Newly Selected Grantee FAQ

The questions below are commonly asked by newly selected grantees. Please note that these are also answered in more detail in the Terms of Award and the Orientation Manual which will be sent to you by the Fulbright office.

How do I arrange housing?

If you are a student or ETA at a university, we strongly encourage you to sign up for a student dormitory as offered by your school. If you are a scholar, or a student who will not be at a university, please contact your host for assistance in looking for housing. You may also want to see what’s available on www.finn.no and www.sabbaticalhomes.com

Do I have to apply for a residence permit?

Unless you are a scholar who will be in Norway and other Schengen area countries for fewer than 90 days, you must apply for a residence permit.

Will I need to apply for a visa?

No. A residence permit is the only sort of permit for which you must apply.

Why all the fuss about applying for a residence permit as soon as possible?

Having a residence permit is a requirement for obtaining a Norwegian social security number. You will need both the permit and the social security number in order to open a Norwegian bank account where you can receive your Fulbright stipend payments. The social security number is also necessary for you to be able to do things like order mobile phone service.

Will Fulbright set up a bank account for me?

No. Fraud-prevention laws and tax regulations require that you set up your own bank account with proper identification and documentation.  The Fulbright office will assist you in obtaining proper documentation, i.e. Residence Permit and Personnummer (social security number).

What do I do if I  can’t open a Norwegian bank account right away?
What if I need to pay a housing deposit before my arrival?

We understand that even when residence permit and social security number applications are submitted in a timely manner, there can be bureaucratic delays beyond your control. Until you have a Norwegian bank account, our office can directly pay rent and other bills for you, and then deduct the amount from future stipend payments.

Will I need health insurance?

The State Department provides a limited health benefit plan for Fulbright grantees only. Family members and grantees’ personal travel outside of Norway are not covered under the plan. Our office strongly recommends that you purchase private insurance in the U.S. before you leave. Scholars on sabbatical may also want to check with their employers about a possible extension of existing benefits.

Do I need to get any vaccines before going to Norway?

No.  The Centers for Disease Control does not recommend any special vaccines for Americans travelling to Norway. Furthermore, unless you have spent more than three months in a country with a high risk for tuberculosis, you will not need to undergo a medical exam other than the one required by program administrators in the U.S. If you have spent time in a country with a high risk for tuberculosis, Norwegian authorities will require you to take a TB test at your local health station (“helsestasjon”) after your arrival. Please note that the U.S. is not considered to be a high risk tuberculosis country by Norwegian health authorities.

Can I plan on staying longer than my grant period?

The amount of time you can spend in Norway and other Schengen area countries after your Fulbright work ends is based upon when your residence permit expires. If you wish to remain in Norway beyond that date, you will need to apply to renew your permit and await a decision from Norwegian immigration authorities.

Will I need to submit travel receipts for my flight to Norway?

No. The transportation allowance listed in your Grant Authorization is a set amount. This means that we will pay you that amount regardless of what your plane tickets cost. If you find flights that are cheaper you can pocket the difference. If your flights are more expensive, you have to cover the difference yourself.  Since the travel allowance is a set amount, we will not need to see receipts from your travel.

Why can’t I just fly to Oslo for orientation and then travel to where I will be staying in Norway?

Orientation is important for newly arriving grantees. We do not want grantees to risk missing orientation due to delayed flights, or to miss out on the content that is presented due to jetlag. Luggage would also present a problem as storage space in our office is extremely limited and because airlines charge an extra fee for transport of luggage on domestic flights.