serves as a one-stop location for its citizens and residents to find a complete overview about current measures, resources, testing information, and other relevant data. At the moment the site is presented in beta form and information may not yet be entirely complete. 

Ministry of Health

WEBSITE

The Ministry of Health of the Czech Republic launched a new website dedicated solely to Covid-19. The website covers important contacts, best practices, information for health professionals, information for employees and employers, issued measures and recommendations, press releases and news, as well as developments in the world and an overview of countries at high risk of transmission, and necessary downloadable materials.

Ministry of the Interior

WEBSITE – INFORMATION FOR FOREIGN NATIONALS

In addition to general information about the current situation in the Czech Republic, the Ministry of Interior’s website provides notices for foreign nationals about new obligations, residency, accommodation and other matters.

CzechInvest

WEBSITE – GOVERNMENT MEASURES – FAQ

The Investment and Business Development Agency CzechInvest is responsible for domestic and foreign investments of the Czech Republic and also supports small, medium-sized and innovative start-up companies, the country’s business infrastructure, and innovation. The section COVID-19 on their website provides information for businesses and entrepreneurs.

Re-open EU

WEBSITE

The European Commission launched Re-open EU, an interactive web platform for their citizens that provides all the necessary information regarding travelling across Europe.

The platform provides real-time information on borders, means of transport, travel restrictions, public health and safety measures such as physical distancing or the wearing of facemasks, available in 24 languages. Moreover, the platform acts as a central point of reference for anyone travelling in the EU as it centralises information gathered both by the European Commission and the Member States. As free movement and cross-border travel are crucial to tourism, an interactive map offers updates on national measures and advice for visitors available for each EU Member State. Europeans are also able to browse country-specific information at their ease. 

Where to get tested in Prague? 

The City of Prague launched a new website which offers an overview of the nearest available testing dates for COVID-19.
 
The website is connected to the reservation systems of individual collection points for requested tests and for self-payers alike, so that you can check the average waiting time for testing at selected sampling points. The website operates in Czech language only.
 

Map of the official collection points in Prague:

What to expect if you test positive for COVID-19?

You can find out a positive result either from your general practitioner (in case they have indicated you – the result will be reported to them by the laboratory) or from the staff of the local hygienic station responsible for your place of residence. You will receive the result by telephone or text message.

When you receive a positive result, you will be informed that you must remain in isolation (which means limiting contact with other people and staying at home).

The general practitioner will order you a 10 days quarantine and declare you as temporarily incapable for work. The work incapacity (so-called “neschopenka” in Czech) is issued from the date of the positive test. In the event that after the 10-day isolation you are at least three days without any symptoms, you are considered healthy and do not need to undergo any further testing. Your GP will then clear you for work. If your symptoms persist, contact your GP.

Search and monitoring of contacts

Smart quarantine (Chytrá karanténa) is a system that results in the early detection and effective testing of COVID-19 positive patients and isolation of as many potentially infected people as possible. Part of the Smart Quarantine is cooperation with the infected by providing a selection of contacts with whom you have been in high-risk contact in recent days.

Contact with another person is defined as a high-risk contact when you remain in a close mutual distance (up to 2 m) for at least 15 minutes without a face mask. Such contacts usually include members of your household, family members or relatives, co-workers, participants in camps, etc.

How does it work?

  • A person who is identified as COVID-19 positive is contacted by the regional hygiene station to specify as many high-risk contacts in the last 5 days as possible.
  • After providing official consent, the regional hygiene station will create a list of high-risk contacts, so-called “memory map” of the places where the infected person moved based on mobile data from operators. The list should include the name, surname and telephone number of the person concerned.
  • After the infected person provides all high-risk contacts, they are informed and isolated in quarantine as quickly as possible.
  • Subsequently, after 4-5 days these contacts in quarantine will receive a visit from a two-member sampling team, which takes a sample and ensures that it reaches the laboratory with free capacity so that the tested person is informed of the result as soon as possible (ideally within 48 hours).
  • If the test is positive, the newly infected person goes through the same whole process (of course, subject to an official consent).

