Costs and finance

International Students in Viikki

When planning your studies, remember that all the degree students at the University of Helsinki must ensure the funding for their studies and living costs themselves. You should also take into consideration that the price level of Helsinki can be fairly high depending on where you come from although it is in line with other European metropolitan cities. Luckily, as a student, you are entitled to several benefits and services that make your life a little easier.

All the degree students at the University of Helsinki must fund their studies and living expenses themselves. Ensure that you have adequate funding and enough of financial means to pay for possible tuition fees, your studies and living expenses for the entire period of your study.

Please note that international students who come to Finland only for their studies are usually not covered by the Finnish social security, and thus not entitled to the financial aid for students by the Finnish government.

If you are an international student studying in Finland, please refer to the Kela website for eligibility for financial aid. You can also find additional information about financing your studies on the Instructions for Students website.

If you are interested in doctoral education at the University of Helsinki, read more about funding for doctoral studies.

If you are interested in coming to the University of Helsinki as an exchange student, read more about funding for student exchange on the Instructions for Students website.

International House Helsinki provides a wide range of information and public authority services in one place to meet the needs of international newcomers in the Helsinki metropolitan area. Their multilingual information and counselling service for internationals is free of charge.

There are no tuition fees for exchange students, PhD students or citizens of the European Union (EU), the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland and those who have permanent residence status in Finland (March 2020).

For the Master's and Bachelor's programmes, citizens of non-EU/EEA countries, who do not have a permanent residence status in Finland, are liable to tuition fees.

Read more about the tuition fees at the University of Helsinki.

If you apply to an International Master's Programme at the University of Helsinki and are liable to pay tuition fees, you may also apply for a scholarship from the University of Helsinki scholarship programme.

Read more about the scholarship programme

All the students have to pay for own their accommodation and living expenses. Living costs in Helsinki—especially the cost of housing— are relatively high but they are in line with the EU average. Please note that although 6720 euros per year is considered as sufficient funds for a residence permit, it won't be enough for living in Helsinki.

The monthly living expenses for a student in Helsinki are on average 700-1000 euros, depending on your spending habits. You can check some specific examples on living costs on websites like Numbeo.

Please note that accommodation is a big cost in Helsinki, e.g. one month's rent is normally 450-700 euros. Read more about housing on the Instructions for Students website.

Please remember to make arrangements for adequate funding for the entire period of your studies before leaving your home country.

All the students studying for a Bachelor's or Master's degree (basic-degree students) at the University of Helsinki are members of the Student Union (HYY) and therefore bound to pay the student union membership fee. The membership entitles to various benefits, discounts and services offered directly or indirectly by the Student Union.

For the academic year 2020-2021, the Student Union membership fee for basic-degree students (Bachelor's or Master's students) is 74,50 euro (please note that as of 2021 it will no longer include the fee for the Finnish Student Health Service).

Please note that if you pay a tuition fee, it covers the Student Union membership fee and FSHS costs.

For exchange students and doctoral students, the membership of the Student Union is voluntary.

More information about the Student Union membership on the HYY website. The membership fee is paid in connection with your annual registration.

As a student and member of the Student Union of University of Helsinki (HYY), you are entitled directly or indirectly to various services and benefits that will make your life easier.

For example, you have access to affordable student housing, student-priced meals as well as low-cost health care services and sports facilities. In addition, you get numerous discounts, for example on public transport fees across the country and on tickets to cultural events or attractions. 

More information about student benefits.

Students already studying at the University of Helsinki can apply for the scholarships offered by the University of Helsinki Funds.

Also various other foundations as well as scientific or other organisations in Finland offer grants and scholarships. Most of them are also open to international students and researchers enrolled at the University of Helsinki.

Read more about the different grant and scholarship options on the Instructions for Students website. There you find both information about the grants and scholarships offered by the University of Helsinki Funds and links to some other funding databases.

International exchange and degree students are allowed to work during their stay in Finland - with certain restrictions. The restrictions have to do with the nationality (EU/EEA or non-EU/EEA) and the nature of employment. Please also note that when working in Finland, you have to pay taxes on your income.

Read more about working while studying on the instructions for students website.