Moving to Finland: Things you should know before you immigrate to Finland

Being one of the countries with the highest standards of life, Finland is a dream destination for many. With clean air, the chance to ski half of the year, and the chance to see the Northern Lights year after year, who doesn’t want to immigrate to Finland? When planning your big move to Finland, you want to have all useful information at hand. And that is exactly what you will find in our article below. Join us when we dive into all the wonderful things the land that is home to Santa Clause has to offer.



International removals to Finland with Eurosender

When you plan on moving to Finland from the USA, you are in for a treat. The Finnish have one of the healthiest lifestyles in the universe. Spending loads of time in the outdoors, relaxing in one of the more than three million saunas or wandering around in one of Finland’s great forests, you can find everything you could ever wish for. Only breathing the fresh Finnish air in the morning can give you the energy you might have been looking for. With all this natural beauty surrounding you, why not go for it and move to Finland? It has everything to lead a happy and healthy life!

When you have made up your mind and relocating from the USA to Finland is what you want to do with your life, then it’s time to get ready. Let’s brush up on your basic knowledge about Finland. In the table below you can find all info that a native Fin knows by heart.

CapitalHelsinki, with 650.000 inhabitants also the largest city in Finland.
TimezoneThere is only 1 time zone in Finland: UTC+2, which changes in summer to URC+3
CurrencyEuro (€)
PopulationFinland has about 6.5 million inhabitants.
How do you call someone from Finland?Finnish
Official languageThere are 3 officially recognized languages in Finland: Finnish, Swedish and Sami.
International dialing code+358
Emergency number112
DrivingOn the right side
TippingTips are not common. You may give one when you feel that you have received exceptional service, but the receiver may refuse to take it.
Unusual factThe number of saunas exceeds the number of cars in Finland. There are more than 3 million saunas spread out all over Finland.

Moving to Finland could be a stressful event. Securing a job, finding a place to live and making new friends, can be quite a challenge. So, you don’t want to stress about moving your stuff to your new crib. With Eurosender, you can sit back and we will do all the heavy lifting for you. We are specialists in international removals to Finland. With our powerful network of the biggest logistics companies, we provide you with the fastest and most flexible delivery of your belongings. With Eurosender you can rest assured that you will feel at home in your new environment as soon as you arrive.

Once your shipment has been picked up by the courier, you will receive a tracking number. After that, you can track your shipment 24/7 online with our free online shipment tracker. When you have any questions your order you can always count our customer support to help you by phone and email.

Living in Finland

Before your big move to Finland, you have probably visited Finland several times. However, a visit for business or for touristic purposes is something completely different from living in the country. Let’s have a look at some of the things that other expats noticed when they started living in the beautiful Nordic country called Finland.

  • There is no Finnish equivalent for the word “please” in Finnish. However, this doesn’t mean Finnish people are rude.
  • Kissing in public is not very well received in Finland. Try to show your affection in other places than in public transport or an elevator.
  • The Finnish have a love for inventing their own sports, with Wife-Carrying being one of the most eccentric of them. You might also want to sign up for the air-guitar championship.
  • Parts of the country are entirely dark or light for part of the year.

Visa Regulations for Finland

  • Citizens from the European Union, Norway, Switzerland, Iceland, and Liechtenstein have the right to residence in Finland. This is necessary when you want to live and work in Finland for more than three months. For this, you will have to register yourself by providing your intentions (work, education, etc) and the source of your income. A work permit is not required in this case but you do need to get a Personal Identification Code.
  • For non-EU citizens, the rules are a bit different. There are many countries that have a visa-free regime with Finland for a period of three months, in which you cannot work. There is also a list of countries that need a visa for Finland for every visit they want to make.
  • When you are from outside the EU and you want to live and work in Finland, you will have to apply for a residence and work permit. There are a number of different reasons for which these are issued., for example, work visa, study visa, reunion visa, etc. The best way to find out the exact list of documents you need and for which permit to apply, is to contact the Finnish embassy in your country. They are also responsible for handing out the final documents and permits.

 

 

Healthcare in Finland

Residents of Finland enjoy a universal healthcare system. This means that basically all healthcare is paid for by a state-funded institution, which is called Kela in Finland. At Kela, you can also get help when you are a student, unemployed or disabled and for a wide variety of other things.
It is also possible to take out private healthcare for treatment which is not covered by universal healthcare, though few Fins do this. Reason for this is that regular healthcare is of a very high standard and has very few waiting lists.

School and education

Finland is known for having one of the best education systems in the world. Until the age of seven, children are mainly engaged in learning by games and playing. When they start school they are ready to learn for more serious subjects. The Finnish school system is described below.

TypeAge
Kindergarten8 months-5 years old (Not compulsory)
Preschool6-7 (Compulsory)
Comprehensive school8-16 (Compulsory)
Upper Secondary school16-19 (Not compulsory)
Vocational school16-19 (Not compulsory)

Once you finish Upper Secondary school, you can go on to study for a Bachelor degree, which takes about three to four years. When you want to obtain a Master’s degree, you will have to hit the books for another two to three years. Whether you may attend a university or not, depends on the final exam results of your Secondary school.
A teacher is a very well-respected profession in Finland and you need to have a Master’s degree to become one. But even then, there is a lot of competition for these jobs.

The job market in Finland

The Finnish population is ageing rapidly and with that, therefore it is necessary to attract an additional workforce. Together with high wages and pleasant living conditions, Finland is an attractive place to make a career. You can even start your job hunt today. Just visit one of the many job boards online and start applying. When you do so, keep in mind that a few things are different in Finland.