What to expect if you have been in high-risk contact with a person positive for Covid-19

You will be contacted by the local hygienic station according to your place of residence as part of the epidemiological inquiry based on the information obtained from a person who tested positive for COVID-19. You may not be contacted on the same day that the person you met is tested positive given that it might take some time to obtain a contact list and evaluate the risk (however, it is usually done the following day).

In any case, if you are aware of contact with a positive person (for example, if a friend notifies you before the hygienic station does), you should behave accordingly and avoid contacts with other people as a precaution.

You will also be informed that you have to undergo quarantine for 10 days from the high-risk contact with a positive person. You need to call your general practitioner who will issue the quarantine (and work incapability if needed) to you. There are no restrictions on family members and people sharing a household with you. In the case you have been in a high-risk contact but have suffered from COVID-19 in the past 90 days, you do not have the obligation to undergo quarantine.

After 5 – 7 days (but no later than the 10th day) from the high-risk contact with this person, you need to undergo a COVID-19 test. For this purpose, you will be issued an electronic application in your name. To complete this application, the hygienic station employees will need to obtain additional information from you, such as place of residence or your birth number.

If your test is negative, you continue with the set quarantine and in the absence of clinical signs, the quarantine will be terminated by the general practitioner. If the first or second test is positive, you will be ordered to isolate for 10 days from the date of the positivity and proceed accordingly.

On October 5, 2020, a state of emergency was declared, during which many restrictions on ordinary life in the Czech Republic occur on a daily basis. Therefore, it is essential to pay attention to the latest information. These are often not available in a language other than Czech, so if in doubt, do not hesitate to contact us.

From October 22, 2020, the operation of the public offices is limited only to ensuring the necessary agenda. The authorities have very limited opening hours. If you have any urgent matter to deal with, check the website of a specific office, or contact it by phone. The restriction also applies to the Foreign Police (availability must be verified by telephone) and the Asylum and Migration Policy Department.

Asylum and Migration Policy Department

With the Asylum and Migration Policy Department, it is necessary to book an appointment in advance. Existing appointments are still valid.

You can book an appointment for:

  • registration upon arrival
  • processing of biometric data
  • issuance of residence permits
  • to issue a bridging label – confirmation of legality of your stay (e.g. by a valid travel ticket)

The Asylum and Migration Policy Department currently accepts applications for:

  • a long-stay visa and a long-term residence permit in order to endure a stay in the territory
  • long-term residence permit following a long-stay visa
  • residence permits for children born in the Czech Republic

Booking an appointment is possible by phone or online. Other submissions should be sent via the data box (6bnaawp) or via post (as a registered letter).

Information regarding visa and residence permits

Third-country nationals (that is a non-EU citizen) who reside in the Czech Republic with:

  • a short-stay visa for the purpose of employment,
  • a short-stay visa for seasonal purposes,
  • a visa for a stay of more than 90 days for seasonal purposes, or
  • an extraordinary work visa

If you are a third-country national and your visa expires after March 12, 2020, the travel period and the validity of the work permit can be extended until November 16, 2020, granted that and the employer negotiates with you an extension of the current employment or you sign a new employment contract immediately after the previous one expires.

Holders of employee cards have the opportunity to change employers earlier than 6 months from
the day they received the employee card. The change must be notified to the Ministry of the Interior on the completed form and it is necessary to provide the required documents according to the law.

If your employer is implementing or assisting in crisis measures, you can start immediately after being notified of a change of employer. To notify the change, you need to provide a statement from the new employer on how they are involved in the implementation of crisis measures (eg health activities, production of protective equipment, etc.).

For further information and current developments, follow the pages of the Department of Asylum and Migration Policy of the Ministry of the Interior of the Czech Republic.

