Finnair, one of Finland’s largest airlines, has announced that since August 16, cloth masks will not be allowed on its flights.
According to a statement from the company, it has been noted that since cloth face masks are not as effective as surgical masks when it comes to protecting passengers from exposure to infection, they should be replaced with a better option.
As such, the airline said it now only accepts valveless surgical masks, FFP2 or FFP3 respirator masks, or other valve-free masks of the same standard (N95), TheSchengen.com reports.
“From August 16, we will not accept cloth masks on our flights. We accept surgical masks, FFP2 or FFP3 valveless respirators, or other valve-free masks of the same standard (N95). Please remember that you need to wear a mask throughout the flight,” it said in a statement. Finnair.
The same said that passengers need to keep their masks on throughout the entire flight, while emphasizing that the mask should cover their noses and mouths, regardless of whether they are in airport facilities or only on the plane. Passengers are only allowed to remove the mask for a limited time when they consume food or drinks.
“You can only remove it for a limited time while eating or drinking. Please make sure you always wear a mask when dealing with Finnair staff, whether it is at the airport or on the plane.”
In addition, it has been observed that passengers with a medical condition that prevents them from wearing a mask must inform the airport at least 72 hours before the flight.
Finland currently imposes strict restrictions on all travelers who have not been vaccinated or recovered from COVID-19. On the other hand, those who present a vaccination or recovery certificate are allowed to enter without restrictions.
Currently, Finland recognizes all vaccination certificates indicating that the holder has been immunized with a vaccine that has been approved by the European Medicines Agency (EMA) or part of the World Health Organization (WHO) emergency use list.
This means that only the following vaccines are accepted as valid proof of vaccination:
Pfizer / BioNTech Moderna AstraZeneca Johnson & Johnson Sinopharm Sinovac
With the exception of Finnair, many airlines in other European countries require travelers to wear a surgical mask.
The German airline, Lufthansa Group, has been requiring passengers and crew to wear a mask since February 2021. Surgical masks are also mandatory for those boarding AirFrance flights.
>> Travel to Finland: Explanation of current entry rules