How a Bavarian supermarket is helping shoppers find love amid shutdown

One Bavarian supermarket is giving singles the chance to find love - or at least flirt behind FFP2 masks - every weekend.

How a Bavarian supermarket is helping shoppers find love amid shutdown
Edeka employee Daniel Cronau took part in 'singles shopping' one Friday. Photo: DPA

Can you find love while shopping in Germany? For many, a supermarket may be just about the least likely place for a starry eyed encounter, especially at the speedy check-out those who live in the Bundesrepublik will be aware of.

READ ALSO: The complete German supermarket survival guide

An Edeka supermarket in the Bavarian town of Volkach, however, is trying to break through barriers amid the coronavirus crisis: every Friday evening has been set aside for “singles shopping.”

“After all, curfew and contact restrictions don't make it easy to find a partner at the moment,” deputy store manager Steven Schellhorn told DPA. 

Every Friday between 6 and 8pm, singles can grab a heart with a number on it at the entrance and stick it on their jacket.

If they spot someone they fancy amid the shelves, they can opt to have that person’s number called out at the checkout. Those who are a bit more bashful can simply leave their phone number with a message. 

READ ALSO: Video: How to flirt during a pandemic? Get a German dating coach

For this purpose, slips of paper are laid out on which the type of contact can be ticked off, such as: “I'd be happy to meet you for an orange juice in the fruit department.”

“I think it's a good change,” says a staff member donning a red heart on his chest. The offer has been around for about two years, said Schellhorn, but so far few customers have taken advantage of it. 

Yet since the start of the pandemic, the red hearts picked up in popularity, with more people using the offer, he said.

“Nothing has taken off yet,” a butcher’s assistant told Bavarian news website Merkur amid a display of schnitzel and minced meat. “At least not here by the meat, but maybe in another department.”

One unattached Friday evening customer told Merkur that he was staying optimistic. “I’m looking everywhere,” said Alfons, who wore a heart with the number 50 on his coat. 

READ ALSO: What's the advice for sex and dating in Germany during the coronavirus crisis?


leave a message – eine Nachricht hinterlassen

A change – (die) Abwechslung

tick or check off – ankreuzen

Fruit department – (die) Obstabteilung

We're aiming to help our readers improve their German by translating vocabulary from some of our news stories. Did you find this article useful? Let us know.

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EXPLAINED: The Covid rules in place across German states

Many Covid restrictions have been dropped in Germany, but some rules remain in place. And as infections increase again, it's important to be aware of what you should do if you get Covid.

EXPLAINED: The Covid rules in place across German states

Germany has relaxed or changed many Covid restrictions in recent months. However, with Covid infections rocketing again, people are reminding themselves of what rules remain in place, and what they have to do if they get a positive test.

Here’s a quick roundup of what you should know. 

Face masks

Covid masks have to be worn when travelling on public transport, including planes departing to and from Germany. 

They also have to be worn in places where there are more vulnerable people, such as care homes, hospitals and doctor offices. 

Masks are not mandatory anymore in shops (including supermarkets) and restaurants, but individual businesses can enforce the rule so watch out for signs on the door. 

READ ALSO: Germany’s current Covid mask rules

FFP2 masks have become the standard in Germany, but in some cases other medical masks are sufficient.

There are no longer any entry rules to public venues such as the 3G or 2G rule, meaning that people had to show proof of vaccination, recovery or a negative test. 

However, they could return in autumn if the infection protection laws are adapted, and if the Covid situation gets worse.

Mandatory isolation 

The rules on isolation differ from state to state, but there is one general requirement: those who test positive for Covid have to go into isolation at home and avoid all contact with people outside the household. The isolation period lasts at least five days or a maximum of 10 days.

If you get a positive result at home, you should go to a test centre and undergo a rapid antigen test. If it is positive, the quarantine obligation kicks in. If it is negative, you have to get a PCR test.

If you have Covid symptoms, you should contact your doctor, local health authorities or the non-emergency medical on-call service on 116 117. They can advise or whether you should get a PCR test. 

Across German states, the isolation period lasts 10 days, but – as we mentioned above – there are differences on how it can end earlier. 

In Berlin, for instance, it can be shortened from the fifth day with a negative test if you have been symptom free for 48 hours. If this isn’t the case, the isolation is extended until you have been symptom-free for 48 hours and tested negative. But you can leave without a negative test after 10 days. 

A positive Covid test.

A positive Covid test. Photo: picture alliance/dpa | Sebastian Gollnow

Anyone who tests positive for Covid using a rapid test at a testing centre can have a free PCR test to confirm whether they have Covid-19. If the PCR test is negative, there is no obligation to go into quarantine.

In Bavaria, the isolation period is five days after the first positive test. For isolation to end on day five you must be symptom free for at least 48 hours. Otherwise, isolation is extended for 48 hours at a time until the maximum of 10 days. 

A test-to-release is not needed to end the isolation, unless the person works in a medical setting. 

READ ALSO: Germany sets out new Covid isolation rules

After isolation, Bavaria recommends that you wear an FFP2 mask in public places indoors and reduce contact for an extra five days. 

The state of Hesse has a similar system to Bavaria where a test is not needed to end the isolation early (unless the person works in a medical setting).

In North Rhine-Westphalia and Hamburg, residents can end their Covid isolation on the fifth day if they get a negative test (carried out at a testing centre). Otherwise the isolation period continues until the 10th day, or until they get a negative test.

Close contacts of people infected with Covid (including household contacts) no longer have to quarantine in Germany, but they are advised to get tested regularly and monitor for symptoms, as well as reduce contacts for five days. 

As ever, check with your local authority for the detailed rules.


Germany recently provisionally dropped almost all of its Covid travel restrictions, making it much easier to enter the country. 

The changes mean that entry into Germany is now allowed for all travel purposes, including tourism. The move makes travel easier – and cheaper – for people coming from non-EU countries, particularly families who may have needed multiple Covid tests for children. 

People also no longer have to show proof of vaccination, recovery or a negative test against Covid before coming to Germany – the so-called 3G rule. 

However, if a country is classed as a ‘virus variant’ region, tougher rules are brought in. 

It is likely that travel rules could be reinstated again after summer or if the Covid situation gets worse so keep an eye on any developments. 

READ ALSO: Germany drops Covid entry restrictions for non-EU travellers

Vaccine mandate

The mandate making Covid vaccinations compulsory for medical staff remains in place. A vaccine mandate that would have affected more of the population in Germany was rejected by the Bundestag in a vote in April

READ ALSO: Germany’s top court approves Covid vaccine mandate for health care workers


Masks are no longer mandatory in workplaces, unless it is in a setting where more risks groups are, such as hospitals or care homes. 

The government no longer requires people to work from home, but employers and employees can reach their own ‘home office’ arrangement.

Tests are also no longer mandatory, but workplaces can offer their employees regular tests.