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WHAT CHANGES IN DENMARK

KEY POINTS: What changes about life in Denmark in January 2022

Here's what changes in Denmark in January and how it could affect you.

Lily shoots pictured growing in the Kongens Have park in Copenhagen in January 2020.
Lily shoots pictured growing in the Kongens Have park in Copenhagen in January 2020. Photo: Ida Guldbæk Arentsen/Ritzau Scanpix

Covid-19 restrictions could end or be extended

The restrictions currently in place to limit the spread of Covid-19 in Denmark, including rules requiring a test for travellers arriving in Denmark, are scheduled to expire on January 17th.

Cinemas, theatres, concert halls and museums are among attractions currently closed. A coronapas (Covid-19 health pass) is required at bars, restaurants, cafes, gyms and events of a certain size.

Face masks must be worn at stores and other businesses and cultural locations with public access as well as on public transport.

An assessment will be made by January 5th as to whether it will be necessary to keep the measures in place beyond January 17th.

Schools return on January 5th

Schools are scheduled to return from the Christmas break on January 5th, having switched to online classes just before the end of the autumn term in response to high Covid-19 infection rates.

There are no current plans to change this despite continued high infection numbers during the Christmas holidays, schools minister Pernille Rosenkrantz-Theil told newspaper Jyllands-Posten in late December.

A return on January 5th “remains the decision we are looking at,” Rosenkrantz-Theil said.

The minister did however not that there were no “set in stone” guarantees on whether the plan could be changed.

READ ALSO: Denmark has ‘no plans’ to delay return to schools despite Covid-19 cases

British nationals resident in Denmark encompassed by new rules

British nationals who moved to Denmark under the pre-Brexit EU rules for free movement have applied during 2021 for continued residence status and a new residence document, which takes the form of a photo ID card. The deadline for applications is December 31st this year so if you haven’t submitted an application yet, now is definitely the time to do it.

READ ALSO: Brexit: How UK residents of Denmark can document status for travel without new ID card

According to Danish Agency for International Recruitment and Integration (SIRI), “applications submitted after 31st December 2021 will only be processed if there is a reasonable reason why the application has been submitted after the deadline”.

People who moved to Denmark from the UK after December 31st 2020 and do not have residency rights under the EU rules formerly applicable to Britons must apply for residency status as third-country nationals, SIRI notes on its Brexit FAQs page.

Ryanair to operate fewer Danish routes 

Ryanair is to considerably reduce its services out of Danish airports during much of January. The spread of the Omicron variant of Covid-19 and new travel restrictions are reported to be behind the airline’s decision to reduce services.

The low-cost operator will pause 28 of its 59 Danish routes during the month. The suspensions will apply for three weeks from January 10th.

Flights out of Copenhagen, Billund, Aalborg and Aarhus airports will all be affected.

We have more detail on the affected flights in this article.

New right wing party leader

The anti-immigration Danish People’s Party is set to choose a new leader early in the new year. Current long-serving chairperson Kristian Thulesen Dahl said he would step down after the party was trounced in November’s local elections, paving the way for a new front figure to be selected at a party congress in January.

The party publicly courted former immigration minister Inger Støjberg, who left the Liberal party to become an independent early in 2021. But Støjberg has now been removed from parliament after she was given a 60-day prison sentence, which probably rules her out of contention.

The current deputy leader, Morten Messerschmidt, is a frontrunner after a conviction against him in an unrelated case was quashed, though he must now go through a retrial. Martin Henriksen, a hardliner who lost his seat in the 2019 election, recently threw his hat into the ring.

Taxi drivers to face language requirement under new law

Taxi drivers will be required by law to speak Danish under an amendment to the country’s legislation passed earlier in 2021.

January 1st sees the Taxi Law (Taxiloven) changed to include a language requirement. Under new rules, documentation of Danish language skills will be required for entry onto the national taxi driver’s licensing course.

READ ALSO: What changes about life in Denmark in 2022?

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WHAT CHANGES IN DENMARK

KEY POINTS: Everything that changes about life in Denmark in June 2022

A referendum on Denmark’s EU defence opt-out, summer holidays, festivals and other major events in Denmark in June.

KEY POINTS: Everything that changes about life in Denmark in June 2022

Referendum on EU defence opt-out 

The June 1st referendum on one of Denmark’s four EU opt-outs – namely, defence – takes place on the first day in June and could signal a significant change in Denmark’s EU participation if a majority of voters tick the “yes” box in favour of ending the opt-out.

In short, the defence opt-out means Denmark does not participate in EU defence policy making and is not required to take part in specified missions. A referendum over the opt-out, which was first negotiated in the 1990s, was called after the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

The government has campaigned for a “yes” vote to scrap the opt-out in the referendum, saying now is a time for Denmark move closer to its European allies.

READ ALSO:

Another public holiday – but make the most of it

We’re just about still in boom season for public holidays in Denmark.

Following Great Prayer Day (Store Bededag) and Ascension Day (Kristi Himmelfartsdag), Monday June 6th is the pinse or Pentecost holiday.

The extra days off through the late spring are very welcome and should be enjoyed while they’re here, because the next public holiday is not until Christmas.

READ ALSO: What public holidays does Denmark have in 2022?

Summer holidays begin

Public holidays aside, many who go to school and work in Denmark will begin their annual summer leave this year. Schools break up for the summer around June 24th – although this can vary a little locally.

For those in full or part-time employment who are covered by the Danish Holiday Act (Ferieloven), most will take three weeks off during the next couple of months, with some of this falling in June.

Of the five standard weeks or (normally 25 days) of paid vacation covered by the Holiday Act, the “main holiday period” begins on May 1st and ends on September 30th. During this time, three weeks’ consecutive vacation may be taken out of the five weeks.

Many take three weeks off in a row, sometimes coinciding with the school holidays (although others break it up) – which is why you often hear Danish people who work full time wishing each other a “good summer holiday” as if it’s the end of the school term.

READ ALSO: What you need to know about vacation in Denmark

Return of summer music festivals 

It feels like they’ve been gone a long time. Major Danish music festivals such as NorthSide in Aarhus, Tinderbox in Odense and not least the Roskilde Festival, the largest music festival in northern Europe, all return at full capacity this year after two years of cancellations and restricted events.

A couple of smaller festivals have already taken place, but the season gets underway for real in June.

The NorthSide Festival begins on June 2nd and Tinderbox on June 23rd, while Roskilde kicks off on June 25th.

Former US president to visit Denmark

It’ll probably be less talked about than the infamous presidential visit that never happened in 2019, but former President of the United States Barack Obama will visit the town of Skive in northwest Jutland during a trip to Europe this summer.

Obama will take part in a moderated debate on June 12th at the KulturCenter Skive cultural centre in the Danish town, which has a population of around 20,000.

Tickets for the event will cost upwards of 3,000 kroner. Obama took part in a comparable event in another Jutland town, Kolding, in 2018

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