FAQ

What, where and when will there be traffic restrictions/ no-traffic areas during the NATO Summit? Which neighbourhoods of the city will be affected the most?

Further details on traffic restrictions will be announced closer to the event date.

However, it is already known that there will be traffic bans and restrictions in the Old Town, in the vicinity of the Lithuanian Exhibition and Congress Centre LITEXPO, in the territory of Vilnius Airport, and in some areas of the Naujamiestis elderships during the NATO Summit.

Delegation planes will also be landing and taking off at Kaunas Airport, so short-time traffic restrictions may be imposed during the arrival and departure of delegations.

Will key emergency services, such as ambulance, be able to enter the area subject to traffic restrictions in the event of an incident? How will they get in?

Only vehicles that have permits (the police, the DPS (Dignitary Protection Service); the ambulance and fire brigade that have permits will be able to enter the areas).

Will waste trucks, food couriers, postal parcel carriers and TAXIs be able to enter the no-traffic/restricted areas?

They will only be able to come on foot; no transport will be allowed on the days of the event, so people will need to stock up on goods in advance. Waste carriers will empty waste containers just before the closure of the area and shall have permits as required. TAXIs will not be allowed. Postal parcel carriers and food couriers will not be allowed to enter either.

Will vehicles transporting seriously ill or disabled people be able to enter the no-traffic/restricted areas (in case of essential health services that cannot be delayed)?

Movement of special-purpose vehicles (ambulance, fire brigade, etc.) will be managed in a coordinated manner with the authorisation of the Operations Manager.

Will city services such as GRINDA, Vilniaus Vandenys and landscapers be able to freely access the Old Town, the city centre, on 11-12 July and conduct emergency works if necessary?

With permits and authorisation from the Operations Headquarters. The services shall be required to have an appropriate level of preparedness to respond rapidly to similar situations. Only emergency services (such as the ambulance, fire brigade, etc.) shall be granted permits.

Will additional permits be required for city management companies to carry out works around the perimeter of the events?

None will be required outside the perimeter, but entry inside of it will be prohibited. All works must be completed before closure.

Will scooter and bicycle traffic be allowed at the Old Town?

More information on traffic restrictions will be announced closer to the event date. However, it is already known that during the NATO Summit, movement of all types of vehicles will be restricted in the Old Town.

Will I be able to get to Mass at the Cathedral or other churches in the Old Town on 11-12 July?

It is already known that during the NATO Summit, movement of all types of vehicles will be restricted in the Old Town, thus allow more time for arriving at the Mass and plan that you will need to walk to the Cathedral.

Will I be able to freely access clinics, dental clinics, etc. located in the Old Town? How will I be able to leave from the Old Town by car for my daily kidney dialysis appointment?

This will be more complicated – we advise to walk along the designated pedestrian passages and call the institution beforehand to check if it will be open.

In the case of dialysis, if going in own car to the facility is planned, driving in the restricted area will be allowed having furnished respective documents in evidence of the procedure. In cases where a special bus is used to transport the patient to the treatment facility, a separate authorisation for the vehicle will be required.

Will there be any spaces in the Old Town or around the Lithuanian Exhibition and Congress Centre LITEXPO where Vilnius residents will not be able to reach even on foot?

More information on traffic restrictions will be announced closer to the event date.

However, it is already known that during the NATO Summit all traffic will be restricted in the Old Town, in the vicinity of the Lithuanian Exhibition and Congress Centre LITEXPO, in the territory of Vilnius Airport, and areas of individual elderships of Naujamiestis.

Will I be able to take my children to kindergartens in the Old Town without any restrictions?

This will depend on the location of the kindergarten – whether it is in a high-security zone. Possibly, walking to the kindergarten may be the only option. More information on traffic restrictions will be announced closer to the event date.

Will I be able to use public transport passing by LITEXPO Exhibition and Congress Centre and the Old Town?

According to the plans, public transport movement will be banned around the Lithuanian Exhibition and Congress Centre LITEXPO on 11-12 July.

