"Swiss tourism has shown over the summer that it is possible to welcome guests safely with good and innovative solutions. When it comes to sending a signal that this will also work for the winter season and in particular for skiing, I am happy to act as patron." So said none other than federal councillor Guy Parmelin on the website of the campaign Die Schweiz fährt Ski. On private initiative, which has its roots in the Saanenland, important winter destinations throughout Switzerland have joined forces to communicate that the coming winter season will take place in the Swiss Alps.
Safety measures taken
"The ski season 2020/2021 will start as planned in the Swiss mountains despite the Covid-19 virus, with all protective measures in place", the open letter published by the initiative states. It is addressed to skiers, snowboarders, telemark skiers, tobogganists, cross-country skiers, speed flyers, ski tourers and mountain enthusiasts. It shows which measures will apply for winter sports. It is not compulsory to wear classic protective masks. Certified multifunctional cloths provide the necessary safety. "Further corona-related requirements are not to be expected," it continues.
In addition, in the event of a corona case on site, the companies guarantee that the booking can be cancelled without additional costs.
Expert send posititive signal
Dr. Kathrin Summermatter is head of biosafety at the Institute for Infectious Diseases and the Biosafety Centre of the University of Bern. She says: "If we all adhere to the measures of the protection concepts as well as the hygiene regulations, we can go on skiing holidays safely." She calls on everyone to make a contribution: hand hygiene is still important, she says. Especially when queuing or when taking a gondola, masks must be worn without exception. She recommends winter sports because they contribute to physical well-being and since they take place outdoors, they are particularly healthy.
The campaign Die Schweiz fährt Ski was able to attract many celebrity ambassadors. Among them are national councillors such as Erich von Siebenthal from Gstaad, Matthias Aebischer and Christa Markwalder. Personalities from the world of tourism are also committed to the cause: Matthias In-Albon, managing director of Bergbahnen Destination Gstaad, Flurin Riedi, director of Tourism Gstaad, Andrea Scherz, general manager and owner of the Gstaad Palace, as well as ski celebrities such as Mike von Grünigen, former world champion, and Olympic champion Pirmin Zurbriggen.
Based on AvS/Blanca Burri