The sharp increase in Murmanskers driving to northern Finland for shopping and leisure seems to slow down. From 2011 to 2012 the increase at Finland’s northernmost border check-point to Russia, Raja-Jooseppi, was 36 percent, while the increase over the last year was only 5 percent, reads the statistics from the Finnish Border Guard.
By year-end 2013, a total of 133,256 border-crossings were counted on the main road between Murmansk and Ivalo.
At Salla, the border check-point most frequently used by travelers from Murmansk going to Rovaniemi, 253,686 border-crossings were counted, up 15 percent compared with 2012.
The slow-downed increase in border traffic in the north mirrors the general statistics in cross-border traffic between Russia and Finland further south. In total, nearly 13 million border-crossings were counted in 2013, up 8 percent compared with the year before.