Wizz Air Tallinn-Kyiv flights halted

A Wizz Air plane on the apron at Tallinn Airport.
A Wizz Air plane on the apron at Tallinn Airport. Source: ERR

Hungarian budget airline Wizz Air has been barred from flying between Tallinn and the Ukrainian capital, Kyiv, till at least the end of July, due to that country's coronavirus incidence rate.

Wizz had been operating flights between the two capitals last week, but the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Communications has issued a precept to the company to stop flying.

Wizz Air had also planned to open routes to Lviv and Kharkiv, both in Ukraine, but this is off the table for the time being too.

Eero Pärgmäe, commercial director at Tallinn Airport, said that the flights were suspended from this Monday, with the flight ban valid until July 28, when the ministry will review it again.

Pärgmäe said the flights, mainly used by Ukrainian workers returning home, many of whom had not been able to do so during the peak of the pandemic in March to May, had proved popular.

"There were a lot of returnees in the first week," Pärgmäe told ERR Thursday, but could not say how other Ukrainians will get home in the near future.

Air traffic from high-risk countries, so far as COVID-19 goes, including Sweden, Portugal, Belarus and Russia, as well as Ukraine, is currently forbidden.

Those who do arrive from Ukraine – often to work in sectors such as agriculture, recently facing a shortage due to the pandemic and increased need during harvest time, and construction, have to quarantine for two weeks, in addition to needing a permit issued by the Police and Border guard Board (PPA).

Travelers arriving from countries with fewer than 16 COVID-19 cases per 100,000 inhabitants in the previous 14 days do not need to quarantine upon arrival.

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Editor: Andrew Whyte

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