Corona and flies: where most germs lurk on the plane

Long-distance travel Window or aisle seat

Where most germs lurk on the plane

According to a survey, most passengers on the plane prefer a window seat. There you can enjoy an unobstructed view of the clouds and you can lean better. But what about virus protection?

| Reading time: 4 minutes

The EU agrees on these hygiene rules

The aviation industry is deep in the Corona crisis. Passengers are feeling insecure, airlines are getting into financial difficulties. Uniform hygiene standards have now been agreed at the aviation summit.

MAn can look out, lean against the wall while sleeping and is not disturbed by fellow travelers who climb over you on the way to the toilet – the advantages of a window seat on the plane are obvious. A survey by the flight search engine Skyscanner confirms this: According to this, 60 percent of all passengers prefer a seat by the window, 39 percent prefer to sit in the aisle, only one percent consciously choose the middle seat.

There is another reason that makes the window seats the most popular on the plane: If you sit there and don’t get up on the way, you have the best chance of not catching germs or viruses from other passengers – because statistically you are in contact with fewer other people on board comes as in the other places. An important seat advantage in times of coronavirus.

Specifically, window seat passengers only have contact with an average of twelve people on a flight, while on the middle seat there are 58, and those who sit in the aisle even get 64. The numbers – regardless of the coronavirus – were found by the Fly Healthy Research Team of 2018 Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia. For the study, passengers and crew members on ten flights to the USA lasting three to five hours were examined.

Where most viruses are transmitted on the plane

The study results partly coincide with a study by the World Health Organization, according to which viruses in aircraft are mainly transmitted where people sit close to each other in the same area of ​​an aircraft – the WHO speaks of a risk of infection within two rows of seats.

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Anyone who wanted to go skiing in the next few weeks would have to cancel their vacation

However, the WHO study does not take into account the fact that many people stretch their legs on board, others go to the toilet or rummage in the overhead locker – all of these are further contact and virus transmission options that the American study classifies more realistically.

So what can you do to reduce the risk of infection on the plane? First of all, what you have already learned in kindergarten: Anyone who sneezes or coughs holds a handkerchief to their mouth or sneezes into the crook of their arm. Then you can of course try to reserve a window seat, which in a typical airplane with a central aisle and rows of three seats will only be possible for a third of the guests.

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Influenza

Coronavirus in Germany

Otherwise, do not touch anyone on board – if we had the opportunity, we could also get rid of the impolite bumping into the narrow aisle, that would not only be a step forward from a medical point of view, but also a civilizational gain for everyone. You should also refrain from going to the toilet – this reduces the contact with fellow passengers and you don’t even expose yourself to the bacteria and viruses that naturally lurk in the on-board toilet.

How Naomi Campbell protects herself from germs

However, there is another place on the plane that is much more contaminated with germs than the toilet and that every passenger has right in front of their noses: the folding table.

According to the travel planning portal Travelmath, which commissioned a corresponding study in 2018, the bacterial load of an airplane folding table (regardless of whether it is a window seat or not) is around eight times higher than the toilet flush button because the table surface is cleaned much less frequently and less thoroughly. So if you want to be on the safe side, don’t even use the folding table or have a disinfectant with you to sterilize the shelf.

Supermodel Naomi Campbell apparently got wind of the study – at least she confessed in a Youtube clip in 2019 that she puts on disposable gloves before every flight and wipes the table, armrests, remote control and wall paneling with wet wipes.

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“I clean everything I touch, on every plane I get on.” She always wears a face mask on board and she always has her own blanket with her to cover the seat, which she regularly uses after landing Hotel wash.

However, the risk of having too close contact with fellow passengers is manageable with her, because she does not travel in the narrow wood class, but prefers first or business armchairs.

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The bar in the Emirates A380 is not only open to first class but also business class guests

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Trouble in business class at Lufthansa

Trouble on the long haul

Can I cancel my trip due to the coronavirus?

Have you already booked your vacation to Tenerife or Milan and want to cancel now? Is the spread of the coronavirus considered force majeure, or is there a right to special termination rights? The lawyer Michael Habeck answers the most important questions.