The general restrictions on crossing the borders of the Czech Republic, both outwards and inwards, continue to apply. For more information, read the section about Travelling from the Czech Republic – restrictions and prohibitions.

 

Last update: 02.12.2020 (18:08)

Restrictions on tourism and entry of foreigners to the Czech Republic.

Hotels and accommodation facilities have been prohibited from accepting travel for tourist purposes, though they may still accommodate business travellers. Travelling to the Czech Republic is allowed only for essential reasons, such as travelling to work and for business purposes (including cross-border workers), essential family travel, travelling to healthcare facilities, and attending a wedding or a funeral. However, Czech borders are not closed at the moment, nor are authorities conducting border controls at any locations. 

The measures will last until November 3. After that, the measures will be repealed, loosened, or extended.

COVID-19 traffic light 

From Monday, November 9, 2020, a new protective measure of the Ministry of Health regulates the entry into the Czech Republic.

The list of countries with a low risk of infection will be regularly updated on the basis of established criteria according to a mechanism for assessing the epidemiological situation of individual EU Member States so that the travel traffic light system is unified across the EU. Countries will be divided into three categories: green, orange and red. The measures and restrictions apply both to Czech citizens returning to the Czech Republic and to all foreigners.

  • Green: Passengers from these countries (both foreigners and Czech citizens) can arrive without having to fill in an arrival form and undergo a PCR test or quarantine. List of countries with a low risk of COVID-19 contagion can be found here (Czech only).
  • Orange: Passengers from these countries can arrive without having to fill in an arrival form. Before entering a workplace or educational institution in the Czech Republic, foreigners who come to the Czech Republic for work or study will have to submit a negative PCR test. Applies to foreigners only.
  • Red: Passengers from these countries (both foreigners and Czech citizens) must fill in the Arrival Form (learn more here) and either undergo a PCR test within 5 days of entering the Czech Republic or provide a negative PCR test result not older than 72 hours.
For the current trafic light for travelling, visit the Travellers’ map.
 

With regard to third-country citizens (ie countries outside the EU+), in accordance with the coordinated EU procedure, the ban on entry into the territory of the Czech Republic with certain exceptions continues to apply.

 

The obligation to undergo an RTS-PCR test at one’s own expense can also be fulfilled by submitting a negative result to an RT-PCR test, which has been performed in an EU Member State and is not older than 72 hours. In such a case, the test result is submitted immediately after entering the territory of the Czech Republic to the locally relevant regional hygienic station. Exceptions to testing are children under 5 years of age.

Further information can be found on the Ministry of Foreign Affairs websites, the Ministry of Health websites or in our article.

E-mail hotline for inquiries related to the entry into the territory of the Czech Republic: cestovani.covid@mvcr.cz


For real-time information on borders, means of transport, travel restrictions, public health and safety measures such as physical distancing or the wearing of facemasks, visit RE-OPEN EU

The platform acts as a central point of reference for anyone travelling in the EU as it centralises information gathered both by the European Commission and the Member States. This interactive map offers updates on national measures and advice for visitors available for each EU Member State. Europeans are also able to browse country-specific information at their ease.  Read more here.

 

Coronavirus and anti-epidemic measures have reduced business activities and diminished income in almost every business sector all around the world. The Czech government prepared various subsidy programs and financial reliefs to partially compensate these outages. We are bringing you an overview of the available financial support for business now affected by the second wave of the pandemic.

COVID – Culture II

The COVID – Culture program aims to provide support in the form of a contribution to the operation of performers and professional artistic and technical professions, as well as support to entities doing business in the field of culture for wasted expenses incurred in connection with the organization of cultural events and continuous cultural activities.

Newly, self-employed individuals in artistic and professional artistic-technical professions can also apply for the support and they will be able to receive a one-off financial contribution of CZK 60,000.

