Travelling for work is permitted again between Finland and Estonia

From today 14 May, it is permitted to cross the border from Estonia to Finland according to employment relationships or duties, and visiting family members is also allowed. Border checks continue at ports and airports, where passengers must be ready to show proof of the purpose of their trip. The same conditions apply to passengers in both directions.

“Allowing migration for work is the first and carefully considered step towards resuming movement between Finland and Estonia; in Estonia we will continue in a reasonable and cautious manner. Above all, this brings relief for many Estonian families that have been stranded in different countries due to the crisis. This decision does not restore the usual tourism volumes between Estonia and Finland; only a fraction of the usual number of passengers are allowed to cross the border with appropriate precautions,” Foreign Minister Urmas Reinsalu said, adding that while possibilities for travelling are gradually becoming available, non-essential international travel is not yet recommended.

People travelling to Estonia from Finland do not have to self-isolate, however, they are advised to stay at home, only perform essential errands and strictly follow the safe distance and hygiene rules. They must also continue to follow instructions aimed at containing the spread of the coronavirus, such as the 2+2 rule, which states that a maximum of two people can converge and they must keep a distance of at least two metres with others.

To make work migration possible, several precautions are introduced to stop the spread of the virus. In cooperation with shipping companies, measures for maintaining a safe distance on board and in harbours have been developed, ensuring conditions that are as similar as possible to the rules in force in both countries.

Detailed rules for passengers travelling to Estonia

  • Individuals holding the citizenship of the Republic of Finland, residence permit or right of residence or with a place of residence in the Republic of Finland according to the population register, and without symptoms are allowed to travel from Finland to Estonia if:
    • the purpose of the trip is to work in Estonia or carry out other contractual duties, including voluntary work and working with an aid organisation;
    • the individual is studying at an education establishment registered in Estonia;
    • they are visiting Estonia for essential family reasons, such as meeting a close relative, funeral, wedding or illness.
  • In order to contain the spread of the virus, individuals arriving from Finland should remain in their permanent place of residence or accommodation, and only move outside their place of residence or accommodation for work or carrying out contractual duties or for other essential tasks; they are free to go to shops and pharmacies.
  • Estonia is applying measures symmetrically with Finland – the same conditions apply for passengers in both directions.

Detailed rules for passengers travelling to Finland

  • Crossing the border from Estonia to Finland is allowed on the basis of employment relationships or duties, and visiting family members is also allowed. Border checks on land borders as well as at ports and airports continue with the aim of ascertaining the purpose of the trip.
  • Anyone entering Finland must avoid non-essential close contacts and self-isolate for 14 days on a voluntary basis. Voluntary isolation still allows commuting between work and the place of residence, as well as going to shops and pharmacies. In Finland, this rule does not apply to emergency and rescue workers and border guard and customs officials. In order to contain the spread of the contagious disease, they should follow the general rules in force in Finland on hygiene, safe distance and avoiding physical contact.
  • Anyone arriving in Finland to provide social and healthcare services should agree with their employer on the organisation of work. The employer must assess the risk of contagion and, if necessary, change the tasks in the 14 days after the worker has arrived in the country to ensure the safety of customers and patients, and the safety of the staff.
  • Both in Estonia as well as in Finland, anyone displaying symptoms of respiratory disease must immediately contact a healthcare provider. More detailed instructions will be given on arrival to Estonia and Finland.
  • The government of Finland has announced that other temporary border measures will remain in force until 14 June.

Additional information:

Leen Lindam
Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Estonia
Communication Department