Are you ready to move to Espoo?
We have collected useful information and links to national and city services to make your relocation or visit easier. Before you pack your suitcase and come to Finland we recommend doing some homework to make your relocation smoother.
Before moving to Espoo checklist
1. Get familiar with the Finnish immigration processes
2. Get a residence permit
- To apply for a residence permit, you should find a job or find a study programme or start a business. Please check out the information provided by Finnish Immigration Service and InfoFinland. The Application Finder will help you easily find the right application for your situation
- You can apply for a residence permit online at Enter Finland or send a printed application to the Finnish Immigration Service. Read the instructions for filling in the form at Finnish Immigration Service website.
- The processing time of applications may vary. Use the Processing Time Checker to check the estimated processing time of your application. Please note that the processing of an application is subject to a fee.
- When you are granted a residence permit or a residence card or your right of residence is registered by the Finnish Immigration Service, your personal information will automatically be recorded in the Finnish Population Information System. You will also be issued a personal identity code to take care of matters with the public authorities, banks and employers, for example.
- Finnish Immigration Service provides instructional videos for applying for a residence permit in Finland.
2.1. Find a job
- Finding a job is always a challenge wherever you are. In Espoo, there are over 680 international companies and 50,000 foreign-language speakers (2020), Espoo is a great place for international talents. Otaniemi and Keilaniemi are important technology campuses in the Nordic countries, sparks professional zeal.
- Talent Espoo is part of ‘Talent Boost - International talents boosting growth’ program working on talent attraction and retention to Finland. Check out our Talent Espoo services made available to you.
- If you wish to come to work in Finland, it is good to gain some knowledge of Finnish way of working. For each month of full-time working employees in Finland earn at least two days of annual leave. In Finland, every foreigner has the same rights at work as Finnish citizens.
- It would be beneficial for you to know index of wage and salary earnings in Finland, which is provided by Statistics Finland.
- Please note that employees in Finland pay a municipal tax, a progressive state tax, and various minor taxes on their gross earned income. The Finnish Tax Administration (Vero) is responsible to provide tax card and calculate a withholding tax percentage for all employees.
- The Ministry of Employment and the Economy website is useful, with tips for finding a job.
- To find a job in Finland, jobs.workinfinland.fi offers open job opportunities for english speaking professionals. You can search for vacancies on company websites, other employment service websites or social media services (for example, Facebook and LinkedIn).
- Read more about work and enterprise in Espoo on the InfoFinland website.
2.2. Find a study programme
2.3. Start a business
- Finland offers growth potential, business and investment opportunities.To better understand how to set up and develop a business in Finland, you can explore Finnish key industries.
- If you want to start your own business in Finland, you might consider applying for a “Finnish startup permit.” Please also check residence permit for entrepreneur .
- You can check out 4 quick steps to set up a business on the Business Finland website.
- Business Finland also offers a Startup Kit for your new business in Finland.
- To build your network and grow your business, FiBAN (Finnish Business Angels Network) actively links startups with more than 650 business angel members in Finland, the Nordics and the Baltics.
Enter Espoo helps companies, investors, visitors, and travel professionals to access business opportunities and exciting adventures in Espoo's innovation and travel ecosystems. The Launchpad matching platform is an open innovation ecosystem of Enter Espoo, helping startups to grow into scaleups by connecting them with the right investors and corporations at the right time.
- If you have questions, Business Espoo gives advice on matters such as founding and developing a company, acquiring skilled workers.
3. Find a home
housing in Espoo
- In Espoo, urban areas and nature come beautifully together. Espoo is a network city comprising five city centres and several local centres. In order to choose a place to live, why not check out the housing options and services of the City of Espoo in different districts, such as Espoon keskus, Leppävaara, Tapiola, Matinkylä-Olari, Espoonlahti and Finnoo.
- The map service helps you easily find all early childhood education providers, schools, hospital or health centres and dental clinics.
- You can find many kinds of homes in Espoo, such as blocks of flats, terraced houses and detached houses. There are more than 131,000 homes of which 52,500 are in detached houses (2019).
- In addition, check the city planning website to learn more about areas that are currently being developed.
Espoo Housing guide
Service tokens on the map
- Purple: Daycare
- Green: School
- Red: Hospital or health center
- Turquoise: Dental Clinic
- Clicking on the color mark will display the name and address of the service.
- Click the "Maximize map" button to enlarge the map. A large map opens in a new tab.
4. Bring your family to Finland
- The City of Espoo offers a wide range of services, such as services for families with children, health services, social welfare services, child care and education.
- Information on how to bring your family members to Finland is available on the InfoFinland website page Family member.
- If your family member is not a citizen of a Nordic country or an EU member state or the family member of an EU citizen living in Finland, he/she will need to apply for a residence permit. The type of the residence permit depends on your family ties. Please note that there is an income requirement for family members of a person who has been granted a residence permit in Finland.
- If you are moving to Espoo with your children, they can attend comprehensive education. Before moving to Espoo, you may already familiarise yourself with the Finnish education system. In Espoo, learning opportunities in English are provided from early to higher education.
- To learn more about public health care for your children, please consult the InfoFinland website page children’s health.
Kela, the Social Insurance Institution of Finland may grant you different benefits while you live in Finland. These for example include the child benefit, child care allowances and child maintenance allowance. Please read more: Kela’s benefits for families with children.
5. Bring personal belongings
When you move to Espoo you may want to bring some of your belongings, vehicles or pets to your new home.
Tulli.fi – The official site of Finnish Customs site provides information about bringing your belongings from abroad.
InfoFinland – Information about moving your personal belongings to Finland.
6. Get accquainted with Finnish language
- The city of Espoo is the first city in Finland to introduce English as a language of service besides two official languages Finnish and Swedish. Finns are well known for their very good English skills.
- Nevertheless, you will feel much more comfortable and be able to expand your networks faster, do basic shopping and get by in the city if you know some basic Finnish. Some Finnish skills will also help you to find a job in Finland.
- Before moving to Finland, you can start to learn Finnish Online – learn some basic phrases and with no doubt you will impress Finns and make your introduction easier.
Aalto Open Learning also offers introductory Finnish for self-study.
The Yle Kielikoulu – Yle Språkskolan service enables you to study Finnish or Swedish language by watching media content in an application or a browser. For subtitles in Finnish, the service produces translations in nine different languages: Arabic, Kurdish, Persian, Turkish, English, Swedish, Somali, Russian and Estonian.
7. Useful links