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Practical information for incoming exchange students

Here you can find useful information when planning your exchange period. The international coordinators and tutors are also happy to help you with practical matters and questions concerning studies, accommodation, etc.

Note that the main communication channel is by email. The email address provided in your application document will be used.

A lot of practical information can also be found in the Study in Finland website.


Each exchange student will be contacted by the international tutor prior to their arrival in Finland. Tutors assist students upon their arrival and with practical matters such as getting to know the campus and student life in Finland.

Student union O’Diako is responsible for international tutoring.

It is advisable to schedule your arrival a few days before your studies start.

When you arrive, please book an appointment with the international coordinator in case you are unable to attend the orientation.


All exchange students arriving to Diak should have valid travel insurance for the entire stay, including journeys to and from Finland. Your insurance must cover expenses and transportation to the home country in case of an emergency.

In case of emergency, students from the EU/EEA countries are entitled to public health care services in Finland if they are covered by health insurance in their home country. A European Health Insurance Card or other official document is needed to access health services in Finland.

Immigration process

You are Duration Permit When Application
NOT citizen of an EU member state, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway or Switzerland Over 3 months Residence Permit Before arrival -> E-service
NOT citizen of an EU member state, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway or Switzerland (and not from visa-free country) Less than 3 months Visa Before arrival Visa application
NOT citizen of an EU member state, but you have a valid residence permit issued by another EU Member State Over 3 months Mobility notification Before arrival Mobility notification to Finland
Citizen of EU member state, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway or Switzerland Over 3 months Right to reside After arrival Right to reside application








Residence permit

Students who are NOT citizens of an EU member state, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway or Switzerland have to apply for a residence permit if the studies/placement in Finland last for longer than 90 days.

Residence permit application is available at -> E-services.

Please find more information about student’s residence permit application here.

If you are a citizen of an EU member state, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway or Switzerland, you are not required to have a residence permit for Finland.

Mobility notification

If you have a valid residence permit for studies issued by another EU Member State and you will study at Diak UAS via student exchange programme (Erasmus+, Nordplus or bilateral), you do not have to apply for residence permit to Finland. Instead you should make a mobility notification to Finland.

Please make sure that you submit all the required documents. If something is missing, the Immigration Service will automatically object your notification and you will have to pay the fee again.


If your studies/placement take more than 90 days to complete, apply for a visa. You may study in Finland for 90 days without a visa or residence permit if you are a citizen of a visa-free country.

EU/EEA Citizens’ Right of Residence Registration

If you are a citizen of an EU member state, Liechtenstein or Switzerland you do not need a residence permit to stay in Finland. You can stay and work freely in Finland for up to three months. You need to have a valid identity card or passport. If your stay lasts for more than three months you have to register your right of residence. You are recommended to register AFTER arrival to Finland.

For more information, please see the Finnish Immigration Service‘s website.


Exchange students are expected to cover rental expenses themselves.


Student housing for exchange students in Helsinki is arranged by HOAS student housing provider.

Apply for housing as early as possible, since the student housing situation in Helsinki is challenging. Student housing is given on first come first served basis.  

Please note that Diak cannot guarantee accommodation for late applicants.

Living costs in Finland

Rents in student accommodation vary between cities. In the Helsinki region, be prepared to pay approximately €300-600 for a shared student flat and €500–1,000 for a studio depending on the location. In other Finnish towns rents can be lower.

Student cafeterias at Diak campuses offer hot meals, snacks and drinks at moderate prices. A discounted student lunch costs approximately €2–4. You will get the student discount at the cafeterias only by presenting a valid student card.

Diak library services and studies are free of charge. Public transport costs about €40 per month. Mobile phone subscription with internet connection also costs around €25 per month. Students get various discounts, and the ISEC student card is widely recognised, for instance in museums, cinemas, sport facilities etc.

Health Care

Health care for EU citizens

If you are covered by health insurance in another EU member state, EEA member state or Switzerland, you are entitled to essential health care in Finland. In order to receive treatment, you must have a European Health Insurance Card. You must obtain a European Health Insurance Card from the country in which you are covered by health insurance.

The European Health Insurance card entitles you to receive treatment if you fall ill or have an accident. You will also receive treatment if your long-term illness requires it. The card also entitles you to receive treatment related to pregnancy and delivery. You will pay the same amount for your treatment as permanent Finnish residents do.

The Medical Helpline service 116 117 is open 24 hours a day.
The telephone health services 09 310 100 23 is open 24 hours a day.

Health Care for non-EU citizens

Students coming from outside European Union should have a Health Insurance that covers medical treatment in Finland. There are several private clinics and hospitals available.

Accessibility & Equality

Accessibility and equality are important values at Diak. We work hard to guarantee our students equal opportunities and access to our facilities.

If you need special support or have questions about accessibility, please contact


Finnish Identity Code

A Finnish personal identity code is required for student union membership and in various activities. Your tutor can advise you about these matters, and information is also available online at the Registry Office.

When applying for the social security number, you will need a certificate of attendance, which can be obtained from the international coordinator / study office.

Instructions for IT systems

Students receive their username and password for Diak IT systems during the orientation.

User guide books for Diak IT systems are available online.

In Diak, students use Diakle for studying. Diakle is an online learning environment, where you will find all you courses, you can submit course assignments and find course instructions and course material. In addition Diakle provides Diak news for students.

Online lectures are held in Zoom video conference system. For lectures, you log in to Diakle.

In addition, students use Office 365 software.