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It’s been a very difficult year for everybody, with many of you I’m sure missing your annual winter getaways on the ski slopes of Crans Montana, Verbier, NendaNendaz and more – but summer can be just as fun too. As we fast approach the warmer months, there finally appears to be some light at the end of the tunnel and with the gradual easing of lockdown comes longed-for opportunities to enjoy the mountains this summer with friends and family (socially distanced of course!).

New cases of Covid-19 have stabilised in Switzerland, and a strong vaccination roll-out since December last year has accelerated to over 70,000 injections a day, with almost 14% of the population now fully vaccinated. Due to this ongoing improvement, the Swiss government announced last week that they will decide on 26th May whether Switzerland could enter its ‘stabilisation phase, ’which would allow people to be indoors at restaurants and bars, and for more people to visit public events. In early summer, they are also hoping to open the chair lifts and gondolas so that visitors can explore the mountains by foot or two wheels.

The latest measures in the Swiss Alps since 19th April…

  • Restaurants and bars have been allowed to re-open their outdoor seating areas
  • Up to 100 spectators outdoors or 50 indoors have been allowed to watch sporting and cultural events
  • Leisure and sports facilities, and cultural venues including indoors have re-opened. This means you are allowed to (what facilities will these include in your resorts eg: tennis, lakes, museums, wakeboarding, golf courses, spas and pools. Alaïa Bay has just opened in Sion which is a wave pool offering surfers the chance to surf in the mountains!
  • There is a 10-person limit on household gatherings
  • Anybody aged 12 or over must wear a mask on public transport including trains, cable cars and mountain railways, as well as in shops
  • Hairdressers, shops and supermarkets are open – subject to social distancing…
  • If you are wanting to view properties and need somewhere to stay, some hotels are open or you are able to rent a chalet or apartment
  • Cable cars/ski lifts are not open until the beginning of July but there are still plenty of local walks and cycling trails to explore in the area
  • Trains are running into Sion at the bottom of the mountains where taxis are available to take you to your resort
  • Car rentals are open should you wish to hire a car and explore the local area

Viewing alpine properties

The team at Alpine Homes are allowed to conduct physical viewings of our properties with buyers, where we adhere to all of the safety measures to include social distancing, wearing a face mask, using hand sanitisers and keeping doors and windows open during the appointment. We are still offering video tours, however, should you prefer.

The rules for entering Switzerland

The rules for entering Switzerland were updated in early February, and there are various factors taken into consideration as to whether you will be allowed entry – for example where you’re travelling from, the type of travel you plan on using, whether you’re a Swiss resident, whether you have a working permit and so on. If you’re thinking of travelling to the Swiss Alps in the near future, it’s therefore important you check whether you’re eligible and what you will need to do in order to be allowed entry. According to the State Secretariat for Migration SEM, foreign nationals without rights of free movement who wish to enter Switzerland from high-risk countries or regions but do not fall within any of the categories of exceptions under the COVID-19 Ordinance 3 are still subject to entry restrictions. There are no longer any entry restrictions related to coronavirus for persons arriving from Schengen and EU countries or from the small European states Andorra, the Vatican/Holy See, Monaco and San Marino as well as certain third countries. You may still be asked to complete a form and produce confirmation of a negative test result when you arrive, and for some, you may need to quarantine.

Here are a couple of helpful articles to help guide you:

We shall keep you posted

We understand that it is hard to keep on top of all of the latest government guidance, especially when you are not based in Switzerland, so we will be working hard to keep you updated with the current situation. Please keep an eye out on our website, Facebook and Instagram for updates.

The next announcement for easing of lockdown is due at the end of May, where we hope to bring you more positive news. Meanwhile if you have any questions about buying or selling in the Swiss Alps this summer, please do contact one of our friendly team who will be happy to assist. You can get in touch here today.