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Feeling home IMEC pub


									feeling home@imec:
a brochure about living & working
in Leuven
      Table of content

     Foreword                         3

1.   Introduction                     4
a    1.1.Belgium                      4
     1.2. Leuven                      6
2.   Arrival                          8
a    2.1. General information         8
     2.2. IMEC specific information   9
3.   Accomodation
     a                                10
     3.1. Practical information       10
     3.2. Relocation                  11
4.   Social security                  12
a    4.1. General information         12
     4.2. IMEC specific information   13
5.   Insurances                       13
a    5.1. General information         13
     5.2. IMEC specific information   14
6.   Health care                      15
a    6.1. General information         15

7.   Money matters                    17
a    7.1. General information         17
     7.2. IMEC specific information   18
8.   Education                        19

9.   Transport                        23
a    9.1. Getting there               23
     9.2. Getting around              23
10. Communication                     27

11. Security, police & legalities     29

12. Day-to-day life                   30
a   12.1. Contact                     30
    12.2. Shopping in Leuven          30
    12.3. Dining                      32
    12.4. Environment                 32
    12.5. Sport                       34
    12.6. Culture                     35
    12.7. Libraries                   37
    12.8. Religion                    38

Dear colleague,

We want to welcome you at Belgium, Leuven and foremost at IMEC.
Joining IMEC means working in a new environment but also living in a whole new country,
with it’s own typical life-style, habits, arrangements, etc.
Moving to an other country is a great adventure, it creates a lot of questions and will take
many preparations. During your first days you will probably be overwhelmed with
impressions and information.
This brochure contains information concerning Belgium, the daily life in Leuven and IMEC
specific information. It will help you to better understand the Belgian idiosyncrasies and
way of being so that your day-to-day life in Leuven soon becomes a positive and fruitful
experience. We hope that it will already answer some questions about relocation, housing,
family and other practical problems that everybody has to face when arriving in this country.
Of course this brochure will not answer all your questions. The Relocation Officers - Marion
Van Tichelen and Veronique Vanautgaerden - at the personnel administration of IMEC will
be happy to help you during the process of relocation and your first days in Belgium. Please
feel free to contact them with any question you might have about finding your way around at
IMEC or in Leuven and in Belgium.

You can contact them on

IMEC wishes you an interesting and successful career!

1   Introduction
    1.1. BELGIUM                                              Name Three Famous Belgians

    Synopsis                                                  Before coming here, hardly anyone is able to name
                                                              even three famous Belgians. We hope that, by the
    Belgium is a small, densely populated country             time you leave Leuven, you will be able to identify
    (10,39 million inhabitants with 339 people/km²),          at least the following ten:
    with three official languages: Dutch, French and
    German. Its capital, Brussels, doubles as the capital     ♦ Hieronymus Bosch
    of the European Union. Belgians enjoy their
    “creature comforts”: most own their own homes             ♦ Pieter Breughel and sons
    and spend a lot of time and money in constantly
    renovating, decorating and improving them. They           ♦ Peter Paul Rubens
    tend their gardens meticulously, love good food
    and drink, benefit from an excellent social security      ♦ Victor Horta
    and health-care system, and insist on having their
    roads and highways brightly lit at night (the             ♦ Adolphe Sax
    illuminated “Belgian Window” can apparently be
    seen from space).                                         ♦ Father Damien

    Politics and Languages                                    ♦ Jacques Brel
    Despite its small size, Belgium has a unique and          ♦ Hergé (creator of Tintin)
    complex institutional and political structure.
    Belgium itself is a democratic monarchy with a
                                                              ♦ Peyo (creator of the Smurfs)
    King, Albert II, a parliament (house of common)
    and a senate (House of Lords). The country is
    divided into three language groups (three                 ♦ Jean-Claude Van Damme
    communities), Dutch-speaking (6 million), French-
    speaking (4 million) and German-speaking (70,000),        ♦ Justine Henin
    each with their own administration in charge mainly
    of cultural and educational affairs. In addition, there   ♦ Kim Clijsters
    are three regions, linked to economic interests,
    again with their own governments: Flanders (in the        Climate
    north), Wallonia (in the south), and Brussels. The
    federal government mainly had authority over              The Belgian, maritime climate is characterized by a
    foreign affairs, immigration issues, social security      mixture of sunny periods and precipitation that is
    and defense. Belgium has 10 provinces; Leuven is          rather equally spread over the year. It is rather
    the capital of the Province of Flemish Brabant.           variable and moderate (average temperature in
                                                              January: 1°C, in July: 16° C). Extreme temperatures
    Leuven is situated in Flanders and is part of the         can occur in summer and winter time.
    Dutch-speaking community. Brussels and the
    language border with Wallonia are very close.             Rich Past, Thriving Present
    Although seven governments might seem a touch
    exaggerated for such a small country, and the             Some Belgian towns, notably Tongeren and
    situation is often derided by Belgians and non-           Tournai, date back to Roman times, when Julius
    Belgians alike, this system is a typical embodiment       Caesar declared ancient Belgians to be the «of all
    of one of the most attractive features of the Belgian     Gauls», after conquering them of course. In the
    character: the art of compromise. When Belgians           High Middle Ages (1200-1500) many Belgian cities
    disagree, they try and find the middle ground. No         flourished and expanded. The ports of Bruges and
    civil wars or ethnic conflicts have ever taken place      Antwerp were among the largest and busiest in
    between Belgians.                                         Europe, cathedrals rose up everywhere, elaborate
                                                              town halls proudly proclaimed the city-dwellers’
                                                              new-found freedoms and wealth. At that time, only
                                                              Northern Italy could boast a similar level of
                                                              development and culture. Many different countries
                                                              ruled over what is now known as Belgium,
                                                              including the Spanish, Austrians, French and Dutch.

