Important Changes in June: Pharmacy Strike, Culture Pass, and New Regulations for Rail Travel
In June, there are several important changes happening in Germany:
- Pharmacy Workers’ Strike: On June 14th, all pharmacies across the country will remain closed. Pharmacy workers are protesting against the “health policy decisions of the federal government,” which have resulted in supply shortages, staff shortages, and long-standing underfunding. Only a few emergency pharmacies will be open on that day.
- Culture Pass for Youth: Starting in June, young people who celebrate their 18th birthday in 2023 can apply for a Culture Pass. This pass grants access to various cultural offerings and provides a budget of 200 euros, which can be used for tickets, books, CDs, and more. Interested individuals can register on the website, and they have two years to spend the allocated budget.
- New Regulations for Rail Travel: On June 7th, a revised version of an EU regulation will come into effect, introducing changes to the rights of train passengers. If a train arrives at its destination station more than one hour late, passengers can claim a refund of 25 percent of the fare, and for delays exceeding two hours, the refund increases to 50 percent. However, in certain scenarios, the entitlement to compensation is waived for extraordinary circumstances beyond the railway company’s control, such as extreme weather conditions, people on the tracks, or cable theft. Whether a winter weather disruption falls within the compensation entitlement is yet to be clarified.
- Restricted Passenger Rights for the 49-Euro Ticket: With the new railway regulation taking effect on June 7th, there are changes for travelers using the Deutschlandticket (also known as the 49-Euro Ticket). If a train is delayed by more than 20 minutes or is canceled, passengers will no longer be allowed to board another train. The right to transfer between trains is eliminated, and the ticket is considered as a “ticket with significantly reduced transportation fee.” However, there is still a compensation provision of 1.50 euros if the regional train arrives at the destination with a delay exceeding 60 minutes.
These changes affect pharmacy operations, access to cultural offerings, and the rights of railway passengers. It is important to stay informed about these developments to avoid any inconvenience.