Companies will be able to cover the costs of up to 10 million. The support is provided in the form of an ex post subsidy:

  • 50% of eligible expenses for the organization of cancelled or relocated cultural events and individual projects, which were to take place in the period from 10 March 2020 to 31 December 2020;
  • 80% of the eligible expenditure of business entities whose continuous activity in culture has been restricted (expenditure that was made in vain) relating to the period from 1 March 2020 to 31 December 2020.

Business entities can submit applications from October 22, 2020 (9:00 am), to November 23, 2020 (11:59 pm). Applications for one-off support for self-employed persons in the field of artistic and artistic-technical professions can be submitted from October 23, 2020 (9:00 am), to November 24, 2020 (6:00 pm). Both can be submitted electronically via the information system available on the website of the Ministry of Industry and Trade. If the applicant has already registered in the system in the first call, a new registration will not be necessary.

Further information can be found on the Ministry of Industry and Trade websites (Czech only).

COVID – Sport II

The aim of the COVID – Sport program is to support business entities in the field of sports that have been limited in their business activities in connection with the negative impacts of extraordinary pandemic measures. The program is designed to support sports competitions and eligible applicants include professional and semi-professional sports clubs.

The program will focus on supporting two activities:

  • Sports clubs of league competitions in the sports sector of football, ice hockey, basketball, volleyball and handball
  • Sporting events that had to be cancelled in connection with government measures, which were to take place in the period from 12 March 2020 to 31 July 2020.

Half a billion crowns are allocated to the subsidy program. The amount of the specific subsidy will depend on the sports industry, the size of the club and the operating costs. Clubs from the highest football and hockey leagues will be able to apply for the highest amount, 12.5 million crowns. The organizers of sports events will be reimbursed a maximum of fifty percent of eligible costs up to a maximum of 10 million crowns.

Further information can be found on the National Sports Agency websites (Czech only).

COVID – Rent II

The COVID – Rent support program is intended for entrepreneurs who had to temporarily close outlets for retail activities and the provision of services to customers in these establishments due to emergency measures. When submitting the application, the entrepreneur must prove payment of at least half of the rent.

The amount of support is 50% of the decisive rent for the decisive period of July, August and September 2020. The maximum amount of support is CZK 10 million for all establishments of one applicant.

Applications can be submitted from October 21, 2020 (9 am), to January 21, 2021 (11:59 pm) electronically via the information system available on the website of the Ministry of Industry and Trade. If the applicant has already registered in the system in the first call, a new registration will not be necessary.

Further information can be found on the Ministry of Industry and Trade websites (Czech only).

COVID – Accommodation

The subsidy is intended to support the tourism industry and operators of collective accommodation facilities in the Czech Republic, affected by the consequences of measures related to the COVID-19 pandemic. The support is aimed at strengthening liquidity, maintaining the operation of these facilities and maintaining the supply of existing services and jobs.

COVID – Accommodation is designed only for accommodation facilities, which do not include short-term Airbnb rentals. The subsidy is proposed in the amount of CZK 100 – CZK 330, depending on the category and class of the accommodation facility. The relevant period for support is from March 14, 2020, to May 24, 2020.

Applications can be submitted from September 11, 2020, to November 31, 2020, electronically on the website of the State Investment Support Fund.

Further information can be found on the Ministry of Regional Development websites (Czech only).

COVID – Bus

The aid is intended for entrepreneurs in non-scheduled bus transport to compensate for the fall in sales due to the COVID – 19 epidemic during a state of emergency. Given the de-facto freezing of the market until the end of the school year, the decisive period is calculated from 12 March to 30 June 2020. The support will be evaluated and reimbursed in the 4th quarter of 2020.

The amount of the support is derived from the emission class of the bus (higher emission class = lower environmental impact = higher purchase price of the bus). The capacity of the bus itself is also taken into account.

Applications can be submitted from October 26, 2020, until November 25, 2020. The application is submitted exclusively electronically via data box or e-mail with an electronic signature.

Further information can be found on the Ministry of Transport websites (Czech only).

COVID – Tourism (coming soon)

Tourism is one of the most affected sectors of the coronavirus pandemic. COVID – Tourism will help travel agencies, travel agencies and guides in tourism.