  • Your diploma might not be accepted at the same level as in your native country. In any case, make sure that all your diplomas and certificates are translated.
  • Learn Finnish. Even though most people know English in Finland, without Finnish you will have a hard time closing a deal. When you know Swedish you will also get by, as this also an official language in Finland. But when you have to choose between studying Finnish and Swedish, always opt for Finnish.
  • Finland is very helpful to new residents. There are integration and language courses and it will be easy for you to blend in with the locals.
  • Punctuality is an important thing in Finland. Not being on time for an interview or an appointment means you can go home again.

Property information

It is common practice for many families in Finland to own their home. However, in the bigger cities, there is also sufficient opportunity to rent accommodation. When renting, you can choose to rent from the city administration, under certain conditions, or you can rent an apartment in the private sector. The living space let by the city administration is cheaper but also scarce, so that is why you might end up renting in the private sphere.
When you rent living space, be aware that your utility bills are not included in the rent price. In most cases, you will pay them by yourself directly to the utility company. Housing is, like many things in Finland, very expensive. Most households spend 20-25% of their income on housing payments.

Cost of moving to Finland

As mentioned before, the prices of living space are rather expensive, especially when you are just getting started. So you might think: How much is shipping from the USA to Finland? Several things are important when you ship your personal belongings to Finland. The dimensions of your shipment, the pick-up, and delivery address, and the tracking number. When you book with Eurosender, you know that we keep the cost of moving house to Finland to a bare minimum and provide you with the cheapest way to move furniture to Finland. Join many fellow expats and enjoy the lowest average moving costs to Finland.

Cost of living in Finland

As in any Scandinavian country, the cost of living in Finland is fairly high. Don’t worry too much about it, the Finnish salaries mostly match the expenses. In any case, it is a good idea to make a budget for the first few months you will be living in Finland. By calculating your income and expenses you can be sure that you have enough to live on until the end of each month. Below we have compiled some tips on how to save money while staying in Finland.

  • Use your bicycle instead of public transport, when the weather allows it.
  • Foraging is allowed, so bring a tent and make it into an improvised camping holiday.
  • Avoid buying bottled water. The water from the tap is of the same, or even better, quality and much cheaper.
  • Alcohol is extremely expensive in Finland, with prices more than 30% higher in comparison to surrounding countries. So, no matter from which country which you arrive, make sure to bring as many alcoholic beverages as allowed.
  • A cheap place to get ready made food is the supermarket. You can get an inexpensive lunch or dinner with a free cup of water. Expect to pay somewhere between 3-5.

Driving in Finland

Visitors from most countries can drive a car in Finland with their native driving license. However, citizens from outside the EU zone should have an International Driving Permit, which you can get at your local driving authority. Below you see several things that might differ from driving in your country.

  • Winter tires are mandatory from 1 December to 31 February. You may leave them on until 1 April when the conditions require so.
  • When driving outside of urban areas, be cautious for moose and reindeers on the road.
  • In most cities and towns you will find parking with time limitation. You will have to either buy a ticket or show your time with a parking disc. Make sure that you don’t exceed the time as the fines are no joke.
  • Headlights should be on under all circumstances.
  • Out of the urban areas, there might not be many petrol stations for long stretches of road. Always keep an eye on your fuel meter.
  • People coming from the opposite direction might flash their lights. This indicates that you should pay attention to something. It could mean that you have forgotten to switch on your lights, or that they have just seen a reindeer or police on the road.

See the most popular destination from where you can move

Canada

When you move from Canada to Finland the shock might not be so big as for other expats. Canadians also have to endure the cold and share their love for spending their time in the great outdoors. As the lifestyles show many similarities, people often have more technical questions such as: How to move to Finland from Canada? By car is not a variant, so by ship or by air are the only options. Using the services of Eurosender, you can save both time and money. We know how to get your belongings safely to your new digs in Finland.

United Kingdom

When you are tired of drinking tea, you should definitely consider moving to Finland from the UK. Finnish can be considered the biggest coffee lovers in the world. An average Fin goes through more than 12 kg of ground coffee a year. But that is not all, the eclectic culinary movement in Helsinki has gathered world-fame. Another thing is the cosiness of the Finnish cities, with Helsinki having just 650.000 inhabitants. The distances within the urban areas are small but it is also a short drive to the majestic nature that Finland has to offer. So get yourself together and ship your belongings to your new life in “Suomi”.

Germany

Flying from Helsinki to for example Berlin will take you no longer than two hours. So, you can drop by on your grandma’s birthday or join your family members for Christmas and still enjoy the perks of living in Finland. With air travel becoming cheaper each season, it is possible to enjoy the best of both worlds. The same goes for your personal belongings. With Eurosender you can ship anything that you can imagine when you are moving to Finland from Germany: from your bicycle to your motorcycle, and from your furniture to your fishing gear. So take that dream job in Helsinki or any other comfortable Finnish city and start a new life in one of the most modern countries in the world.

 

 

Other destinations?

Disclaimer: The materials provided in this article were collected from other credible resources to be used for general information purposes only. Given that the legislative basis of the country and its economic development have a changing nature, the information provided in the article could be subject to change. Whilst we endeavour to keep the information up-to-date and correct, Eurosender will not be liable for any inappropriate, incomplete, or inaccurate information. Certain links will lead to websites which are not under control of Eurosender. Thus, Eurosender accepts no liability in respect of materials, products or services being not under control of Eurosender.