A traffic ban is planned in the Old Town on 10-12 July. Stay tuned for further details.

Will the loop traffic in the Old Town be temporarily lifted during the NATO Summit?

Yes, the plan is to cancel loop traffic to ensure smooth movement of transport of the delegations.

Will the traffic restrictions affect intercity public transport to/from the bus station/train station?

Public transport will go to the bus/ train station, but its routes may change, e.g. bypassing the Old Town and certain sections of the streets.

Will there be a need to install temporary roads/connections/passes in the city?

More information on traffic restrictions will be announced closer to the event date.

According to the plans, public transport movement will be banned around the Lithuanian Exhibition and Congress Centre LITEXPO on 11-12 July.

A traffic ban is planned in the Old Town on 10-12 July. Stay tuned for further details.

Who and in what procedure will issue these special permits for special service vehicles to enter the Old Town/ LITEXPO? Will it be an electronic system? Will permits be required to access airports?

Permits will be produced and issued by the DPS (Dignitary Protection Service), but in exceptional cases only, when necessary for the event.

No one will need permits to access the airport and they will not be produced to this end, at least no such measures have been planned for the time being.

If one road is temporarily restricted, there will always be an alternative access for public transport, airport staff and passengers.

It is likely that some of the participants will not be able to stay in Vilnius, are there any negotiations with intercity carriers (Trakai, Kaunas) regarding the addition of routes and stops at the place of the events?

Information will be available later on.

What legal acts are used as the grounds for closing certain parts of the city to traffic and imposing other restrictions?

The planned restrictions will be implemented in accordance with Article 27(2)(4): https://www.e-tar.lt/portal/lt/legalAct/TAR.AF4E384215F8/asr Article 27.

Officials’ rights: when ensuring the implementation of the tasks of the Dignitary Protection Service, officials have the right to: request the police to restrict or prohibit vehicle traffic or pedestrian traffic in order to ensure the safety of protected persons and/or protected objects.

Law on Police Activity: (https://e-seimas.lrs.lt/portal/legalAct/lt/TAD/TAIS.111665/asr  Article 22(1)(6): “6) to temporarily restrict access of persons or vehicles to a certain territory or premises, to suspend the works being carried out, to restrict or modify the traffic order when there is a danger to nature, public order, personal or state security.”

What traffic/movement/ meeting restrictions will apply in Vilnius Old Town?

There will be a number of traffic restrictions, some streets or areas may be closed completely, some intermittently. Information on finalised restrictions will be announced in advance.

How the police will escort VIPs?

People will be escorted as usual, in accordance with applicable requirements and procedures.

I have a parking permit valid in a paid zone in the Old Town/city centre. Will I get an extension or any compensation for the NATO Summit days?

Persons who have a parking permit (both residents and businesses) will be allowed to park their cars in
other areas of Vilnius city and in paid parking zones where traffic restrictions will not be imposed.

How are the police preparing for the forthcoming NATO Summit? What are the main tasks?

The police are preparing very responsibly. The main tasks include ensuring public order, public safety, and traffic safety during ongoing events, and accompanying delegations. Much attention will be paid to public order in and around the living quarters and meeting places of event participants.

What are the possible threats to public security – terrorist attacks, provocations, cyber incidents?

Officials are responsibly preparing for all possible scenarios.

How will public security be ensured during this important event?

In addition to the usual day-to-day activities, additional measures will be taken to ensure public security, including in cyberspace.

How many officials will be used?

The exact number of officials cannot be disclosed, but they will be deployed as necessary.

Can events be planned in Vilnius in mid-July?

Campaigns, pickets and other events will be restricted on 10 – 13 July, at least in the areas under security.

Can graduation events be planned in mid-July in schools, squares, churches in the Old Town - certificate/university diploma ceremonies, graduation parties?

We recommend to hold graduation ceremonies and graduation parties after the NATO Summit.

Can I plan a wedding at the Town Hall or in the public outdoor spaces of the Old Town on 11-12 July?

