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Etelä-Pohjanmaa - Muutto ENG

Welcome to live in the Ostrobothnia or South Ostrobothnia regions with a total population of approximately 370,000 inhabitants. When you move to an area, there are things you need to plan ahead of time.

On this page, you will find basic information about obtaining a residence permit, different types of residence permits, the right of residence and registration when you arrive in the country. However, you can always be in touch with the Welcome Office if you have any questions related to the move.

Moving from another Nordic country to Finland

When you move from the Nordic countries to Finland, the moving notice must be done personally at the service location of the Digital and Population Data Services Agency.

Moving from an EU or EEA country

Right of residence

When you move to Finland, you must register your right of residence within three months (90 days) after you have moved to Finland.

As an EU citizen, you have unlimited rights to work as soon as you arrive in Finland. You don’t have to wait for your stay to be registered by the Finnish Immigration Service.


When you move to Finland, you must register your residence and address so that all authorities can find you in the Population Information System. You can do this at the Digital and Population Data Services Agency. If you have not yet received the Finnish personal identification number, you will receive it when you register.

Moving from outside EU countries

Residence permit

If you move to Finland from outside the EU or the EEA, you need a valid residence permit. You need to apply for it online through the Enter Finland service of the Finnish Immigration Service and from the Finnish diplomatic missions abroad before the move to Finland. If you want to visit Finland as a tourist for up to 90 days, you should apply for a visa from the Finnish Embassy outside Finland.

There are different types of residence permits, depending on the reason for admission (for example study, work or family) and whether the move is temporary or continuous / permanent.

If you have a job in Finland, you must apply for a residence permit for an employed person. You may have unlimited or limited employment rights. In some cases, you do not need a residence permit to be able to work.

Often you need to have adequate financial resources when applying for a residence permit.

Registration / relocation notice

When you move to Finland, you must register your residence and address so that all authorities can find you in the Population Information System. You can do this at the Digital and Population Data Services Agency. If you have not yet received the Finnish personal identification code, you will receive it when you register.

Your address will be stored with your personal data. The address may be temporary, permanent (the municipality of residence) or an address used as a postal address only. The personal identification code is used to identify people in the registers and information systems of different authorities and for the transfer of information between them.

If your data is already found in the Finnish Population Information System, you can file a moving notice electronically. Otherwise, you need to personally visit a service location of the Digital and Population Data Services Agency.

More information on moving to Finland

Identity card / identification

In many places you may have to identify yourself, and it might be good to have an identity card issued by the Finnish police. This card will help you, for example, to identify yourself in the bank and make it easier to open a bank account.

TE Office (The Employment and Economic Development Office)

If you move to Finland on a permanent residence permit or permanently, for example as a spouse or family member, and do not have a job, you must register as a jobseeker at the TE Office. TE Services provide guidance and advice on integration and job search. First, your competence will be assessed, after which your integration plan can be drawn up. You should follow this plan. If the TE Office thinks you need Finnish language skills to help with your job search, you will be provided with an integration training. Integration training is a labour market program, so you get to study at the same time as you are a job seeker. In this case you can get an unemployment benefit from Kela (Social Insurance Institution of Finland).

Basic security and health insurance - Kela

Social Insurance Institution of Finland (Kela) is a government institution that provides basic security in different life situations for people living in Finland. Kela’s clients include all people living in Finland and abroad covered by the Finnish social security.

For example, Kela helps in the following areas:

  • families with children
  • study
  • unemployment
  • housing
  • pension
  • illness
  • disability
  • social assistance

Receiving services and benefits from Kela usually requires permanent living in Finland. Those moving from Finland cannot receive Kela’s services and benefits.

If you are moving to Finland permanently and do not yet have a job or income, you should register as an unemployed job seeker at the TE Office. You can then apply for the unemployment benefit from the unemployment fund or Kela.

Kela offers benefits for families with children, for example maternity allowance, paternity allowance and child benefit.

From Kela, you can apply for help with housing costs, a general housing allowance.

If you are sick and unable to work, you can apply for example for the sickness allowance.

If you are a voluntary student, you can apply for Kela’s student benefits.

If your income and funds are not enough for your and your family’s daily spending, you can apply for basic living support.


You need to have a tax card if you work and receive a salary or other income in Finland. You can get a tax card from the Tax Office by personally visiting their office or on the tax administration website OmaVero if you have online banking credentials.

Your tax card shows your tax rate. Take your tax card to the employer. Then the employer withholds the amount directly from your salary.

When applying for a tax card, a full-year income must be assessed. When you live permanently in Finland, the Tax Administration will send you a new tax card each year in December or January. The tax rate is calculated based on the income of the previous year. If you don’t show your tax card to the employer, 60% from your salary will be deducted as tax.

On the Finnish Tax Administration website, you can manage your own tax issues, for example order a new tax card and calculate your own tax rate using a tax calculator.

In Finland, you can get deductions on the tax rate for things like commuting costs, remote work, mortgage interest or household chores (for example cleaning, child care, flat renovations).


When you move to Finland permanently, apply for a Finnish bank account. When applying for a bank account, you should also request online banking credentials to manage your account. With online banking credentials, you can conveniently pay and manage all your bills through online banking. This is a free service through your own online banking.

To open a bank account, you need strong identification.

It is good to take with you to the bank:

  • Passport
  • Finnish personal identity code, identity card
  • address information. You can take with for example a certificate of residence
  • residence permit card (if you have one)

Online banking credentials are also used in Finland for identification in all online services.


If you want to travel by train, see train connections and timetables at VR:

If you want to travel by a long-distance bus, see connections and schedules for example at Matkahuolto or Onnibus.