International Calls, Telephone Services & Networks in Finland
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Directory Enquiries: Phone 118
General Enquiries: Phone 020202 Timetables, route guidance, weather & more!
- Jump Down to:
- Mobile / Cell Phones & Accounts in Finland
- Prepaid Mobile & Data Services
- Finnish Telephone Networks / Operators
- International Calls from Finland: Switching Operators
- Cheap Calls Using the Internet: VoIP
- International Country Codes
- Landline / Fixed Phone Services
- Related Links
Please note: any information on charges and prices given on this page is subject to change.
Accounts: Getting Connected
Landlines have been consigned to history in Finland; even the switchboards of large companies use mobile. There is no set-up fee for a mobile phone account, but if you don't have a Finnish credit history you may need to pay a deposit to open a mobile phone line. This can be substantial - perhaps € 500 - but if you pay your bills the amount is fully refundable when either you cancel the service, or the 'trial period' of up to 2 years is over. Alternatively, when you first arrive in Finland a prepaid service can be the quickest and cheapest way to get set up.
Mobile services are reasonaby priced and the cost of mobile internet access has dropped substantially. Rates for all services can vary significantly between operators, so shop around for the best deal and look at packages and promotions; these are increasingly common as competition increases.
You can usually arrange a telephone line over the phone; the SIM cards will be posted to you.
Get connected: call a Mobile Phone Operator
Buying a Phone
'Mobile phone' is matkapuhelin, kännykkä, känny, or käsipuhelin in Finnish. If you need a phone:
- Many of Finland's mobile phone operators offer a phone as part of a service package. This is not necessary though, as it is in some countries; you can set up an account and buy your phone separately.
- You can buy phones from numerous retailers - even the ubiquitous R-Kioskis sell them occasionally, packaged with prepaid calling cards. These days basic phones start from about €30 and you can get a pretty good phone for about €80. At the other end of the spectrum, you can expect to pay over €500 for a top model
- If money is tight, ask Finnish friends or acquaintances if they have an old phone you could use - many people have phones left over from past upgrades
- You can also try Huuto.net, the Finnish equivalent of Ebay, established in 1999 and good for buying almost anything second-hand. Look in the Puhelimet section, which lists thousands of phones. Tori.fi is another popular and reliable 'online flea market'.
Prepaid packages are an easy way to get started with a Finnish mobile phone service, and a deposit is not required when setting up prepaid services! In recent years prices have dropped significantly and the range of services has increased. International calls and Internet access for example are now available with prepaid packages.
Prepaid subscriptions can be purchased from outlets including R-Kioskis and larger service stations, as well as online. Simply buy a package, install the supplied SIM card, key in the codes provided and start making calls. Your new phone number is included with the package. You will be alerted when your airtime is running out, and can then 'top up' the subscription from a dealer or online.
Saunalahti: Easy to use, no bills and no monthly fees. Phone calls, messages and Internet services immediately ready for use. Works on Elisa's 3G / 4G networks and abroad. The Starter Kit is €5.90 and includes €6.00 talk time. Supplied with SIM Cards for all devices (Mini / Micro / Nano). Credit can be topped up at Otto ATMs, Elisa stores, R-Kioskis, ABC and Shell service stations, and Prisma, S-Market, Alepa, Sale, Siwa and Valintatalo stores.
Information: kauppa.saunalahti.fi Fi
Customer Service in English: 01019 0240 Mon-Fri 08:00-19:00, Sat 10:00-16:30
Prepaid Data Packages are also available for €19.90 / month. All Saunalahti Prepaid data packages include unlimited 3G/4G data over Elisa’s network in Finland, and can be supplied with a router or SIM card. You can also pay for data on a daily or weekly basis - very handy if you're visiting Finland for a short time!
Finland's major mobile operators are Elisa Saunalahti, DNA, and Sonera / Tele Finland. They are also Internet Service Providers and TV service providers. Other operators include MVNO's (Mobile Virtual Network Operators) using the wireless network infrastructure of other mobile network operators.
*Use Google Translate for sites not available in English.
Elisa Saunalahti: www.saunalahti.fi > Puhe
Mobile plans with unlimited data and talk time, Family plans and Prepaid plans.
