Madness in the first week

Three weeks have passed since I’ve arrived, and these weeks have been really busy. Apart from the tons of research-related work, I was running around the streets of Vienna trying to settle bureaucratic paperwork within the first few days of arrival.

Looking back, I wonder how I managed to get these things done in such a short time in a foreign land in a foreign language!

  • Meldezettel  – Don’t know exactly how to explain it accurately, but it’s a document that shows proof of your residence in Vienna, without which you cannot apply for insurance and a bank account.
  • Collect my student ID – despite my status as a visiting PhD student, I also get an ID that is identical to everyone else’s, and this entitles me to have the same rights as any other student for this entire summer semester. So if anyone of you readers are going to the University of Vienna and contemplating whether to get one, I’d say it’s worth the trouble.
  • Apply for insurance at the Wiener Gebietskrankenkasse
  • Collect my scholarship stipend at the OeAD Regional Office
  • Apply for an Austrian bank account – one could live without a bank account if it’s only for 3 months, but I thought it’d make things easier. Since I’ll have to bank in my scholarship cheques monthly, I don’t want to get charged unnecessarily on both sides for the transaction.
to my surprise, a rather old-school student ID…

Luckily I have been to Vienna and other European cities before, so navigating the U-Bahn (underground) wasn’t a problem when I’d first arrived. Unfortunately I have an abysmal sense of direction (it’s incredible how easily I get lost 😦 ), and being able to ask for directions in German definitely helped 🙂

Figuring out the opening hours and deciding the order of places to which I should go to first was also a bit of a challenge,  and that brings me to my next post… 


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