Covid rules: all restrictions lifted for trade shows in Germany.
Covid-19 restrictions are being dispensed with across Germany. Since the beginning of April, organisers in North Rhine Westphalia have been able to hold trade shows, concerts and events without restrictions and open these to the public at large. Visitor limits have been eliminated along with the requirement to wear face coverings and comply with the country’s ‚3G‘ (vaccinated, tested or recovered) and stricter ‚2G‘ rules. Sabine Loos, Managing Director of Messe Dortmund operator Westfalenhallen Unternehmensgruppe commented, saying, “We are delighted to be able to offer people the experience of attending superb big-name trade shows once more – with immediate effect – especially with a view to international highlights such as the twin shows InterTabac and InterSupply. There is no longer anything stopping people engaging face-to-face in a physical location, and that’s something the entire industry is looking forward to.”
Especially for international visitors to the world’s largest trade show for tobacco products and smoking accessories – taking place in Dortmund from 15 to 17 September – the end of Covid restrictions means a less complicated journey and a more relaxed time in Dortmund. Wearing face coverings and observing ‚3G‘ (vaccinated, tested or recovered) and stricter ‚2G‘ rules are now simply no longer necessary. Westfalenhallen Unternehmensgruppe will maintain some key basic hygiene measures, however, with disinfectant dispensers continuing to be located throughout the event area, and with state-of-the-art ventilation systems still running in the exhibition halls. Sabine Loss continued: “We are appealing to exhibitors and trade visitors to apply their sense of responsibility to others, and to continue to observe social distancing. Beyond that, though, no restrictions are planned.”
Travelling to Dortmund will also be less complicated for visitors now that the German government has significantly eased entry regulations to Germany: no country in the world is now classed as a Covid risk area, and quarantine and registration obligations have been dropped almost entirely. Travellers from within the EU need only produce evidence of being fully vaccinated, a negative rapid lateral flow test result (max. 48 hours old) or evidence of recovery from a Covid infection (where such infection occurred during the last 90 days). When it comes to vaccines, Germany accepts all vaccines licensed in the EU: Johnson & Johnson, Moderna, Oxford/AstraZeneca, Pfizer/BioNTech and Novavax. A person is considered to be fully vaccinated if he or she has received at least two vaccination doses with at least 14 days having passed since the final dose. Trade show exhibitors and participants may also enter Germany from countries outside the EU. There are no restrictions for vaccinated travellers. Unvaccinated travellers must provide evidence of their participation in the show in order for the journey to be considered a strictly necessary business trip. Business visas from countries with visa requirements are still necessary.
Improved supporting programme
Among other things, the InterTabac and InterSupply organisers are once again strengthening the supporting programme for what is rightly regarded as the comeback of the year. This year, informative seminars and talks are planned covering retailing, production, conventional tobacco products and NGPs. The keynote talks and conference sessions will keep specialist retailers abreast of these important topics and give opportunities to interact and exchange ideas. Participants will also learn about the current legal fundamentals that need to be observed. Sabine Loss commented: “This is, of course, only one aspect – albeit an important one – of a diverse programme that’s being co-designed by many renowned industry players and experts, thus delivering a lot of added value.”
In addition to the comprehensive information on offer, there will also be plenty of opportunities to indulge the senses, with products available to be felt, tasted and smoked at any time during InterTabac. In addition, cigar tastings and pairings are on the agenda once again, with experts applying unusual combinations to create entirely new taste experiences for their trade audiences. Also, training courses will be held, allowing employees of specialist retailers to learn first-hand how to recognise good products.
For over 40 years, InterTabac, the world’s largest trade show for tobacco products and smoking accessories, has been held at Messe Dortmund as the place where trade visitors meet top decision-makers in the retail, manufacturing and service sectors, with exhibitors from home and abroad informing audiences on all the latest products and trends in the tobacco industry. These international credentials are key to the central role the twin shows InterTabac & InterSupply play as a business and communications platform – indeed over 40% of visitors come from abroad. Last time, InterTabac and InterSupply set a new visitor record, clocking up 13,800 visitors in 2019. After two cancellations due to COVID, the twin shows are making a big comeback this autumn/fall.
The latest information, exhibition highlights and news items are available on the trade show websites (InterTabac/InterSupply), the online platform Business Insights, LinkedIn and directly via newsletter.
Date: 15 – 17 September 2022