The Finnish government has withdrew its recommendation that domestic tourism should not be practiced. With immediate effect, domestic travel is allowed again “if the security instructions against COVID-19 are adhered to.”
However, the advisory against going on touristic trips abroad remains in place, even though the government cannot prevent citizens from leaving the country.
Minister of Economic Affairs Mika Lintila noted in a press release that the tourism sector has suffered greatly from the COVID-19 pandemic and that domestic travelers could help the industry.
“But as the pandemic is not yet over, I appeal to both the travelers and the tourism operators that we all do our part on behalf of safe tourism,” he said.
The government has published a set of new guidelines on safe domestic travel. They urge travelers to avoid all unnecessary social contacts and confirm that in the event of sickness, those on the road have the right to access local health care. Tourism operators must ensure sufficient hygiene.
Last winter, the risk of overburdening the health care services at the country’s main tourist destinations was one of the reasons for the government to discourage domestic leisure travel.
Municipal executives of northern Finland’s highly popular Lapland area issued a statement on Friday welcoming tourists “as long as they honor the safety measures against the virus.”
According to the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare, as of Friday afternoon, the country had confirmed 6,776 COVID-19 infections, of which 33 were new. The death toll has reached 314 while at least 5,500 people have recovered.