COVID III

Loans from the COVID III guarantee program can be arranged in banks and savings cooperatives. The COVID III program is designed for the self-employed and businesses with up to 500 employees. 150 billion crowns are set aside for guarantees. This is a portfolio guarantee, which will apply to operating loans up to CZK 50 million, which will be provided until 31 December 2020.

Provision of guarantees:

  • up to 90% of the principal of a guaranteed loan for undertakings with up to 250 employees,
  • up to 80% of the principal of a guaranteed loan for undertakings with between 250 and 500 employees,
  • the maximum amount of the guaranteed loan may not exceed CZK 50 million,
  • liability period max. 3 years.

The support is provided in the form of a ČMZRB guarantee to the cooperating bank for the portfolio of transactions of final beneficiaries. The guaranteed loan can be used to cover operating expenses, such as wages, rents, energy payments, payment of supplier-customer invoices, acquisition of inventory, materials, etc.

The entrepreneur applies for support in the form of a loan application from a cooperating financial institution that has a portfolio guarantee agreement with ČMZRB for the COVID III Program.

Further information can be found on the Českomoravská záruční a rozvojová banka website (Czech only).

Compensation bonus

Compensation bonus for self-employed, partners of small s.r.o. and DPČ, DPP will follow the proven model from the spring months of this year – for each day of closing the establishment or direct impossibility or restriction of business, the Financial Administration will pay CZK 500 per day. The condition for drawing the compensation bonus will be the main activity of doing business in the affected field (a sphere of activity that was directly closed as a result of government restrictions) during the decisive period from 1 June to 30 September 2020

Applicants will be able to claim the bonus for each day of the immediate ban or restriction of business due to government restrictions, for the bonus period defined by the state of emergency from October 5 to November 4, 2020, with the possibility of its automatic extension. Therefore, entrepreneurs can apply for up to CZK 15,500 for 31 days of emergency.

In addition to directly affected entrepreneurs in the field of hospitality, culture or sports, entrepreneurs who are significantly linked to directly closed businesses will also be able to apply for a bonus. A key condition is that the supply activity is limited by at least 80% for the relevant period from June to September 2020. At the same time, this activity must be the main source of income for the supplier, for which there is no easy substitution. Part-time employees (at DPP or DPČ working agreement) who have lost their income as employees of businesses affected by an immediate ban or restriction from the state will also be compensated in the same amount.

As in the spring, applicants can expect the compensation bonus to be paid out in a matter of days on the basis of a signed solemn declaration of compliance with the legal conditions. The application will be submitted again no later than two months after the end of the bonus period and it is possible to submit the application for the bonus in personal at the Tax Office, through data box, or via e-mail. After the finalization of the legislative process and the final form of the law on the compensation bonus, the application form will be published on the website www.financnisprava.cz.

Further information can be found here.

Common COVID-19 hoaxes

In connection with the COVID-19 epidemic, countless hoaxes, fake news and misinformation are spreading through social networks. Disinformation most often aims to downplay the data and the course of the coronavirus pandemic or to discredit official information published by the government. Below, we present an overview of the common narratives with disinformation potential appearing in this context in the media and spreading through social networks or chain e-mails in the Czech Republic.

1. EU IS INCAPABLE

CLAIM: The EU is not able to respond to the crisis effectively and is therefore unnecessary, the EU is only harmful in the current crisis (alleged support for migration, alleged efforts to prevent the acceptance of aid offered by Russia, etc.).

