Help with bus timetable please!! Is this bus running or not?!
Replies: 8 - Last Post: Feb 3, 2013 4:38 PM Last Post By: urchin79
Nov 21, 2012 4:39 PM
Help with bus timetable please!! Is this bus running or not?!I'm trying to get from Mumansk to Ivalo roughly mid March.
Finally I found a website with English but something worries me. The bus goes to Ivalo Matkahuolto. Fine I don't know where Matkahuolto is but as long as it's Ivalo-ish
BUT when you click on the info icon it says "Matkahuolto tickets not valid" So can I go there or not?? :/
Is this a reliable bus or am I going to end up getting into trouble for being in Russia past my welcome?
Nov 21, 2012 4:44 PM
1This is the main website http://www.kuopionliikenne.fi/aikataulut/kaukoliikenne/koiviston-auto-yhtymaen-pikavuorot-462012-262013/15069-rovaniemi-ivalo-murmansk
Also could I actually book this ticket to prove exit from Russia? I can't seem to be able to and if I just try and book it says "place of departure not found" :(
Nov 22, 2012 1:02 AM
2Matkahuolto is Finnish for "Travel Services". If you use Google Maps to search for Ivalo Matkahuolto, and use google streetview to see what it looks like, you will discover that it refers to a large area of tarmac, occupied in part by stationary buses, on Petsamontie street close to the town centre, ie it appears to be the town bus station. The Matkahuolto-kahvila Inka, ie "Inka" Transport Cafe, is adjacent (wonder if they serve guinea pig sandwiches). But it sounds like you are being warned that you mustn't buy your ticket from the matkahuolto.info website.
Nov 22, 2012 1:36 PM
3Oh right haha I enquired and just had an email to say I have to book via www.goldline.fi but I don't understand Finnish and when I click on the English version it redirects me to the page where you cannot buy tickets (matkahuolto website!) I tried to book in Finnish but it just wasn't happening! I assume buying on bus is ok? but it always looks better if you have transport booked to leave a country like Russia. I'll have my flight back from Finland but still rather have bus departure ticket as proof of exit.
Nov 22, 2012 11:49 PM
4I wouldn't be too worried of getting bus tickets from Murmansk to Ivalo. The problem seems to be that the goldline web service is not set to international reservations. If you want the reservation to proof your exit from Russia, that doesn't seem to help.
Matkahuoltos are always located at bus stations, so basically they're 'the transportation hubs' of every Finnish village.
Nov 23, 2012 9:49 AM
5As long as I know there are more than one a week then I guess it'll be fine. Just want to make sure I get enough time in Finland and not have to wait for ages to get there and miss out. I guess I could always start walking... ;)
Nov 26, 2012 1:01 AM
6I've used this service once at March 2010 from Ivalo to Murmansk.
I'm not sure is it possible to book a seat in advance. Ticket cost 50€ and I bought it from Ivalo bus station ticket office (Matkahuolto). Tickets are hand written and russian, that's why they are not available from net.
That was the easy part.
The bus was a 15-seater MB Sprinter and about half booked in Ivalo and almost full after border, Russian frontier guards use this line between border station and Murmansk. The line was quite reliable, but the roads at that side of the world are not. There was a heavy snowfall at that night and the bus got stuck in the snow some times. The road was blocked many times when cars and vans vere stucked. And by russian style, no one wouldn't help stuck cars, seemed that this was impossible in russian culture. There was one Norwegian and me, a Finn pushing those cars. The bus got back to road after all big men from frontier were seated to rear seat to make more weight on driving wheels.
The bus wasn't refueled in Finland because of much higher fuel prices. Struggling in deep snow burns diesel a lot more than dry road and the bus ran out of fuel near Tuuloma, forcing the driver to refuel from backup jerry can, luckily full enough. The bus was in Murmansk 2h late.
I recommend you to have some survival kit and good clothes for the weather, especially at winter time. There is about 140km road without telephone service between Finnish border and Verkhnetulomsky. If something unwanted happens, it's more comfort to wait help while sitting around campfire.
Feb 3, 2013 1:03 PM
7I can confirm that the bus is running... I took it two days ago from Ivalo to Murmansk... Just like mm I bought my ticket at the bus office... However, I have no idea from where to bye the ticket in Murmansk... You best encore at the bus stations in front of the train station a day before...
Contrary to mm I had a fine trip... 6½ hours on the spot.... Even though I almost got stuck at the border because the officials though my passport was fake (new passports tend to confuse some border officials - or at least make them suspicious)... It can be a little chilly in the bus... And do note the two hour time difference!
Buses go Monday 0830, Wednesday 1430 and Friday 0830...
Feb 3, 2013 4:38 PM
8Cool thanks guys! That's good to know... i've yet to work out other stuff... like getting to Lovozero. Don't suppose either of you managed to find somewhere to stay there? I can only find bus time tables going there but not coming back, and it looks like it gets there lunchtimeish so unlikely to get any time there to look around before returning. Any other recommendations for Apatity and Kirovsk accomodation would be great too. Not got anything sorted yet and barely any info in my LP guide! thanks
(4 star Hotel)
From US$251.17 per night
(4 star Hotel)
From US$162.23 per night
(4 star Hotel)
From US$122.28 per night