Source: WELT / Matthias Ludwig

This article was first published in March 2019.

This text is from WELT AM SONNTAG. We are happy to deliver them to your home on a regular basis.

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Vacation in Corona times: We shouldn’t condemn travel

opinion Vacation in Corona times

What does the world offer beyond the garden fence?

Travel doesn’t have the best image at the moment – for two reasons: Corona and climate. Of course, pandemic rules and flight shame have their place. But to completely question travel as such is wrong.

| Reading time: 3 minutes

Federal government extends travel warning for more than 160 countries

A good five months ago, the federal government issued a worldwide travel warning for tourists due to Corona. It still applies to almost all countries outside Europe – and it will stay that way for the time being.

WDo you still eat what it was like when you first saw the sea in the south? Not the North or Baltic Sea, but the mystical Mediterranean in which Odysseus crossed, on whose shores there was stracciatella ice cream and mussels, almost unknown in Germany at the time?

I can remember my first time well. I was about eight years old and we were going to Lignano Sabbiadoro. That fantastic name alone! There were six of us in the Opel Kadett, besides my parents and the two brothers our great-grandmother was there; There were no child seats or seat belts, that’s how people were out back then.

From the apartment you only had to walk through a strip of pine forest – and there it was, the sea. It was blue and we raged inside.

On the way back through the fragrant pine forest, we once lost our great-grandmother and my youngest brother. Disappeared without a trace! My parents went out but found them nowhere. Then the police drove up and the missing people got out with a squeaky cheer. They got lost. I immediately loved Italy: the beach, the ice cream – and such lovely carabinieri who brought my little brother back. And the great grandma.

Vacation in times of corona and climate change

For me, that’s exactly what traveling is about: seeing the sea and having exciting experiences. Getting to know the country and its people, as it is called something flat. But now traveling is no longer well-regarded, for two reasons: Corona and climate.

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In social media channels and often also in conversations, traveling is condemned in fluff. It’s your own fault, it is said, if you have to go into quarantine. Why go away, Germany is beautiful too. Yes, Germany is beautiful. But you already live there, you already know that. People are curious, they want to see more of the world.

The Polynesians got into canoes and started paddling across the endless South Pacific. The Vikings wanted to know what was on the other side of the Atlantic, the Greeks sailed for Italy and founded Magna Graecia. And many a little pants-shit buzzes from home, only wearing a diaper, just to see what the world has to offer beyond the garden fence.

Travel with understanding – and look forward to the sea

Of course, it’s not about questioning the mask requirement and complicated corona rules. That has to be the case – in dubio pro prophylaxis. But to completely question travel as such is wrong.

Pine trees, picturesque places and the Mediterranean: Italy is and will remain a place of longing

Pine trees, picturesque places and the Mediterranean: Italy is and will remain a place of longing

Source: Getty Images / Westend61

Flight shame is also justified. You can avoid short-haul flights within Germany, after all, there is the train, and you don’t have to go to Rome just for a weekend.

Maybe in the future we can keep traveling the same way we do with meat consumption. The good Sunday roast is making a comeback, but you can enjoy the variety of vegetables during the week. So we could do without many short flight trips in favor of the rare long-haul trip for which you just get on the plane. Incidentally, that would save Venice and Barcelona from overtourism.

On the weekends, you think about short-term goals, you haven’t seen everything right behind the garden fence either. True to the travel motto of Friedrich Hölderlin, who wrote very appropriately in his poem “Curriculum Vitae”: “Man check everything (…) and understand the freedom to go wherever he wants.” Travel with care and understanding, and looking forward to the sea.

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Little Square "Plönlein" (Rothenburg ob der Tauber Landmark)

Travel in times of Corona

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According to tourism experts, distant dream destinations will continue to attract holidaymakers in the future

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The Brandenburg Gate in Berlin is one of the sights that the author believes should be seen

This text is from WELT AM SONNTAG. We will be happy to deliver them to your home on a regular basis.

