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Russian-owned cars gather dust at Helsinki Airport

The Finnish government has given the owners of Russian-registered vehicles six months to get their cars out of Finland.

Rear view of a Chevrolet SUV with the words "slava Ukraini" and "go home" written in dust on its windows.
The messages "go home" and "slava Ukraini" ("glory to Ukraine") adorn this Chevrolet. Image: Miika Koskela / Yle
Yle News

Several expensive cars with Russian license plates continue to sit in Helsinki Airport's parking garages. The amount of dust covering the vehicles suggests that some of them have been there for months, if not even longer.

This month Finland banned the entry of Russian-registered cars, and gave owners of Russian-registered vehicles six months to get their cars out of Finland.

Airport operator Finavia told Yle that Vantaa's parking enforcement will eventually tow away vehicles that appear to have been abandoned. If left unclaimed, the ownership of these cars will eventually transfer to the city of Vantaa, where the airport is located.

The most valuable among the dusty cars is likely the Mercedes-Benz GLE 63s AMG, which costs over 300,000 euros when purchased new and can accelerate from 0 to 100 km/h in less than four seconds. Another fast car is the Porsche Cayenne GTS worth over 200,000 euros. There are also several Land Rovers and Lexuses priced over 100,000 euros each languishing in long-term parking.

Storing a car at Finland's main airport is not exactly cheap. Parking in the P1 garage, which is closest to the terminal, costs 186 euros a week, and in the P2 garage, it's 136 euros. But these lots only house a handful of Russian cars. The majority of cars with Russian license plates are parked in the P3 or P5 garages, which cost 79 and 88 euros per week, respectively.

Yle counted 78 Russian-registered cars in these garages, a drastic drop from the 1,400 cars Helsingin Sanomat reported were stored there around a year ago.

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