Finland to close incoming ferry passenger traffic this week

Tallink's Megastar.
Tallink's Megastar. Source: Andres Raudjalg/Tallink

Ferries between Finland and Estonia will no longer take on passengers in the direction of Finland, following new restrictions imposed by that country's government Monday in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.

Passengers may still travel on ferries from Finland to Estonia. The same restrictions apply to vessels between Finland and Sweden.

"The Finnish traffic authority has asked all shipping companies operating sea transport to and from Finland to suspend passenger carrying towards Finland for an unlimited period, Katri Link, Tallink communications manager, told ERR.

The exact timing of the new measures coming into effect is not fully known yet, but likely to be on Thursday or Friday, Link added.

"At the moment, we do not know for sure what date it will take effect, I.e. when there will be no passenger transport to Finland. As of Wednesday, April 1, there could have been passenger disruption on our routes to Finland already, but as there are Finns are still trapped in various locations in western Europe, who are trying to get home, the deadline has been slightly delayed for their arrival. This doesn't postpone it by much, just a few days," Link continued.

Tallink's own Megastar shuttle ferry will continue to carry passengers on Tuesday and Wednesday at least, Link said, and will continue to transport cargo, as it has been doing.

As well as these restrictions, passenger transport will continue in the opposite direction, i.e. from Finland to Estonia and Sweden, Link said, since the new restrictions do not concern departing from Finland.

"Beyond tomorrow (Wednesday-ed.), passenger transport will definitely continue to Estonia and Sweden... Estonians who need to get home from Finland to Estonia or Sweden can continue to do so,"she added.

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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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