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Military action is underway in Ukraine. If you’re in Ukraine, shelter in place until it’s safe to depart.
The Russian invasion of Ukraine is ongoing. The security situation continues to be volatile and is deteriorating rapidly. Heavy fighting, including bombardments, explosions and missile launches, is ongoing throughout Ukraine, including in major cities. Infrastructure and military facilities have been struck by rocket attacks. There have been many civilian casualties. Foreigners have been killed and may be targeted, including in areas not directly affected by fighting. Do not travel to Ukraine, there is a real risk to life. If you’re in Ukraine, shelter in place until you judge it’s safe to depart. Continue to monitor advice on Smartraveller and reputable local and international media. Where it is safe to do so, you should leave Ukraine.
Use your judgement to decide the best time and safest means of exit. Expect some congestion on routes, at checkpoints and lengthy queues. Roads may be crowded, exposed to military action or have damage, including to bridges and facilities. Make sure you have an adequate supply of food, water, medication and fuel.
The Australian Government will not be able to evacuate you from Ukraine.
Be aware that some borders may close without notice. Information may change and will be updated as details become available. You should also read the travel advice of the destination you’re travelling to - entry requirements may differ when entering by road, rail or air. Before leaving Ukraine, verify if the local authorities of your destination have implemented any restrictions or requirements related to this situation.
Expect some congestion on routes, at checkpoints and lengthy queues. Make sure you have an adequate supply of food, water, medication and fuel. Use your judgement to decide the best time and safest means of exit. Roads may be crowded, exposed to military action or have damage, including to bridges and facilities.
In most cases, Australians departing Ukraine must present a valid Australian passport.
Read our advice about Ukraine border regions.
+61 2 6261 3305 from overseas
1300 555 135 from within Australia
Health advice is continually changing as we learn more about COVID-19 and new variants may be discovered. Rules and restrictions to prevent outbreaks can change quickly. It’s important to regularly check the rules in the destinations you’re travelling to and transiting through, as well as the requirements at the Australian border. These may differ between state and territory jurisdictions.
Full travel advice: Safety
Full travel advice: Health
Full travel advice: Travel
Full travel advice: Local contacts
Recent attacks in European cities have targeted places popular with travellers. This includes:
The Finnish Security Intelligence Service assess Finland's terrorist threat level to be 'elevated'. This is the equivalent of level 2 on a 4-point scale.
In August 2017, there was a fatal stabbing attack in central Turku.
Finnish authorities say the attack was terror related.
To protect yourself from terrorism:
If there's an attack, leave the area as soon as it's safe. Avoid the affected area in case of secondary attacks.
Terrorism is a threat worldwide.
You might encounter protests or demonstrations.
Public protests and events that draw large groups of people can turn violent.
During periods of unrest:
Serious crime isn't common.
Pickpocketing and bag-snatching is common.
Credit card theft and skimming also happens.
To protect yourself from crime:
Winters are extremely cold and there's heavy snowfall, including in metropolitan areas.
This may delay transport and temporarily shut down infrastructure.
Finland also experiences severe weather such as severe storms, rockslides, floods and strong winds.
If there's a natural disaster:
Get comprehensive travel insurance before you leave.
Your policy needs to cover all overseas medical costs, including medical evacuation. The Australian Government won't pay for these costs.
If you can't afford travel insurance, you can't afford to travel. This applies to everyone, no matter how healthy and fit you are.
If you're not insured, you may have to pay many 1000s of dollars up-front for medical care.
Consider your physical and mental health before you travel, especially if you have an existing medical condition. Consider whether you may be in a vulnerable category for COVID-19.
See your doctor or travel clinic to:
Do this at least 8 weeks before you leave.
Not all medication available over the counter or by prescription in Australia is available in other countries. Some may even be considered illegal or a controlled substance, even if prescribed by an Australian doctor.
If you plan to bring medication, check if it's legal in Finland. Take up to a 3-month supply for your trip. Your personal supply can include:
Carry a copy of your prescription and a dated letter from your doctor stating:
If you plan to stay longer than 3 months, find a doctor and pharmacy early in your stay who can re-supply your prescription medicines.
Prescribed narcotics are restricted. Check with the Finnish Customs Authority.
COVID-19 remains a risk in Finland.
Information on Finland's COVID−19 vaccination program is on the website of the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare. You should consult your local health professional for advice on vaccine options, including assistance that may be available locally. The Australian Government cannot provide advice on the safety, quality and efficacy of vaccines that have been approved for use outside of Australia's regulatory process.
To protect yourself and others from illness:
The Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare recommends that anyone with COVID-19 symptoms to contact your health care provider for testing. You can call the national helpline on +358 295 535 535 for answers to general COVID-19 questions, but the helpline does not offer medical advice.
If you travel in forest areas or to the Aland Islands, tick-borne encephalitis is a risk.
Ticks are common in rural areas and active from March to November.
To protect yourself from illness:
After visiting forested areas:
The standard of medical facilities is similar to Australia.
Emergency services are limited in remote areas.
Major hospitals are located in the Helsinki, Tampere and Turku area.
English is widely spoken.
A reciprocal health care agreement (RHCA) allows Australians who visit for fewer than 90 days to access emergency medical services for free.
It doesn't provide the same amount of cover as Medicare in Australia. It doesn’t cover:
To get emergency treatment, you need to present an Australian passport and a valid Medicare card. You may also need to mention the RHCA.
If you can’t show your passport and Medicare card, you may need to pay the same costs that apply to non-residents.
