What are unusual Finnish laws?

Answered by Willian Lymon

Unusual Finnish laws? Well, there are certainly a few interesting ones that might catch your attention. Let’s dive into some of them:

1. No music in cabs: As mentioned earlier, playing music in a taxi is considered a public performance in Finland. This law, implemented in 2002, means that taxi drivers must pay a fee to the Finnish Composers Copyright Society if they wish to play music in their vehicles. It’s an interesting way to ensure that musicians are properly compensated for their work, but it might seem a bit unusual to visitors.

2. Licenses for TV ownership: In Finland, if you own a television, you are required to have a valid television license. This license fee helps fund the Finnish Broadcasting Company (YLE), which is responsible for providing public broadcasting services. While this concept may not be unique to Finland, it is worth mentioning as it is not common in all countries.

3. No public urination: This may seem like common sense, but Finland takes it a step further. In the Finnish city of Turku, it is illegal to urinate in public, even if you are in dire need. This law is in place to maintain a clean and hygienic environment and to discourage public indecency. So, make sure to find a proper restroom if nature calls!

4. Mandatory headlights: In Finland, it is required by law to have your car headlights on at all times, regardless of the time of day or weather conditions. This law aims to increase visibility on the roads and reduce the risk of accidents. So, if you’re driving in Finland, remember to keep those headlights on!

5. No ads on billboards: Unlike many other countries, Finland has strict regulations on advertising. It is illegal to display commercial advertisements on billboards along highways and main roads. This law aims to reduce visual clutter and maintain the natural beauty of the Finnish landscape. Instead, you may find informative signs or cultural advertisements in these areas.

6. No chewing gum sales: This law may come as a surprise to some. In Finland, the sale of chewing gum was banned until 2017. The ban was originally put in place in 1978 due to concerns over littering and cleanliness. However, the ban was eventually lifted, and now chewing gum can be found in Finnish stores. Nevertheless, it is still a unique aspect of Finnish history.

7. No public smoking: Finland has taken a strong stance on smoking in public places. Smoking is prohibited in most indoor public spaces, such as bars, restaurants, and workplaces. Additionally, designated smoking areas must be at least 10 meters away from entrances to public buildings. This law aims to protect non-smokers from secondhand smoke and promote a healthier environment.

8. No jaywalking: In Finland, crossing the street outside designated pedestrian crossings is considered jaywalking and can result in a fine. Finnish pedestrians are expected to use designated crosswalks and follow traffic signals. This law ensures pedestrian safety and encourages people to use proper crossings.

These are just a few examples of unusual Finnish laws that may seem peculiar to outsiders. Finland, like any other country, has its unique legal framework and cultural norms that shape its society. Understanding and respecting these laws is an important aspect of visiting or living in Finland.