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During the exchange

Below are some things that you will need to do during your exchange studies with us, as well as some important information that you may need during your exchange.


The first day of the orientation week is the official arrival day for all international students and this is the day when you should register as attending at the University.

The student office in Åbo is in Gripen (Tavastgatan 13, 20500 Åbo) and is open from 09.00 – 12.00 and 13:00 – 15:00 during the orientation week. Opening times all other days are 09:00 – 12:00.

The International Office in Vasa is in Academill (F4), Strandgatan 2, 65100, and is open from 09:00 – 12:00 and 13:00 – 15:00.

Things to bring with you when you register:

  • Official ID (passport or driving license)
  • Receipt of the paid student union fee, if you choose to join the student union.

After you have registered with us you will receive:

  • Certificate of registration.
    • This certificate is needed in contact with the Digital and population data services (DVV) and the Finnish Immigration Service.
  • Åbo Akademi IT Username and Password
    • This is needed to log into all university systems, including your ÅA email address, Peppi (course registration system) and more.

Signing of documents for your home university:

    • It is very important that you PRINT OUT any documents that you need signed by us for your home university i.e., Certificate of Arrival for Erasmus+ students. We will only sign your documents for you if they have been printed out and bought with you to registration.
    • If you have electronic documents you can e-mail them to us at exchange@abo.fi.

It is common that the exchange student tutors bring their tutor groups to the office to register at the same time, so check with your tutors first.

You can get a Finnish student card only once you have paid the student union fee and you have been registered as attending at the University.

You can either get an electronic student card on your phone via the Frank App, or you can order a plastic student card for an additional fee.

By activating the student card, you get cheaper lunches at the student restaurants as well as cheaper tickets for buses and trains and discounts in shops. More information on the student union can be found here: The Student Union and student card.

Before you get your electronic student card via the frank app, you can show your student union payment receipt in all university restaurants to get student prices on lunch.

Please note that sometimes it takes a day after registration to be able to activate the electronic student card in the app.

You will have your own ÅAU email address for the duration of your exchange studies with us. You will receive your username and temporary password after you have registered as attending with us.

We will have an information session during the orientation week where you can find out how to set up your ÅAU email account, change your password, and sync your emails to your phone.

All personnel at the University, including the international office, will use this e-mail address to reach you during your stay here. Please read your e-mail frequently to ensure that you do not miss important information.

When contacting teaching or staff of Åbo Akademi, always use your ÅAU email account so the person knows that you are a student of the university and does not treat your email like spam.

If you want to use another e-mail address instead, you should active the forwarding setting for the ÅAU e-mail. This can be done in SelfService.

Students do not usually need to purchase course books during their studies, these are available at the ASA-library in Åbo and at Academill in Vasa.

The ÅAU libraries organize information sessions for exchange students so that students can get the most out of the resources and databases provided. Information on how to obtain a library card can be found here. To see the library collections please visit the search portal Alma.

All academic and social services available to Finnish students are also provided to exchange students. Moreover, the computer facilities are of very high standards, and students have access to several computer rooms at the University.

Exchange students will be provided with usernames for e-mail and computers when registering at the University, and will after registration have immediate access to all computer rooms.

You can access our WiFi called Eduroam with your Åbo Akademi username and password, that you will receive after you register as attending with us during the orientation week.

Many universities use Eduroam, so you can try with your own credentials or use username@abo.fi and your password.

All exchange students need to obtain a Finnish Personal Identity Code after they have arrived in Finland. A Finnish ID code is a number sequence with 11 characters, formed on the basis of one’s date of birth. The ID code is needed for a variety of things, such as to open a bank account etc. It is also mandatory for our university systems.

Already have a residence permit? 

Most students with a residence permit should already have a Finnish Personal ID code stated on the residence permit card.

How to apply for a Finnish Personal ID Code

You can only apply for a Finnish Personal ID code after your have registered at Åbo Akademi University as an attending exchange student, and received your Letter of Attendance from us.

