"We get port call cancellations to Longyearbyen every day now," says Assisting Harbor Master Rikhart Olsen Ingerø. Norway's ban on most international visitors is extended to August 20 and includes Svalbard.
Lapland tourism players are divided over a proposal to mitigate carbon emissions by introducing a flight tax. On Thursday, a citizens’ initiative aimed at implementing a tax passed the 50,000-signature threshold required for lawmakers to consider it. It notes that a similar scheme already in place in neighbouring Sweden adds between six and 40 euros to most airfares.
Plans for the Republic of Santa Claus theme park north of Rovaniemi include a giant transparent dome with round-the-year artificial snowfall and northern lights, gingerbread houses, a tall Christmas-tree formed hotel and the world’s biggest sauna village.