The announcement follows a rise in infections amongst the young and unvaccinated, who often catch coronavirus after holidays abroad.

During the past weeks, the Delta variant has caused a resurgence of Covid-19 cases throughout the world. In Monaco, the average rate of weekly infection has risen in particular amongst children between the ages of 6 and 18. In June, 60% of contaminated residents were less than 30 years old.

Following the recent rise in cases, the Prince has approved a motion drafted by the Government of Monaco that will introduce the compulsory wearing of face masks throughout the Principality starting from the age of 5. Only beaches are exempt from the rule.

Furthermore, starting from 24 July, any resident of the Alpes-Maritimes and the Italian region of Imperia will be required to present proof of vaccination, a negative Covid-19 test or proof of recovery from the virus to access restaurants and bars. The rule does not apply to Monaco residents and anyone with proof of employment in Monaco.

For concerts and sport events, such proof is only required if the event exceeds 1,000 people. Stadium and concert halls will have to continue to remain at 70% capacity.

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PCR tests will no longer be free for everyone

In order to achieve herd immunity, the Government of Monaco stresses the importance of vaccinating the entire population and encourages anyone who has not yet been jabbed to get a vaccine in order to protect themselves and others. Vaccines remains free of charge for Monegasques and residents over 12 years of age, as well as for Monaco employees over the age of 50.

The Government has also announced that from 15 August, PCR tests will no longer free of charge, unless the person requesting the test has a medical prescription. They will, however, remain free for Monaco residents, even without prescription.

Even as vaccination rates go up and the number of Covid-19 patients in hospital remains low, the Prince’s Government continues to stress the importance of practicing social distancing and getting tested after holidays abroad.

>> READ MORE: Covid-19: the latest on vaccines and Monaco’s health pass