Finland is a wonderful study destination in Europe for Nigerian international students with study interests in sciences, technology, engineering and management. The country has a very high educational standard and excellence with no tuition fees required. Although, new educational policies will take effect from mid 2017 will require international students from outside the EU/EEA to pay a varied amount of tuition fees. Finland is a beautiful country with great city skylines in Helsinki, Turku, Oulu, Tampere and Jyväskylä. The living standards and quality of life in Finland is quite high, so you’ll require a tangible sum of supporting funds of at least €6,720/year to cover living expenses, you are allowed to work for 25 hours/week on your student residence permit.
For our article on the best 10 schools in Finland, please click here
If you’re reading this article, it means you do have an interest to study in Finland, therefore you will need a student residence permit B or visa. A Finnish visa is issued for student stays of up to 90 days (3 months), but if your study duration is above 90 days, you must apply for a student residence permit. The student residence permit to Finland is granted under the precondition that the student will return to his/her country of legal permanent residence upon completion of his/her studies.
In order to apply for the Finland visa or residence permit, you must register on the Finnish Immigration Service to begin your student residence permits application. Note that this visa can be applied for as early as three months before the planned travel date and the visa application is valid for three months from the application date, so immediately you receive your Finland higher institution admission letter, you’re advised to begin your application. The visa application processing fee must be paid to the Embassy bank account, supporting documents submitted 2 weeks prior before scheduling your compulsory visa appointment date.
Documents of Nigerian origin such as such as marriage certificates, birth certificates, school certificates, etc will require legalization from the Nigerian ministry of foreign affairs. Further legalization will be done at embassy of Finland after the ministry; this appointment can be placed through here. An independent document verification consultant; Rayfield Consult will investigate the origin of the document and return it back to the embassy, who in turn returns it back to the visa applicant. The total fees for this process are €40.50 for the embassy and N120, 000 for Rayfield Consults.
Click here for full explanation on Finland documents legalization
Click here to schedule your Finland visa appointment; this process will require your visa fee payment receipt and certificate of admission acceptance from a Finnish university.
You must submit your application to the Finland Embassy in Abuja. All visa applicants will be interviewed, and biometric data such as fingerprints will be collected.
The visa fee can be paid either in cash to any Standard Chartered bank in Nigeria, or via international money transfer to the Embassy bank account. The receipt of payment should be scanned and attached to the e-mail with which an appointment date is requested.
When you apply for a student residence permit you must submit the following documents in original and two sets of clear photocopies two weeks before your personal interview at the Finnish embassy:
- Registration with the Finnish Immigration service portal, fill, submit and print your online form
- Finland visa application form, this could be done online or on paper via this link
- An international passport valid for at least 3 months after your intended stay in the country, it must have at least two blank pages. You can also submit previous passports with visas and stamps; this can help assess your travel history. You can process your international passport at your nearest immigration office. Click here for our article on how to process your international passport.
- A copy of your international passport bio-data page
- Recent passport photograph in dimensions of 35 – 40 mm, full face capture. Note that you must NOT staple the passport photo; passport photos with staple marks on them will not be accepted.
- A certificate of acceptance from a Finnish educational institution this must contain the following information:
1. The applicant’s full name
2. The name of the institution
3. What course/programme the applicant has been admitted to
4. The duration of the course/programme
- A clarification on tuition fee If you plan to attend an institution/programme/course that has tuition fees, you must also document that you are able to finance this extra cost
- Travel medical insurance certificate. It is required that the insurance covers all days you are planning to stay in the Schengen area. The insurance has to be valid in all Schengen countries for the whole duration of stay inside the Schengen area, and has to cover expenses caused by illness, accident, medical care and possible repatriation up to the amount of €30,000. Click here for our article on where to get your travel insurance
- Documentation/clarification of financial income
This document is proof of your financial capability; it is required in order to ensure that you can afford €6,720 (N2, 343, 976) for the school year 2016/2017. This can be done via your bank account’s financial statement or present a certificate showing that you have received a scholarship or grant from an official body, such as a state, an educational institution or an organization. Sponsorship guarantees or account statements from private persons, such as relatives, friends or employers, will not be accepted.
- Students bio information like birth and marriage certificates
- School certificates
- A scanned copy of receipt of visa payment
Visa Application Fees
The approved standard visa application fees for the Finland student residence permit is €300 (N104, 641), payment is made either in cash to any Standard Chartered bank in Nigeria, or via international money transfer using a credit/debit card (MasterCard or Visa) or money transfer networks to the Embassy bank account. Make sure that you carry your international Passport bio-data page photocopy while paying the service fee at the bank.
Click here to verify student residence permit fees
The Finland Standard Chartered bank account details are as follows:
Embassy of Finland
Standard Chartered Bank,
Plot 374, Adetokunbo Ademola Crescent,
Wuse II, FCT, Abuja, Nigeria,
NGN- account: 0001449729
Visa Application Process
The visa applications submission and interview is done at the Finland embassy in Abuja. Finland visa application submission times are between 09:00AM to 14:00PM on Mondays – Thursdays except on Nigerian and Finland public holidays. After the appointment, you must wait for the Finnish Immigration Service to process your application. You will be informed once a decision has been made, if the decision is positive, the Embassy will contact you by e-mail regarding collection of your residence permit card and vice versa.
You may ask to be registered in the Finnish Population Information System after your student residence permit has been approved; this is so that you can receive a Finnish personal identity code. The personal identity code is a unique number sequence with 11 characters, formed on the basis of your date of birth and gender. Public authorities, banks and employers, for example, often need to know your personal identity code.
Visa Processing Time
The processing time for a visa is a minimum of 14 days and average processing time 30 days. During holiday seasons the time of processing depends on the number of applications received and it is wise to book the interview appointment as early as possible bearing in mind that visa can be applied earliest 3 months before the planned travel.
Visit here for more information on Finland Residence Permit
Embassy of Finland,
9, Iro Dan Musa Street,
Note: If you will like to read various posts on top schools, visas and immigration like this, especially on Traveling to foreign countries such as Tourism, Education, Visiting and Permanent Visa and Immigration to USA, UK, Australia, Europe including France, Belgium, Sweden, Denmark, Netherlands, Germany and Switzerland, please subscribe to our newsletter below. We will send you updates any time there’s a new post. We promise it is 100% spam free!