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Yle sources: Gov’t preparing changes to 'dual test' travel model

The new measures would require tourists entering Finland for a three day visit to only provide one negative test result.

KAsvomaskiin pukeutuneita matkustajia Helsinki-Vantaan lentoasemalla.
File photo of Helsinki-Vantaa airport. Image: Silja Viitala / Yle

The government is putting the final touches to a new coronavirus travel model which will determine how, and if, tourists coming into Finland are tested at the border, according to Yle sources.

A decision in principle has been made on the new model, but finer details are still to be agreed, the sources have revealed. The government is aiming to publish both the decision in principle and the new measures at the same time, so as to avoid creating any confusion or ambiguities.

Businesses in the tourism industry, in particular, have been eagerly anticipating an announcement of the government's decision.

According to Yle's information, the new measures will state that a negative coronavirus test result from the country of origin will be sufficient for the traveller to take a trip to Finland for a maximum of three days. The incoming tourist will therefore not be required to also take a coronavirus test at Finland’s border or for the duration of their stay.

However, for a trip that lasts between three and seven days, the tourist should undertake a second coronavirus test after 72 hours in Finland, but will not be required to quarantine.

If the trip lasts more than seven days, an assessment of possible measures will be made at the border on a case-by-case basis by an infectious disease doctor.

No negative test result required in certain circumstances

Furthermore, the new measures would mean that if the coronavirus situation in the tourist’s country of origin is better than in Finland--based on the rate of infection over the prior two-week period--no negative test results would be required at the border.

According to the source, this is justified by the government because, in such a situation, there would be no epidemiological grounds to quarantine the tourist or set a specific amount of tests.

Last week, the Parliament's Constitutional Law Committee rejected the previous version of the model, as it was considered to be still incomplete, especially from the perspective of citizens’ fundamental rights.

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