WELT AM SONNTAG from August 30, 2020

Source: WELT AM SONNTAG

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Boeing 747 and Airbus A380: The last giant jets in the sky

TA lot of onlookers were standing at Narita Airport near Tokyo when a huge airplane from Europe floated in for the first time in spring 2019, painted in a funny turtle design. When the Japanese All Nippon Airlines (ANA) offered its first scheduled flight with this jet shortly afterwards, it was sold out in no time. The airline called its new A380 “Flying Honu”, named after an endangered sea turtle in Hawaii. The fans stood upside down, had themselves photographed in front of the giant plane before the first flight with A380 models or with turtle actors in kitschy costumes.

The Airbus A380, the largest airliner in the world, has always sparked enthusiasm among passengers and airplane fans, since its first flight with paying guests in 2007 with Singapore Airlines. ANA was the last of 15 airlines to get their A380 – that was just over a year ago.

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Flights in Corona times: How airlines implement the mask requirement

Europe Flying in times of Corona

Airlines have no mercy for mask refusers

It is mandatory to wear a mask on board aircraft. But how do airlines deal with passengers who refuse to do so? A cabin manager reports from TUIfly. And Lufthansa is tightening the requirements for passengers with a certificate.

| Reading time: 4 minutes

Lufthansa machine has to abort takeoff at short notice

A Lufthansa plane had to cancel its flight from Frankfurt to Minsk at short notice and was only able to take off after a two-hour delay. The reason was the corona test result of a passenger that she received shortly before take-off.

THEb out of ignorance, defiance or ideology – many people do not wear a face mask. This type of protection is particularly important in aircraft, because the minimum distance cannot be maintained. The rules of the airlines are clear: wearing a mask is compulsory, except when eating and drinking.

But how does it look in practice? How do you deal with mask refusers on board? Franziska Günther explains that, as cabin manager she is responsible for around 1,400 flight attendants at the TUIfly holiday airline.

“The behavior of the guests is very sensible, most of them support the mask requirement and show consideration for other passengers,” says Günther. Nevertheless, the mask is of course an issue. “We certainly also have guests on board who need a few more tips and who don’t take the topic so seriously. But I cannot confirm that there are mask refusers on every flight. “

When vacationers on the plane refuse to wear a mask

What if a vacationer shows himself unreasonable? “We have an escalation pyramid and a catalog of measures. First we speak to the passenger and inform them in a friendly manner about the mask requirement, ”says Günther. “This is followed by much more emphatic instructions and a warning.”

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If a passenger does not respond to multiple warnings, things get serious: “If the de-escalation does not work, we create a Passenger Disturbance Report, land in between and contact the local authorities, such as the Federal Police,” says Günther, describing the process.

However, this has so far not occurred on any of the around 2000 TUIfly flights since the beginning of the corona pandemic. “We haven’t had anyone on board who didn’t want to put on the mask and whom we had to fish out before take-off,” says Günther.

In that case the machine would roll back to the gate. “The passenger would have to leave the aircraft, his luggage would be unloaded.” That leads to a delay of at least 30 minutes.

TUIfly has so far had mostly positive experiences with passengers when it comes to mask requirements

TUIfly has so far had mostly positive experiences with passengers when it comes to mask requirements

Source: pa / Markus Mainka

In any case, it is rare that someone does not wear a mask at all, reports the airline employee. “Much more often the mask is not put on correctly.” And most of the passengers then reacted to the hint from the crew. “But we also have masks on board, in case someone loses their mask.”

Flights in times of Corona

Even before the start there are announcements about the protective measures and the reduced service on board – among other things, that the mask may only be removed for eating and drinking. And how about the coffee trick? With Günther he doesn’t pull: “You can’t drink your coffee for three hours to be able to take off the mask. We pay attention to that. “

It is well known in aviation that alcohol is not conducive to common sense. Two drunken mask refusers recently rioted on a KLM flight to Ibiza; they were arrested on arrival.

“We have reduced the number of alcohol sold a lot,” says Günther. “In addition, the reduced service prevents a lot of beer or wine from being drunk.” In Corona times, however, you no longer have the typical party guests on board.

