A drive from Finland to China represents both an exciting adventure and a serious challenge. However, as many foreign travellers have learned, the laws and regulations in the country mean that the challenges extend far beyond an endurance test and actually gaining permission to drive your own vehicle in the country can be tough. China has some of the strictest laws around when it comes to bringing foreign-registered vehicles in and to make matters more complicated, the Chinese government does not recognise an international driving permit or foreign driving licences. With this in mind, you will likely need to work with a tour operator in order to clear these hurdles.
Here, we explore some of the preparation involved, as well as the ideal route to take from Finland. There are two main challenges those hoping to drive from Finland to China will face in terms of preparation. The first relates to securing a recognised driving licence, while the second centres around bringing your own vehicle into a country that has laws designed to prevent foreign-registered vehicles from entering.
Most travellers will need to apply for a temporary Chinese driving licence and while the process for this has become easier in recent years, you are still going to need to work with an experienced tour operator to go through the process. If you intend to stay in China for the long-term, you will need to pass a theory test and acquire a full licence. Bringing your own vehicle into the country will also require significant paperwork. You will also need an up-to-date MOT, an official translation of the documentation, and photos of your car or motorcycle from all angles. Upon arrival at the Chinese border, you will also need to obtain temporary Chinese number plates and fit these to your vehicle.
Aside from acquiring a licence and registering your vehicle, you will also need to have a valid passport, a visa and insurance that specifically covers China. You may also be questioned about where in the country you intend to go, so you will need a clear itinerary and you will need to check permit requirements for individual Chinese provinces.
Is it possible to travel from finland to China or South East Asia by Motor vehicles? Yes, this is possible. Every year there are people who have done it. They drive normal cars, motor homes, old timer, trucks, buses, vintage cars, pure electric vehicles, and even ride motorcycles to China, India or Southeast Asia.
Because China is not a party to the United Nations International Treaty on Land Transport, international driving licenses are not recognized in China. using ATA Carnet or Carnet de Passages en Douane (CPD) to temporary import the used vehicles of tourists into China is not currently feasible. Tourists’ vehicles need to be registered after entering China and they must obtain temporary Chinese number plates to drive on the road. Therefore, tourists driving in China and driving on Chinese roads usually need to complete the following procedures
Therefore, foreign tourists who want to drive own car/motorbike into China and drive on Chinese roads usually need to complete the following procedures:
Chinese travel agencies usually ask for following Materials and documents
You can apply for a Chinese tourist visa(L Visa) in your home country, or you can apply for Chinese tourist visa in a third country on the road. If conditions permit, we always recommend that you apply in your home country. To apply for a Chinese visa in your home country, you need to ensure that your visa is still valid when you reach the Chinese border. Following is place for applying china visa in finland.
Chinese Visa Application Service Centre in Helsinki
Salomonkatu 17B, 3krs, Helsinki, Finland
By Subway: Get off at Kamppi station.
Business Hours: Monday-Friday, Closed on Saturdays, Sundays and Public Holidays.
Submission of applications: 9:00 to 15:00.
Payment and collection: 9:00 to 16:00.
The journey from Finland to China spans thousands of miles and, realistically, will take several weeks of driving time. As you plan your journey, you will need to check visa requirements for each individual country you enter, make sure you are aware of any relevant political tensions, and plan out the places that you rest along the way.
For most travellers, the most efficient route from Finland involves entering Russia close to the city of St. Petersburg and then travelling through Russia and into Kazakhstan. From there, you will either cross straight into China, or pass through either Mongolia or Kyrgyzstan first and this will largely depend on where in China you are heading.
The routes through Kazakhstan or Kyrgyzstan will bring you into China via the north west, whereas passing through Mongolia opens up access to the north and north east. Other routes are possible, but they will lengthen the journey.
The following are the most commonly used routes:
Route 1(Entering China from Kyrgyzstan): Finland-Russia-Kazakhstan (or Uzbekistan)-Kyrgyzstan-Turkut Port or Irkstan Port-China
Route 2(Entering China from Mogolia): Finland-Russia-Mongolia-Bulgan Gol or Zamiin-Uud-China
Route 3(Entering China from Kyrgyzstan): Finland-Russia-Azerbaijan-Iran-Turkmenistan-Uzbekistan-Kyrgyzstan-China
Route 4(Entering China from Pakistan): Finland-Russia-Azerbaijan-Iran-(Many governments will advise their citizens to stay away from the Iran-Pakistan border, please refer to the latest Ministry of Foreign Affairs travel security tips)-Pakistan-China
Route 1: Finlnd-Russia-Kazakhstan (or Uzbekistan)-Kyrgyzstan-China (Xinjiang)-Pakistan-India
Route 2: Finland-Russia-Kazakhstan (or Uzbekistan)-Kyrgyzstan-China (Xinjiang, Tibet)-Nepal-India
Route 3: Finland-Russia-Azerbaijan-Iran-(Many governments will advise their citizens to stay away from the Iran-Pakistan border, please refer to the latest Ministry of Foreign Affairs travel security tips)-Pakistan-India
Route 1: Finland-Russia-Kazakhstan (or Uzbekistan)-Kyrgyzstan-Turkut Port or Irkstan Port-China-Laos-Thailand, Myanmar, Malaysia, Singapore, etc.
Route 2: Finland-Russia-Mongolia-Bulgan Gol or Zamiin-Uud-China – Laos, Thailand, Cambodia, Malaysia, Singapore, etc.
Route 3: Finland-Russia-Azerbaijan-Iran-Turkmenistan-Uzbekistan-Kyrgyzstan-China – Laos, Thailand, Cambodia, Malaysia, Singapore, etc.
Route 4: Finland-Russia-Azerbaijan-Iran-(Many governments will advise their citizens to stay away from the Iran-Pakistan border, please check the latest travel security tips from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs)-Pakistan-India-Myanmar-Thailand, Cambodia, Malaysia, Singapore, etc.
We help our customers drive to china and cross china with car or motorbike. We organize road trips with automobile and motorcycle clubs. With our extensive experience and in-depth knowledge, we also provide following services for your Automotive Events: drive or ride event, media event, test drive, support for automotive show, customer relation and brand image production.