EXAMPLE: Silvia Kucherenko on Russia’s aid to Italy: Putin is a man of action, but a team of EU experts has been unable to do anything. Source: Sputnik Czech Republic

FACTS: Health and internal security are among the areas in which the EU has very little competence. Both are the sole responsibility of the Member States. On the other hand, in its areas of competence, the EU is active in resolving the crisis – it has created a rescue fund from which the Czech Republic can use approximately 30 billion crowns to help small and medium-sized enterprises, stabilize health care or support the labour market as such. The EU is spending another significant amount of money on developing a coronavirus vaccine as soon as possible and is committed to making the approval process as easy and as fast as possible. It also announced the joint purchase of protective equipment, co-finances the return of Czech and other European citizens from abroad, or organizes flights where commercial carriers no longer fly. It also makes other recommendations, such as a proposal to provide lanes for the rapid handling of lorries at EU border crossings, to ensure the rapid supply of necessary goods, such as food or materials for the production of protective equipment.

The EU is actively addressing the situation. For an up-to-date overview of EU activities in the fight against coronavirus, see the European Commission’s website.

2. CORONAVIRUS AND MIGRATION

CLAIM: The government or public service media is flooding the public with information about coronavirus, which, together with the measures taken, is intended to divert citizens’ attention from the real current danger of migration. It is presented as an organized “invasion” supported by non-profit organizations, or as a targeted effort to Islamize Europe. The consequences of the coronavirus pandemic are intended to help build capacity for the “planned” supply of migrants.

EXAMPLES: Influenza worse than migrating snails and niggers? Duce Hamáček announced the resumption of border controls. Source: Vlastenecké noviny.
From the Vox Populi blog: In Germany, seniors have been evicted from their homes due to migrants, now the coronavirus is useful for them. Source: Pravý prostor.

FACTS: A conspiratorial but unsubstantiated claim about the organized efforts of supranational “elites”, the European Union, the UN, NGOs and Czech political leaders to import (Muslim) migrants to Europe, has been present on the disinformation media scene for several years. It has recently been extended in relation to the situation at Greek-Macedonian border and the coronavirus pandemic.

The Czech Republic has a long-term defined and applied migration policy strategy, including the fight against illegal migration and a description of possible threats arising from this phenomenon. In addition to joining the EU’s support for Greece, the Czech Republic is also solving the current migration situation on the Greek-Turkish border by sending police officers to guard this border. The Czech Republic also consistently defends its opposition to the so-called relocations of migrants (quotas) defined by resolutions of the Parliament of the Czech Republic and the Government of the Czech Republic. The disinformation media scene did not provide any evidence of its claim of “coronavirus distraction”.

For an up-to-date overview of the Czech Republic’s migration-related measures, see the website of the Ministry of the Interior.

3. THE VIRUS WAS DEVELOPED AS A BIOLOGICAL WEAPON

CLAIM: The virus was developed as a biological weapon (Americans / British / Chinese / by global elites, such as Bill Gates, etc.), was created to destroy humanity, the controlled collapse of the financial system, establish world domination, profit from the sale of vaccines, etc.

EXAMPLE: Coronavirus: Is it a biological weapon? Who created it? Who released it? A look at the facts. Source: Pravý prostor.

FACTS: Disinformation is very often related to geopolitical issues, as is in the case of disinformation about the spread of coronavirus. According to currently available information, this virus was not created in a laboratory or artificially, which has been agreed upon by several leading research institutions and laboratories. The natural spread of this virus has mutated its genetic information, but the gradual modification of the virus is normal and likely. Since, according to current knowledge, it cannot be proven that the virus was developed artificially, it is not possible to speculate on the targeted creation of this virus by one or the other power in order to achieve its political or geopolitical goals with its help.

For further information regarding the nature of the virus, we recommend following the latest news on the World Health Organization or the Ministry of Health.

4. ALTERNATIVE TREATMENT AND PREVENTION

CLAIM: Using alcohol, garlic, smoking, drinking hot water, washing with chlorine, using nasal drops, antibiotics, colloidal gold, etc. as a prevention or treatment of the disease. Deterioration of the course of the disease with the use of ibuprofen or drugs containing it, the ineffectiveness of protective equipment (face masks), etc.

