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8 changes in Germany in October 2021

Germany in October 2021: From October 2021, several important changes will come into force that will have a big impact on the lives of everyone living and working in Germany. Here are the most important of them:

Coronavirus rapid tests will no longer be free, but there will be exceptions

According to a new ordinance of the Federal Ministry of Health, from October 11, 2021, you will have to pay for quick coronavirus tests out of your own pocket. There will be exceptions to this rule, however, as there are people in Germany who cannot be vaccinated against Covid-19 in October 2021.

For this reason, the tests will remain free for children under the age of 12 who do not yet have an approved vaccine, and for those who cannot take any of the Covid-19 preparations for medical reasons.

The regulation also lays down some transitional provisions . Children from 12 to 17 years of age and pregnant women will have the right to take at least one free test per week until December 31. The reason is that the general immunisation recommendation from the Standing Committee on Vaccinations (Stiko) has only recently been available to these groups, so they need more time to sign up for vaccination.

Booster vaccination: Germany starts giving the third dose of the COVID-19 vaccine

Digital sick leave

From October 1, electronic declaration of incapacity for work (eAU) will become effective in Germany This means that the insured person will no longer send his sick leave to the health insurance fund, but the doctor will do it for him.

Paper sick leave will be available in a simplified form, the employee will be responsible for presenting it to the employer. As the necessary technical equipment needed to issue digital medical exemptions will not yet be available in all surgeries in October, the National Association of Health Insurance Doctors has agreed a transitional arrangement with health insurance companies. It assumes that by the end of 2021, doctors who do not yet have the appropriate equipment will still be able to issue paper sick leaves.

The deadline for submitting tax returns expires in October 

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the deadline for submitting tax returns for 2020 has been extended this year by three months, i.e. until October 31. Since October 31 is a Sunday, the documents must be received by the tax office by Monday, November 1.

As 1 November is a public holiday (All Saints’ Day) in Baden-Württemberg, Bavaria, North Rhine-Westphalia, Rhineland-Palatinate and Saarland, the deadline for submitting declarations has been postponed to 2 November.

Exception: Persons who commission a tax advisor to prepare a tax settlement with the deadline to submit the declaration by May 31, 2022.

Increase in gas prices 

Natural gas wholesale prices have been rising sharply for months. Consumers are already feeling this in many places: according to the comparison portals Verivox and Check24, many regional gas suppliers have announced price increases for the fall. The increases will average between 11.5 and 12.6 percent. It is estimated that for the average household this means an increase in the gas bill by around 172 or 188 euros a year.

Change to winter time

It is autumn, the days are getting shorter and shorter. In October, we will switch from summer to winter time.

As every year, we will switch the watches on the last Sunday in October. This means that this year the time change will take place from Saturday 30 October to Sunday 31 October. We will move our directions back from 3:00 am to 2:00 am, thanks to which we will sleep an hour longer.

Less anti-Covid restrictions for travelling from Germany to England

To enter England from Germany, several corona tests have so far been required: one before entering, then one on the second day, and one on the eighth day after entering. From October 4, fully vaccinated people will no longer have to take the test on the eighth day of their stay in England.

In addition, probably from October on the second day after entering England, it will no longer be necessary to do a very expensive PCR test, but only a quick test for coronavirus, which is much cheaper.

Winter tires will have to be fitted

Although in Germany there is no obligation to change from summer to winter tires, it is de facto necessary given that the “O bis O” period starts in October. We explain which drivers in Germany must use winter tires between October and Easter.

TUI increases the network of air connections to the countries of the Mediterranean Basin

Many Germans go on holiday to the Mediterranean countries in the fall. This year, expects increased interest in vacationing in Spain and Greece as these countries have been removed from the Covid-19 risk list. The world’s largest tourist concern, TUI, has announced that it will introduce additional air connections to these countries from Düsseldorf, Frankfurt, Hanover, Munich and Stuttgart.