We do not recommend doing that on those days, because traffic will be restricted. But if you cannot plan otherwise, plan with extra time and without any vehicles.

Will I be able to fly to/ from Vilnius on 10-13 July? What will be the impact on Kaunas Airport operations?

From 11 July, noon, until 12 July 2 p.m., all flights will be prohibited in Vilnius airspace in line with NATO security requirements. Stay tuned for updates.

Air traffic disruptions and delays are also possible due to higher than normal aircraft traffic and congestion at Vilnius and Kaunas airports.

Will I be able to watch the guest delegations' planes landing at the public planespotting site at the airport on 11-12 July?

Temporarily, on the days of the NATO Summit, and for some time before and after the event, planespotting enthusiasts are advised not to go to the site, as the perimeter of the airport will be guarded.

Will balloons and drones be able to take off over Vilnius on 11-12 July, or will there be restrictions? Will I be able to kayak on the Neris River past the Lithuanian Exhibition and Congress Centre LITEXPO?

On 7-13 July, small aircraft, balloons and drones will be banned from flying over Lithuania.

Waterborne vehicles will be banned on the stretch of the River Neris from Antakalnis Bridge to Gariūnai Bridge. The restrictions apply on 10-13 July.

Where will all the planes be accommodated? Vilnius Airport is not a big airport - will some delegations go to Kaunas Airport? Or will there be other ways of getting to Vilnius?

The common goal of all authorities responsible for the NATO Summit is to ensure that all delegations arrive at and depart from the event without any disruption.

Aircraft for delegations attending the NATO Summit will land at Vilnius and Kaunas airports. The specific numbers and distribution of aircraft between the airports are still being coordinated.

Approximately how many delegations are scheduled to be flown in before/during the NATO Summit?

50 delegations are expected.

Will scheduled, charter flights be stopped/affected? How?

On 11-12 July, all commercial flights will be banned in Vilnius airspace during the NATO Summit in Lithuania pursuant to NATO security requirements.

Flights in Vilnius will be restricted for slightly more than a day, from noon on 11 July to 2 p.m. on 12 July.

What additional actions (security) will Lithuanian Airports take in relation to NATO Summit flights?

The Lithuanian Airports Authority cooperates with Lithuanian and international security organisations. We are ready to take any additional measures necessary to ensure security. It is planned that additional security at Kaunas and Vilnius airports will be provided by the Armed Forces and Public Security Service officers.

What inconveniences will passengers of Lithuanian Airports face due to the NATO Summit?

It is likely that passengers may experience some inconvenience due to the restrictions on the route to Vilnius Airport. Due to the significant increase in the number of arriving and departing aircraft of official delegations, scheduled flights may be affected and it may take longer than usual to reach Vilnius Airport.

Will delegations use the VIP terminal VNO? Will there be any additional facilities at the airport for NATO delegations?

Yes, the VIP terminal will be used for servicing NATO delegations. Kaunas Airport will have additional service facilities for welcoming and seeing-off guests.

Will the VIP terminal in Vilnius be open on 11-12 July?

The VIP terminal will not provide commercial services on those days and will be used for the NATO Summit delegations only.

Will works of construction of the terminal be affected during the arrival of NATO delegations? Will they be suspended at the airports?

It is likely that the construction of the new departures terminal at Vilnius Airport may have to be temporarily suspended, but this will not affect the deadlines of the construction works of the terminal.

Will people willing to enter the passenger terminals at Vilnius Airport be able to do so?

Yes. The passenger terminals at Vilnius Airport will work as normal and will be open for access, however, there may be additional restrictions and checks around the airport.

Will my business be affected if we are located next to the Old Town/Centre hotels? If so, will I get a compensation?

Businesses are advised to stock up in advance due to the planned traffic restrictions.

Which outdoor cafes may interfere with the delegations’ routes and are unlikely to be open on NATO Summit days?

Further details on possible traffic and activity restrictions will be announced closer to the event.

Will souvenir vendors be able to work in Pilies Street?