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In order to protect against corona, the stewardess wears protective clothing on the plane

For people with certain medical conditions, it can actually be unreasonable to wear a face mask during a flight. “It happens that we have guests who show a certificate at check-in, at the gate or at the latest on board,” says Günther. Such passengers should be equipped with a visor. At TUIfly, the following applies here: “Anyone who has a medical certificate and a visor can fly with you.”

Lufthansa introduces compulsory testing for passengers with medical certificate

Lufthansa is tightening the mask requirement on board its planes. So far, an informal medical certificate has been enough to avoid having to wear a mouth and nose cover on board. From September 1st, passengers must also present a negative corona test, which must not be older than 48 hours for the scheduled departure.

In addition, certificates must be presented on a Lufthansa form, as the company announced in Frankfurt. The new rules will ensure better protection for all passengers, it said. They apply to all companies in the Lufthansa Group.

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High costs for mask refusers:

  • On board an aircraft, passengers must adhere to the captain’s announcements – also with regard to the mask requirement. “The flight captain has them sovereign power on board and is the official representative of the security authorities, ”says travel lawyer Paul Degott. “He can take all necessary measures for the safety of the crew, passengers and the aircraft.”
  • The activities can be very far-reaching: if a passenger riot, for example in a dispute about wearing the mask, the captain can decide to make a stopover if he sees the safety of the flight at serious risk.
  • “That can get expensive and definitely ruin a passenger financially, ”warns Degott. The airline TUIfly confirms: If you add everything up, additional landing fees, fuel and compensation for follow-up flights could well add up to 50,000 euros.
  • If this decision is made, carry the passenger the blamesays Degott. The captain will have his crew behind him and will always be able to argue why a stopover was necessary. “Rioters usually have bad cards.”

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In many countries the mask is part of the train ride

More than 1200 positive corona tests at NRW airports

As of August 17, around 65,000 corona tests were carried out at the airports in North Rhine-Westphalia. Of the 58,475 results available to date, over 1200 were positive.

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Flights in Corona times: Only a few airlines leave the middle seat free

Europe Flying in Corona times

Only a few airlines leave the middle seat free

Even in times of Corona, it is often quite tight on board aircraft. Some airlines now offer to book a free middle seat next to your own seat for a surcharge. But not everyone thinks this is necessary.

| Reading time: 3 minutes

“We don’t even have half a meter between us”

Holidays abroad are in principle possible again, including air travel, but many are afraid to get on a holiday plane. WELT reporter Lea Freist flew to Barcelona and reports how things are going on board.

FAir passengers who value greater distance from fellow travelers can now book a free middle seat directly next to their own seat with some airlines for an additional charge. The Turkish holiday airline Corendon Airlines, which serves eight German airports, is now offering this “double seat” service on all routes from 39.99 euros, reports the tourism magazine “fvw”.

At the Lufthansa subsidiary Eurowings, a free middle seat can now be booked after the actual booking, but currently only via the call center from 18 euros per person and route. According to “fvw”, over 4,000 such spacer seats have already been sold, although the new product has not yet been advertised. An online booking option is under development.

Ferienflieger Condor has vacant middle seats from 39.99 euros on short and medium-haul flights, bookable as part of online check-in or on site at the airport. However, the prerequisite is the availability of free seats, which is why this option is only activated 24 hours before departure. If you book in Business Class with Condor, you automatically only sit by the window or aisle, so the middle seat in the row of three remains free.

Lufthansa does not think it necessary to distance itself because of Corona

Delta is the pioneer when it comes to vacant center seats: the US airline has been blocking all center seats on all aircraft at no extra charge since April and at least until September 30, in order to reduce the total number of passengers and to guarantee a distance from the direct seat neighbors.

Many airlines worry that someone will sit in the middle seat next to you

The worry that someone will sit in the middle seat next to you is not unjustified for many airlines

Quelle: Getty Images/Andriy Onufriyenko

CEO Ed Bastian has already discussed an extension beyond September, but without specifying a specific time frame. Delta’s American competitors United and American, however, do not block their center seats.

