"Christmas is in danger"
Santa's home village in Lapland is empty this year
as travel restrictions remain in place in Finland
(SOUNDBITE) (English) VISIT ROVANIEMI MANAGING DIRECTOR, SANNA KARKKAINEN, SAYING:
"Well, for local businesses definitely Christmas is in danger. Christmas itself will come but how merry it will be, that's the question mark."
Source: Business Finland
Foreign tourist numbers were down 78% in August 2020
particularly in the northern part of the country
where businesses rely on visitors flying to meet Santa Claus
or to see the Northern Lights and ride on a snowmobile
(SOUNDBITE) (English) TOUR COMPANY SAFARCTICA SALES DIRECTOR, ANTTI ANTIKAINEN, SAYING:
"Christmas won't be cancelled you know. Santa is still here and all things are going on but of course it will affect local people, it will affect the brand of Lapland for sure."