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Foreign ministry: New rules apply from Saturday when traveling to Latvia

Estonian-Latvian border at Valga-Valka.
Estonian-Latvian border at Valga-Valka. Source: ERR

The Foreign Ministry has announced that due to the increased infection rate in Estonia, new rules apply when traveling to the Republic of Latvia from 00.00 a.m. on Saturday. Passengers from Estonia must self-isolate when entering Latvia.

Latvia said on Friday it plans to add Estonia to its list of high-risk countries as the 14-day average infection rate is over 16 per 100,000. On Friday, Estonia's average was 21.75.

Passengers from Estonia must self-isolate when entering Latvia. The rules will apply until further notice but are reviewed every Friday.

However, there are some exceptions. Mandatory self-isolation does not apply when entering the territory of Latvia for the following purposes:

Employment: if crossing the border is necessary for carrying out professional or basic duties and the individual has proof of their employment.

Childcare services or formal full-time studies at pre-school level (by presenting a certificate issued by a service provider or educational establishment).

Full-time study at basic, secondary and higher education level, and professional educational programmes in the field of arts and culture (by presenting a certificate issued by an educational establishment).

Accompanying a minor or an adult student with special needs to a nursery, kindergarten or school.

Transiting through the country (the stay should not exceed 12 hours with no overnight stay).

Caring for relatives, or organising or attending a funeral;

Healthcare services in Latvia prescribed by a doctor (by presenting a certificate or referral issued by a doctor).

The government of Latvia decided to allow the continuation of work-related migration and free movement across the border in the twin town of Valga-Valka. The decision applies to residents of Valga and Valka provided they have not travelled outside the municipality in the previous 14 days.

The additional restrictions do not apply to the free movement of goods.

Existing exemptions are available here.

When using international carriers for entering the country, a form with contact details must be completed, including information about the countries the passenger has been in during the past two weeks. The form is handed out and collected by the carrier.

Anyone arriving from a high-risk country must wear a mask when in public in Latvia. The government recommends avoiding social contacts and following the relevant safety precautions when carrying out professional duties or services.

Individuals who are obligated to self-isolate can leave their place of accommodation wearing a mask for the purpose of returning to their country of residence or going to their new place of accommodation.

Prior to returning to their country of residence or changing their location of self-isolation, they must notify the Latvian Police (Police contacts).

Information about the coronavirus situation in Latvia can be found here.


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Editor: Helen Wright

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