No one is perfect. Every country has its pros and cons. Tastes differ, and different people consider different things as something ‘good’ or ‘bad’. In my previous blog post I shared my opinion about 7 pros of living in Finland. And today I want to write about some downsides that I’ve noticed or experienced myself while living in Finland. I wouldn’t call them serious, but they still take place and thus should be discussed. Besides, I can’t stand negativity and complains myself, so I’ll try to keep ‘the bright side’ along the post.
In the middle of cold ‘nowhere’
When you say ‘Finland’ to foreigners, the majority of them react like ‘brrrr, it’s quite cold there, huh?’. Yes it’s. In Lapland though. What is more, they have only 3 hours of daylight there during the winter time and reindeers walking down the road everywhere. I’ve lived in the Southern part of Finland only, and the local weather doesn’t differ much from the one in my hometown in Russia. Yes, we make jokes about a non-existent summer, but I’ve always had summers like this. And if you like snowy winters with -20 degrees, you will manage here just fine.
Now let’s talk about geography. I guess you’re aware of the fact where Finland is. When it comes to travelling, you can’t do much without jumping on the plane because the location is not centric at all. For the sake of contrast, it’s much easier to travel around Europe from Germany or Austria, as you can take a car and have a road trip to other countries nearby. That’s why travelling costs go up because you have to fly to somewhere in the Baltics or Germany first, and from there take another plane to your final destination. But on the bright side, living here is simply safer. Besides, you can learn how to save money on airfare in this blog post!
Oh, what a price!
When I compare Finnish prices to ‘normal’ prices, the only thing I can say is ‘Holy Moly’. Everything is pricy. EVERYTHING. Supermarkets, restaurants, cafes and bars, services in general, rent, cars, apartments and whatever has a price on it is quite expensive. I haven’t been to Norway or Denmark though, but people say that those two can compete with Finland when it comes to price tags in Europe.
Let me give you some numbers! For example, a main dish in a restaurant (even some simple pasta) will cost you from 15 euros up. A beer or a cider starts from 6-7 euros, and cocktails – from 10 euros. A nice piece of cake and a cup of cappuccino in a cozy cafe – from 9 euros easily. Eating and drinking out is insanely costly. When it comes to groceries, meat and fish are quite expensive, but the quality of products is always good. Car prices can easily go twice cheaper as soon as a car hits the age of 2-3 years. When I see people buying brand new cars, I feel my tears coming up as such a waste of money brings too much sadness! So yeah, everything is pricy here.
On the bright side, salaries in Finland are also higher than ‘normal’, so they can cover the bigger costs. Besides, it’s always nice to get a Finnish salary and travel somewhere with cheaper prices (if you know what I mean).
Mitä vit.. or what did you say?
Suomen kieli. Seriously, how could one come up with such a language? What was the purpose behind its difficulty? Make sure that no one understands local people? No other language can be compared to it. No other language can help you learn Finnish. What I ‘love’ the most, is the ‘motivation’ to study it. Only 5 000 000 people speak it. Besides, some of them are Swedish-speaking people, and in the North they speak their own language as well. WTF.
It took me tears, blood and pain to get a B2 level in Finnish. Not sure if I want to master it to C1-C2, as I can manage my life with B2 just fine. Sorry, but I can’t see anything positive about this con. However, here are some tips on how to learn Finnish and pass the YKI test – feel free to read!
Burana is a cure for everything
What I’ve heard so far about Finnish healthcare is that it could be better. People say that the painkillers called Burana is the solution to any health problem. The bigger the problem, the stronger Burana you should take. Prices in the private sector are extremely high. You can get something for free in the public places, but then you have to be in a line for a while. I usually go to my hometown to take care of my health, so I can’t say much about Finnish healthcare as I don’t have my own opinion on that. So let’s just stay positive and hope that it’s not as bad as what others say.
Stereotype or the bitter truth?!
Typical Finnish people are quite closed, as they need their personal space. Even though they are friendly and polite in general, the only time when they are ready to give up on their personal space is when they are drunk. Then they forget about what it’s like to be shy, take off their clothes and jump over the fire on the Midsummer’s night.
And yeah, I find Finnish boys quite boring. Sorry if it hurts your feelings, but this is my honest opinion about this sensitive topic. Of course, there are exceptions! But they usually speak Finnish-Swedish as their mother tongue 😀 Just kidding! I do have some Finnish friends and acquaintances who are far from the stereotype people have about Finns, so I hope to meet more and more people like them!
What do you think about Finland? What things are the ‘cons’ for you? Please, share your opinion in the comments below! I’d love to discuss this topic more with you!
P.S. Mä rakastan sua, Suomi! No matter what! <3