University Post
University of Copenhagen
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Comment: No permanent address? Sorry, you have no life

With no place to stay, I have no permanent address. And with no permanent address, I have no CPR number, no bank account, no phone, and no job - University of Copenhagen Master's student stuck on the merry-go-round

My name is David P. Lind and I just recently began my studies as a full degree philosophy MA student at the University of Copenhagen.

I have both Danish and American citizenship, having originally been born in Randers, but moved to the states when I was only 3 years old. Everything about the university itself has been amazing so far, including the staff and facilities; but there has been one very basic factor that has been a huge issue for me (as well as many other international students), and this is the issue of a permanent address.

Since arriving here in Copenhagen just over 3 weeks ago, I have been staying at places temporarily (through while searching for permanent housing. This has been an extremely expensive option that I cannot continue to do. I have purchased memberships to many housing and rental websites (,,, etc.), which I check many times throughout the day on a near-hourly basis. Having not found any permanent housing solution yet, one of the only options available to me at this point is to move in with family living in Randers for at least a period of a month in order to acquire a permanent address.

We were invited to study here

While living there, I am also planning on saving up some money that I would have otherwise been over-spending on rent, until I am able to start receiving SU. In preparation for this living option I have dropped one of my classes, and am not sure how much time I will be able to devote to the other. It should go without saying that this is not an optimal solution for a student starting on his masters studies. I am lucky enough that I have relatives that I can move in with to help me get an address, but this is unfortunately not an option that is available to other MA and full degree students in my same situation.

Having been accepted and invited to a foreign university, it is not unreasonable for us to expect that we should at least be recognized as residents in our country of study. It is not so much the fact that we do not have a physical place to stay (although this is also a big issue), but that a permanent address is required for almost every aspect of life in Copenhagen (i.e., it is required for getting your CPR number, getting a phone, having medical insurance and being able to see a doctor/get prescription medication, opening a bank account, and getting job, etc.). There must be some other way that students can be able to acquire a permanent address without having to secure a residence letter from a landlord – as most landlords will not offer such letters, or the students can not stay at a single residence for a long enough period of time.

Of the many international students that I have spoken with personally, nearly all of them have had at least some problem with this basic and primary issue of student housing. The three friends with whom I am searching for housing are still struggling with this issue. There must be some simple solution that can be offered by the University of Copenhagen to help with this problem – We have agreed to study in this country for a period of two years, it is not like we are drifters wandering through the EU searching for a generous social system to exploit; again, we were invited to study here.

A modest proposal

One option might be to let students who have been accepted to the university to at least initially use the university address as their permanent address? Or it might be possible to set-up P.O. Boxes at one of the campuses so that we actually have a physical address to receive mail for a period of up to a semester, at least until we can find alternate permanent address arrangements? As stated earlier, this is not to say that housing is not an issue (it most certainly is), but that the problem of securing a ‘permanent address’ is a more fundamental issue – Again, it is required for almost Everything in daily life in Copenhagen.

Solving this very basic problem would put a lot of student’s minds at ease.

Sincerely yours

David Lind
A homeless MA student at UCPH.

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