News digest: Second pandemic Christmas in Slovakia about to kick off

Vaccination centres will reopen on Monday. Shops will be closed during the holidays.

(Source: / Hej,ty)

Good evening. The Thursday, December 23 edition of Today in Slovakia is ready with the main news of the day in less than five minutes. We wish you a pleasant read.

Enjoy safe Christmas holidays

December 23 is the last working day for many people. The Christmas holidays start on December 24 and last until December 26.

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On December 25, more anti-pandemic measures will ease up. If you have a question about whether it is allowed to visit family and friends, when the curfew applies, what rules are in place for hotel stays, check out our Christmas FAQs.

Scientists and doctors also provided seven points for minimising the risk of infection when meeting other people during holidays. Vaccination, testing, meeting in small groups and boosting immunity are among them.

The majority of shops will close on December 24 before noon and reopen only on December 27. Shops will also be closed on January 1 and January 6, which are also national holidays. Post office branches will close between December 24 and December 27, and on January 1 and January 6.

Check out classic and new Slovak and Czech movies on Netflix with English subtitles.

Learn why opekance, bobaľky or pupáky should not be missing from Christmas Eve Dinner in Slovakia and listen to the podcast where people from Ethiopia, Argentina, Spain, Bulgaria and the Philippines discuss Slovak traditions.

To help you fully soak in the Christmas atmosphere, check out our cultural roundup where Peter Dlhopolec writes about the festive weekend weather forecast, ice climbing, food and tips on how to spend Christmas in Slovakia.

Coronavirus and vaccination news

Photo of the day

Fifteen Slovak artists have created a joint light installation that will illuminate the National Bank of Slovakia (NBS) building. Each artist prepared their own version of a winter and Christmas symbol - the snowflake. The screening of the art installation will be held on the building from today until December 26.

Feature story for today

Although the coronavirus pandemic dominated 2021 once again and affected events in Bratislava, the year was a notable one in many other ways for the Slovak capital. The Slovak Spectator has picked five of the most notable developments in the capital this year.

[br][/br] Despite pandemic, 2021 was a notable year for Bratislava Read more 

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In other news

  • The traditional health difficulties about which patients call the 155 emergency line during the Christmas holidays are acute stomach aches and injuries. During last year's Christmas Day, regional emergency medical service operations centres sent paramedics to 1,649 patients. Compared to the previous year, this was an increase of more than 200 hits.
  • The National Mental Health Support Line operates on weekdays from 14:00 to 22:00 and on weekends from 10:00 to 18:00. The ministry is expanding its operating hours during holidays. On Christmas Eve (December 24) the line will operate from 10:00 to 22:00 and during New Year's Eve (December 31) from 10:00 to midnight. Anyone who needs advice and guidance from an experienced psychologist can call. The number of the National Mental Health Support Line is 0800 193 193.
  • When a fish bone is stuck in the throat, a piece of dry bread or boiled potatoes will help swallowing it. "Stomach acids then dissolve the bone in the stomach," explained Alena Krčová, a spokesperson for the Emergency Medical Service. If the bone gets stuck in such a way that it causes severe pain and makes breathing difficult, it is important not to panic and breathe through your nose, she said, and call 155 in order to receive further instructions.
  • The Bratislava City Waste Collection and Disposal Company (OLO) will ensure waste collection in the capital during the upcoming Christmas holidays, i.e. from December 24 to 26, as well as on 6 January 2022. The exception is New Year's (January 1, 2022), when waste will not be collected. Instead, it will be picked between January 3 and 5, 2022.

Do not miss on today

Government passes law on higher education Read more  People with contraindications to Covid vaccine fall under vaccinated/recovered regime Read more  Health Ministry gears up for Omicron, plans to establish emergency health facilities Read more 

If you have suggestions on how this news overview can be improved, you can reach us at

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