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Thread: Private Russian buses Helsinki - St Petersburg - anyone ever tried?

  1. #1
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    Mar 2009
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    St Petersburg, Russia
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    Default Private Russian buses Helsinki - St Petersburg - anyone ever tried?

    There are dozens of Russian charter buses running daily between Helsinki and St Petersburg. Considerably cheaper than regular scheduled bus services, and much cheaper than trains, these buses are operated by St Petersburg travel companies and are the most economical way of travelling St Petersburg - Helsinki or the other way around. Anyone ever tried?

    I'll post details here asap, and it would be good to hear your personal experiences. I've used them on a number of occasions myself - in fact every time I go to Helsinki I take one of those buses, unless I drive my own car of course.

    P

  2. #2
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    Mar 2009
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    Default St Petersburg - Lappeenranta (Finland)

    Am planning to do a run from St Petersburg to the Finnish border and back soon, and talked to the people running those buses today. St Petersburg to Lappeenranta (a Finnish town close to the border, on the edge of the lake district) is 1000 rubles. This includes the return trip too! Travel by a comfortable minibus, departures from hotel Oktyabrskaya (across from Moscow Station). The distance is about 200 km. Will post photos and details here if I end up taking it.

    Peter

  3. #3
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    Mar 2009
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    Ended up joining friends driving from Moscow to Lappeenranta, so never used the bus service. Yet, I had looked into the regular scheduled buses.

    The Sovavto bus company together with the Finnish Pohjolan Liikenne and Saimaan Liikenne/Savonlinja runs regular services between St Petersburg and several destinations in Finland: Helsinki, Turku, Lappeenranta.

    Sovavto's site is mainly in Russian, but a basic bilingual timetable can be found here: http://www.sovavto.ru/finland.html. The St Petersburg-Helsinki-Turku bus runs daily, with many stops along the way.

    The St Petersburg - Lappeenranta service runs on Wed, Fri and Sat, and costs 25 euro one way.

    The web site of the Finnish bus company Saimaan Liikenne/Savonlinja is http://www.savonlinja.fi/eng/yhteystiedot.html - with details in English.

    Peter

  4. #4
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    Mar 2009
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    Took a bus from hotel Oktyabrskaya to Helsinki last week. Departure 22:00, travel time around 8 hrs. 15 euros one way (and I believe something like 20 euros one day return). Can't beat that one.

    On the way back I used a different service. A minibus leaving from outside Finnkino in Kamppi (near main bus station in Helsinki), left at 15:30 got to hotel Oktyabrskaya 23:30 (all local times). This one was 25 euro. But - it was a comfortable 15-seater minibus and not a big one with 40 passengers.

    The times and prices given here are to be used as a very general guide - especially the departure/arrival time are completely chaotic. The only thing certain is that you can count on leaving from St Petersburg around 21:00-22:00, and from Helsinki around 11:00-12:00. There's usually a choice of buses at those times. Arrival/departure locations are always the same too.

  5. #5

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    Hello Peter!
    next month I am going to Saint Petersburg and then I would like to go to Helsinki. I am looking for something cheap, that's way I thougth about buses, but I can't find prices or timetables or websites. I would like to buy online but I can't find anything. Do you know about prices, timetables and if I can buy the ticket easily at the Bus station in St Petersburg. Thanks!!! Alex

  6. #6
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    Hello Alex,

    These cheap buses and minibuses from Hotel Oktyabrskaya don't have any schedule - they are run by private tour companies, and each one has their own kind of schedule. As a rule, they leave from St Petersburg around 21:00-22:00, and also some time in the morning. Come to the hotel a day or so before your planned departure and talk to the women standing outside those buses with advertising cards. They will tell you the exact departure time of their bus, and will actually book you for a specific day and time. Pay in cash when you get on the bus with you bags ready for departure.

    Peter

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
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    1

    Default HELP! st peterburg to helsinki bus!

    hi peter. i am planning to travel to helsinki this summer.
    how does border crossing looks like? does russian police bother you or ask bribe?
    is there finnish custom immigration on the russian side before you cross into the finnish border? sorry ive asked much. thanx in advance.
    ive european passport but ima not sure if i would need nvisa for finland. but i will give a try.
    muchas gracias
    chris

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