After you receive your acceptance letter from Metropolia you should check the immigration formalities. Leave enough time to complete all the necessary steps, such as obtaining a passport and arranging insurance and the permits, before leaving your home country.
Note that all the information on these pages is subject to change. The latest information about the arrival procedures is available on the websites of the Finnish officials:
The instructions are different for those students who apply to study a full degree and those who come to Metropolia only for a student exchange programme - make sure to check the correct section!
Permits for Degree Students
Are you a citizen of EU, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway or Switzerland?
- If your answer is ‘yes’, you do not need a residence permit. Click here to find information on EU citizens’ registrations.
- If your answer is ‘no’ and you plan to study in Finland for more than three months:
you will need a residence permit. Finnish Immigration Service instructions on residence permit
If you are not a citizen of an EU/EEA member state you must apply for a residence permit if you are planning to study in Finland for longer than three months. Apply for a visa if your studies will take less than three months. You can study for three months without a visa or residence permit if you are a citizen of a visa-free country. (Source: Finnish Immigration Service)
Citizens of the EU/EEA member states do not require a residence permit. However please refer to the Finnish Immigration Service for more country specific information on what you should do upon your arrival to Finland. Please follow the guidelines on how to apply for a residence permit/visa on the pages of Finnish Immigration Service. If you encounter problems during the application process please contact the authorities mentioned on the Finnish Immigration Service website.
It is essential that you start the application process soon after receiving the acceptance letter. It might take several weeks to process the application.
Bear in mind that you must also have an insurance cover when applying for a residence permit as without it, a residence permit cannot be granted.
Note: Information here might be subject to changes. The latest information about the immigration procedures is always available from the officials.
Permits for Exchange Students
Note that this information is subject to change. Check the updated information on the immigration requirements well in advance on the website of the Finnish Immigration Service.
Citizens of EU member states, Nordic countries, Switzerland and Liechtenstein
Check travel documents accepted by Finland from the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland. Note that during your study period in Finland there will be opportunities to travel to Finland’s neighbouring countries. For travel outside Finland a passport is often required.
EU Registration and Personal Identity Code
EU citizens and citizens of Liechtenstein and Switzerland do not need a residence permit to Finland. However, you should register your right of residence if your stay lasts for longer than three months. You can do this during your exchange period in Finland and you will receive more information about this during the orientation days. You can register your right online at EnterFinland.fi. Please note that after filling in the application online, you need to visit the Immigration Service before your application is processed.
Citizens of the Nordic countries (Sweden, Norway, Denmark and Iceland) have to register at the Digital and Population Data Services Agency if their stay in Finland longer than six months.
All students studying in Finland for over 90 days must apply for a Personal identity code. You can apply for it in the EU registration for residence application or by visiting the Digital and Population Data Services Agency in Helsinki. The international office also organizes a possibility to apply for it during the orientation days. You will receive more information about this during the orientation days. Universities are obliged to collect the code for administrative purposes.
EU citizens and citizens of Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland can freely work in Finland if the work lasts less than three months. After that you must register your right of residence at the Helsinki Immigration Service. See more information on the website of Employment and Economic Development Offices. Note, however, that your primary focus during your exchange in Finland should be studying.
You will need to apply for the necessary permits before coming to Finland, so reserve enough time - several weeks - for the process. The application process is longer than usual because of the covid pandemic. In some countries the Finnish Embassies or VFS Global Application Centers could still remain closed or provide only limited services.
Students can submit their residence permit applications through the Finnish Immigration Service’s online service at www.EnterFinland.fi. However, the processing of these applications will start only after the student has visited a Finnish mission or a VFS Global Application Centre for identification. Start the application process immediately after receiving your acceptance letter from Metropolia.
In order to start and finish your studies properly at Metropolia, we recommend that you apply for some extra days or weeks before and after your study dates in your residence permit application. This will enable to you to travel to Finland before the orientation days begin and leave Finland some days after the studies. In case you apply for extra days or weeks before and after your study period, make sure that your insurance is valid for the full period you are in Finland, not only the study dates.
Non-EU students who hold a valid residence permit based on studies in any EU country do not need to apply for a new residence permit to Finland. These students will be able to study in Finland just by submitting a Mobility Notification.
The Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland has a list of countries showing what travel documents are required and what agreement each country has with the Schengen member states. Check what is required for your country, but usually a valid passport is required.
Visas - for stays less than 90 days
If your study period is less than 90 days, apply for a visa. Read more about visas on the website of the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland.
Residence Permit and Personal Identity Code - for stays longer than 90 days
Exchange students, who are non-EU citizens or of a comparable status, must acquire a residence permit before entering Finland, if their studies in Finland last for longer than three months. The processing fee is approximately 350 euros.
Check the up-to-date application guidelines on the Finnish Immigration Service website and begin the application process as early as possible. It will take at least 6-8 weeks to process your residence permit. Note that the residence permit process requires you to have e.g. an extensive insurance coverage, so you should start collecting the required documents well in advance.
All students studying in Finland for over 90 days must apply for a Personal identity code. You can apply for it in the residence permit application or by visiting the local registry office in Helsinki. The international office also organizes a possibility to apply for it during the orientation days. You will receive more information about this during the orientation days.
To be able to work in Finland, non-EU citizens must apply for a residence permit already before coming to Finland. Note, however, that your primary focus during your exchange in Finland should be studying. With a residence permit granted on the basis of studying you may work without restrictions when the work consists of practical training or diploma work as part of a degree.
During study semesters when actual instruction is given, you are allowed to work maximum of 25 hours of part-time work weekly. During holidays, i.e. during summer and Christmas holidays, you can work full-time without hourly restrictions.