Bogotá relaxes coronavirus restrictions

By Freek Huigen February 2, 2021

Colombia’s capital ends red alert as intensive care occupancy reaches 81%.

Photo: John Arias Calvo,

As the coronavirus case numbers and intensive care occupancy begin to fall, so too do the restrictions in Bogotá. Today, as the COVID-19 intensive care occupancy sank to 81%, authorities announced the end of its red alert. 

Like much of the world, Colombia began 2021 with increased lockdown measures, including curfews and localised quarantines. Intensive care occupancy — a key figure for local authorities — had hit 94% in Bogotá and a number of restrictions were put in place to try to reduce the case numbers.

Read also: How to get a coronavirus test in Bogotá

However, Bogotá’s mayor Claudia López announced today the city is no longer on red alert. As such, some of the stricter restrictions will be relaxed. 

The localised lockdowns in place in nine areas (Los Cedros, Castilla, Timiza, Fontibón, Garcés Navas, Boyacá Real, Tibabuyes, Suba and El Rincón) of Bogota will be lifted from 11.59 pm tonight. 

This Sunday (Feb. 7), you’ll be allowed back out on the ciclovia and parks will fully reopen. But the mayor warns against crowds gathering at traffic lights and, of course, facemasks continue to be mandatory.

Football will return to El Techo and Campín. Thursday and Sunday’s league matches will be played without fans. During the red alert, matches that would have taken place in the capital were shunted elsewhere or postponed.

And from Feb. 15, we’ll see the gradual reopening of the city’s public schools. Private schools can open from Feb. 8. Universities will also be able to start face-to-face classes, up to a maximum capacity of 35%.

Read all our coverage on the coronavirus in Colombia

But, before you grab your face masks and rush for the outside world, some restrictions remain. We’re still in orange alert.

  • Pico y cédula will continue for commercial and banking establishments, which includes supermarkets.
  • Nightly curfews are now a thing of the past, but commercial establishments will have to shut by 11pm.
  • Certain sectors can only operate within certain times — for example, construction can only take place between 10am and 7pm. Warehouses and shopping centres from 10am to 11pm.

As President Duque announces that vaccination will begin in Colombia on Feb. 20, local authorities are still keen to slow the spread as much as possible. If you have symptoms or have had contact with someone who later tested positive, find out how to get tested.