Finnish Student Card
Finnish student unions have negotiated excellent benefits for students. Most benefits and discounts are linked to a Finnish student card, although some are available also with specific certificates provided by Finnish higher education institutions (see below).
You can get the Finnish student card by joining the student union and paying the membership fee. Read more on ordering the student card from Metropolia's student union Metka.
Other Student Cards
Many service providers will not accept a foreign student card as the basis for discounts. However, some alternative discount arrangements are available if you do not wish to pay for the membership of a Finnish student union and buying the card:
- International Student Identity Card (ISIC) might be accepted as a basis for student discounts by some individual service providers such as museums. Exchange students can purchase the ISIC card before coming to Finland or upon arrival as they already have the student status in their home institution.
- Erasmus Student Network (ESN) is a European student association and Metropolia has its own ESN section called ESN Metropolia. ESN has negotiated certain discounts for their own ESN card.
- Alternative certificates for enrolled students: the most important discounts are available through other certificates if you are a degree or exchange student enrolled in Metropolia. For instance the public transportation and student cafeterias accept an alternative discount certificates.
Most Metropolia campuses have a student cafeteria. The campus cafeterias offer hot meals, snacks and coffee at moderate prices for students. In student cafeterias you can get a healthy lunch for around 2,5 euros if you are enrolled in a Finnish higher education institution!
The student discount is given to students with a Finnish student card or a meal subsidy card. With these cards you can get student discounts in most student cafeterias in Finland (see the list of subsidised student restaurants on the Kela website). Some of the student cafeterias are open late in the evenings and on Saturdays.
Meal Subsidy Card
International degree and exchange students of Metropolia are entitled to get a student discount in subsidised student restaurants and cafeterias.
Students of Metropolia can get the student discounts with a Kela meal subsidy card from the Student Affairs Office. Exchange students usually get the card in their orientation.
The Social Insurance Institution Kela pays the difference between the full price and the discount price to the operator of the restaurant. Students of higher education and vocational education institutions and students attending specialisation programmes eligible for financial aid are entitled to the meal subsidy programme.
Helsinki Region Transport (HSL)
The public transportation provider Helsinki Region Transport (HSL) gives a 50% discount for students living in the HSL region. This includes also exchange students.
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VR - National Railways provide the long-distance train network in Finland. VR sells cheaper tickets if you buy them in advance (the so-called Saver Ticket), but they also give a 30% student discount on basic tickets and 10 and 30 journey multi-tickets. You can get the student discount with the Finnish student card, but also with the Joint VR and Matkahuolto Student Card. Note that for getting the Joint VR and Matkahuolto Student Card, you will need a certificate from the Student Affairs Office.
Matkahuolto long-distance coach company provides the most extensive national coach service. Matkahuolto sells cheaper tickets if you buy them in advance, but you can also get the 50% student discount with the Joint VR and Matkahuolto Student Card. Note that for getting the Joint VR and Matkahuolto Student Card, you will need a certificate from the Student Affairs Office.
Onnibus coach service also offers student-friendly prices without specific student discounts for their destinations around Finland.
Places of Interest
Each tourist attraction, museum, restaurant and shop or other place of interest has their own policy on student discounts. Check each time, you might get the discount with the above-mentioned ISIC or ESN card, an enrolment certificate from Metropolia or, if you are an exchange student, with the student card of your home institution.
Note that many museums in the Helsinki region also have one day per month when the entrance is for free. If you like to visit museums, you might also want to take a look on the Museum Week Card valid throughout Finland.