Event notifications and permits

Are you planning to organise an event in Helsinki? We have compiled on this page a checklist for organisers of common notifications and permissions that an event organiser must take into account.

 

 

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On this page

Notify the authorities and apply for permits

Having the permits and notifications in order also helps the event organiser. As a public event organiser, you are obliged to notify the event in writing to various City and state authorities. Below you will find the event organiser’s notification obligations and permit applications for the City of Helsinki and other authorities.

Remember to report your public event to the police in accordance with the police department's instructions(Link leads to external service). You can report a public event at the police’s Online Service.

Notify the police of a public event(Link leads to external service)

You need a permit to organise an event on a street, square or park if the event restricts the public use of the area. A permit is required if the event involves bringing marquee tents, tables, chairs, stages, fences or other structures to the area, for example. The simplest option is to hold your event in one of the city’s event areas (pdf).

If necessary, you can contact the inspectors by telephone Mon–Fri 10.00–11.30 or by email at ulkoilma@hel.fi(Link opens default mail program).

Apply for a permit to use an area(Link leads to external service)

Area use application (pdf, in Finnish)

Inspectors’ contact details (pdf, in Finnish)

Prices and principles of outdoor events (pdf, in Finnish)

General terms for outdoor events (pdf, in Finnish)

Areas for a smaller event through Varaamo

You can also use the online booking service Varaamo to reserve an outdoor event space without permit. The online booking service Varaamo to reserve an outdoor event space for smaller events scheduled between 1 April and 31 October.

Book an event space through Varaamo(Link leads to external service)

Certain areas have specific permit/rental policies

If you are planning an event in the following areas, please contact the below operators:

Notification of noise in the affected area

Advance notification of the event reduces annoying noise by informing residents and other actors in advance of the abnormal soundscape and its duration. Inform about the event at least one week in advance on each staircase in the buildings affected by annoying noise. Agree separately on adequate noise abatement in the case of any particularly sensitive sites, such as daycare centres, schools, hospitals or churches that are affected. 

The size and orientation of the sound system and a reasonable volume level with consideration to the surroundings of the venue are particularly important in noise abatement. The time of the event also affects people’s perception of noise disturbance: the later the event, the more annoying the noise is perceived.

Please also note the guidelines for making music on the streets

Notification of noise to the City authorities

Submit a notification of noise in writing via the City of Helsinki e-services at least 30 days before the event. A notification of noise must be submitted at least for the following outdoor events (City of Helsinki’s Environmental Protection Regulations):

  • outdoor concerts or other public events with sound amplification organised between 22:00 and 07:00
  • motorsport events
  • air shows
  • professional fireworks organised after 22:00, fireworks organised after midnight can be approved only for highly justified reasons; notification of noise is not required for firework shows organised on New Year’s Eve (22:00–02:00).

The City of Helsinki Environmental Services processes the notifications of noise. The decision is subject to a charge. 

Submit a notification of noise via the Lupapiste service(Link leads to external service)

Read more on notification of noise

Fees charged for notifications of noise (PDF, in Finnish)

Guidelines for outdoor concert end times

The most common concert venues have specific end-time guidelines. The guidelines apply to the number of outdoor concert days ending after 22:00 and their end times.

Guidelines for outdoor concert end times (PDF, in Finnish)

Prioritisation model for noise restriction guidelines (PDF, in Finnish)

Prioritisation model for playing times (PDF, in Finnish)

Electricity: Helen or private electricity grid contractors tel. 09 6171 (switchboard) or private electricity grid contractors.

Water: Helsinki Region Environmental Services HSY’s water supply service tel. 09 1561 2110 (switchboard) or private operators in the sector. More information about domestic water requirements is available from Environmental Services at ulkomyynti@hel.fi(Link opens default mail program) or on 09 310 1635 (switchboard). 

Guidelines for the distribution of domestic water at large public events (PDF, In Finnis)

Waste management regulations for public events (PDF, In Finnis)(Link leads to external service) stipulate that the organiser is responsible for the following:

  • Providing waste receptacles and placing them in appropriate places.
  • Providing advice on waste management during the event and sorting, and separate collection following the waste management regulations.
  • Emptying the waste receptacles. Rubbish bins should be emptied daily and whenever they are full. The event organiser must clean up the event area immediately after the end of the event and, if necessary, during the event.
  • Cleaning up any event-related litter in the event area and its vicinity, including passages to the area. A convener of the event is considered an organiser and held secondarily responsible for cleaning any littered area.

Submit a waste management plan for an outdoor event

If more than 500 people are expected to attend the public event, you must submit to the City of Helsinki Environmental Services a waste management plan at least 30 days before the start of the event. Also, submit a final report on the actual amounts of waste generated no later than one month after the event is held. Submit the waste management plan and final report to kymp.ymparistovalvonta@hel.fi(Link opens default mail program)

Waste management plan for an event (PDF, In Finnish)

Waste management report for an event (PDF, In Finnish)

Toilet facilities

The number of restrooms must be sufficient for the number of people. For more detailed information on the number of restrooms, see Valvira’s guide on waste management (PDF, In Finnish)(Link leads to external service). The event must have separate restrooms for food traders, with the possibility of hand washing.

Useful links for waste management planning

EcoCompass  (Link leads to external service)



Neat Event! – An environmental guide for event organisers (PDF, in Finnish)

Roskat riviin! – A guide to sustainable waste management (PDF, in Finnish)

Prepare a public event rescue plan if

  • the event hosts at least 200 people present at any one time 
  • the event features, for example, open flames, fireworks or pyrotechnics 
  • the event’s evacuation arrangements deviate from the standard
  • the nature of the event is particularly risky for people.

