As in previous years, the number of assistance cases was highest in the countries to which Finns prefer to journey: Spain, Estonia, Germany, Asia and Sweden. In 2022, the Unit for Consular Help of the Ministry for International Affairs was involved in managing 652 cases of death abroad. There were 171 sufferers of crime abroad, 303 needed assistance due to a health problem and 184 were imprisoned or detained. The latter quantity does not include the Nordic nations, as such cases are handled through direct contact between the authorities of the Nordic nations. The numbers increased fairly from 2021.
In practice, obtaining a brand new passport or travel record abroad can mean a long journey from the holiday destination towards the capital. A longer stay can certainly result in additional hassle plus costs, such as trips to the mission, accommodation costs, purchase of new return tickets plus passport fees.
The consular services from the Ministry for Foreign Affairs recommend that you always remove travel insurance before travelling. This really is especially vital in case something serious occurs. The European Health Insurance Card entitles people covered by health insurance in Finland to medically necessary medical care during a temporary stay in another EU or EEA nation, Switzerland, the Great Britain or Northern Ireland. The patient will be charged a co-payment. Nevertheless , the card does not cover healthcare transport to Finland. Medical center bills can quickly rise in order to thousands of euros. International air flow ambulance flights to Finland cost tens of thousands of euros.
The come back of tourism has increased Finnish travellers’ problems and information needs abroad again. Probably the most common reasons for contacting the particular 24/7 service of the Ministry for Foreign Affairs last year was passport-related questions and concerns. The traveller’s passport had unexpectedly expired, been lost or left behind in your own home. The passport is a very essential document for travellers – an essential one to bring along and keep up to date. It allows holidaymakers to move from one country to a different and to prove their identification.
Traveling advisories remain popular
The Ministry to get Foreign Affairs publishes vacation advisories for more than a hundred and fifty countries, and they remain probably the most read content on the exterior ministry’s website. In 2022, readers of the travel advisories were most interested in those for Spain, Italy plus Greece. The travel advisory for Ukraine was also appealing as the security situation damaged rapidly.
Requests for assistance are delivered to the missions, the Ministry for Foreign Affairs as well as the ministry’s 24/7 service (+358 9 160 55555, paivystys. um@formin. fi). The day to day service is responsible for emergency consular services outside the office hours of all Finnish missions abroad. The primary duty of both missions and the 24/7 assistance is to provide advice and help the customer to advance their own case independently. When planning a visit abroad, or at the most recent if something unfortunate occurs during the trip, it is important to keep in mind the services provided by the Ministry for Foreign Affairs.
The Ministry for International Affairs helps travellers overseas
This past year, nearly 178, 000 visitors submitted a travel notification to the Ministry for International Affairs through the Matkustusilmoitus. fi service for a total associated with 203 countries or locations. Spain, Greece, Italy plus Turkey accounted for the highest variety of notifications. “The travel notification enables the ministry to quickly contact the traveller in a crisis if the security situation in the country makes it essential. It is also advisable to submit a travel notification whenever moving abroad permanently or temporarily, ” says Outi Saarikoski , Director of the Unit designed for Consular Assistance.
“We cannot overstate the importance of travel insurance. It makes matters much easier in problem circumstances. Where the European Health Insurance Credit card is not valid and the traveller does not have travel insurance, the costs are usually borne by the traveller or his or her family, ” says Saarikoski.
In 2022, the Ministry for International Affairs and the missions abroad provided consular services to some total of approximately 256, 000 customers. The demand designed for advisory services, in particular, continuing to grow. During the year, the ministry’s 24/7 service received over 8, 000 contacts in total.
In 2022, Finnish missions around the world issued 23, 297 new passports and four, 373 identity cards. When compared to previous year, these figures also increased.
The biggest single consular problems of the year arose whenever Russia invaded Ukraine in February 2022, and a large number of Finns were assisted in leaving the war zone. There was almost 100 natural or man-made crisis situations plus emergencies that were significant in the perspective of the protection associated with Finnish travellers last year. Internal conflicts and unrest, one example is in Afghanistan, Ethiopia plus Iran, were particularly notable. In addition to these, natural disasters such as hurricanes, earthquakes plus volcanic eruptions kept the particular Ministry for Foreign Affairs busy.
“It is not always enough for your passport to be valid throughout the trip. In some countries, the authorities require the passport remains valid for many months after the trip. If you have multiple citizenships, local authorities may also require you to present a passport from the other country, especially when leaving the country. Take good care of the passport and keep it in a safe place. Never depart your passport or various other valuables unattended during your moves, for example in a rental car. It may easily get stolen right now there, ” Saarikoski says.
- Outi Saarikoski, Director, Unit meant for Consular Assistance, tel. +358 295 350 696
- Email addresses of the Ministry for Foreign Affairs are usually in the form firstname. lastname@formin. fi.