Outdoor trade areas will be heavily restricted in the Old Town. Further details on the streets and venues which will be subject to restrictions will be disclosed later on.

Will service vehicles and goods suppliers be able to access outdoor cafes?

We advise to stock up on the necessary supplies in advance as there will be no transport access on the days of the NATO Summit from the 10th to the 12th.

I am a tour guide/tourism representative. Can I organise tours of Vilnius to foreign and local tourists on 11-12 July?

Walking tours will be allowed.

Will there be enough hotels in Vilnius? Where will the delegations be accommodated: in hotels only or in other accommodation facilities as well? Which ones? If there are not enough hotels, will the delegations be accommodated in other cities, Kaunas for example?

We expect 40-50 delegations (up to 3,000 guests) and up to 2,000 representatives of NGOs and the international media to attend the NATO Summit in Vilnius on 11-12 of July of this year.

It is the common aim of all the institutions responsible for the NATO Summit to ensure that this historic event runs as smoothly as possible. In order to meet the needs of delegations and other guests, accommodation is planned not only in Vilnius. Media representatives will be able to stay both in hotels and to book accommodation on hospitality platforms.

There is information appearing that there are problems with hotels, i.e. accommodation for NATO Summit participants. What is the situation? What is the estimated number of participants in the NATO Summit?

All the institutions responsible for the NATO Summit share the common goal of ensuring that this historic event runs as smoothly as possible. In order to meet the needs of delegations and other guests, accommodation is planned not only in Vilnius. Media representatives will be able to choose accommodation not only in hotels but also book it on hospitality platforms.

We expect 40-50 delegations (up to 3,000 guests) and up to 2,000 representatives of NGOs and international media to attend the NATO Summit in Vilnius on 11-12 July of this year.

What exactly will need to be done in preparation for the NATO Summit (what will need to be set up, built at the Lithuanian Exhibition and Congress Centre LITEXPO, what technical equipment will need to be purchased, etc.). What has already been done? What public procurement contracts have been or will be announced?

The Lithuanian Exhibition and Congress Centre LITEXPO will host NATO Summit working sessions, bilateral meetings and press conferences. It will also include a media centre, a working area for the delegates and catering facilities. A public event – a forum for representatives of NGOs and analytical centres – will take place in one of the spaces set up on the LITEXPO grounds on the days of the NATO Summit.

The LITEXPO space will be redesigned and adapted to the needs of the event.

The infrastructure of the exhibition centre will be modernised. Detailed requirements of the NATO International Secretariat have been set for the functional zoning, furniture layout and selection of the necessary equipment for the event premises.

Preparatory works have already started. Procurement processes are underway. Landscaping has started. The City of Vilnius conducts the works in the area outside the perimeter of the LITEXPO Lithuanian Exhibition and Congress Centre. Works of renovation of the pedestrian path leading from K. Jelskio St. to the LITEXPO Exhibition and Congress Centre have been started, and in the autumn, trees on both sides of the walkway were pruned. The infrastructure of the car parking lots is also being adapted to the needs of the event, with the construction of a temporary road linking the two car parking lots. A plan of measures is being prepared for traffic in the residential area next to the Lithuanian Exhibition and Congress Centre LITEXPO. All works must be completed by 1 July 2023.

How are the surroundings of the Lithuanian Exhibition and Congress Centre LITEXPO being prepared? Will they be/are they being arranged? Why was LITEXPO chosen and how will security be ensured?

The Lithuanian Exhibition and Congress Centre LITEXPO was chosen because of its ability to adapt its premises and external spaces to the Summit in line with NATO security requirements for infrastructure, and its ability to ensure the security of guests and information.

Works of adaptation of the Lithuanian Exhibition and Congress Centre LITEXPO for the NATO event have started. The City of Vilnius is carrying out works in the area outside the perimeter of the Lithuanian Exhibition and Congress Centre LITEXPO. The pedestrian path leading from K. Jelskio Street to the LITEXPO Exhibition and Congress Centre is being improved. The infrastructure of the car parking lots is being adapted to the needs of the event, building a temporary road connecting the two car parking lots, which will be dismantled after the event. All works must be completed by 1 July 2023.

