The Latvian authorities have announced that the country will no longer offer public transport fare reductions for citizens who do not hold a vaccination or recovery certificate due to a state of emergency that has been declared within the country.
Such an announcement was made by the Ministry of Transport of Latvia, which stated that the new rule would start being effective from next Monday, October 18, SchengenVisaInfo.com reports.
“From October 11, 2021, to January 11, 2022, a state of emergency has been declared in Latvia, and it has been determined that from October 18, adults who do not have a vaccination or disease certificate will not be entitled to fare reductions,” the statement of the Latvian Ministry of Transport reads.
According to a press release that the same Ministry has issued, the Latvian citizens who are not able to present a valid certificate that indicates that they have been fully vaccinated against the COVID-19 and those who are unable to present a recovery certificate will not be eligible to benefit from the fare reductions that are applied on routes run by public transport service providers that receive grants from the state or local government budget.
Regarding those who have already been vaccinated or recovered from the virus, the authorities noted that they would be able to attend public transport without having to pay the full fee.
Since the country is going through an emergency state, the number of passengers must not exceed 80 per cent of the total capacity of the vehicle. Still, if it is necessary to pick up passengers at stops outside regional routes destinations, the capacity can go up to 85 per cent.
Additionally, passengers should continue to follow all of the COVID-19 preventative measures while in a public transport vehicle. Every passenger is required to wear a face mask during the entire journey and sit away from one another.
“If, due to the nature of the vehicle, it is not possible to control the embarkation and disembarkation of passengers, passengers must choose their seats in such a way that the passenger compartment of the vehicle is evenly filled and the distance requirements are complied with as far as possible,” the Ministry added.
Based on the figures provided by the World Health Organization (WHO), Latvia has identified a total of 169,917 COVID-19 infection cases and has registered 2,794 deaths since the beginning of the pandemic.
As for the vaccination rates, data from the European Centre for Disease Preventions and Control (ECDC) shows that the country has administered 1,617,989 vaccine doses, meaning that 52.2 per cent of the country’s entire population is fully vaccinated.
Previously, the Latvian authorities revealed that travellers from Monaco, Malta, Czechia, Hungary, Poland, and Vatican City State could enter the Baltic State restriction-free since these territories were placed on the green list.