The Finnish government adopted on October 8 a decision on entry restrictions to the country, which further reduces the list of states from which travel to Finland will be allowed as of October 12. As a result, from that date internal border controls will be re-established for the entire Schengen area.
The new decision implies that entry restrictions will be reintroduced for internal border traffic between Finland, Latvia and Liechtenstein (the two Schengen countries with which border traffic was not previously restricted) and for external border traffic with Cyprus. Additionally, all previously existing entry restrictions will remain in effect until 10 November.
The decision applies the limit value of a maximum of 25 new cases of the disease per 100,000 persons in the previous 14 days set by the government.
"Differences in the epidemiological situation in Finland and other European countries, as well as the new acceleration in the spread of infections, require internal border controls to remain in place until the new health security measures are made available to the extent necessary," the Ministries of the Interior and of Social Affairs and Health said in a joint press release.
Finland also introduced new travel-related health security measures. Starting from 12 October, the recommended 14-day period of self-isolation for travelers from a high incidence country will be shortened to a 10-day period. Travellers can shorten their self-isolation period at their discretion if they take two voluntary Covid-19 tests. If a traveller is staying in Finland for less than 72 hours, they do not need to self-isolate or take a second test.
Internal border traffic
Internal border traffic refers to traffic between Finland and other Schengen countries. Starting from 12 October, internal border control will be reinstated for traffic between Finland and all Schengen countries.
As a result of the Government’s decision, restrictions will be in force between Finland and Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland, apart from certain exceptions.
Day-to-day travel will still be permitted for local border communities at Finland's land border with Sweden and Norway. People will be able to travel for work in Finland from Sweden and Estonia without a 10-day self-isolation period. Leisure boating from the EU and Schengen countries to Finland will not be restricted either.
At the internal borders, restrictions on entry allow only return traffic to Finland, transit traffic, work-related travel and travel for other essential reasons, apart from the above-mentioned exceptions. A 10-day period of self-isolation is recommended for travelers arriving in Finland. Travelers can shorten their self-isolation period at their discretion if they take two voluntary Covid-19 tests.
External border traffic
External border traffic refers to traffic between Finland and non-Schengen countries. Starting from 12 October, it will be permitted only for people arriving in Finland from the Vatican, and for traffic between Finland and Australia, Japan, Rwanda, South Korea, Thailand, New Zealand and Uruguay for residents of these countries.
In addition, people may come to Finland from the following European countries for work or another essential reason: Andorra, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Ireland, Monaco, Romania, San Marino and the United Kingdom. Again, travelers can shorten their 10-day self-isolation period at their discretion if they take two voluntary coronavirus tests.
For all other non-Schengen countries, restrictions on entry allow only return traffic to Finland and other EU and Schengen countries, transit traffic at Helsinki Airport and other essential traffic.