Landscaping works have started around the Lithuanian Exhibition and Congress Centre LITEXPO. What is planned to be done and how much money will be designated to this end?

The City of Vilnius conducts works in the territory outside the perimeter of the Lithuanian Exhibition and Congress Centre LITEXPO. The pedestrian path leading from K. Jelskio St. to the LITEXPO Exhibition and Congress Centre is currently being renovated. The infrastructure of the car parking lots is being adapted to the needs of the event, building a temporary road connecting the two car parking lots, which will be dismantled after the event. For information on the funds allocated for these works, please contact the City of Vilnius.

What is the deadline for completing landscaping works?

All works must be completed by 1 July 2023.

There is an unfinished abandoned building next to the Lithuanian Exhibition and Congress Centre LITEXPO. Will any works be conducted on it?

This building is privately owned.

When will the preparatory works at the LITEXPO Exhibition and Congress Centre itself start?

Work for adapting the premises and the environment of the Lithuanian Exhibition and Congress Centre LITEXPO for the NATO event have already started.

What is the current stage of preparations for the NATO Summit to be held in Lithuania in 2023? Is everything going according to the plan? What is the plan?

Preparations for the NATO Summit are progressing according to the plan approved by the Working Group of the Government. Procurement, logistics planning and contracts with suppliers of services and goods are currently underway.

Is Lithuania ready and able to welcome the arriving guests?

Lithuania is capable of organising such an event and welcoming the arriving guests. Preparations for the event have started early, and plans are being coordinated with NATO and the responsible authorities of the Republic of Lithuania. An inter-institutional group has been set up at the governmental level to coordinate the event, with separate sub-groups dedicated to individual organisational issues: content and programme coordination, logistics, hospitality, security and communication.

Are there any difficulties in organising the event, and what difficulties do you see in the future?

The event plans have been drawn up on the basis of a coherence of organisational actions and plans for the purchase of the necessary goods and services, in accordance with a preliminary budget estimate.

What additional infrastructural and security measures will be taken?

The physical security of the event (including the infrastructure) is subject to detailed NATO requirements, which we cannot comment on for security reasons. The major infrastructural work is the adaptation of LITEXPO’s indoor and outdoor spaces for the event, in accordance with NATO security requirements for infrastructure, guest and information security.

Is there enough staff for the event or will help be sought from other institutions?

Although the Ministry of Foreign Affairs plays a major role in organising and coordinating the event, the individual organisational stages involve the staff of many institutions, with representatives of all ministries and other public institutions participating in the working group. LITEXPO plays a major role in arranging the adaptation of the premises. The institutions that will ensure security, for example the Dignitary Protection Service, the Lithuanian Police, etc., are also very important. Lithuanian institutions have sufficient human resources for the organisation of the event, but close coordination and a clear understanding of responsibilities among all the participating entities are of paramount importance.

Which institutions in Lithuania are generally responsible for the preparations for the NATO Summit?

The working group set up by the Prime Minister’s Decree includes representatives of many institutions. The head of the Working Group is the Vice-Chancellor of the Government, Rolandas Kriščiūnas. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs plays the role of a coordinator and a secretariat.

What key events are planned for 2023?

It will be a two-day summit of NATO leaders and partners. A forum of representatives of non-governmental institutions and analytical centres will take place at the same time.

What is the main idea or message that Lithuania plans to convey at the NATO Summit?

