Plan and prepare your move to Oslo

When you plan your move to Oslo, there are a few things you can do to make the transition period easier for yourself. This is a collection of general advice from public agencies and people who have already relocated to Oslo.

Do your research

It will take some time until you are completely set up – sometimes weeks, but it can even take months until you have everything in order. During the process, you might experience some inconveniences due to long waiting times, conflicting information, or other issues that might feel frustrating.

The most important and general advice for those who are about to relocate is: do lots of research.

  • If you know what to expect, you might feel less frustrated
  • Ask for advice from official sources if you don’t fully understand the information you find. If it is difficult to understand, ask if they can give the answer in writing so you can refer back to it later.

Make a general timeline

Make a timeline to get an overview of the processes you are going through. It is not easy to know in which order to do things, or how long it takes. Making a timeline will help you both structure the tasks and get an overview of the expected time it will take. This can really help with the feeling of a never ending process. Ideas on what to include in your timeline:

Keep your documents in order

  • Sort out all your documents and bring them with you in a folder.
  • Make a backup of all your documents in a secure cloud (online) storage. You can do this by taking photos of the documents or scan them and upload them.

Avoid delays

There are a few things you can do yourself to make the process smoother.

Give power of attorney

If there is someone you trust with Norwegian residency (family member, employer, agency), you can give them power of attorney (authorization) when you apply for residence. That means they can contact UDI with questions on your behalf and receive the answer to your application in their digital mailbox, instead of it being sent to you by mail. This can shorten your immigration process.

Go to udi.no for information on how to choose a digital mailbox to receive the answer to your permit application sooner

Book your registration appointment early

It is difficult to get an appointment to register with the police or Service center for foreign workers (SUA) on short notice.

You should book your appointment as soon as you know when you will be moving. The longer it takes for you to register after arrival, the longer it takes for you to receive your D number or national identity number.

Keep your address updated

If you apply for a residence permit, they ask for your residential address in the application. If you haven’t been able to find a place to live yet, explain what your plan is. If applicable, give your employer’s or a friend’s address in the meantime. If you are a student, check if there is an address connected to your place of study that you can register.

  • As soon as you have an address, update the information in UDI’s Application portal.

After you have registered with the police or SUA, you register any change of address by going to National Population Register at skatteetaten.no or “My address” at posten.no instead of in UDI’s Application portal.

You will receive letters with important documents by mail. Make sure your full name — and the full names of all the family members, if applicable — are clearly visible on the post box.

  • Make sure you check your spam folder if you are waiting for an important e-mail.

Temporary healthcare services

There are a few general practitioners (GPs) who treat people without a National identity number. They also treat people with a European Health Insurance Card.

Go to the City of Oslo’s information about seeing a GP/family doctor

  • If you need prescription medication, make sure you bring enough as it can take a while before you get a regular doctor.

Do you need private health insurance?

Your document checklist at udi.no will include a private health insurance if this applies to you. If you are not covered by the European Health Insurance (ec.europa.eu) or the Norwegian National Insurance Scheme, you need a private health insurance.

Go to Healthcare services for information about your health care rights.

  • By the way: it is recommended that you buy a travel insurance, and that you insure any particularly valuable items that you bring with you.

Bring a master or visa card

You need to have a Norwegian identification number in order to apply for a Norwegian bank account. It will make your transition period easier if you keep your account open from your previous country of residence until you are fully settled in Oslo. Bring a Master or Visa card and make sure you have enough funds in your account. Most shops and restaurants will accept cash, but paying with a card is the most common payment method.

Go to Opening your first bank account for more information about bank services. Keep in mind that opening a bank account in Norway unfortunately takes a long time.

Paying for public transport

The easiest way to buy tickets is through the Ruter app , but there are some restrictions regarding which countries the app accepts payment cards from.

See information regarding the app and payment methods at ruter.no

The alternative is to buy a travelcard in the kiosks Narvesen, 7-Eleven, Deli De Luca or Mix, as well as some selected shops.

See information about buying tickets at ruter.no

Norwegian mobile phone subscription

Mobile phone providers will check your credit history before they give you a monthly subscription plan (mobilabonnement). You need to have a Norwegian bank account before they can perform this credit check. There are temporary solutions available.

  • You can buy a Norwegian SIM card and a pre-paid subscription (kontantkort) in every shop selling telecom equipment, and in most kiosks and convenience stores.
    • You only need to identify yourself with your passport or equivalent ID.
    • To top up your phone, you can buy a charging code (ladekort) at the same place.
  • Some providers also have pre-paid subscriptions where you pay by registering your bank card instead of buying charge codes in the shops. This is an alternative as long as you have a Visa or Master card from your previous country of residence.
  • If you have a phone from a country in the EU, check with your provider if you can use roaming, or “roam like home” in Norway, and for how long.

Go to europa.eu for information about roaming in the EU

Choosing a mobile phone subscription plan

When you have your Norwegian identification number, checking prices across different providers might be a good investment before selecting a subscription plan. Prices for call minutes, SMS, MMS, data use and international calls vary a lot between different providers.

Go to The Consumer Council’s advice about mobile phone subscriptions (in Norwegian)

Short-term housing

Keep in mind that it is hard to secure a permanent place to live before you have a bank account and electronic ID as the deposit should be placed in a designated bank account for deposits. The deposit account is a safe option where neither party can withdraw money from the account independently.

Go to Rent a home for information about deposit accounts and contracts

If you have not been able to arrange a place to live before you arrive in Oslo, you might be looking for short-term housing, where you won’t need a contract and a Norwegian bank account to pay for your stay.

Go to visitoslo.com for short-term housing, including links to camping sites and guest marina

Go to Airbnb.no for privately owned short-term housing

Internet access

You will find that most short-term housing options have wi-fi. There is also free wi-fi at public libraries, most caf├ęs and some parks in the city centre.

Transport from the airport

Whether you arrive at Oslo Airport or Torp Airport, you will find multiple options for getting to the city centre with public transport, both express and regular routes. Prices are fairly similar for standard tickets, but you will find cheaper fares for seniors, students and children. The fastest option is the airport express train (Flytoget). Keep in mind that taking a taxi is the most expensive option by far.

See all the travelling options from Oslo Airport (avinor.no)

See all travelling options from Torp Airport (torp.no)

Go to The Civil Aviation Authority for information about travelling by plane if you have special needs