UPDATE: Finland Removes Tests From Fully Vaccinated Tourists & Stricter Requirements For Others (Delayed Until July 26)

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Finland’s government July 6, approved new entry requirements that will come into effect on July 12, 2021, but there is now a two-week transition period when two sets of rules are in place until July 26 (extremely confusing).

Finnair now states that, as an airline, they will no longer require passengers to prove their Covid-19 vaccination or test status as of July 12, 2021, for those traveling to Finland. Still, they may have to do so if mandated by the government and/or entry requirements (very confusing too).

You can access Finnair’s page for travel restrictions here and Finland Border Guard’s here. There is also a Finentry app that you can use to book a free Covid-19 test upon returning to the country (access here)

The new model allows free travel, regardless of vaccination or test status, or quarantine, only from countries with less than 10 positive Covid-19 infections per 100K residents over the previous 14 days. In addition, the list of counties and areas with this low current infection rate is concise.

The model in place from July 26 allows free travel, regardless of vaccination or test status, or quarantine, only from countries with less than 10 positive Covid-19 infections per 100K residents over the previous 14 days. The list of counties and areas with this low current infection rate is concise. Fully vaccinated tourists from EU and Schengen countries can enter from that date without any test or quarantine requirements.

You have to keep in mind that Finnair has been the only airline flying to Finland that has required passengers to have a negative Covid-19 test, recovery, or vaccination certificate before allowed to board a flight to the country, putting it at a disadvantage.

But now there is a transition period:

Per Finnair:

TRAVELLING TO FINLAND ON 12-25 JULY 2021

In Finland, there will be an interim entry model in place on 12-25 July 2021. You can enter Finland without restrictions from EU and Schengen countries where the coronavirus incident rate is below 25. If the incident rate is above 25, you can travel to Finland for business or other essential reason. Entering Finland from third countries is allowed for essential reasons and without restrictions from EU green list countries where the coronavirus incident rate is below 25.

You may be directed to a health check upon arrival in Finland. Coronavirus testing upon arrival doesn’t concern you if you have one of the following:

  • You have been fully vaccinated at least 14 days before your trip.

  • You have a certificate stating that you have had a coronavirus infection within 6 months and you are now symptomless.

  • You have a certificate of a negative coronavirus test result, and you need to take a new test in 72-120 hours after arrival.

Per Finnish Border Guard

Entry to Finland as of 12.7.

According to the Government decision of 8 July, internal border control from Schengen countries to Finland will continue between 12 and 25 July.

Restrictions on internal border control, referring to traffic crossing the border between Finland and another state that is a member of the Schengen area, shall continue to be applied until 25.7. 2021.

Entry to the country is permitted to residents of Finland or another EU or Schengen country for persons who hold a certificate of a having received a completed vaccination series or of having had Covid-19 infection less than six months earlier. In other cases, entry to the country is permitted to residents of Finland or another EU or Schengen country returning to Finland, to persons travelling for business, or for other essential reasons.

During the transition period, 12.- 25.7., a certificate of a negative Covid-19 test taken before entering Finland or a certificate of the first vaccination completed no less than two weeks earlier will not yet entitle a person to enter the country.

The new entry model will come into effect as of 26.7. 2021.

The restrictions concerning external border traffic will continue until 22.8.2021 in order to prevent the spread of the Covid-19 and its virus variants. External border traffic, or traffic crossing the external border, refers to traffic between Finland and a state that does not belong to the Schengen area.

The country-specific restrictions will be updated every 1-2 weeks.

Conditions on entry to Finland :

The Finnish Border Guard shall allow a passenger to  enter  Finland 12. – 25.7., when one of these conditions is met:

  1. Entry is permitted from EU and Schengen countries, if the amount of Covid-19 cases in that country is under 25 per 100 000 inhabitants, or if the person has completed a full vaccination series or had a Covid-19 infection within the last six months (a certificate is required).
  2. Business travel and other essential travel to Finland is permitted from other EU and Schengen countries.
  3. It is allowed to arrive in Finland from third countries that are on the EU green list, where there are under 25 Covid-19 cases per 100 000 inhabitants.
  4. A person travelling from another third country must have an essential reason for  entry.
  5. Transit travel through Helsinki-Vantaa airport is always possible. Health safety measures are not applied to transit travellers at Helsinki-Vantaa Airport, but travellers must meet the requirements of the destination country.

If the person has a right to enter Finland, the health safety measures applied at the border will be assessed based on the Communicable Diseases Act as follows:

  1. You are arriving from a low risk country , where the amount of Covid-19 cases is 25 or less per 100 000 inhabitants (until 11.7.). As of 12.7. the list of countries and areas shall be defined by a Government decree based on the Communicable Diseases Act.

  2. You have received the approved series of vaccinations no less than 14 days before travelling.

  3. You are born in 2006 or later.

  4. You are holding a certificate of having had a Covid-19 infection less than six months earlier. You must be fully recovered and have no symptoms.

  5. You have received only one dose of vaccination no less than 14 days before travelling. In this case, you are required to have a Covid-19 test taken within 72-120 hours (3-5 days) after arrival. The recommendation by the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare (THL) to avoid contacts with other people concerns those travelers, who are required to have a Covid-19 test taken no earlier than 72 hours after arrival.

  6. You have a certificate of a negative Covid-19 -test. In this case you must have a new Covid-19 test taken within 72-120 hours (3-5) days after arrival. Avoid contacts with other people, while waiting for the results. The recommendation by the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare (THL) to avoid contacts with other people concerns those travelers, who are required to have a Covid-19 test taken no earlier than 72 hours after arrival.

  7. Everyone else must have a Covid-19 -test taken both upon arrival in the country and within 3-5 days after arrival. Avoid contacts with other people, while you are waiting for your test results.

Conclusion

So, Finnair may continue to require you to show proof that you have had the required vaccination, tests, or recovery if your destination is Finland and also if it is another third country.

The communication from the government in Finland has not been clear beyond that traveling to the country is not welcomed and that the unlawful Schengen arrival checks have been in place now for way more than a year.

There have not been strict lockdowns or quarantines (voluntary ones yes) during the pandemic and a small number of deaths. However, there has been a recent spike in positive cases, of which some/most are attributable to one of the UEFA games held in Russia, where many caught the delta variant and brought it back.

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