Lockdown 2022 Update: Scandinavia, Europe and the US

Blog, Research

Throughout the first months of the new year, countries around the globe have had different approaches to pandemic restrictions, reflecting the current situation in their respective markets. Insider knowledge from various markets about the ins and outs of the current lockdown status is useful information to have to keep international businesses running as smoothly as possible.

How are different markets operating as we are closing in on two years of pandemic?


What are the current travel regulations in different markets? 


How can you best get in touch with the press and influencers?


What are retail regulations as we are approaching a new season?

The Lifestyle Team at VOCAST is made up of native researchers, with specific knowledge about what is happening across international markets. These questions will all be answered below for markets in Scandinavia and Europe – along with quotes from fashion insiders. 

Here is an update on the lockdown status of our 10 markets, updated as of 01.03.2022

Lifestyle industry updates

Lifestyle industry updates from 10 markets – From Denmark to France, to Italy and Germany.

Do you want to know what office regulations are like or what the most efficient ways to get in touch with editors and journalists are right now? Are you looking to contact buyers and want to know the retail status of their market? These questions are answered for you below.

Navigate your way through these updates by clicking on the arrows or the dots: 1. Denmark 2. Sweden 3. Norway 4. France 5. Italy 6. Germany 7. The Netherlands 8. Belgium 9. The UK 10. The US

Denmark's March Update

Lockdown status: Denmark has become the center of attention on an international scale, after lifting all restrictions. The status remains the same, as of the 1st of February, all covid-19 restrictions were lifted and the Danish Government is no longer categorizing covid-19 as a socially critical illness. Businesses and private cultural institutions continue to have the opportunity to enforce their own restrictions, ex. demand presentation of “Coronapas”.

Travel advice: As of the 1st of February the rules for entry into Denmark will change. Vaccinated and previously infected people can enter without testing or isolation from all countries. However, requirements for testing and isolation are still in effect if you have been in a country or area with a virus variant of concern (at the moment, there are no such countries).

Working regulations: Depending on the internal structures, workers are either working from home or working from the office.

Press status: contact via email or phone.

Retail status: All physical retail stores are open.

Sweden's March Update

Lockdown status: On February 9th the government, in accordance with the Public Health Agency lifted most COVID-19 related restrictions. Recommendations to stay home if one has symptoms and to get vaccinated are still in place.

Travel advice: As of January 27th, there is a ban on unnecessary travel to Sweden from countries outside the EU / EEA and Switzerland. The ban applies to foreign citizens until the 31st March 2022. Foreign nationals may only enter the country if they are covered by one of the exemptions from the entry ban and can present a negative test taken within 72 hours of arrival.

Working regulations: There are no longer any work office regulations recommendations imposed by the government or the Public Health Agency.

Press status: The press is available and working, as usual, they can be reached via email, phone, or social media.

Retail status: Retail sales are increasing with all physical stores open and back to regular opening hours with no limitations on customer amount or similar.

Fashion Week: Stockholm Fashion Week took place in February with physical shows, however, with a greater focus on covid safety keeping groups and gatherings smaller, and asking for vaccine passes from all participants.

Norway's March Update

Lockdown status: After advice from the Directorate of Health, the Norwegian government announced that all restrictions would be lifted in the month of February. Thus, as of February 12th, there are no active COVID-19 restrictions in the country. Although there are no requirements to isolate if infected, the government recommends that adults stay home if they experience symptoms. Close contacts do not have to quarantine.

Travel advice: All travel restrictions were lifted on February 12th: you no longer have to test, quarantine or register upon arrival. The only exception is the island of Svalbard, where travelers are required to do a quick test within 24 hours of arrival.

Working regulations: Offices are operating as normal. You are advised to work from home if you are infected and experiencing symptoms.

Press status: It is best to contact the press via email or phone.

Retail status: Retail is open on a national level.

Sales home interior: In general, the pandemic has not affected the interior and home goods industry too badly. Norwegians love home renovations and projects, and many have spent quarantine updating their homes.

Sales fashion: Stores and malls are open on a national level.


France's March Update

Lockdown status: The “Pass Vaccinal” (meaning 2 doses of vaccine + the booster shot) has replaced the previous “Pass Sanitaire” and is mandatory for everyone who is older than 16 years old if you wish to access restaurants, concerts, nightclubs, bars, and all other sorts of events and leisure activities. Face masks will no longer be required in indoor spaces that require a “Pass Vaccinal”. 

Travel advice: France is open to travelers, but a few restrictions still apply. EU residents are allowed to enter the country without a negative PCR test as long as they are fully vaccinated. Non-vaccinated travelers, as well as travelers coming from non-EU “green” countries, will be required to have a negative test and to isolate. Finally, non-EU residents coming from “orange” countries will be requested to have a worthy purpose to enter France.

Working regulations: Working from home is no longer mandatory, but still advised.

Press status: It is best to contact the press via email.

Retail status: Stores and malls are open across the country.

Italy's March Update

Lockdown status: The country adopts a traffic light approach when it comes to introducing progressively new restrictions against covid-19. Currently, most regions are yellow and only one is orange. Masks outdoor are not required anymore. Tighter restrictions in yellow regions mainly apply to unvaccinated people. A super green pass is now required in order to access most cultural and public venues, as well as means of transportation. The super green pass is obtained if you are vaccinated with the third dose (booster shot) and remains always valid. All people over the age of 50 are now required by law to be vaccinated.