Larger European airlines such as Lufthansa or Ryanair also do not offer such a service, either with or without a surcharge. Ryanair boss Michael O’Leary described a vacant center seat across from the British newspaper “The Sun” as an “idiotic idea that does nothing”.

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A flight attendant demonstrates the safety measures to protect against infection with Corona

Lufthansa’s position can be read on their website under the motto #WeCare: “Even in these special times, we attach great importance to the fact that you feel comfortable on your flight.” For Germany, the fact that some passengers would feel more comfortable with an empty seat next to them is a fact largest airline, however, not an issue.

The Lufthansa website goes on to say: “Our fresh air supply enables a complete exchange of air within about three minutes. The resulting excellent air quality, in combination with a mouth and nose cover, offers so much protection that a minimum distance to the person sitting next to you does not have to be maintained. ”

However, Lufthansa does not explain why the subsidiary airline Eurowings still markets vacant center seats.

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An advantage in Corona times: The Emirates airline offers first-class passengers closed cabins on the plane

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In order to protect against corona, the stewardess wears protective clothing on the plane

What now applies to travelers returning from risk areas

There are two options for everyone returning from Corona risk regions: Either they can be tested in the holiday destination at their own expense – or after their return to Germany. This can be done free of charge for the first three days, after which there is a risk of a fine.

This text is from WELT AM SONNTAG. We will be happy to deliver them to your home on a regular basis.

Source: Welt am Sonntag

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Corona test at the airport: why and for whom? – Travel

With the summer vacation, the desire to travel increases – and the fear of a second corona wave, brought in by travelers who become careless with the sheer joy of vacationing. That is why a test after returning from a risk area should become mandatory in Germany, announced Federal Health Minister Jens Spahn. Test centers are to be set up in airports and seaports, but also at motorway border stations. Most recently, travelers had been infected in St. Wolfgang in Austria and Mallorca.

Why should vacationers be tested for the corona virus after their return?

“There can’t be a second Ischgl”: This is often the argument when it comes to corona tests for vacationers returning. In the Austrian ski resort, known for its hype of après-ski, skiers from all over Europe were infected with the virus in winter and carried the disease to their home towns. Even now there are celebrations at many popular holiday locations, close to each other and without a mask. The more people are on the road again, the more the risk increases. Corona tests on holidaymakers could prevent the numbers from rising again after the holidays, so the idea. Therefore, the tests should now become mandatory immediately after returning home, but only for people who were previously in risk areas.

Corona virus updates – twice a day via email or push message

All reports on the current situation in Germany and worldwide as well as the most important news of the day – twice a day with SZ Espresso. Our Newsletter brings you up to date in the mornings and evenings. Free registration: sz.de/espresso. In our News app (download here) you can also subscribe to the espresso or breaking news as a push message.

Which countries are considered risk areas?

A region becomes a risk area if more than 50 new infections per 100,000 inhabitants have been registered within the past seven days. The Robert Koch Institute currently sees a high risk of infection in numerous countries outside Europe. Turkey, the USA or Egypt, for example, are considered a risk region, but not the classic holiday destinations in the EU such as Spain or Italy, Greece or Portugal. In Europe, Serbia, Montenegro, Albania and Luxembourg are currently among the risk areas. The list is continuously updated. A supposedly safe holiday country can become a risk area within a few days if the numbers increase: Some German Swedish vacationers were surprised by this during the Pentecost holidays and had to go to quarantine after returning home. Therefore, when planning your holiday this year, a look at the current corona numbers is recommended – not just when booking, but also shortly before departure.

What does that mean for returnees?

