• Meuse-Rhine Gazette

NL reduces avondklok by one hour, however all other lockdown regulations are extended until 20 April

Updated: Mar 24, 2021

Outgoing Premier Mark Rutte and Minister Hugo de Jonge from Ministerie van Volksgezondheid, Welzijn en Sport gave a press conference in Den Haag this evening to announce a one-hour reduction for the avondklok, however no further relaxation of other lockdown regulations until at least 20 April.


"Corona virus infections are on the increase. The number of corona patients in intensive care is rising. The third wave is starting to become visible. That is why the current regulations are being extended. One measure will be slightly adjusted: from 31 March onwards, the avondklok will be set one hour later; at 22:00. In addition, the government is considering the use of self-testing in education. For tertiary education, the aim is that students will again be able to follow lessons on location one day a week. This is not expected to be possible before 26 April at the earliest.

All current measures will be extended until 20 April.

On 13 April another press conference will be held to discuss what is possible after 20 April. If the figures show a positive change before this time, regulations can also be adjusted earlier than expected. If the figures are not as hoped, regulations can be tightened in response.

The current travel advice is extended until 15 May.

This means: stay in the Netherlands. Do not travel abroad until 15 May, unless strictly necessary. This also applies to the meivakantie.

In April, the Kabinet, together with the travel and transport sector, will start with test trips abroad. These will provide insight into how we can safely and responsibly go on holiday to other countries.


The daylight hours are getting longer. Therefore, from Wednesday 31 March onwards, the avondklok will be one hour later. This means that from that moment on everyone has to stay inside between 22:00 and 04:30 in the morning. Shops that mainly sell food can be open until 21:45. This applies to, for instance, supermarkets and takeaway locations.


Corona self-tests are expected to be available from mid-April. This will enable risk-oriented and preventive testing in education.

The government wants students in tertiary education to be able to follow lessons on location again as soon as possible. This will not be possible before 26 April at the earliest. This will only be possible if the infection figures allow it and if the educational institutions can offer students access to self-tests.

Access tests

In other places, the use of access tests will make more possible. Before an event or activity begins, a test must be taken. If the result is negative, access can be granted. This can be shown via an app. Provided that the figures allow it, tests will be carried out in the coming period at, for example, small-scale events and activities.

Hospitality and retail

During the previous press conference on 8 March, it was said that terraces could possibly open before Easter and that there would then be more room for the retail trade. This was only possible under the strict conditions that the number of occupied IC beds would be stable and the reproduction rate would remain around 1. Unfortunately, this is not the case. There are now 623 people with corona in ICUs across the Netherlands. The reproduction rate is 1.11. This figure shows how quickly the virus spreads. With a reproduction rate of around 1, the number of infections remains approximately the same.


Vaccination is an important step towards a society without the corona virus. It is expected that from the beginning of June onwards, much more will be possible, because by then a large group of people will have been vaccinated. According to the schedule, by July 2021 everyone aged 18 and over who wants to be vaccinated will have had their first shot.

Basic rules

More and more people are protected against the corona virus by vaccinations. But people still get sick. The basic rules help to prevent residents from becoming infected with the corona virus. Even if those who have already been vaccinated. If we wash our hands, keep our distance and test and stay at home in case of complaints, fewer people will be infected. In this way, more can be done more quickly.

To prevent infection, it is still important to do the following:

Wash your hands.

Good hygiene prevents the spread of virus particles. Wash your hands frequently with soap and water. Especially when you come home or when you visit someone. Touch your face as little as possible. Cough or sneeze into your elbow. Wear a face mask indoors in public places. This prevents the coronavirus from spreading.

Keep 1.5 metres away.

Also from family or friends. If people are close to each other, the corona virus can be given to others very quickly. Therefore, limit your contacts and avoid crowded places.

Get tested.

Do you have symptoms? Get tested immediately. Even if you have a mild cold such as a runny nose. Stay at home until you have the test results. That way you can be sure that you are not infecting other people with the coronavirus.

Want to know more about the data surrounding the corona virus situation in the Netherlands? Then take a look at the Corona Dashboard. (https://coronadashboard.government.nl)."

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