Practical Brussels

Accommodation

Brussels is well-known for its quality of life. Many residents and foreigners think of it as "home sweet home". Most students rent rooms, known as "Kots", from individuals close to one of the school's two campuses, in the municipalities of Woluwe-St-Pierre, Woluwe-St-Lambert or even Etterbeek.

In Belgium, the standard rental contract lasts 9 years with a notice period of 3 months should you wish to terminate.

Student leases have a maximum duration of 12 months.

The 1st month's rent must be paid when signing the contract.

You must also pay a deposit of 2 months' rent into a bank account and take out an insurance policy for tenant risks before receiving the keys to your accommodation.

Useful links

Several platforms will help you to find your accomodation:

Several Facebook groups are useful for finding a flat to rent or a flatshare

Travel

Whether you travel by bike, tram or metro, the city offers plenty of alternatives to car travel. Brussels Gare du Midi is the departure station for high-speed trains to France, UK, Holland, Germany and Luxembourg.

Two international airports connect you to the rest of the world. Brussels Airport and Brussels-Charleroi Airport are respectively 20 mins and 1 hour from the city centre.

Sports

Brussels has the infrastructure needed for playing sports in optimum conditions and to suit all tastes.

Sport City is a sports complex located 250 metres from ICHEC's Anjou campus. It offers sporting activities to suit all tastes: Athletics, martial arts, hockey, tennis, squash, swimming, gymnastics, volleyball, yoga, etc. 

CICHEC, ICHEC's student circle also organises many sports activities (Table football tournaments, hockey, etc.) throughout the year.

 

Sports in Brussels

Get insurance, look after yourself

Belgian or foreign students must be covered by healthcare insurance known as "mutuelle". This insurance offers excellent cover for your medical or pharmaceutical costs or in the event of hospitalisation.

  • Students from the European Union, Switzerland, Norway or Liechtenstein are covered by the social security system in their country of origin. Before leaving their country, they must obtain a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC). Students may also contract an insurance policy specifically covering their stay abroad from an insurance company of their choosing.

 

  • Students from countries outside the European Union who are covered by healthcare insurance in their country of origin must liaise with their insurer to ascertain whether the company operates in Belgium within the context of international agreements. If this is not the case, students can take out an insurance policy covering their stay abroad from an insurance company of their choosing. Mutuelle insurance providers are legally authorised to insure foreign students for healthcare provision.

To take out mutuelle medical insurance while at ICHEC, you must firstly:

  • Be enrolled at a higher education institution;
  • Request an enrolment certificate from your institution, for exclusive use by the mutuelle insurance provider
  • Have a copy of both sides of your ID
    • For Belgian students: Belgian ID card
    • For European students: European card or E card or annex 8
    • For non-Europeans: A, B or C card or the annex 15 document for temporary stay with a valid visa (type D)

You must firstly see a doctor. It is recommended that you go to the hospital only in the event of "emergency" or on the advice of a doctor. There are several general practitioners close to ICHEC. It is not always necessary to make an appointment as doctor's surgeries often have walk-in consultations. However, for dentists and other specialists, you will need to make an appointment several days in advance. The doctor will provide you with a "consultation certification".

Brussels' healthcare service provides a very high standard of care.

Details of the nearest clinics and hospitals;

Pharmacies

Medicines are available from pharmacies which are easily recognised by their green cross sign. Some medicines can only be provided with a prescription from a doctor.

Pharmacies are open Monday to Friday and Saturday mornings. An out-of-hours service operates in the evenings, over the weekend and on public holidays; consult the following website for details: www.pharmacie.be .

Welfare and medical assistance on the campuses

The student social service at ICHEC is on hand for any concerns in complete confidentiality.

ICHEC has an infirmary on both campuses. The infirmary is able to provide first aid.

Budget planning

An affordable cost of living, low rents, hedonistic way of life... Belgium is an attractive destination for your wallet but also for its friendly vibe.

Ouvrir un compte en banque

Si vous voulez ouvrir un compte dans une banque belge, vous aurez besoin d’une copie de votre passeport, d’une preuve que vous êtes étudiant, et d’une preuve d’adresse légale. Votre compte belge vous sera demandé souscrire une garantie locative ou encore l’assurance de votre logement.

Average monthly budget for a student in Brussels

To get an idea of life on site, you can visit the numbeo website for information on the cost of living in Brussels compared to 250 other countries worldwide.

 

Accommodation: between €350-550/month

Utilities (water, gas, electricity) not included in the rent: €50

Food: €300/month

Healthcare (insurance, medical costs): €35

Public transport: €50

Miscellaneous (telephone, leisure, etc.): €100

 

Here some other examples of prices in Belgium:

  • A daily newspaper : 1,50 €
  • Book of 10 tickets for the bus/tram/metro: 14 €
  • A sandwich: 3,50 à 4,80 €
  • Entry fee to the Belgian Comic Strip Center: 6 €
  • Cinema ticket: 8,5 €
  • Can of drink: 1,5 €
  • Bread (800gr): 2 €