German parliament approves bill on freedoms for COVID vaccinated people

People who have been fully vaccinated or have recovered from the coronavirus could soon enjoy fewer rules when shopping and meeting up with friends. Restrictions are one step closer to being dropped.

The German parliament on Thursday passed new rules that gives special privileges to people who have been vaccinated against or have recovered from the COVID-19.

The law is expected to pass the Bundesrat, the upper house, on Friday, potentially allowing the rules to come into force on Saturday.

What would the new rules mean?

Current curfews and contact restrictions will cease to apply to fully vaccinated or recovered people. This includes the lifting of restrictions on private meetings between eligible people. They would not count towards contact limits in meetings with other people.

In other areas — such as shopping or visiting the hairdresser — they will be treated the same as people who have tested negative.

They would still have to wear masks and keep their distance and would still be unable to visit restaurants and hotels, because they are still closed in most federal states.

Quarantine obligations would also be lifted.

It applies to people who have received the final vaccine dose at least 14 days ago, and to anyone who has recovered from COVID-19 between 28 days and six months ago and has a PCR test to prove it.