Anyone returning to Germany from such a risk region must be in quarantine for two weeks. However, it is difficult to check whether people actually do this. Therefore, the test is now mandatory for them, the regulation should come into force in the week from August 3. If the result is negative, there is no quarantine; if the result is positive, it is easier for the authorities to track whether those affected actually stay at home. The tests are free for all returning travelers. The federal, state and health insurers pay for this. This also applies to vacationers from non-risk countries. You can have yourself tested voluntarily from August 1st. The costs will be covered if the test is carried out within three days of the return and the stay abroad is documented, for example by a flight ticket or a hotel bill. Doctors, however, have to consider: The common PCR tests, for which a smear is taken in the throat, are only a snapshot. A virus may not be detectable because the infection is fresh. In Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania, the quarantine may therefore only be ended after a second negative test.

How should the tests work?

The main focus of testing is at the airports. The first test stations have already been set up, for example in Munich, Nuremberg, Düsseldorf and Berlin. When entering by land, tracking is more difficult, but the test is also required here. Disembarkation cards for air, ship, bus and train traffic from risk areas should make it easier to record travelers in the future. In Bavaria, the smear will be possible, among other things, at the large border crossings to Austria and at several main train stations. How a violation of the test obligation is punished is not yet known. Anyone who does not comply with quarantine requirements can expect a fine of between 500 and 10,000 euros.

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Corona tests at the airport: why and for whom? – Travel

With the summer vacation, the desire to travel increases – and the fear of a second corona wave, brought in by travelers who become careless with the sheer joy of vacationing. The health ministers of all federal states have therefore agreed on a new test concept.

Why should vacationers be tested for the corona virus after their return?

“There can’t be a second Ischgl”: This is often the argument when it comes to corona tests for vacationers returning. In the Austrian ski resort, known for its hype of après-ski, skiers from all over Europe were infected with the virus in winter and carried the disease to their home towns. Even now there are celebrations at many popular holiday locations, close to each other and without a mask. The more people are on the road again, the more the risk increases.

Corona virus updates – twice a day via email or push message

All reports on the current situation in Germany and worldwide as well as the most important news of the day – twice a day with SZ Espresso. Our Newsletter brings you up to date in the mornings and evenings. Free registration: sz.de/espresso. In our News app (download here) you can also subscribe to the espresso or breaking news as a push message.

Corona tests on holidaymakers could prevent the numbers from rising again after the holidays, so the idea. For this reason, test centers should be set up at airports and seaports, initially only for people returning to Germany from risk areas, i.e. the countries in which the Robert Koch Institute sees a high risk of infection. This includes most of the non-European countries as well as in Europe currently including Serbia, Albania and recently also Luxembourg. The popular holiday destination Turkey is considered a risk region, as is the USA or Egypt, but not the classic holiday destinations in the EU such as Spain or Italy, Greece or Portugal. The list of risk regions is continuously updated. An important criterion is the number of newly infected people: there must not be more than 50 per 100,000 inhabitants within the past seven days.

Anyone returning to Germany from such a risk region must be in quarantine for two weeks. However, it is hardly possible to fully check whether this actually happens. Anyone who does not report to the health authorities will not be checked. That is why testing should now be carried out at the airports on a voluntary basis. If the result is negative, there is no compulsory quarantine, if the result is positive, the health authorities can use the transmitted data to track whether the person concerned actually stays at home.

“Travelers from non-risk countries can also be tested within 72 hours,” said the chairwoman of the conference of health ministers, Berlin’s head of department Dilek Kalayci (SPD), on Friday after a switch conference: “But not in the airports.” The tests are free for all returning travelers. The federal, state and health insurance companies share the costs.

How should the tests work?

Negotiations are still underway about the organization of the test centers. “Of course we support that,” said a spokesman for Munich Airport. But it is primarily about premises. The implementation must be done by the state. The Frankfurt airport operator Fraport is still waiting for the exact instructions from the authorities. For a few weeks now, holidaymakers have had their throat swabbed voluntarily and at their own expense. In Berlin, the tests should start next week: “We have been in discussion with the airport company since last week and are currently coordinating where and when we will install the test points for returnees from RKI risk countries in Tegel and Schönefeld,” said the Governing Mayor Michael Müller (SPD).

Doctors, however, have to consider that the common PCR tests for the virus, for which a throat swab is taken, are only a snapshot. Even if the result is negative, there may be an infection: Maybe the smear was not taken correctly, maybe no virus can be detected because the infection is fresh. You only have security after several tests.