Submit the rescue plan to the rescue department at least 14 days before the event at pel.tapahtumat@hel.fi(Link opens default mail program). Also, attach it as part of the public event notification to the police.

Download the rescue plan template (docx, In Finnish)

Temporary traffic arrangements

If the event affects pedestrian, cycling or other vehicle traffic, also submit a notice of temporary traffic arrangements. The notification must also be submitted if parking spaces are reserved for event use with street signs urging vehicle owners to move their parked vehicles.  Always include a plan for traffic arrangements with the notification. As the event organiser, you are also responsible for implementing the traffic arrangements.

Inspectors’ contact details (PDF, In Finnish)

Instructions for temporary traffic arrangements and planning

Submit a notification of temporary traffic arrangements(Link leads to external service)

Form to notify temporary traffic arrangements (PDF, In Finnish)

Impact on traffic per number of people

If more than 1,000 people are expected to attend the event: notify HSL Helsinki Region Transport of the event at info@hsl.fi(Link opens default mail program).

Request for additional local transport services in the Helsinki Metropolitan Area: infra@hsl.fi(Link opens default mail program).

If more than 8,000 people are expected to attend/visit the event: Notify the event to VR Group railway company, tel. +358 307 10 (switchboard) and ask to put you through to their safety unit.

Read more about HSL’s event collaboration(Link leads to external service)



Notify the city’s food control about the event’s food sales or serving activities. 

Submit a notification(Link leads to external service)

If you have any questions about outdoor sales, please contact food control at kymp.ulkomyynti@hel.fi(Link opens default mail program) .

Apply for an alcohol serving licence from the Regional State Administrative Agency for Southern Finland.

Apply for an alcohol serving licence(Link leads to external service)

When selling or serving food or alcohol, please note the obligations related to waste management and toilet facilities.

Submit a retail sales permit application in writing to the municipality via Valvira's online service.

Read more and apply for a sales permit for tobacco products(Link leads to external service)

Read more about the sale of tobacco products

Fireworks

If you plan to organise fireworks at an event:

  • Notify the police about the fireworks no later than 14 days before the event.
  • Draw up a rescue plan for the fireworks display and submit it to the area’s Rescue Services no later than 14 days before the start of the event.  

Notification of fireworks use(Link leads to external service)

Rescue plan template (docx, In Finnish)(Link leads to external service)



You must also file a noise notification for the fireworks no later than 30 days before the start of the activity if:

  • The fireworks used will have a diameter of more than 100 millimetres, or fireworks with a noise level equivalent to this will be used after 22.00.
  • Notifications of plans to use fireworks after midnight are only approved for very well-founded reasons.

Submit a noise notification via Lupapiste(Link leads to external service)

Fire-based performances

Performances using fire at public events are a professional activity that requires the permission of the building’s owner or tenant and, if necessary, the landowner. A rescue plan must also be drawn up for the fire performance and submitted to the rescue authority no later than 14 days before the performance.



Read more about organising a fire-based performance and drawing up a rescue plan(Link leads to external service)

Pyrotechnic effects

Explosives or hazardous chemicals can be used as special effects at public events if a notification has been submitted to the rescue authority no later than 14 days before the event is organised. The notification must name a responsible person with professional qualifications in the special effects field in line with Finland’s Charger Act.

Read more and submit a notification of pyrotechnics use(Link leads to external service)

Hazardous chemicals

Some public events may involve the use of hazardous chemicals such as liquid gas and generator fuel. 

As the organiser of the event, you must submit a rescue plan for the event, in which you list the quantities of hazardous chemicals that will be in use and the reasons why they are necessary. You must also describe the risks and safety arrangements caused by the use of hazardous chemicals and instructions for preventing and responding to an accident or dangerous situation based on the risks described.

Submit the notification of hazardous chemicals use at least one month before the start of the event. 

 

Read more and submit a notification of hazardous chemicals use (in Finnish)(Link leads to external service)

The use of land or premises belonging to the City for the purposes of films, advertising or other commercial transactions is subject to a filming and photography permission issued by the responsible body as follows:

  • Port area: permission is granted by the Port of Helsinki.
  • Sports and outdoor areas: permission is granted by Helsinki Sports Services.
  • Commercial market squares: permission is granted by Helsinki Wholesale Market.
  • Land owned by private landowners or property owners: permission is granted by the owner of the land or property.

Please note that



Drone photography and videography

It is not allowed to fly a drone over a crowd outdoors. Please also note that there are several no-fly zones in Helsinki where you are not allowed to fly a drone without a special permit and two airfields around which you are not allowed to fly a drone without permission from air traffic control. For more information, see www.droneinfo.fi(Link leads to external service).

Advertising in public places

 

Do you want to place an advertisement in a street area? You can apply for a permit for fixed advertising structures or banners to be attached to bridges from the Urban Environment Division’s Land Use and Monitoring unit. On these pages, you can also find more information on election advertising and instructions on the use of mobile advertising stands.

Helsinki advertising spots

Would you like to fly a flag?

Flags and flagpoles can be rented from the Stara logistics centre: Liukumäentie 4, tel. +358 9 310 38925.

Vehicles over 12 metres in length require a permit in the inner city. The permit is granted by Urban Environment Division.

Read more and apply for a transport permit



All abnormal transport permits in Finland are granted by the Centre for Economic Development, Transport and the Environment for Pirkanmaa. 

Please note that event traffic controllers must be approved by the police (Road Traffic Degree, Section 2).