International students

Living in Finland

On these pages, you can find information about living in Finland. Take a look at the information provided about grocery shopping, recreation, the climate, where to find help, and other practicalities.

Loading table of contents

Finnish climate

The climate in Finland is colder than in many countries, but with suitable clothing, you may grow to love the seasonal changes and the beauty of the great outdoors of Finland!

For information in a nutshell about the seasons in Finland, see InfoFinland's website, and for more about the climate, see the Finnish Meteorological Institute.

Everyday shopping

Shopping in Finland is easy and flexible due to a large selection of grocery stores, shopping malls, restaurants and smaller local markets which are open almost every day – some even 24/7. Especially large markets have a wide selection of all sorts of products, so you can often find everything you need  – from groceries to electronic devices – in one store.

Opening hours are usually clearly displayed on shop entrances, websites and social media accounts. The largest stores and shops may have limited opening hours on public holidays, but you will always find a small grocery store or filling station that will serve you. Many stores and most restaurants also offer home delivery.

When paying in cash, please note, that one and two cent coins are not used in Finland, and cash payments are always rounded to the nearest five cent amount.


Recycling is well organised in Finland and most housing providers have proper sorting solutions on their premises. Recycling is important as most material can be reused.

Please see the InfoFinland website for detailed instructions about recycling.


Exploring the Finnish outdoors during different seasons is almost a hobby in its own right. However, you can find loads of possibilities for indoor and outdoor sports, artistic pursuits or maybe gaming – you choose!

Cities as well as private service providers offer a lot of recreational possibilities. See the InfoFinland website for a list.

As a student, be sure to also check what clubs associated with the Aalto University Student Union have to offer. In the metropolitan area, Unisport offers sports facilities, group exercise and other wellness services at student prices.

Finnish customs

Finnish customs are European with some national characteristics. In general, attitudes and lifestyles in Finland are liberal, and basic courtesy and respectful behaviour goes a long way. However, there are a few aspects of the Finnish social and Finnish mentality that it is good to be aware of. Note that these are generalisations and do not apply to all Finns.

Where to find help?

On this page, you can find sources of information and support for different kinds of situations. For general information concerning how Finnish society functions, see the InfoFinland -site.

For any questions or issues to do with your wellbeing, you are always welcome to contact and/or visit the Starting Point of Wellbeing, which offers a wide range of advice as well as guidance on different services at Aalto.

International students

Feedback about the page

  • Published:
  • Updated:
URL copied!