The resolution adopted by the Seimas of the Republic of Lithuania on 6 April “On Lithuania’s Key Objectives for the NATO Summit in Vilnius” sets out Lithuania’s key objectives for the NATO Summit to be held in Vilnius:

  • to significantly strengthen the forward defence and deterrence of the Baltic region and the entire eastern part of NATO; to significantly increase the number of permanently stationed Allied ground forces in Lithuania to a brigade size; to strengthen integrated air and missile defence, including air defence capabilities in Lithuania and in the region; to ensure the readiness to host Allied forces through the prepositioning of Allied military equipment and other means;
  • to fully support Ukraine through practical means, including NATO political support, recognising the need to invite Ukraine to become a NATO Member State at the NATO Summit in Vilnius;
  • welcoming Finland’s accession to NATO, to actively contribute to the early ratification of Sweden’s accession protocols in Hungary and Turkey in time for the NATO Summit in Vilnius;
  • to pursue the commitment of all NATO Member States to significantly increase defence funding by at least 2% of Gross Domestic Product from 2025 onwards, and to agree on an ambitious commitment by all NATO Member States to increase long-term investment in defence capabilities and the defence industry;
  • to expand and strengthen practical cooperation between NATO and its Indo-Pacific partners, including in the areas of technology, cyber-defence and resilience to hybrid threats, and in the pursuit of a rules-based international order.

Resolution of the Seimas of the Republic of Lithuania on Lithuania’s key objectives at the NATO Summit in Vilnius: https://e-seimas.lrs.lt/portal/legalAct/lt/TAP/6c8785d0d3ac11ed9b3c9397e1236c2a

Why was Lithuania, Vilnius, chosen for the NATO Summit? What message is being sent?

Vilnius was chosen by a joint decision of NATO countries, and we consider it first and foremost as an acknowledgement of Lithuania’s role in the Alliance. In almost 20 years of NATO membership, Lithuania has proven to be an active and reliable member of the Alliance, actively participating in NATO operations and missions, and consistently strengthening resilience and cyber security. The NATO Energy Security Centre in Vilnius has been successfully operating with the participation of 13 countries. Lithuania invests heavily in military infrastructure and is fully implementing the Welsh Summit commitments on defence investment, contributing more than 2% of GDP.

The fact that the Summit is being held in Lithuania also sends a clear message of NATO unity to Russia, which is carrying out a brutal aggression against Ukraine. A number of NATO leaders have said that the Alliance will defend every inch of the NATO territory.

At the same time, we are also sending a message to the people of Lithuania that the decision to join the most powerful defence alliance 19 years ago was the right and timely one. The fact that at a time of geopolitical upheaval and turmoil we are members of the world’s most powerful defence alliance, currently comprising 31 countries, gives us strong confidence in Lithuania’s secure future.

How is it useful and important for Lithuania that this meeting is taking place in Vilnius?

We hope that the NATO Summit will demonstrate NATO’s solidarity, unity and focus in the face of Russia’s aggression against Ukraine – the biggest war in Europe since World War II. During the NATO Summit in Vilnius, we expect to see not only the leaders of European countries, but also the leaders of the USA, Canada and NATO partners (European Union, Japan, South Korea, Australia, New Zealand). This is an important signal and a demonstration of attention to the security situation in our country and the region. This will inevitably be reflected in discussions and decisions.

The NATO Summit in Vilnius is also a signal to potential aggressors that NATO is here and strong and ready to defend every inch of the Alliance. The NATO leaders gathered in the capital of Lithuania will take decisions to strengthen the security of all of us and our allies.

Around 2,000 representatives of the world’s media are expected at the NATO Summit in Vilnius. Lithuania has never had such global attention before.

Is it possible that we will be asked to temporarily move out of our homes/ offices if they are in close proximity to the critical facilities where NATO Summit participants will be gathering/ living? If so, what will be offered to me and will I be compensated?

The common goal of all the institutions responsible for the NATO Summit is to ensure that both the participants and residents of the city are inconvenienced as little as possible. According to the currently available information, no temporary relocation of residents is planned.

Will there be any restrictions on taking pictures of guests or approaching the event/ hotels? Visiting the beach close to LITEXPO?

There will be strict restrictions, including a prohibition to visit the beach, in the surroundings of this territory.

What recommendations do you have for Vilnius residents regarding the NATO Summit in July in terms of holiday planning, those involved in renting accommodation, etc.?

We recommended to walk or take public transport around the city, and to telework whenever possible.  Also, plan your departure to/ return from holidays before or after the event.