This arrangement doesn't replace the need for private travel insurance with medical cover.
You're subject to all local laws and penalties, including those that may appear harsh by Australian standards. Research local laws before travelling.
If you're arrested or jailed, the Australian Government will do what it can to help you under our Consular Services Charter. But we can't get you out of trouble or out of jail.
Penalties for drug offences, even for possession of small amounts, include heavy fines and jail.
Some Australian criminal laws still apply when you're overseas. If you break these laws, you may face prosecution in Australia.
Every country or territory decides who can enter or leave through its borders. For specific information about the evidence you'll need to enter a foreign destination, including COVID-19 vaccinations and tests, check with the nearest embassy, consulate or immigration department of the destination you're entering.
Finland is part of the Schengen area. In some situations, this lets you enter Finland without a visa.
Entry and exit conditions can change at short notice. Contact the nearest embassy or consulate of Finland for details about visas, currency, customs and quarantine rules.
Entry into Finland
Finland has lifted border controls for Schengen and EU countries as well as countries on Finland’s green list (Australia isn't on the list) which you can view on the Finnish Border Guard’s website.
Travellers entering from all other countries born in, or before 2006, you must provide one of the following to enter Finland:
If you can't provide any of these documents, then you must have an essential reason for entry.
Departure from Finland
Airlines operating from Helsinki Airport are gradually reintroducing services. Be aware that flights are less frequent than before the pandemic and may be subject to change or be cancelled.
Australians seeking to return home can enter Finland to depart from airports in Finland, or transit to airports in neighbouring countries.
If you're returning to Australia from a third country, you can transit through Helsinki Airport, though you may not be able to leave the transit area at the airport.
Staying in Finland
If you’re remaining in Finland, find out about visa regulations in place and follow the advice of local authorities. For more information about visa requirements, please refer to the Finnish Immigration Service.
The Finnish authorities recommend the use of face masks when travelling on public transport and in other situations where maintaining safe distances is not possible. For further details visit the THL website.
COVID-19 measures may change overtime, but strict compliance with hygiene and social distancing rules remains essential at all times. There are tighter restrictions in place in some regions depending on the incidence of COVID-19. Many venues in Finland require proof of vaccination for entry. COVID-19 certificates issued outside the EU are now accepted in Finland (Ministry of Social Affairs and Health).
Within Finland, you may be required to show a COVID-19 Passport to enter or attend some events and venues.
Some countries won't let you enter unless your passport is valid for 6 months after you plan to leave that country. This can apply even if you're just transiting or stopping over.
Some foreign governments and airlines apply the rule inconsistently. Travellers can receive conflicting advice from different sources.
You can end up stranded if your passport is not valid for more than 6 months.
The Australian Government does not set these rules. Check your passport's expiry date before you travel. If you're not sure it'll be valid for long enough, consider getting a new passport.
Your passport is a valuable document. It's attractive to people who may try to use your identity to commit crimes.
Some people may try to trick you into giving them your passport. Always keep it in a safe place.
If your passport is lost or stolen, tell the Australian Government as soon as possible:
Get an entry stamp in your passport from border control when you first enter the Schengen area.
Always carry your passport.
If you have one, always carry your Finnish residency permit. You may be asked to verify your identity.
Always carry a valid passport even if you're travelling from another Schengen country.
The currency of Finland is the Euro.
Declare amounts over 10,000 euros or equivalent currency if you're travelling between Finland and any non-European Union (EU) country. This covers all forms of currency, not only cash.
You don't need to declare cash if you're travelling to or from another EU country.
The land border is open between Finland and Russia. Commercial bus routes are also available. The train service between St Petersburg and Helsinki will be suspended from 28 March. Australians seeking to cross will need to comply with Finnish border rules and requirements including on COVID-19. Visit the Finnish Border Guard website for more information.
Roads are mostly in very good condition. They can be dangerous in winter when it gets icy.
Long, dark nights during winter can reduce visibility.
Check the Finnish Transport Infrastructure Agency for updates on road conditions.
Get to know the local road rules.
Headlights must always be on, even during daylight hours.
Winter tyres must be fitted:
The blood alcohol limit is 0.05%. If you’re caught driving over the limit, authorities may arrest you.
Public transport, including buses and trains, is mostly reliable and safe.
Use officially marked taxis.
DFAT doesn't provide information on the safety of individual commercial airlines or flight paths.
Check Finland's air safety profile with the Aviation Safety Network.
Depending on what you need, contact your:
Call 112 or go to a hospital.
Call 112 or go to the local police station.
Always get a police report when you report a crime.
Your insurer should have a 24-hour emergency number.
Contact your provider with any complaints about tourist services or products.
Read the Consular Services Charter for what the Australian Government can and can't do to help you overseas.
Australia has a consulate in Finland, headed by an Honorary Consul.
It provides limited consular assistance. The consulate can't provide visa or immigration services or issue passports.
You can get full consular assistance from the Australian Embassy in Stockholm, Sweden.
Museokatu 25 B 23
Phone: (+358) 10 420 4492
Klarabergsviadukten 63, 8th Floor
111 64 Stockholm, Sweden
Phone: +46 8 613 2900
Fax: +46 8 613 2982
Facebook: Sweden Embassy Facebook
Check the Embassy website or Facebook page for details about opening hours and any temporary closures.
In a consular emergency, if you can't contact an embassy, call the 24-hour Consular Emergency Centre on:
Be the first to know official government advice when travelling.