My first impressions of TAMK and Tampere

Moving to Finland from Nigeria during the winter is a smooth transistion. Especially, when you are joining TAMK's welcoming community.

The last time I wrote on this blog, I shared my experience on studying remotely while I was still living in my home country due to the long immigration process.

I am now living in Tampere, and I will be sharing my experience of arriving to Tampere; the help I received from TAMK, my first days in the new city, and of course some moments of culture shock.

Arriving to Tampere

I had a good arrival transition with the help of Mirja Onduso, TAMK social counselor, who ensured I arrived safely and helped with my accommodation. Also, my classmates were very supportive. They picked me up from the train station and helped me to settle into the new city.

Tampere is a beautiful city with various historical buildings.

What to bring with

I must confess that the first few days of adjusting to the new climate were not so easy for me. I moved from a country where the coldest temperatures are 75°F- 91°F (23°C-32°C) into a city where I experienced a -14°C (6,8°F).  If you are arriving during the winter, it is essential to pack a lot of warm clothes or be ready to go shopping.


If you are wondering about accommodation, let me ease your mind. You can easily get a flat or a room by applying to various housing companies in Tampere once you get a study place at TAMK. This process might be a bit competitive, so it is to apply an apartment at the same time when you confirm your study place. After I confirmed my study place at TAMK, I filled applications for various housing options and got my apartment.

Culture shock

I had various moments of culture shock I arrived. For example, when you go to a cafeteria or eateries, you are most likely expected to arrange your food tray at a designated place. This was quite strange to me because in my home country, after eating at any eatery, you do not tend to the tray nor dispose the trash.

Back in my home country, Nigeria, we pay for all types of water we use. However, here in Finland, your water consumption and usage are seemingly free. For example, I do not need to pay a water bill on top of my rent. Also, cafes and bars offer free water for their customers.

Another thing is that you will most likely not be given a plastic bag when you go grocery shoppin. This has made me more conscious and deliberate about the ecosystem. I have drastically reduced my usage of plastic bags and I aim for not using them anymore in the future. I try to make our planet a safer place to live.

Most importantly, Finns are very nice and reserved people. However, do not take it personal when you realize they are not so chit chatty. They are not so talkative when you first meet them. As a culture, they are reserved people.

New learning

Since my arrival at Tampere, I have learned quite a lot of things.  One of my favorites is the traditional Finnish sauna. When you start living here, you get used to having sauna in your apartment.

It is very nice to learn a new language and very helpful to have people you practice with. So far, I have improved my spoken Finnish by regularly speaking with my flat mate. My favorite Finnish word is “Kiitos” which means thank you.

This is a little summary of my arrival and life in Tampere. It has been fun; I look forward for sharing here more beautiful experiences and memories. I am happy with my choice to study at TAMK and Finland!

About the author:
Falilat, is a digital marketing strategist and International Business student at TAMK.