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COVID-19

Sweden extends ban on travel from non-EU countries

Sweden has extended a ban on entry from outside the EU, just over a week before it was set to run out. Exemptions are in place however for people travelling from certain countries as well as those who meet specific criteria.

Sweden extends ban on travel from non-EU countries
Passengers on a flight from Stockholm's Arlanda airport. File photo: Stina Stjernqvist/TT

Sweden has had the entry ban in place since mid-March, in line with the EU's coronavirus recommendations, but has updated it several times. On Thursday the government again extended it to apply until December 22nd, after it was previously due to expire on October 31st.

Certain exemptions to the ban all remain in place. Those include people from the following countries, regardless of their purpose of travel (which means anyone, including tourists, from those countries can travel to Sweden):

  • EU/EEA, Andorra, Monaco, San Marino, Switzerland, Vatican City
  • Australia
  • Canada
  • Georgia
  • Japan
  • New Zealand
  • Rwanda
  • South Korea
  • Thailand
  • Tunisia
  • Uruguay

Exemptions also apply to people moving to live in Sweden, working in certain key jobs, or travelling for urgent family reasons, regardless of which country they are resident of or travelling from. You can read more about the exemptions (in English) from the Swedish police here, and more detail on the entry ban from the Swedish government (in Swedish) here.

Sweden does not have any quarantine rules in place for foreign visitors and no proof of a negative coronavirus test is required. However, everyone is expected to follow coronavirus health and safety guidelines, such as social distancing and avoiding public transport, especially at busy times.

Border control remains a national competence and is not decided at EU level, so its decisions are not legally binding for member states, but Sweden generally follows the European Council's recommendations.

The above rules only apply to travel to Sweden, not from. 

Member comments

  1. Hi Dominik, the source is the Swedish government which is linked to in the text. I see the same information at the link you posted, under Temporary entry ban to Sweden: “The entry ban does not apply to citizens and their families from EU/EEA countries and Switzerland”.
    Note that this ban relates to travel to Sweden, not travel from Sweden. I hope that helps.

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SAS

Crisis-stricken airline SAS records heavy losses

Troubled Scandinavian airline SAS, which has filed for bankruptcy in the United States, reported deeper losses in the fourth quarter on Wednesday.

Crisis-stricken airline SAS records heavy losses

Net losses amounted to more than 1.2 billion Swedish kronor ($117 million) in the August-October period, compared to a loss of 744 million kronor a year earlier, the company said in a statement.

“As with previous quarters in 2022, the currencies (foreign exchange) and jet-fuel price have brought strong headwinds for our business,” said SAS chief executive Anko van der Werff.

The airline, however, saw the “highest number” of passengers since the beginning of the Covid pandemic, with healthy demand in the summer, van der
Werff said.

The airline, which cut 5,000 jobs in 2020, is preparing for “substantial recruitments and rehirings” to meet the expected increase in demand next
summer, he added.

SAS filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceedings in the United States in July — a move allowing a company to restructure its debts under court
supervision.

Van der Werff said the airline expected to complete the court-supervised process during the second half of 2023.

Earlier this year, The airline posted a net loss of 1.84 billion kronor ($170 million) for the May-July period, compared to a loss of 1.33 billion kronor a year earlier.

Earnings were “severely affected” by the 15-day pilot strike between July 4th-19th, which led to the cancellation of some 4,000 flights affecting more than 380,000 passengers, the company said in a statement.

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