And if you return to Germany by car, train or bus?

In principle, the quarantine rules imposed because of the pandemic continue to apply: Anyone who enters Germany – regardless of which means of transport – and was previously in a risk area must report to the health department and stay at home for two weeks, unless they show a negative corona test. He is not allowed to receive work, shopping or visiting. In contrast to air travel, it is much more difficult to track who was on vacation where on land than in air. There have been no controls at the German borders since June, not even for the Luxembourg risk area.

A breach of the quarantine requirements can be expensive: the fines range from 500 to 10,000 euros. Those who comply with the isolation requirements may also pay for the compulsory vacation: “After traveling to a risk area while accepting quarantine upon return, no statutory loss of earnings can be claimed,” reports the Bavarian Ministry of Health. Or to put it a little less bureaucratically: if you travel to a designated risk area, you are responsible if you have to stay away from work for two weeks afterwards. If home office is not an option, there is no money in time.

A supposedly safe holiday country can, however, also become a risk area within a few days: Some German Sweden vacationers were surprised by this during the Pentecost holidays and had to go into quarantine – but then paid – after returning home. That is why it is advisable to look at the current corona numbers when planning your holiday this year – not just when booking but also shortly before departure.

What about non-risk countries?

Even outside the risk areas, Covid-19 remains a danger, a family from Cottbus, father, mother and two daughters, just brought the virus home from a holiday in Mallorca: all four were tested positive. “We know that behavior is now being observed in the non-risk areas, for example in European celebrations such as Mallorca, but not only there, which entails a high risk,” warned SPD health expert Karl Lauterbach in the ARD news channel Tagesschau24. He advocated asking travelers to take tests regardless of the country of vacation. They should be “comfortable and free”. So far, however, Bavaria has been the only federal state to pay its citizens a throat swab even if no symptoms point to Covid-19. The decision of the health ministers could now make such tests possible in other federal states.

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Because of Corona: Frequent flyers fear for their status with airlines

Dhe Corona crisis hit aviation badly; In Europe alone, there were 90 percent fewer take-offs and landings over several months than before the pandemic. Many passengers have to stay on the ground – and therefore cannot collect miles.

The situation for frequent flyers is not entirely hopeless. The mileage expert Alexander Koenig knows ways to secure the coveted frequent flyer status even under these difficult conditions. However, not every airline is equally customer-friendly.

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Lufthansa and Thiele: to brake Hard economy

Where the Self-made billionaire and Investor, Heinz Hermann Thiele interference, is often very direct. Now the major shareholder wants to vote for the Lufthansa-rescue package.

The sun king, the Patriarch, the Relentless – about Heinz Hermann Thiele, many names are circulating. The effect is as it were a feared military of times long past. But Thiele is present, he makes again a talking point. The 79-year-old main shareholder of the industrial companies, Knorr-Bremse and Vossloh has purchased in hard-hit Lufthansa and made off with around 15 per cent, its largest shareholder.

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Lufthansa-rescue remains open for Federal and major shareholder of silence

Frankfurt One and a half hours, the Meeting of the German Finance Minister, Olaf Scholz (SPD), Federal Minister Peter Altmaier (CDU), Lufthansa-Chef Carsten Spohr and major shareholder Heinz Hermann Thiele took. What exactly was discussed, it Involved silence. A result, a kind of compromise is not to give it to but so far, it is called in the environment of the participants.

Thus, the situation remains three days before the crucial annual General meeting of Lufthansa unclear. Thiele can block a consent to the rescue package of the Federal government with a volume of nine billion euros. Because it is already determined: In the case of the shareholder is less than 38 percent of the share capital will be represented meeting. Thiele has the opportunity, with his share of the last reported 15,52 per cent, the necessary Two-thirds majority to prevent it.

The two Ministers had done a lot of Persuasion, according to the environment of the participants of the “summit”. Thiele had to look but any Minute in the cards. It remains unclear what the 79-Year-old, exactly, is up to. After the interview, you would prepare also in Berlin, together with the state Bank KfW in full swing in responding to the case in the short term, a mass in the credit, it is said in government circles.