EXAMPLE: Cure for coronavirus: It’s that simple: Whiskey and honey! Source: AC24

FACTS: Consumption of alcohol, garlic, smoking, drinking hot water, washing with chlorine, taking nasal drops or antibiotics is not effective in the fight against coronavirus. These and other “tips” are debunked by the Ministry of Health on their website aimed at informing the public about coronavirus (Czech only). According to the State Institute for Drug Control (SÚKL), a doctor or pharmacist can recommend various treatment options to relieve the problems (fever) that accompany COVID-19. These include the use of anti-inflammatory drugs such as ibuprofen. Thus, the use of ibuprofen in accordance with the package leaflet is an effective and safe treatment for fever and pain. According to the European Medicines Agency (EMA), there is currently no scientific evidence that ibuprofen worsens the course of COVID-19 infection.

The existence of an effective anti-coronavirus drug has not yet been confirmed, but the positive effect of existing drugs is being intensively developed or investigated. Regarding Remdesivir, SÚKL issued a positive opinion on its use for COVID-19 (Czech only). Remdesivir is intended for critically ill patients and is considered on a case-by-case basis.

For more information on coronavirus, treatment or prevention, follow trusted and verified sources, such as the Ministry of Health, and follow doctors’ advice.

5. FOREIGN STATES SEIZE PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT OF THE CZECH REPUBLIC

CLAIM: Germany (or other states) maliciously withhold supplies of the necessary medical aids for the Czech Republic, which limits the necessary health care, the government and the mainstream media intentionally conceal this information.

EXAMPLE: Coronavirus: I don’t think so! Does Germany detain shipments with veils to the Czech Republic and other countries on its territory? Millions of respirators in German warehouses, while thousands of people die in Europe !. Source: Arfa.cz.

FACTS: Some European countries, including Germany, but also the Czech Republic, have banned the export of medical supplies since March 4, 2020. In connection with this ban, but also the general lack of medical supplies and different channels of orders and distribution, the situation with these supplies is not always completely clear. This situation is often abused for fabrication or considerable manipulation of facts in an attempt to cause panic, spread anti-European or anti-German sentiments. The situations that have been publicized so far in this context (detention of Czech supplies by Germany, Hungary or Chinese supplies to Italy by the Czech Republic) have shown that this is not an intention and can be resolved constructively by cooperation with the official authorities of the states.

For more information regarding the import and export of medical supplies, see the Customs Administration website.

6. THE CITIES QUARANTINE AND ITS IMPACTS

CLAIM: Demonization of ongoing security measures with the potential to cause panic (use of terms such as “concentration camp”, “martial law”, calls for lynching of non-quarantineers, etc.), speculation about closing specific areas (eg Prague), etc. These are usually variations of a narrative whose author seeks to create an impression of credibility by referring to “guaranteed” inside information from the security community.

EXAMPLE: List of concentration camps – Panic does not end, but grows: Olomouc closed! People are not allowed to leave or enter 21 municipalities. Source: Vlastenecké noviny.

FACTS: Hoaxes about the closure of some areas or cities appear repeatedly (especially) on social networks. The situation does not only concern the Czech Republic, these messages can also be found in Slovakia, for example. The recorded cases concerning Prague were disproved by the Minister of the Interior, the Prime Minister and the Mayor of the Capital City of Prague. Social networks and disinformation media websites may also contain distorted and manipulative information about the conditions that allegedly prevail in closed areas, or criticism of already existing or planned measures (for example in the so-called smart quarantine), which are described as totalitarian and self-serving, which calls into question the constitutional principles of the Czech Republic as a democratic state governed by the rule of law. The quarantine of municipalities in the Olomouc region has already been completed in accordance with the evaluation of the hygiene situation.

For an overview of currently adopted measures, see, for example, the pages of the Government of the Czech Republic.

7. FORCED HARMFUL VACCINATION IS BEING PREPARED

CLAIM: The state is preparing forced mass vaccination of the population as a tool to control society, as part of the vaccination, toxic substances or, for example, nanochips will be introduced into the body, which will then be used for electronic identification of the population.