  1. Fill in the online application form which is available at the following link: https://dvv.fi/en/international-student
  2. Meeting with DVV in Åbo and VasaYou will need to visit DVV after you have arrived in Finland and filled in the application.Åbo: Digital and population data services (DVV) will book a date for when ÅA exchange students can go and visit them at their office. We will inform you about this date later.The address is Itsenäisyydenaukio 2. If you cannot go the the DVV’s office during these days, you will need to visit them by yourself. If this is the case, please check the instructions on how to book an appointment yourself below.Vasa: Digital and population data services (DVV) will book a date for when ÅA exchange students can go and visit them at their office. We will inform you about this date later.The address is Wolffintie 35 B, 2nd floor, 65200 VAASA. If you cannot go the the DVV’s office during these days, you will need to visit them by yourself. If this is the case, please check the instructions on how to book an appointment yourself below.If you cannot make the specific date that DVV will book for ÅA exchange students, you should book an appointment time yourself directly with DVV:
    • Go to the following link: https://isl.ajanvaraus.fi/frontend/
    • Change the page into English at the top right-hand corner of the page
    • Choose “International Relations” which can be found under “Personal Law Services”
    • Under “Select Service Location” choose “Service location in Vaasa/Åbo”
    • Click “Select time”
    • You will then be able to book an appointment that suits you best.


  3. Please remember to bring with you for the appointment:
    • Your passport/ID
    • Complete Finnish address (check your rental agreement or bring it with you)
    • Certificate of registration from Åbo Akademi University (you will get it when you register at the university)


  4. Please inform us when you´ve got the Finnish personal ID code by sending a mail to exchange@abo.fi.

Non-EU citizens: residence permit

Students from non-EU countries should have applied for a residence permit and should have their residency card when they come to Finland. They do not need to visit Migri.


EU Citizens: Registration at the Finnish Immigration Services

EU/EEA citizens need to register their right to reside in Finland as a student if they stay in Finland for longer than three months without traveling somewhere outside of Finland. You will need to do this even if you have applied for a Finnish ID-code.

  • Registration of the right of residence of a citizen of the European Union costs 54 euros
  • Complete the application form and attach all required documents at the Enter Finland website https://enterfinland.fi/eServices/info/europeancitizens
  • Select the service point where you need to go to prove your identity and book an appointment.
  • What do you need for registration at Migri?
    • National proof of identity or passport
    • Certificate of registration from Åbo Akademi University (you will get it when you register at the university)


Citizens of a Nordic Country

Citizens of a Nordic country (Denmark, Iceland, Norway or Sweden) register their right of residence at the Digital and Population Data Services Agency (DVV) when they apply for their Finnish ID-code. They do not need to visit Migri.


EU Citizens

If you are an EU Citizen and you get sick on your exchange and need to visit a health care professional, you will need to book an appointment for this. You will need to show your European Health Insurance Card when visiting the health care professionals in Finland, so please make sure you bring the card with you on your exchange and that it is in date.

The European Health Insurance card entitles you to receive treatment if you fall ill or have an accident. You will also receive treatment if your long-term illness requires it. The card also entitles you to receive treatment related to pregnancy and delivery. You will pay the same amount for your treatment as permanent Finnish residents do.

Non-EU Citizens

If you are a non-EU Citizen and you need to visit a health care professional, you should contact your health insurance provider that you organized insurance with for your stay in Finland. Your health insurance company will be able to give you more information on what private health care services you should contact in Finland for your needs.


Medical Help In Finland 


Students in Åbo should start with calling Turku health stations appointment telephone: +358 2 266 1130 Mon-Fri 8:00–15:00. More information can be found here. 

Evaluation of the need for care and health care guidance

The Turku health stations’ reception services assessment and counselling phone service for treatment needs is offered to the public on weekdays. A call-back system is in use. Listen to the recording carefully and leave a call request. You will be called back during the same day. You can also handle matters at the health station’s information desk during opening hours. Please note that there’s no information desk in the evening appointments’ waiting room. Please find more information here. 

You should always call 116 117 before you go to the emergency room  to evaluate what kind of care you need.

If you are informed that you should go to the emergency department at TYKS hospital you can find more information here. 


Students in Vasa start with calling +358 6 21 9000 to have your health needs assessed. That telephone number is open Monday–Thursday from 08:00–15:00 and Fridays 08:00–14:00.

If you need medical help outside of the telephone hours, you can call +358 116 117 for a medical assessment. You can find more information here. 

You should always call 116 117 before visiting the emergency room at Vasa Hospital to have your needs assessed. They will then advise you if you need to go to the emergency room. If you need to go to the emergency room at Vasa Hospital, you can find more information here. 

If you have a medical emergency and need help right away, call 112 from anywhere in Finland!

Updated 27.3.2024