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Information for exchange students

Welcome to Finland! The Student Union O'Diako and its activities are for everyone, including Diak's exchange students. Here you can find important information for incoming exchange students.

If you have any questions, please contact us!

Joel Kortesaari, O'Diako board member, international affairs: international(at)

Iida Tuomola, O'Diako employee, international affairs and guidance: iida.tuomola(at)

When you arrive in Finland

Once you arrive in Finland, there is a lot to take care of. O'Diako has recruited a tutor to help you with all the practicalities. They will contact you before your arrival and meet you at the airport or train/bus station.

Your tutor is there to help you with the following things:

  • fetching the key to your apartment

  • public transportation and tickets

  • phone subscription

  • student discounts

  • finding your way to your apartment and to school

  • prices and currency

  • health care, services nearby, free time activities, culture, stores and shopping

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Exchange students are expected to cover the expenses of their accommodation. Diak can help you in finding accommodation. For more information about housing on different campuses, see Diak's web page for exchange students.

You can ask your tutor if they can fetch the key to your apartment. This is recommended especially if you arrive late in the evening.

When you get to the apartment, check it to see if there are any faults that you should report. This way you won't be accused of the possible damages done by previous tenants and reporting the faults right away will make things easier once you move out. You can ask your tutor to help with this.

Most student apartments/rooms are furnished with a standard size single bed (80x200 cm), mattress, desk, chair and wardrobe. The kitchen is usually equipped with a fridge, oven, stove and cupboard. The bathroom has a toilet, sink, shower and mirror.

There might not be any dishes or kitchen equipment, so you need to be prepared to buy them. You will also need to bring your own sheets, pillow and a blanket. If you wish to buy these in Finland, you can go to a hypermarket (Prisma, K-Citymarket) or cheaper places, such as Tokmanni or IKEA. In Helsinki, O'Diako offers a survival kit for the exchange students.

Journey planner and timetables

Helsinki region: Journey Planner

Oulu: Oulu public transport

Pori (unfortunately this is only in Finnish): Porin linjat

Turku region traffic: Föli

Permits and registering


If you are a citizen of an EU member state or some other Nordic country, you do not need a visa to enter Finland. International students from other countries have to apply for a visa to gain an entry permit.

Residence permit

In case you are not a citizen of the EU, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway or Switzerland and you are planning to stay in Finland for more than 90 days, you need to apply for a residence permit. You can apply for your permit electronically at EnterFinland.

Registration of EU citizens

If you are going to stay in Finland for more than three months, you need to register. You can fill your application and pay for it at EnterFinland and then go to your local police station to verify your identity (within three months of entering into Finland).

Useful links

About Finland

This is Finland - "things you should and shouldn't know"

The Official Travel Guide of Finland


Social media

O'Diako Facebook page

O'Diako Instagram

Diak Facebook

Diak Instagram

Diak Twitter


Diak's page for exchange students

Diak library

Study in Finland

Permits and registration


Enter Finland

Here you can apply for a residence permit or register

The Finnish Immigration Service

General information

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