The extension means that all visitors over the age of 16 travelling from outside the European Union (EU) and Schengen area will still be required to present proof of full vaccination or recent recovery, or a negative result for a PCR test taken within 72 hours of arrival, for a further month.
The policy does not apply to Finnish citizens or residents arriving from a third country, or arrivals whose travel is considered ‘essential’.
Finland eased Covid border regulations for all EU member states and Schengen area countries in February 2022. The rules had been put into force due to concerns about the Omicron variant. At the time, the Finnish government stated that non-EU, non-Schengen countries would have to abide by the old rules until at least 14 February – however 12 weeks later, the restrictions are still in force.
The decision was reportedly made with the intention of protecting public health. This is despite the country having one of the highest vaccination rates in the EU, with 78.3 per cent of the population covered by the primary course of vaccinations, with a booster shot administered to 52.9 per cent of the population according to data from the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC).
A growing number of EU member states and affiliates have already lifted all Covid-related travel restrictions, including Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway, Poland, Romania, Slovenia, Sweden, and Switzerland. The UK has also lifted all its Covid border rules.