Cost of living
Finland and especially Helsinki is quite an expensive place to live. Even though Finnish universities have no tuition fees, you have to take into consideration that you need to have enough financial means to pay your rent, personal expenses, transportation costs, meals etc.
Estimated cost of living
All students have to pay for their accommodation and living expenses as well as their books and other study materials. The total monthly living expenses of a single student average from 700 to 1000 euro - depending on your spending habits.
For rent in a student dormitory and residence hall you should budget about 400 euro a month (in a single room). The rent for a studio or family flat is higher; it ranges from 500 to 850 euro a month depending on the flat and the location.
Lunch at the Unicafe student cafeterias costs between 2,30 and 4,20 euro for undergraduate and graduate students, for postgraduate students the cost is 4,25 to 6,10 euro. The price depends on the lunch and the method of payment.
Local transportation costs are about 23 euro / 30-days travels in Helsinki and 47,90 euro / 30-days regional travels from Espoo and Vantaa to Helsinki (prices shown include the student discount which is available to undergraduate and graduate students under the age of 30).
Your student status, and especially the Student Union membership, entitles mainly undergraduate and graduate students to various services at affordable prices as well as to an abundance of student discounts.
The discounts for postgraduate (Ph.D.) students are more limited.
Student Union fee
The Student Unions of the various universities charge an annual membership fee to cover their activities.
At the University Helsinki, the fee for undergraduate and graduate students is 92 euro for the 2013-2014 academic year. The right to access the student health care is included in this fee for undergraduate and graduate students.
The fee for postgraduate students is 48 euro for the 2013-2014 academic year. The postgraduate fee is smaller because postgraduate students are not entitled to use the services of the student health care.
More information on the Student Union membership fee and the benefits and services of a Student Union membership is available on the Student Union website.