Departure to Helsinki

Customs and import to Helsinki

Home > Expat Guides > Europe > Finland > Helsinki

Finland is part of the Schengen area for freedom of movement.  If you are a citizen of the European Union, you will not need to make a declaration when entering Finland .  The sections below will first deal with travel within the EU and then with immigration from outside the EU.

Travel within the member countries of the EU

Travelers entering from another EU country may import purchases exempt from tax without restrictions on quantity or value. Through the new EU legislation even the earlier restrictions regarding alcoholic beverages and tobacco products have ceased to apply. However, these products may only be imported exempt from tax as presents, or for the travelers' own or their families' use.  For the countries which joined EU on 1st May 2004, except Cyprus and Malta , the import of tobacco products exempt from tax will be restricted under the so called transition period.

Travelers and immigrants coming from outside the EU

Travelers entering Finland from outside the EU may import the following products without duties or other taxes as presents or for their own or their families' use. A person residing in a country outside the European Economic Area, arriving in Finland by land or by sea from a country outside the European Economic Area and staying in Finland for purposes other than transit for a maximum duration of 72 hours is not allowed to import alcoholic beverages.

Age limit Alcoholic drinks
20 or over 1 liter strong alcohol of more than 22% or
18 or over 2 liters aperitif (under 22 %) or sparkling wines and
2 liters of other wines and
16 liters of beer
Age limit Tobacco
17 or over 200 cigarettes or 100 cigarillos (max. 3 g each) or
50 cigars or 250 g pipe tobacco or loose cigarette tobacco
In addition to the above, a traveler arriving in Finland from outside the European Union may bring in the same quantities of tobacco products and alcoholic beverages free of tax as may be brought in free of tax from another EU country, provided that he can prove that the products have been purchased and taxes paid in another member state.
  50 g perfumes or 0.25 liter toilet water
Age limit Tea and coffee
15 or over 100 g tea or 40 g tea extract and
500 g coffee or 200 g coffee extract or concentrate
In addition to the above and their own luggage, travelers may import personal goods free of tax up to the maximum value of EURO 185.01. This includes the value of imported beer.

Alcoholic beverages containing not more than 22 per cent ethyl alcohol by volume comprise aperitif wines, vermouths, port wines, madeiras and sherries and long drinks. Strong alcoholic beverages containing over 22 per cent ethyl alcohol by volume comprise brandies, whiskies, rums, liqueurs, punches, bitters, cocktails, strong aperitifs and spirits. The importation of kits for making alcoholic drinks is prohibited.

Vaccination certificate requirements: No vaccination requirements for any international traveler.

Currency regulations: There are no restrictions on the importation or exportation of currency.

Foodstuffs: Dairy and egg products, fish and fish products and meat and meat products may be imported from EU countries without restriction to be consumed by the traveler himself or his family.

Travelers entering Finland from outside the EU may import no more than 1 kg dairy and egg products, 1 kg fish and fish products and 1 kg of meat or meat products originating in countries from where these products may be imported to the EU.

Endangered animals and plants and products, including souvenirs, made of them: A permit is needed for the export and import of endangered species of animals and plants and products made of them (e.g. furs from wild cat species, wolves, and bears etc., whale products, birds of prey and parrots, many reptiles and reptile products, corals, orchids and cactuses).

More Information: Finnish Environment Institute, tel. +358-(0)9-403 000, telefax +358-(0)9-4030 0791.

Pharmaceutical products: The importation of pharmaceutical products and certain toxicants and the importation and exportation of narcotics, and radioactive substances is prohibited without a proper permit. For his own use a traveler may, however, bring in medicine from a country of the European Economic Area (EU-countries, Norway , Iceland and Liechtenstein) for a maximum of. one year's treatment and from another countries for a maximum of three months' treatment. A traveler is allowed to bring medicine considered to be narcotic drugs for his or her own use for a maximum of 14 days' treatment. For importation of medicine available in Finland only a doctor's prescription is needed.

Firearms: A license must be obtained for firearms and ammunition imported by a traveler for his own use. This is issued by the police at the place of importation or beforehand from the police in the traveler's place of residence. Sharp-edged weapons may not be imported.

More Information: Ministry of Interior, Police Department, tel. +358-(0)9-1601.

Update 20/05/2008


Facebook Twitter LinkedIn Pinterest Addthis

Recommended Service Partners

International Movers

When you move internationally you are taking a big step. Lots of things are changing and you have a million things to think about and take care of. If you are able to select a top of the line moving company that moves for a modest price, it can take a big weight of your shoulders in busy times.

Our network of international removal companies can move your furniture & possessions to Finland and anywhere overseas.

Filling in the form at the bottom will allow you to request up to 5 quotes from various moving companies. This service is free of charge and will help you select an international moving company that suits your needs and budget.

Do you have comments or personal information to communicate about this article? Add your comment.

Go to the Forum to talk more about customs and import to Helsinki, departure.

Find more definitions and general answers on expatriation issues in the Expat FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions).

Stay connected

- My Life Abroad -
A selection of expat stories

"A fun compulsive read!"
J. Matcham, Amazon

"I strongly advise people ready to live abroad to read this book!"
Patrice, Amazon