Photo: MTI

One-third of Hungarians planning for vacation

Chief medical officer: Vaccine impact reflected in falling daily cases

The impact of Covid-19 vaccines can already be seen in Hungary's trend of declining daily new cases, the chief medical officer said. The number of new cases recorded has fallen by 21 percent since last week, Cecilia Muller told an online press briefing of the operative board responsible for handling the pandemic. The average age of the patients is 45 years, she said.

More than 4,326,000 people have registered for a vaccine, and 69 percent of them have already received their first dose, Muller said. Fully 33.4 percent of the Hungarian population has been vaccinated, compared with the European Union average of 18.5 percent, she said.

Public trust in the vaccine is rising thanks in large part to a flow of positive news and scientific studies on the jabs that are also in use in Hungary, Muller said.

She said the arrival of new vaccine shipments in the country will accelerate inoculations and allow everyone who has registered to get their shot.

Monday saw a delivery of 68,800 doses of Moderna, to be used as second jabs, Muller said. On Tuesday, 72,000 doses of AstraZeneca and 248,040 doses of Pfizer vaccines are scheduled to arrive, she said, as is a delivery of second shots of Sputnik V. A shipment of the Sinopharm vaccine is also scheduled to arrive in the coming days, she added.

Trace amounts of the virus in waste warer, an indicator for case numbers in the coming days, is stagnating or falling somewhat, Muller said. However, it remains higher than at the beginning of the third wave, she added. This points to a high number of active infections and to the importance of adhering to epidemic regulations, she said.

As terraces and garden venues open, the evening curfew will stay in place, Lieutenant Colonel Robert Kiss, deputy leader of the operative board, said. As soon as the number of vaccinated reaches 3.5 million, the second stage of lifting restrictions can take place, he added.

Terraces and garden areas can open between 5am and 9.30pm, and guests do not have to wear masks. Indoors, however, where they order food and drink and use the toilet, masks remain mandatory. Restaurant staff must wear a mask at all times. Everyone must be home by 10pm, he said.

One-third of Hungarians planning for vacation

Around one-third of Hungarians say they are thinking of going on holiday this summer, said on Tuesday, citing a survey conducted in cooperation with pollster Ipsos.

According to, Hungary’s easing of coronavirus-related restrictions has had a noticable impact on the figures, with reservations for the summer increasing daily. PR manager Beatrix Trepess said that several times as many reservations have now been made as this time last year.

Most respondents are planning to spend up to 100,000 forints (EUR 277) on accommodation for their holidays, calculating with four nights and 3-4 family members on average, compared with 2-3 nights last year. Fully 33 percent of the reservations are for apartments, and 25 percent for hotels.

Two-thirds of the respondents are planning to stay inside Hungary, while 20 percent would go abroad. Some 11-12 percent of respondents would book holidays both inside Hungary and in another country. One-third of respondents said they were not entertaining holiday plans at all.

The most popular domestic destinations are Lake Balaton, Heviz, Eger, Hajduszoboszlo, Lillafured and Szilvasvarad.

Ministry: 60 percent of kindergarteners, 75 percent of schoolchildren attend first day of in-person education

Fully 60 percent of kindergartners and 75 percent of schoolchildren attended school on Monday, when in-person education resumed after months of lockdown due to the coronavirus pandemic, the Ministry of Human Resources (EMMI) said.

Hungary’s kindergartens and grades 1-4 of primary schools reopened on Monday, while grades 5-8 and secondary schools will reopen on May 10.

Almost all teachers started working too, EMMI said, thanking public education employees for their work.

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