You are very welcome to Finland and Helsinki! From these pages you can find answers to frequently asked questions related to traveling in Finland, as well as links to additional information sources.
A good way to get to know Finland, the country of thousands of lakes, midnight sun, and technology is to visit Virtual Finland, which provides general information about the country. You can even learn a bit Finnish, while browsing their web pages. In general, the majority of the population speaks fluent English (some also Swedish and German), so you don't need to learn the whole Finnish dictionary. The official language of the conference is English.
Probably the easiest way to travel between Helsinki center and Otaniemi is to take a bus. Information about the public transportation and ticket prices in Helsinki area is provided by HSL. The journey planner is a very handy tool when you need to check what bus line you should take. Taxi is also an option, all taxi drivers are honest and will not drive around randomly to earn higher fare. Taxis take credit cards and tipping is not required.
About 15 min by taxi. Address for taxi driver: Otakaari 5 A, Espoo (Acoustics Laboratory, where the first day tutorials and demos are) OR Dipoli, Espoo (The conference venue)
You need to buy a regional ticket for traveling from Helsinki to Espoo, see here for more information on tickets
When travelling by bus lines 102 and 103, you should get out at the main library of Aalto University as both of the busses stop there. The campus area is illustrated in this map (the main library is building 15, the conference venue is Dipolo, and first day tutorial location is building 4).
The average the temperature in the beginning of March is -2 degrees Celsius, but be prepared for temperatures as low as -20 degrees Celsius (hint: cover all exposed skin). More information about the average snow coverage.
The time in Finland is GMT +2. The current time in Finland can be found at World Time Server.
The currency of Finland is Euro (EUR, €). You can use for example Yahoo's Currency Converter to check out the exchange rates. Major credit cards are accepted in most shops, restaurants, and hotels. Cash can be withdrawn with credit cards from Otto ATM machines. You can also change Euros at Forex. Forex officies can be found for example in Tapiola and Helsinki city center.
In Finland, VAT (23 %) is included in all prices. In restaurants, tipping is not expected. You may, however, tip for extraordinarily good service.
Please check well in advance whether you need a visa to visit Finland. If you would want to visit Russia (St. Petersburg is relatively close) during your trip, arrange your visa already in your home country by contacting the local Russian Embassy.
There are no vaccination requirements for any international travelers.
Electrical socket type: 50 Hz, 230 V (the same as in the continental EU countries). Additional information about electrical and phone plugs and adapters as well as mobile phones can be found at www.kropla.com.
Helsinki and the surrounding cities Espoo, Vantaa, and Kauniainen form the capital area of Finland with about 1.2 million inhabitants. Helsinki forms the heart of trade, culture, and science in Finland. The head offices of the most prominent Finnish companies are located in Helsinki, as well as eight of the 20 universities in Finland. The most well-known museums and sights in Finland can be found in the Helsinki area. The center of Helsinki offers the best possibilities for shopping: large department stores and small boutiques are within walking distance.