Federal Finance Minister Olaf Scholz had said before the Meeting with Thiele, and Spohr at a conference in Frankfurt, to which he was the Federal Minister of Finance, added: “We had a very good discussion with the Lufthansa Management, and have developed a very good Plan, about the, there is also agreement with Brussels,” says Scholz. Now it had to be achieved through discussions a consensus.

But not so balanced, as the SPD politician sees the nine-billion Euro stabilization package, it is in truth. Because a group has been overlooked in the whole situation at the Deal completely: the existing shareholders. They are ordered from the field edge to watch. Until now.

Thiele has a long breath

Because even if Thiele certainly has, above all, his own goals in mind, with its package of shares and the significant criticism of the rescue package, the Munich-based entrepreneur has brought to the stock shareholders back to the negotiating table. This should be the real message of the meeting on Monday. It doesn’t change that the outcome of the talks looks at first glance to be rather modest.

Thiele is someone who has patience. He will not let loose. So he is now not only the voice of the shareholders. He helps despite his criticism of the negotiating tactics of the Lufthansa management is the group chief Executive Carsten Spohr. Thanks to Thiele, in a stronger negotiating position than before.

The Federal government supports Lufthansa by a loan from the state Bank KfW in the amount of three billion euros. A silent participation in the amount of 5.7 billion Euro. Part of it may be converted into shares if a hostile Takeover of the “Hansa” appears or the company fails to make the agreed repayments.

Along with the bailout belonging to the direct participation of 20 percent could be involved the Federal government in the future, in the case of all cases, with up to 30 percent of the Airline group.

That bothers Thiele, fearing, among other things, the Federal government could prevent hard restructuring measures in the company or more difficult. And Spohr had warned during the negotiations against the state influence on the company. The Lufthansa CEO has never made a secret of the fact that he has nothing against an anchor shareholder. Thiele he has not selected itself as a major shareholder. But he comes in the current Situation is not inconvenient.

The Munich-based entrepreneurs, the majority shareholder in the specialist Knorr-Bremse and the rail company, Vossloh, Brakes are not a gambler. Thiele operates first and foremost the security of his Investments. Of which will be of benefit to, in the best case, the 480,000 other shareholders.

Like Thiele, you can see that the Federal government gets favourable conditions and more or less gains when the share acquisition has been secured. The subscription price for the shares, which the Federal government gets to amount to EUR 2.56. On Monday, at midday, the Lufthansa share, which is descended to the start of the week from the Dax in the M-Dax, cost just under ten euros.

The shares of the existing shareholders will be diluted significantly. And dividend it will be in the coming years, no. In comparison to other countries, in Germany is already rather weakly developed equity culture is likely to suffer more.

Because the entrepreneur has to protect his involvement in the case of Lufthansa, it is hard to imagine that he takes on Thursday, in fact, the insolvency of the company, and against the rescue package vote. Is not excluded also. As you hear in the industry that Thiele support of a large US Investor. Who could it be, however, remains uncertain.

Thiele could offer in the case of insolvency, to provide the bulk of credit, and later on in the shares convert. However, the risk that this bill does not add up is great. Because a protective shield proceedings, a special form of insolvency, is a Trustee for all matters related to the “mass” is responsible. In addition, should the success of the reorganization, the shareholders of the total loss is threatening.

It is conceivable, therefore, that the 79-Year-old relies on the legal map. In the case, he could contain himself on Thursday. The rescue package would then probably get the consent of the other shareholders. Because, with one abstention, his vote will not be counted out. Other investors such as Union Investment and DWS have already said, despite concerns for the rescue package agree.

Its power is estimated position at Lufthansa – Thiele the company and has declared to want to save it to solidify, he could then take over in the medium term, the shares of the Federal government. The explained, so quickly it goes to back of Lufthansa to separate, to be so only for a short time engaged.

More: How dramatic is the Situation with Lufthansa.

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