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NEWSLETTER

Here’s the new list of countries Sweden warns you should avoid right now

Sweden on Wednesday added Cyprus to its list of countries exempt from its advisory against non-essential travel, but extended it for the UK and several other countries in the European Union.

Here's the new list of countries Sweden warns you should avoid right now
The foreign ministry's travel advisory is not a legally binding ban, but may affect your travel insurance. Photo: Henrik Montgomery/TT

From September 10th, the advice is lifted for journeys to Cyprus, the Swedish foreign ministry said.

That means that non-essential journeys are now ok – as far as the Swedish foreign ministry is concerned – to Andorra, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Croatia, Denmark, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Monaco, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, San Marino, Spain, Switzerland and the Vatican.

But for other countries in the EU, EEA and Schengen (which leaves only seven EU countries: Estonia, Finland, Ireland, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Slovakia and Slovenia), as well as the UK, the recommendation was extended on Wednesday until September 23rd.

The advice against non-essential travel to countries outside the EU remains in place until November 15th, for now.

The foreign ministry's advice against non-essential travel is not a legally binding ban, but has other implications that residents in Sweden may want to take into account before deciding to travel, for example that your Swedish travel insurance may not be valid if you disregard the advice.

The guidance has been in place since an early stage in the pandemic, due to global uncertainty and travel bans, so it relates to restrictions in place for travellers rather than being based on the spread of infection in the countries.

That said, it is important to remember that individual countries may also have their own rules about entry from Sweden, and that these may change quickly.

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SAS

SAS strike affected 380,000 passengers in July

More than 3,700 flights where cancelled and 380,000 passengers where affected by the 15-day strike which hit Scandinavia's SAS airline last month, the company has revealed.

SAS strike affected 380,000 passengers in July

“We sincerely apologize to our customers who were affected by the July strike,” Anko van der Werff, the company’s chief executive, said in a press release. “We are happy operations returned to normality again allowing us to start regaining our customers’ trust.”

According to the release, 1.3 million passengers travelled with the airline in July, which was still a 23 percent increase on the same month last year, when Covid-19 restrictions were still reducing tourism levels.

“In comparison with last month, the total number of passengers decreased with 32 percent and capacity was decreased by 23 percent, which was a result from the 15-day pilot strike,” the release read. 

Pilot unions in Sweden, Denmark and Norway, went on strike for 15 days last month over pay, conditions, and the company’s refusal to rehire pilots laid off during the Covid-19 pandemic on the same terms as before. 

The strike, which cost the airline between €9m and €12m a day, was ended on July 19th, after which it took several days to get flights back to normal

Van der Werff said company said it would now continue putting in place its restructuring plan, SAS FORWARD, and push ahead with restructuring in the US, where the company has filed for Chapter 11. 

He said these would both “accelerate the transformation process that will lead to a financially stable airline, that will be able to deliver the service our customers are expecting”. 

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