Can I Drive in Finland?

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turbodank23
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Can I Drive in Finland?

Post by turbodank23 » Thu Feb 05, 2004 8:04 am

I am a american citzen. Can I drive legally in helsinki?


Always do sober what you said you'd do drunk. That will teach you to keep your mouth shut.
-- Ernest Hemingway


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Can I Drive in Finland?

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TrishPaakkonen
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Post by TrishPaakkonen » Thu Feb 05, 2004 9:50 am

If you have a valid US driver's license then yes you may drive in Helsinki...BUT what you do need to do is visit the local AAA office in the states and get an International Driver's License. The one I bought last July is good for one year only and was issued within 15 minutes at a local AAA office for about 45 US dollars.

Because of some treaty, this is valid for driving in Finland. On the other hand, if you are here in Finland already, NO a US by itself is NOT valid.

Any questions, email me at [email protected]

Trish

Is you have BOTH, then BOTH must be with you at all times when driving and shown to the police if stopped.


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Hank W.
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Post by Hank W. » Thu Feb 05, 2004 10:07 am

The question is rather if you *may*, if you *can* is another question that is up to your talent. :mrgreen:

Only thing I add to Trish is that brace yourself mentally to drive stick. Automatics do exist, but maybe 1 in 200 or so.
Cheers, Hank W.
sitting here like a lemon looking for a gin.


TrishPaakkonen
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Post by TrishPaakkonen » Thu Feb 05, 2004 11:56 am

Hi Hank!

I failed to mention that I DONT drive here in Finland :) My husband bought a car ( with no automatic) and has patiently attempted to teach me. Thus far, it is fair to say that my NOT driving makes Espoo a very very safe place :)

Trish


Jason
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Post by Jason » Thu Feb 05, 2004 3:15 pm

The rules use to be that you can drive up to 1 year in the country that you did not get your drivers license in. After this it is then illegal. Well that is what it is in other countries in Europe so I guess Finland must have the same rules being part of the EU.


TrishPaakkonen
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Post by TrishPaakkonen » Thu Feb 05, 2004 3:32 pm

Just to clarify a bit:

Before I left the US, I contacted the Finnish Embassy in Washington DC about the driving issue. I was told that if a police officer pulled me over in Finland, that the only way for him or her to know my driver's license was indeed " valid" was for me to have an appropriate International Permit. This in no way substitutes for a license.It is documentation I guess for the validity of my US license....since I watched then do a quick check on me before it was issued.

I have a brother who travels throughout the EU alot and also informed me (before I left) that he renews his once a year. ( for business and so forth)

Ive heard, as Jason has mentioned, that after a year it is illegal. Since I plan to remain in Finland, I better learn to drive that stick thingie:)...and take the test in Finnish:)


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Hank W.
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Post by Hank W. » Thu Feb 05, 2004 3:40 pm

You don't need to take a test in Finland if you go exchange your US licence to a Finnish one. You just need to have your hubbys (or anybodys) statement that you've been driving 6 months.
Cheers, Hank W.
sitting here like a lemon looking for a gin.


TrishPaakkonen
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Post by TrishPaakkonen » Thu Feb 05, 2004 3:53 pm

Thanks once more Hank for the info I continually seem to get from you!

A question though: How much exactly does a license to drive cost here? I heard it was hundreds of dolars. Any truth to that?

Trish :)


TrishPaakkonen
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Post by TrishPaakkonen » Thu Feb 05, 2004 3:54 pm

OOPSS EUROS as my husband keeps reminding me :)


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Hank W.
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Post by Hank W. » Thu Feb 05, 2004 3:57 pm

If you go to driving school, it'll cost you about a grand.
Cheers, Hank W.
sitting here like a lemon looking for a gin.


TrishPaakkonen
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Post by TrishPaakkonen » Thu Feb 05, 2004 4:00 pm

Ive been driving for over 25 years if that helps. Do I still need driving school :)


Trish


PeterF
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Post by PeterF » Thu Feb 05, 2004 4:01 pm

I think one point has been missed in this thread.."Can you drive in Finland!"
Forget the legal points..what about the practical ones..
your are just 20..have you ever driven a non automatic car.?
have you ever driven on packed snow/ice.?
Have you ever driven on packed snow/ice in the VERY dark through a forest?
Have you ever met an Elk/reindeer/bear that will not move from the middle of the road!?
Have I forgotten few...like Finnish Bus drivers/trams?


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Hank W.
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Post by Hank W. » Thu Feb 05, 2004 4:02 pm

TrishPaakkonen wrote:Ive been driving for over 25 years if that helps. Do I still need driving school :)
apparently :mrgreen:

You need to have a valid US licence to exchange it though.
Cheers, Hank W.
sitting here like a lemon looking for a gin.


Wombat

Post by Wombat » Thu Feb 05, 2004 6:25 pm

The current cost is 40 € plus whatever it is for the medical certificate and two passport sized photos. If you're from the EU or the EEA, you don't need the medical certifcate but it is 1,30 € more expensive! ;)

Exchanging a driving licence issued in a country that has signed the Geneva or Vienna Road Traffic Convention


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turbodank23
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Post by turbodank23 » Thu Feb 05, 2004 6:52 pm

To answer your questions yes I can drive manual car, Yes I can drive on packed snow and ice I actually sometimes enjoy it. I also can ride a motorcycle, snowmobile, atv pretty much anything. I grew up in a very small town where you could get away with driving illegaly so i've drove stick since I was like 14-15. I mean I didnt drive all the time but I could go a couple blocks with out getting caught just some joy riding!!!! thanks everyone for input
Always do sober what you said you'd do drunk. That will teach you to keep your mouth shut.
-- Ernest Hemingway


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