There's no way around it: Helsinki isn't cheap. Luckily, there are plenty of tricks for making your euros go farther. We'll tell you where to save (hotels) and where to splurge (restaurants, as if you had any choice!).
Expect to Spend: Helsinki
For such a pricey city, Helsinki has a surprisingly decent selection of budget-friendly hotels and hostels. Most of the properties we've recommended in our guide fall in the €65-125 range. Helsinki hostels, from €22 per person, are the cheapest option but offer few amenities. The city is a destination for business travelers, so visiting when a conference is in town might mean higher rates. Summer, the peak tourist season, can mean higher rates as well.
Eating out in Helsinki will cost you. In a city with a fair share of Michelin-starred restaurants, budget options are few and far between. Expect to spend €10-20 for a main dish—not including drinks.
Tipping is not customary in Finland. If service is particularly good, feel free to leave some change. However, the tip is included in the price. (That ought to soften the blow of paying €8 for a bowl of noodles.)
In Helsinki, "budget eats" are anything within the €4-8 range. Kebab, pizza, and Thai joints are most likely to have the cheapest fare. Additionally, food stands known as "grilli" offer up hot dogs and other fried delights for €3-10. You'll find the cheapest eats in the central Kamppi and Kluuvi neighborhoods.
Popular hotels in Helsinki (by views)
Helsinki blog posts
- High-speed in Russia: Trains from St. Petersburg to Moscow, Helsinki and more
- Tinkering with Time: Daylight savings time in Europe
- Tampere, Finland: A town with a buzz
- European Rail Update: Summer 2011
- From St. Petersburg to Helsinki, by bus
- European Ferries: 4 interesting new options for 2011
- 5 daytime rail journeys to consider in Europe
- European Winter Festivals: Last Tango in Oulu
- European Train Update: 2011 rail changes
- The Cheapo 100: Our favorite budget hotels in Europe