Customer Service in English: 01019 0240 Mon-Fri 08:00-19:00, Sat 10:00-16:30
Elisa Saunalahti is also an ISP and TV service provider.
|Globetel||www.globetel.fi||09 228 9100|
DNA, Sonera and Tele Finland have advised that visitors to Expat Finland do not fit their marketing profile, so no information is provided about their services.
The list above is not comprehensive; the market changes often and there are also regional operators. See the Finnish Communications Regulatory Authority for a full listing of communications services suppliers and their official prices (special offers not included):
www.viestintavirasto.fi/en/ > About the sector > Supply and price information
When using your mobile for international calls, you can choose which operator you would like to handle individual calls. Operators' rates per minute vary dramatically. Not only that but one operator may have cheap rates to one country while their rates to another country are comparatively high. Check the operators above for their rates to various countries; you may find one that will allow you to "phone home" cheap! Please note that you have to add the local network charge to the prices given on the Web pages. Sometimes the prices are shown without the 24% sales tax (ALV).
To call with a different operator: Normally
when making an international call from a mobile you
key the + sign first; this simply specifies that the call
will be placed through your regular operator. Instead, key
in the prefix of the operator you want to handle the call*, then the country code, area code and phone number as usual.
Ex: 999 (Elisa prefix) 61 (country code) 2 (area code) 9234 5678 (number)
Finnish Operator Prefixes: fi.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operaattoritunnus > Ulkomaanpuhelun operaattoritunnukset Suomessa
*Some operators require you to register - check their sites for details
Free calls can be made between devices which both use a VoIP service and software client such as Skype. Services are available on a widening range of platforms, including computers, tablets, smartphones, gaming platforms, and smart TVs. So, free video calls to Australia!
Cheap calls can also be made with VoIP to landline telephones and mobile phones; these are usually charged via an account system and are a fraction of the cost of using your standard operator.
A Skype VoIP call from my PC to an Australian landline is about 94% cheaper than using my phone.
A Rebtel VoIP call from my mobile to a USA mobile is about 70 cents + local call charge per hour.
Most services for Internet calls work on the same procedure:
- Register with the service
- Download the software (app / 'client')
- Buy 'phone time'
- Make the call
Leaders in the VoIP field include:
Founded in Sweden in 2006, Rebtel offers international calling, messaging and mobile money delivered in apps for Android, iPhone and Windows Phone. Benefits of Rebtel include
- It works on any phone, including landlines
- No phone card or PIN required
- First call is free (10 minutes)
- PC-to-Phone and International Texting also available
- Author's Review
- Rebtel: www.rebtel.com
Started in 2003, Skype works extremely well and is easy to download and install. It works on numerous platforms and apart from VoIP calling, it allows video conferencing, file transfers, messaging and more.
Depending on your needs the following services may be preferable:
- Chillitalk: www.chillitalk.com
- Linphone: www.linphone.org
- Google Voice: www.google.com/voice
- Deltathree Go2Call: www.deltathree.com
- VykeMobile: www.vyke.com
So you're a nostalgia buff and you want
a landline (lankapuhelin)? You'll be the only person in a 10km radius to have one, so maybe
you can start a retro trend! Contact Elisa regarding
installation of landlines.
Elisa.fi/puheliittymat/lankapuhelin/ Finnish only
Pricing depends on the package you purchase; this is an indication only for a home phone:
- Monthly fee €22.20 + call charges
- Local call rate of 12¢/call + 1.2¢/min regardless of time of day
- You will receive telephone directories and free-of-charge services including Caller ID, Call Forwarding & Call Waiting
- Charges differ for business lines
- Viestintävirasto: Finnish Communications Regulatory Authority
The Viestintävirasto site provides detailed technical, legal and consumer information about all forms of regulated communications in Finland. The main sections of interest are Internet & Telephone, TV & Radio, Post, and Information Security.
- Internet & Telephone section: Acquisition, use, availability and functionality of telephone and broadband services. Includes .fi domain name info.
- Information Security section: Security and confidentiality of electronic communications. Articles, alerts and vulnerability advisories
- www.viestintavirasto.fi En, Fi, Sw