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Practical information

Going abroad can be a whole undertaking. But fear not, this webpage will help you with some of your basic needs.

Accommodation

Where to look for accommodation?

Artesis Plantijn University College only has a limited number of student rooms at its disposal. These are reserved for short term use (less then one semester). We advise all students staying in Belgium for a full semester to look for student accommodation at Kotweb

Kotweb is a collaboration between the city of Antwerp, the higher education institutions in Antwerp and GATE15, Antwerp's student portaI. It offers the largest database of student accommodation in Antwerp.

Rental agreement

Every rental agreement must be in writing. You and your landlord should both receive an original copy of the contract signed by both parties. Never sign a document you don’t understand. Ask for an English translation. Contact the Stuvo AP housing service in case you have questions about the rental agreement.

If your landlord uses the free Kotweb model lease you are always safe. This contract has a good legal basis and seeks a balance between the interests of students and landlords.
You can recognize the rooms for which the model rental agreement is used by the model lease logo.

Rental prices

The average monthly rental price (costs not included) for a furnished room in Antwerp is:

  • € 390 for a room
  • € 450 for a studio (room with private bathroom and kitchenette)
  • € 545 for an apartment

These prices do not include extra costs (gas, electricity, water, Internet. Expect to pay between € 30 and € 60 per month.

You will also have to pay a deposit at the start of the rental agreement. This deposit usually equals one or two months’ rent.

High-quality student accommodation

All the student rooms in Kotweb have been inspected on fire safety and housing quality standards.
Based on this inspection, the city services assign a quality label to each student property.

Estimated cost of living in Antwerp
  • Room: €340/month
  • Utilities (water, electricity, internet, fire insurance): €100
  • Registration city hall: €20
  • Bike rental: €75/year
  • Living costs: €400-500/month
  • Rent deposit: €700 (2 months’ rent) 
  • Study materials: €100/semester (varies depending on study programme)

Insurance

Accident and third-party liability insurance

Incoming exchange students should be insured by their home university for accidents and third-party liability insurance as they are still registered as a student in their home university. This insurance should be valid during educational and recreational activities in university buildings, while commuting to and from the university and during excursions approved by the university. If this is not the case, students are responsible for their own insurance for all possible risks

Health Insurance

Before leaving for Antwerp, students should report to their insurance company and carefully examine whether their health insurance covers all medical costs for the entire period of stay in Belgium. If that is not the case, they can choose to take up insurance with a local health insurance federation in Antwerp upon their arrival.

Fire Insurance

If you rent a property, you are responsible for damage caused by fire, water or explosion, except in circumstances beyond your control. You should take out insurance to cover these risks. Whether you should take out an individual policy or whether these risks are insured by the policy of the landlord depends on what has been agreed upon in the rental agreement. Landlords have to insure their building for fire and related risks, electrical and water damage. These policies can include insurance on behalf of the tenant, by means of which the tenant’s liability towards the landlord and towards third parties is covered. The landlord can ask you a contribution for the tenant’s liability in the fire insurance.

If the contract does not stipulate that the tenant’s liability is insured through the landlord’s policy, you need to take out individual insurance to cover the risks of damage to the landlord’s property and to third parties. Your personal belongings will never be covered by the landlord’s insurance policy. However, your parents' fire insurance may cover this since your belongings have only been temporarily moved to your student accommodation. Check this in your parents' insurance policy. Note: This is only possible if you are still registered as living at home. If your parents’ fire insurance does not cover your belongings, you will have to take out an individual insurance policy.

VISA

If you are a national of a European Economic Area country* or from Monaco or Switzerland, you may travel to Belgium on the strength of a national passport or identity card.

If you have any other nationality, you have to apply for a student visa (type D) with the Belgian embassy or consulate in your current country of residence before leaving for Belgium.
Having a European Union residence permit from another EU country is not sufficient because upon arrival in Belgium you will have to present the same documents to the immigration office as for a student visa (type D) application.

If you have dual citizenship (for example non-EU and EU) and you are not currently a resident of an EU country, we strongly advise you to apply for a visa. The issuance of a residence permit could otherwise be delayed as you will not have health insurance issued by a European provider (which is a requirement for all European nationals to stay in Belgium). By applying for a visa, you will already be able to settle this in advance.

 *EEA: EU + Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein

Please make sure to check the latest information on:
http://diplomatie.belgium.be/en/services/travel_to_belgium/studying_in_belgium
https://dofi.ibz.be/sites/dvzoe/EN/Application-guides/Pages/Higher_education_or_preparatory_year.aspx

Addresses of the Belgian embassy or consulate in your home country:
http://diplomatie.belgium.be/en/services/embassies_and_consulates/belgian_embassies_and_consulates_abroad

Important note
For some countries, approval by the Belgian authorities can take up to three months or longer. Make sure you start the visa application procedure well in advance! We urge you not to come on a tourist visa alone.

New contribution for visa long stay

Since 2 March 2015, non-EU nationals must pay a contribution to cover the administrative costs involved with the processing by the Immigration Office of a long stay visa application for Belgium. When submitting the visa application, the applicant who must pay the contribution has to demonstrate the contribution has been paid in full. As of academic year 2016-17, international students on a scholarship are exempted from paying this contribution fee.