Travel advice: As of February the 1st Italy only requires a “green pass” in order to travel from EU countries. The green Pass is a document showing proof of COVID-19 immunity through vaccination, previous infection, or a negative test. The ministry also renewed the go-ahead for travel to a number of non-European tourist spots, widening it to six other destinations along with the previous ones.

Working regulations: In most cases, it is advised to work 2-3 days at the office and the rest at home. All workers are required to provide a green pass. All workers over the age of 50 must now present a super green pass.

Press status: it is best to contact the press via email.

Retail status: currently, all retail stores are open.

Fashion Week: Milan Fashion Week is scheduled from 22 to 28 February in a physical format

Germany's March Update

Lockdown status: Germany’s incidence number is quite high, however, bars are open as well as cinemas and shopping centers including boutiques and stores of essential goods (drugstores, supermarkets). All non-essential establishments (e.g. shops, cinemas, events) can only be entered with the 2G rule and some such as bars and gastronomy businesses with the 2G+ rule. Public transport requires 3G. At some point towards 21.03.2022 the 2G, 2G+, and 3G rules are being dropped completely as Germany goes back to its pre-pandemic state.

2G – Vaccinated or Recovered + ID
2G+ – Vaccinated, Valid corona test (antigen or PCR) + ID
3G – Valid test, Vaccinated or Recovered + ID

Travel advice: In general, travel is allowed and they are no restrictions if you are vaccinated (3 doses). This is valid for travellers from EU member states and countries within the Schengen area. People from overseas territories are also allowed to enter Germany, as long as they have proof of vaccination and their country of origin is not classified as a Virus-Variant area. The digital entry form has to be filled out by everybody, except from individuals from green countries (low infection risk).

Working regulations: Employers are required to offer the possibility of working from home. This legislation is still valid until mid-march. The workplace has a general 3G rule where no exceptions apply. Most people working in office environments are working from home.

Press status: It is best to contact the press via email.

Retail status: Physical retail stores are open and can only be entered when wearing a face mask (FFP2). The number of people allowed in a store could differ from state to state.

The Netherlands's March Update

Lockdown status: Open. From 25th February, the government wants to lift the 1.5-metre distancing rule together with the face mask and corona pass requirement. Also, general closure of public places such as clubs between 01.00 – 05.00 don’t longer apply. However, the government plans to make pre-admission testing (1G) mandatory for all visitors aged 13 and over at certain indoor locations. These are locations with more than 500 visitors per space and without assigned seating.

Travel advice: Travel is allowed with basic rules in place. From the 25th of February, travellers arriving in the Netherlands will no longer be required to self-quarantine. Travellers will only have to quarantine if a new virus variant of concern emerges in the country they are travelling from.

Working regulations: Generally all of the lifestyle industry are working half the time from home and half the time at the office.

Press status: It’s best to contact the press via email.

Retail status: All stores and malls are open (general opening hours).

Fashion week: Amsterdam Fashion Week is scheduled for 01/09/2022 – 04/09/2022 and will be physical as normal.

Belgium's March Update

Lockdown status: Open. Public places such as restaurants, bars, and museums are open, but a Covid Safe ticket or certificate will still be required for access as well as a mask.

Travel advice: Traveling is allowed. However, the Belgian approach for people arriving in Belgium depends on whether they are returning from a red, orange or green zone. Depending on the country or region you are traveling from, different measures apply after you arrive in Belgium.

Working regulations: Generally all of the lifestyle industries are working from home.

Press status: It’s best to contact the press via email.

Retail status: All stores and malls are open (general opening hours).

The UK's March Update

Lockdown status: All restrictions in the UK are now lifted. Some shops across the country ask people to wear masks still, but it is no longer mandatory.

Travel advice: If you are fully vaccinated and arriving in the UK, you no longer have to quarantine or pay for a test upon arrival.

Working regulations: generally, most of the lifestyle industry is working from the office as normal.

Press status: it’s best to contact the press via email or phone

Retail status: all retail, high street shops, and malls, are open and although it is not mandatory to wear face masks individual stores may ask their customers to – though this is rare.

Fashion Week: London Fashion Week took place from the 18th to the 22nd of February. If you haven’t done so already, you can sign up to gain access to LFW’s press portal here.

The US's March Update

Lockdown status: The US has lifted restrictions across the country and reports of new cases have declined by 80% from their peak in January. The Biden administration authorized free Covid-19 home tests as well as masks to the public after seeing the highly infectious Omicron variants spread. However, most states have or are in the process of lifting mask mandates.

Travel advice: The US lifted travel restrictions for vaccinated international travelers in November admitting international foreigners entry into the US. However, The CDC continues advising Americans not to travel internationally until they are fully inoculated against Covid-19 and is cautioning travelers to “pay close attention to the situation at your international destination before traveling outside the United States.” The US also requires both international inbounds and returning Americans to provide negative tests taken within one day of departure upon arrival.

Working regulations: Businesses are open across the country and people in the lifestyle industry are back in the office.

Press status: It is best to contact the press via email or phone at the moment.

Retail status: U.S. retail sales increased by the most in 10 months in January. “The strong rebound in January retail sales suggests consumers still have plenty in the tank to propel the expansion forward this year,” said Sal Guatieri, senior economist at BMO Capital Markets.

Fashion Week: New York Fashion Week took place in February and there is a small section of digital-only brands noted on the calendar, however, most brands are expected to show in person. The CFDA and IMG are monitoring COVID precautions and follow protocols instated in September that call for mandatory vaccination, mask-wearing indoors, and scaling back the size of audiences.



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This blog post was a collaborative effort written by our in-house team of curators, who are experts in identifying relevant influencers, as well as building email lists of important contacts for our fashion and home & interior brands.





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