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Finland Eases Restrictions for Passengers on Cruise Ships From Today

Travelers from third countries who arrive in Finland by cruise ship will be able to enter the country from today, March 14, given that they provide proof of COVID-19 vaccination or a recovery certificate no more than six months old. So far, they have not been allowed to enter Finland regardless of vaccination or recovery status.

The move was announced again on March 10, last Thursday, in a statement that also revealed that the current entry restrictions would be extended for another month, until April 10, reports.

“The Corona pandemic continues, and in order to protect the health care carrying capacity, restrictions on entry to traffic across external borders will be extended for one month, until April 10. Restrictions for passengers on cruise ships from outside the Schengen area. Be relaxed,” he notes. The press release, further highlighting that the entry rules for this category of travelers will be eased today, on March 14.

The statement states that in order to allow cruise ship passengers to enter Finland, they must provide proof of:

Certificate of vaccination against COVID-19 with the initial vaccination cycle completed at least seven days before arrival but not more than 270 days, or Certificate of recovery from the virus in the past six months confirmed by a positive laboratory test.

If the traveler is not in possession of either certificate, they will be directed to a coronavirus testing point at the border in order to be tested for the virus.

“This requirement applies to those born in 2006 or earlier. Certification is not required for Finnish citizens or foreigners permanently residing in Finland,” asserts the Finnish Ministry of the Interior in a press release issued regarding the change.

Thus, cruise passengers from third countries, who have hitherto not been allowed into Finland at all, will now be subject to the same entry restrictions as air passengers.

>> Finland eases restrictions at its external borders from 14 March

The move to ease restrictions imposed on another category of travelers from third countries comes at a time when the Finnish tourism sector has been significantly affected by the war in Ukraine, in particular, with regard to tourists from Russia.

According to Kristina Hitasari, Director of the Visit Finland website, the country’s tourism sector is facing uncertainty regarding the spring and summer travel seasons due to the situation in Ukraine.

“We have sent inquiries about the current situation, whether you can come to Finland and what has been affected here. This is a serious crisis, and we are afraid that it will have implications,” says Director Hitasari.

Her concerns were confirmed by Päsi Varsjainen, the regional director of Northern Finland in Finvira, who said that travel cancellations have been recorded in several provinces of Northern Finland. He also expressed his concerns that “the desire to travel is declining across Europe” due to fears of fueling war among travelers.

>> Is it safe to travel to Europe now because of the war in Ukraine? Experts say it is

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