Living and accommodation
Laurea operates in the Greater Helsinki Region, in the cities of Espoo (Leppävaara and Otaniemi units), Vantaa (Tikkurila unit), Kerava, Hyvinkää, Lohja and Porvoo.
Laurea does not have its own student dormitories or other housing for students. Student accommodation is available with student housing associations and companies close to most Laurea local units. Read about the different accommodation options for students studying in different Laurea units as well as other important info about living in Finland from below.
Helsinki Metropolitan Area
International exchange students coming to study at Laurea units in the city of Espoo (Laurea Leppävaara and Laurea Otaniemi), city of Vantaa (Laurea Tikkurila) and city of Kerava (Laurea Kerava) can apply for accommodation from HOAS and different sources from the private markets.
International degree students coming to study at Laurea's Kerava unit cannot apply for housing from HOAS.
Please notice that the apartment situation in the Helsinki Metropolitan Area is extremely difficult and thus it is important to start looking for accommodation as soon as possible and preferably from several different sources! When you receive a housing offer, we strongly advice you to take it.
Student accommodation for international students at Laurea Hyvinkää unit is offered by Hyvinkään vuokra-asunnot Oy. Laurea Hyvinkää will reserve the accommodation for all their exchange students according to the exchange period.
Exchange students will have rooms in a student dormitory. Students will share the apartment with one or two other students. Each student will have his/her own room and the kitchen and bathroom will be shared. Laurea Lohja will reserve the accommodation for all their exchange students according to the exchange period.
Information on accommodation at Laurea Porvoo can be obtained from the international coordinator.
If you do not have an apartment before arriving in Finland
Be sure to make a reservation for a hostel early enough! The hostels are often fully booked especially in early September. You can search for a hostel at http://www.hostellit.fi/?lang=EN. Or you can try e.g. CheapSleep hostel at www.cheapsleep.fi. You can also try couch-surfing, a volunteer-based network for accommodation, http://www.couchsurfing.org/.
We strongly advice not to rely on finding an apartment after arrival to Finland!
Students with disabilities
Most of Laurea’s premises are new and therefore suitable for various learners and disabled customers. Every unit has a lift and unrestricted access into the building. The spaces inside the buildings vary in their standard of equipment, but most teaching facilities are suitable for wheelchair users. The furnishings of most IT facilities also allow for wheelchair use. Every unit has a disabled toilet. There is also unrestricted access to dining and catering areas. Disabled parking spaces are available for every unit.
Cost of Living
Since higher education in Finland is funded by the state through the Ministry of Education, students enrolled in regular Bachelor's or Master's degree studies pay no tuition fees. Students have to pay for their books and other materials, as well as accommodation and living expenses. The cost of living is comparable to the rest of Europe on average. The monthly living expenses of a single student are around EUR 700-900 per month.
Temporary expenses include the housing deposit, which will be refunded at the end of the tenancy period. The expense for textbooks is very low, since most of the course books can be borrowed from libraries.
Please note that there are always unexpected expenses for any international traveller.
Insurance is recommended for all international students.
Finnish higher education institutions (both Universities and Universities of Applied Sciences) have created an insurance package that provides coverage at a reasonable price and as comprehensive as possible for your needs while you are studying in Finland.
Instructions for obtaining insurance from the Student Insurance Program (SIP)
To buy the Marsh SIP insurance please go to www.marsh.be/sip. This website allows you to purchase your health insurance online with a credit card. It is as easy as that! If you have any questions about the insurance, you must contact Marsh directly (see their “contact us” section of the website).
-> Read more about the insurance.
VERY IMPORTANT: All communications regarding this insurance (obtaining it, what it covers, and how to make a claim) should be done with the insurance provider. You, the student, are the policy holder and your institution has no right to discuss any issues with the insurer.
The Helsinki Metropolitan Area has a very efficient public transport system. There are four forms of public transportation: buses, trains, trams and the underground. Information about public transport, including ticket prices and schedules, are at Helsinki Metropolitan Area Council (YTV) web pages. For example the online journey planner gives route suggestions and maps for how to get from student accommodation to Laurea units.
The Finnish State Railways and national bus company, Oy Matkahuolto Ab, provide information on trains and busses that operate to Laurea’s units in the Greater Helsinki Region. Laurea Porvoo and Laurea Lohja are best reached with a bus, whereas train is the easiest way to reach Hyvinkää and Kerava.
Non-citizens of Finland can get financial aid for studies in Finland only if they live in Finland on a permanent basis for a purpose other than studying. However, students with a Finnish student card are entitled to various discounts. Student cards are provided by the Student Union LAUREAMKO.
Laurea students are entitled to discounts on catering. Kela provides direct support for providers of catering at higher education institutions, so meals cost less for students. Students should pay a maximum of EUR 2.35 for lunch. Subsidised lunches can be obtained with a valid student card. All Laurea students have access to other universities’ and university of applied sciences’ canteens included in the meal subsidy system.
Students are also entitled to certain discounts on public transport. Laurea’s International Tutor Students help international students in purchasing their ticket in the right place and at the right price.
See also theGuide to International Student Services in the Metropolitan Area, which has comprehensive information from residence permits and heath care to social security and employment services in Finland.
Sports and Leisure
Laurea units in Leppävaara and Hyvinkää have a gym for weight lifting training. Student union LAUREAMKO organises some sports activities, such as football tournaments.
Helsinki Metropolitan Area offers a variety of other sports and leisure activities. International students are usually welcomed to local sports clubs. In addition, Otaniemi International Network organises various leisure activities, including sports.
The Jolly Dragon international network organises various get-togethers and social networking events.