Consumers who have booked Lapland winter breaks have been reassured that Santa will appear – even if there is no snow.
The organisation that promotes tourism to Finnish Lapland issued a response following media reports that rising temperatures had limited snow fall so far this winter.
At a time when northern Lapland would normally have 20-30cm of snow on the ground, there are now no more than a couple of centimetres in isolated patches, and the majority of the area has no snow at all, Sky News reported.
Tui had a “number of contingency plans” to ensure customers “can still have the trip they are looking forward to”.
A spokesman said the operator wanted to reassure anyone who had booked a holiday they were “confident” they would be “able to offer them the full experience as planned.”
Tourism marketing body House of Lapland said: “Annual variations of the arrival of snow are normal. The tourism companies operating in Finnish Lapland are well prepared to deal with low or no snow coverage.”
The arrival date of permanent snow cover may be October, November or December.
“Due to climate change, the unpredictability will probably increase in coming years,” House of Lapland admitted.
Meteorologist Ville Siiskonen, from the Finnish Meteorological Institute, said: ”First snow arrives to Lapland generally early to mid-October.
“Due to the prevailing weather type, the first snow has melted. The five-day forecast is that there will be a few centimetres of snow in south and central Lapland, and possibly more in northern Lapland.”
Despite the low snow cover, Lapland’s nature “has something to offer for all seasons”.
The marketing organisation said: “Right now is the best season and weather to enjoy the northern lights, fatbiking, outside campfire, and do light trekking and photographing.
“No snow makes it particularly easy to explore the beautiful National Parks in Lapland.
“If you prefer a hygge atmosphere, you can enjoy the magic of the Polar night in the special accomodations, eating the local delicacies and superfoods or relaxing in the warmth of the Finnish sauna.
“And of course Santa meets his guests, big or small, every day of the year.”
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