Special off-road traffic permit
Snowmobiling off-track and driving other motor vehicles on state-owned lands is generally prohibited. There are certain exceptions where you may apply to Metsähallitus for a separate off-road traffic permit for a justifiable need. Such permits are always handled on a case-by-case basis.
Summer off-road traffic is more restricted than winter off-road traffic due to the damage caused, whose impact may be visible for years or even decades. As a rule, summer off-road traffic is only permitted under special circumstances, such as in reindeer husbandry work in Upper Lapland and, in certain exceptions, for other purposes.
Permits are generally not issued for strict nature reserves, because the use of off-road vehicles conflicts with the conservation objectives of the reserves.
However, permits are not required for local reindeer husbandry or for the work of authorities, such as the maintenance of protected areas, supervision, police work or border surveillance.
Metsähallitus decides the permit quotas for state-owned areas regarding both snowmobile tracks and areas outside of the tracks. You can see the decision here (in Finnish).
Applying a special off-road traffic permit
The special off-road traffic permit applications are always handled on an individual basis. The off-road traffic permits are administrative decisions subject to charge, also if rejected. Payment for the permit is collected after the application is handled by Metsähallitus. The application is handled within 10–15 working days.
Prices for the administrative decisions
- Personal and family-specific off-road traffic permit 50 €
- Off-road traffic permit for several people 50 €/driver
- When companies (excl. safari businesses co-operating with Metsähallitus), clubs/societies/organizations or educational and research institutes apply for an off-road traffic permit for their personnel or for the participants of an event organized by them, the price of the permit decision depends on the number of vehicles in use. The price is 50 €/vehicle, if the drivers' municipality of residence is not know.
- For local residents, the permit decision is free of charge
Some decisions concerning off-road traffic permits require more thorough investigation or juridicial consideration by Metsähallitus. Such are, for instance, decisions requiring new principled guidelines. In these cases, the price of the decision is doubled.
Applying a permit
You can apply for a special off-road traffic permit online. Go to webshop (verkkokauppa.eraluvat.fi)
If you wish to apply for an off-road traffic permit on special grounds, contact your nearest Metsähallitus service point (nationalparks.fi) for further information.
Safari companies co-operating with Metsähallitus are provided more detailed information on off-road traffic permits and prices by their nearest Metsähallitus service point.
Off-road terrain or road?
Roads constructed by Metsähallitus can be used by vehicles, but driving cross-country is prohibited without a special off-road traffic licence. It is for the driver to recognise the difference between a built road and a cross-country track.
Read more about differences between off-road terrain and road.