KU Leuven University - Practical Information
Cost of Living
The KU Leuven podcast http://www.kuleuven.be/english/podcast/ provides all kinds of useful information that you may need when you first arrive in Belgium, starting from what to do and where to go when you arrive at the airport. There are 8 different recordings that will help you get to Leuven and settle in once you have arrived.
To help you find your way around, you can request a personal buddy, a KU Leuven student who will answer all your practical questions. Most of the buddies will also introduce you to Belgian habits and customs, and some even to their own family. http://www.kuleuven.be/orientationdays/buddy.html
To help you get settled during your first few days in Leuven and to learn more about Belgium, we have designed a special orientation programme with trips, tips, information and lots of opportunities to meet your fellow students. The Orientation Days take place at the beginning of each semester, in September and in February.
KU Leuven will provide the necessary accommodation in one of its top student residences.
Cost of Living
The estimates on this pdf download (page 40) or on this website provide a rough average of what a monthly/yearly budget in Leuven can amount to, apart from the tuition fee. Basically, these figures reflect a budget that is realistic and sufficient to live simply and decently.
All residents of the country, Belgian or otherwise, are required by law to be covered by a health insurance. A standard health-insurance policy will reimburse about 75 % of the cost of a doctor's visit, medication and hospitalization.
Students from non-EEA countries are required to take out health-insurance coverage in Belgium. With the proof of registration at the university, the student can take out a health-insurance policy at the insurance company of his/her choice. However, it may be useful to know that KU Leuven has excellent relations with 'Christelijk Ziekenfonds Leuven'. Further information is available online.
Visa and Residence Permit
All information can be found in the brochure "Travelling to Leuven".
The KU Leuven Cultural Activities office has a lot to offer: free cultural events as well as opportunities to get involved in cultural activities. The STUK arts centre is an important venue for culture in Leuven and the Leuven Cultural Centre organizes theatre, dance, classical and non-classical music, workshops, lectures and much more.
At Pangaea, the international meeting centre of KU Leuven and through the International Contact Club students can meet other students, friends and colleagues in an informal setting.
KU Leuven welcomes international visitors of various cultural, philosophical, political and religious convictions.
The university restaurants (ALMA) provide a wide variety of meals and a place where students can meet with friends.
Upon registration students will receive a Student Card and a free Bus Pass.
Computer Access and Email account
Students enrolled at KU Leuven have access to centrally managed computer services such as email, classes, TOLEDO (blackboard), the learning environment at KU Leuven, etc. When registering, students automatically receive a user-id and an activation code.
The university library system is composed of more than 30 libraries spread out over the various campuses of the university. The Central Library collects and preserves old book collections and old documents of general interest. The faculty or department libraries house books and periodicals in their respective fields. All these libraries have different opening hours.
International students are supported by a wide range of Student Services: Housing, Social Service, Study Advisory, Housing, Student Employment, Medical and Psychotherapy.
Sports and Recreational Facilities
The University Sports Centre provides a wide range of sports facilities at all levels, from introductory to top-level sports. The City of Leuven has 4 swimming pools and the city's Sports Office has a comprehensive list of sports clubs in the Leuven area.
KU Leuven has an extensive English website and a weekly newsletter, sent to all international guests. All information can be found in the following brochures. You can download or order them:
Leuven University - General Information