EXAMPLE: Coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic. The real danger is “Agenda ID2020”. Source: Nová republika.

FACTS: Conspiracy theories about coronavirus in preparation for forced or widespread vaccination are very often associated with disinformation narratives about “secret elite intentions and vaccination as a means of establishing totalitarian world domination”. It mainly benefits from the often irrational belief of some people that vaccination is not only ineffective but even dangerous. Such disinformation is currently pointless and serves primarily to provoke fear, distrust and panic.

For more information on the effects of vaccination, we recommend monitoring trusted sources, such as the Ministry of Health (Czech only) or the World Health Organization.

8. EPIDEMIC IS ONLY PRETENDED, THE SITUATION IS NOT SERIOUS

CLAIM: The epidemic is fabricated, used to cause panic, control the population with fear, cover up other problems, create a totalitarian society, etc. The coronavirus pandemic is not serious and therefore protective measures are not necessary. The economic impact is more dangerous to the state than the damage that a virus can cause.

EXAMPLE: How to do a pandemic when fewer people died than last year. The world of Dr. Wodarga. Coronavirus is said to be fiction. Many ridicule him, but data against him is missing. VIDEO and shocking statistics. Source: Arfa.cz.

FACTS: A significant argument against the underestimation of the virus is the real situation in countries with a high increase in the number of detected infected persons. The comparison with the effects of other diseases does not stand up – the coronavirus has a longer incubation period than, for example, influenza, which increases the probability of human-to-human transmission even at the stage when the first infected person does not know he has the virus. The timely implementation of key measures is therefore essential. There are also voices that consider the negative economic impacts of the measures taken to be more important than the effects of the uncontrolled spread of the virus and the necessarily related effects on the health system. However, uncontrolled spread could undoubtedly have, in addition to its own significant economic impacts, also much more serious social impacts.

For more information on the consequences and impacts of a pandemic, we recommend monitoring credible sources, such as the Ministry of Health or the World Health Organization.

9. CORONAVIRUS AND 5G

CLAIM: Speculation about the connection between the virus and the introduction of 5G networks in the context of the perceived health risks associated with the introduction of new technologies (previously, for example, the claim that 5G causes cancer).

EXAMPLE: Covert operation. Maybe when people understand, it will be too late. 5G hidden behind CORONAVIRUS. Source: Tadesco.

FACTS: There is no scientific evidence for an alleged link between the operation of 5G networks and the development of COVID-19. These are two completely unrelated areas. Although the coronavirus is relatively new and scientific research is still underway to find a cure and vaccine against it, current scientific evidence suggests that it was caused by a natural mutation. 5G technology has and has had no effect on or related to this mutation. 5G technology is simply just a newer version of today’s mobile technology, which enables faster data transfers.

For more information on the consequences and impacts of a pandemic, we recommend monitoring credible sources, such as the Ministry of Health or the World Health Organization.

10. THE AMERICANS ARE ABUSING THE CRISIS FOR MILITARY USE

CLAIM: The Americans, under the guise of crisis, are secretly deploying their troops throughout Europe, preparing to launch military operations, occupy Europe, etc.

EXAMPLE: In the shadow of coronavirus: The US is moving huge numbers of soldiers, planes and tanks to Europe. We are on the brink of war, says the expert. The United States has never occupied Europe with such a strong army as it does now. Source: Arfa.cz.

FACTS: The above misinformation is in some cases based on the planned NATO Defender-Europe 20 military exercise, which was scheduled to take place in Europe in spring 2020 and to which hundreds of vehicles and thousands of US military troops were to be transferred to Europe. However, their transfer was completed due to the onset of the coronavirus crisis, and the US military decided to return those training units that had already been transported to Europe.

For current information, follow the websites of NATO or the Ministry of Defense.


This overview is based on the activities of the Center against Terrorism and Hybrid Threats, which monitors disinformation cases related to internal security occurring in the Czech information space.

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