Before your exchange

We will organize two Pre-departure trainings for all the nominated students before the exchange. In the Pre-departure trainings you'll get practical information about the exchange as well as cultural training. Please read through the checklist before your exchange period!

Learning Agreement (LA)

Before the start of your exchange studies, often after you have been admitted by the host university, you will fill in a Learning Agreement (LA) for your exchange studies. You need to sign the LA and get it signed also by Arcada and the host university. Read more under Learning Agreement

Grant agreement

When you have been accepted for an exchange by our partner institution, it is time to prepare your grant agreement (Arcada, Erasmus or Nordplus - only one of them). We need to have your grant agreement ready before your exchange period starts. Read more about grants under Grants.


You are responsible for arranging accommodation for yourself. The hosting university often helps you with accommodation. Normal rent is paid. Remember that accommodation standards are not necessarily the same as in Finland. Be aware of accommodation scams if you choose to look for housing on the private market.

Visa and residence permit

Check with the embassy of the host country if you need a visa/residence permit during your exchange. It varies depending on how long you will be studying abroad, where do you come from, what you are studying and whether it concerns only studies or practical training.

EU-citizens travelling to an EU-country do not need a visa, but after 3 months in your new country, you may be required to register with the relevant authority (often the town hall or local police station). You can get more information from your host university and from the embassy of the host country.

Everyone who will be travelling to Canada and stays more than 6 months are required to apply for a Study Permit from the Canadian High Commission in London External link. If you also have planned to work alongside your studies you also might have to go through a medical exam by a doctor approved of the Canadian embassy. Read more about it here External link.

Notification of move

According to Finnish legislation, you must always submit a notification of move if your temporary stay at another address is longer than three months. The notification can be made at the earliest one month in advance. However you must take care of that the notification has been received by the local register office within a week of your move at the latest. Notification can be submitted online. External link More information can be found on the webpage of the logal register office. External link


If you get study allowance from Kela, fill in Kela's form for changed circumstances their e-services External link. Do this only after you have been accepted for an exchange by the hosting institution. Put the same date for the exchange in the form for changed circumstances to Kela, as you put in your grant agreement.


Make sure that you have a valid travel insurance for the whole period abroad. Many of our partner universities require that the incoming exchange students have a travel insurance. Note that travel insurance that covers e.g. travelling belongings, health care, accidents and medical transportation to Finland is highly recommended. Contact your local insurance company for more information about insurances.

You are entitled to a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) granted by Kela, if you are covered for health insurance in Finland or if Finland is responsible for your medical care costs. The card is available free of charge. You can use the European Health Insurance Card in the EU and EEA countries and in Switzerland in the public health care system and at private doctor’s surgeries and hospitals affiliated to the public health insurance scheme. When you show the European Health Insurance Card to the treatment provider, you should receive treatment to the same cost as the country’s inhabitants. Note that the EHIC is not the same as a travel insurance!


Please make sure you have all the vaccinations needed and a valid insurance. Contact the nurse at Arcada for more information regarding vaccinations. On the site External link (in Finnish) you can find out more about different vaccinations. The National Public Health Institute has published a book called ´Matkailijan terveysopas' External link (in Finnish) in which you can read more about the vaccinations.


Read the country-specific travel advice External link (in Finnish) of the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland before your departure. The advice pertains to the country’s safety and security situation and contains instructions for what to do if you need consular assistance during your exchange. Also read the instructions of the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland concerning the support offered by both the Ministry and Finnish missions in the event of a crisis.

Arcada strongly recommends that all students with a Finnish nationality or a permanent visa in Finland do a Travel notification to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Finland External link. Students with another nationality are recommended to contact the embassy of their home country in Helsinki/closest embassy to get instructions about how to make a travel notification.

Registration for the academic year

You have to be enrolled as present while studying abroad because the studies are part of your degree at Arcada. Read more about the registration for the academic year.

If you are a tuition fee paying student at Arcada, you need to pay the tuition fee to Arcada also for the semester(s) you are on exchange. Read more about tuition fees.

OLS language test

If you are going on Erasmus exchange you must complete the OLS language assessment before your exchange period starts. More information about the OLS language assessment.

Erasmus Student Charter

If you go on Erasmus exchange read about you rights and obligations related to the exchange in the Erasmus Student Charter found on the page with information about Erasmus.