Strict rules in NRW: What is allowed on New Year’s Eve – and what is not

NRW – Party, meeting and firecrackers bans, curfews in some cities. Because of Corona, strict rules apply, especially on New Year’s Eve. One thing is certain: it will be much quieter. Inside and outside. An overview of what is allowed in NRW at the turn of the year 2020/2021 – and what is not.

▶ ︎ In your own apartment:

According to the current Corona Protection Ordinance, meetings with friends or family on New Year’s Eve in your own four walls are not limited by a fixed number of guests. According to Interior Minister Herbert Reul (68, CDU) there will be no random controls at home.

But: parties are prohibited!

“Partying means celebrating. And that can be decided very quickly: is it a peaceful dinner or is it a party, ”said Reul. Furthermore, the urgent recommendation applies to apply the regulations on contact restrictions also in the private sector and to restrict social contacts to what is really necessary.

▶ ︎ In public space:

The current Corona Protection Ordinance applies here, which was only relaxed a little at Christmas: a maximum of five people from a maximum of two households are allowed to stay together. Children under the age of 14 are not counted.

▶ ︎ Fireworks:

The sale of fireworks of all kinds is prohibited nationwide in 2020. However, there is no general ban on igniting firecrackers that have already been purchased. Every city handles it differently, sometimes setting up firecrackers prohibited zones.

▶ ︎ Travel and excursions:

Excursions are not prohibited. However, it is especially advised not to visit popular winter sports locations such as Winterberg (Sauerland) and Hellenthal (Eifel), where traffic chaos broke out after Christmas.

Particularly strict rules in Dortmund

Dortmund will take particularly drastic measures in 2020. First the firecrackers prohibition zones in the city center were expanded, then the ban on assemblies was tightened: at Reinoldikirche, Katharinentreppe and Möllerbrücke in the Kreuzviertel, a maximum of two people may meet instead of five. In addition, there will be no public transport in the city on New Year’s Eve from around 10.30 p.m.


In some cities and districts there is also a night curfew at the turn of the year. In the Gütersloh district, citizens have to stay indoors between 10 p.m. and 5 a.m. Similar restrictions also apply in Oberhausen, Solingen and in the districts of Düren and Lippe.

The apartment may only be left in special exceptions – partying and banging are not included.

Over 4800 police officers will be on duty in NRW on New Year’s Eve to check that the rules are being followed. “It is extremely difficult for the security authorities to predict how people will behave,” said Interior Minister Reul. But be prepared for possible problems.

The Minister of the Interior asks to generally refrain from using rockets and firecrackers. It would relieve the health system if the risks of accidents with pyrotechnics were minimized.


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