Saturday. 20.04.2024

Culture is what identifies a specific location and entices tourists to visit. Finland is no different from others, with a lot of culture that wows the crowd. These odd habits can be perceived to be one of the things that bring charm to the place. There are so many unique habits of the Finnish. This article provides ten practices that visitors might be amazed by when they visit Finland.

Greetings are done by hand. No way are we kissing!

In Finland, handshakes are the primary way of acknowledging each other. If you are in an informal situation, then a simple nod or a wave of the hand is used. If you are dealing with a crowd - for example, you are visiting a gym or a public place - there is no need for greetings. Parties and living room crowds need a 'Moi,' and you are good to go.

Serve yourself at the table

Foods in Finland are served in bowls and dishes. Plates, spoons, and cups are also accompanied but not served. Everybody has to personally serve themselves with the amount or portion that will satisfy them.

Adults can sometimes serve other adults if requested, or if the person is not able to reach a particular dish. In cases where you are not satisfied, you can refill your plate without request.

Here is an ancient practise-Molybdomancy

Molybdomancy is an old culture dating back to Ancient Greece. Basically, what people do is melt a horseshoe-shaped piece of tin by the fireplace or on top of a stove and then throw the remains in cold water buckets.

What is the reason? Well, they believe that the resulting shape of the metal's shadow will predict the future. This tradition is carried out on New Year's Eve.

Personal space

Finns naturally keep a distance from each other, mostly with people that they are not acquainted with. From the Finnish perspective, this means that they are polite, and they do not want to disturb the other person.

This also applies when travelling. People will sit next to each other only when there are no empty spaces by the window. If you know each other, "Hello" will do.

No shoes when visiting

If you have been invited to a friend's home, then no shoes will be required in the house. However, this does not apply in situations where you are dealing with a large crowd.

Some Finns have different shoes that are used for the party and others to be used while walking outside. This is means it is commonplace for guests to arrive with two pairs of shoes!

Recycling is a habit

Not so many countries reuse plastic waste. Finland is one of the countries that reuse it. Homes have different types of rubbish bins. They are grouped into regular rubbish, bottles, cans, and biodegradables.

This kind of rubbish collection ensures that plastic waste is collected separately so that it can be reused. This is a habit, and most people in Finland view it as a way of life.

No smoking

Most people in Finland hate smoking. Smoking is not allowed in public places such as restaurants and resting areas. You are only authorised to smoke in the terrace of a restaurant, and still Finns to hate it.

Some of these terraces have now become a no-smoking zone due to customer complaints. Everybody is allowed to roam freely in Finland and eat or pick fruits anywhere, including the forests.

Birthdays are significant

Children's birthdays are very vital in Finland. In some cases, parents throw two parties; one for friends and one for the family. As the child grows older, becoming an adult, birthdays become less relevant and are celebrated at ages 40, 50, 60, and so on.

Adult birthdays are less intense when compared to children. Guests can show up with a birthday card and a simple gift.

You bring your own drinks at a party

Alcohol is significantly expensive in Finland. Many Finns throw parties in such a way that every guest has to come with his/her drinks.

This type of party is always indicated on invitation cards. If you see OPM ("Oma Pullo Mukaan") on your invitation, then it merely means bring your bottle. However, this is not the case for every party. Some do offer alcohol and other drinks.


If you plan to visit Finland to enjoy the culture and scenery, just a few things will make you feel at home. Practice these ten habits, and you will fit right in with the locals.

Moreover, prepare to learn new things relating to the Finns. This article provides just a few of their habits, and there may be more out there. So, be prepared for anything.

10 Finnish Habits Every Foreigner Should Know