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Easter weekend shuffles transport, postal schedules

Maundy Thursday and Easter Monday are two of the busiest travel days of the year.

Pääsiäsipuu koristaa Kuhmo-talon aulaa.
Most offices close for the long holiday weekend. Image: Niko Mannonen/Yle

The pre-Easter travel rush begins on Thursday ahead of national holidays on Friday and Monday, when schools, banks and most offices are closed.

Maundy Thursday and Easter Monday are two of the busiest travel days of the year. Most of Thursday's long-distance trains are fully booked, according to State Railways VR. Trains run according to Friday schedules on Thursday, and then on Sunday schedules through Monday.

The same is true for most local transport services throughout the country, as well as for most long-distance coaches.

There is still some space on long-distance coaches on Thursday, reports bus station operator Matkahuolto. The firm lists holiday weekend schedule changes on its website.

No postal deliveries

Most post offices are closed from Friday through Monday, although postal counters and services within stores and kiosks are open on some days. The Santa Claus Post Office in Rovaniemi, Finnish Lapland, is open every day all year round. There are no postal deliveries from Friday through Monday.

Pharmacies have limited opening hours over the weekend; check their websites for details.

State alcohol monopoly Alko's outlets are closed on Friday, Sunday and Monday. They are open until 9pm on Thursday, and from 9am to 6pm on Saturday.

Late Easter

Finland's state-supported Evangelical Lutheran and Orthodox churches both celebrate Easter on 21 April this year, while some other Orthodox churches observe it on the following Sunday.

Easter is unusually late this year. That is because it is dated to the Sunday after the first full moon after the spring equinox.

This year the equinox was 20 March and the full moon immediately the following day. However old church calendars assumed that the equinox was always on 21 March, meaning that Easter could fall anytime between 22 March and 25 April.

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