Garry Lewis was one of the international students whose card was late this autumn. He is studying at the university of Jyväskylä in the master’s degree programme in Sport Management and Health Promotion programme. Lewis came to Finland last August, and at the beginning of December had still not received his student card.

“I have passed the feeling of frustration and anger. Right now I just don’t feel anything because if I am, then I’m just wasting my energy. I don’t know who to get angry at. It’s just like pissing in the wind”, he says.

“I have been frustrated with the lack of accountability. They haven’t done the job they were meant to do.”

Since Lewis has had to do without the card, he has used his certificate of registration for instance in the student restaurants. The certificate is, however, not sufficient in buses and trains, so he has bought normal-priced tickets.

“I don’t have much motivation to travel because of that.”

Lewis heard about Matkahuolto and VR’s own ticket a only while ago, and has not yet bought it. The 8 euro price sounds reasonable to him, but he is still irritated by the fact that  some have to purchase the extra card.

“It’s annoying. This has made me realise how bureaucratic everything is.”


Lewis has, however, contented himself with visiting JYY’s office and calling Frank repeatedly. According to him, people have been nice and have tried to help him, but empty promises have only annoyed him more.

“They told me almost every time that the card would come next week. It didn’t. Last time I called I said that I don’t believe you.”

Lewis will be studying in Finland for two years. He would like to get his money back from the time he did not have his card or his student benefits.

“I think it’s quite a light argument I don’t get my money back because I will someday get my card.”