1    Introduction
    Finally, Belgium gained its independence in 1830,         social-security coverage, usually own their own
    drew up a constitution and imported a monarch             homes, and have never started or engaged in an
    from among the German nobility. It entered the            armed conflict, either internally or internationally,
    Industrial Era at an early stage, and is now firmly       except for a futile attempt of self-defense against
    established primarily as a service economy with           the Germans in World Wars I and II.
    over 70% of the working population employed
    outside of agriculture and industry. The standard of      This lack of pride in its own achievements
    living in Belgium is among the highest in the world.      contributes largely to Belgium’s indeterminate, or
                                                              non-existent, identity abroad. Chocolate springs
    Religion                                                  most readily to mind when foreigners are asked
                                                              what they know of Belgium, an embarrassed silence
    Historically, Flanders is a predominantly Catholic        usually follows further enquiries. Whereas other
    region. Even though churches nowadays draw only           small countries, such as the Netherlands, Portugal
    a minority of the inhabitants, Catholicism is still the   or Norway, have been successful in projecting a
    most important religion. Weekly masses,                   coherent image of them to the outside world,
    celebrations and services like marriages,                 Belgians have never really tried.
    communions, and funerals take mostly place in the
    catholic churches. However, all world religions are       The Belgian Character
    represented in Flanders (freedom of religion is
    guaranteed in the Belgian Constitution), and even         The one thing that most non-Belgians would agree
    smaller denominations usually have at least one           on when first confronted with Belgians on their
    established community and place of worship in one         home turf is that they are a reserved and
    of the larger cities.                                     introverted people. This impression usually lasts
                                                              until their first visit to a Belgian’s home, where they
    The state currently recognizes six religions (and a       will be very cordially welcomed and fed large
    non-confessional community since 1993): Roman             amounts of excellent food and drink. A Belgian
    Catholicism (representing the majority of                 feels most relaxed and comfortable in the midst of
    believers), as well as the Protestant, Orthodox,          his close circle of family and friends. Family ties are
    Jewish and Anglican religions. Islam was added in         very important – witness the weekly exodus of
    1976. Islam is currently the second largest religion      Belgian students from Leuven, who routinely spend
    in Belgium due to the wave of immigration of              every weekend at home with their parents and
    foreign workers.                                          childhood friends. Friendships are enduring; once
                                                              you have made a Belgian friend, you will find that it
    “There are no Belgians”                                   is very hard to get rid of him.

    “Your Majesty, there are no Belgians” – a Belgian         Another attractive feature of the Belgian character
    politician once famously exclaimed to the king. This      is the trend towards egalitarianism. There are no
    statement exemplifies the attitude of many Belgians       obscenely wide gaps in income, the rich are never
    towards their own country. Although the politician        super rich, the poor are provided for, and the
    in question meant to refer to the fact that Belgium       number of homeless people might well be the
    is divided into different linguistic groups, it also      smallest in the entire industrial world. It is
    reflects the high degree of self-criticism                fashionable among Belgians and non-Belgians alike
    characteristic of almost all Belgians. There is no        to complain about the level of bureaucracy in the
    such thing as a patriotic Belgian. Attractively           country and the inordinate number of holidays that
    modest though this attitude might seem, it does           Belgians enjoy. In fact, economic productivity is
    lead to a distorted image of Belgium abroad. After        among the highest in the world, and the anarchic
    all, who will take a country seriously when even its      streak in the Belgian character ensures that
    own citizens deride it?                                   bureaucrats never gain the upper hand. Belgium is
                                                              also a very safe country, with a remarkably low
    As a foreigner in Belgium, you will find that most        crime rate. Brussels, according to some surveys, is
    Belgians will agree whole-heartedly with any              the safest capital in the world in terms of the
    criticism you have to offer of their country,             murder rate.
    customs or politics. To redress the balance, we
    would like to reiterate that the standard of living in    Leuven, we can assure you from a lifetime of
    Belgium is among the highest in the world, its            personal experience, is without a doubt a quite safe
    citizen benefit from an excellent (almost free)           university town. The main crime element to watch
    educational system, universal health-care and             out for is bicycle thieves.

1    Introduction
    A very short introduction to Belgian                      Gilles with their eerie blank-faced masks, is highly
    popular culture                                           recommended, and was recently elevated to the
                                                              status of a UNESCO World Heritage tradition.
    Some aspects of Belgian popular culture hardly
    need an introduction. Most people will not need           Read more on
    any encouragement to try out the hundreds of
    delicious Belgian beers. According to one                 1.2. LEUVEN
    commentator, Belgian beer is “a heavenly liquid
    which Belgians have perfected thanks to centuries         History of Leuven
    of intense contemplation by silent orders of monks.
    Beer is the very essence of the land, the blood of        Leuven is very proud of both its past and its
    the nation, heaven served in a variety of peculiarly      heritage, and rightly so. Although the first
    shaped drinking receptacles.”                             references to the town can be traced back as far as
                                                              the 9th century and in spite of its strategic location
    A lesser-known attraction, and one that routinely         on the river Dyle, it was not until around the 11th-
    creates confusion among the non-Belgians, is the          12th century that Leuven began to develop as an
    figure of Sinterklaas (Saint Nicholas).                   important trading centre within the Duchy of
    Affectionately known as de Sint, he is often              Brabant. It was at this time that its first town wall,
    described as the Belgian (and Dutch) version of           churches, monasteries and abbeys were built.
    Santa Claus. However, he has no connection with
    Christmas. Dressed in magnificent red robes and a         The town's once flourishing cloth trade had fallen
    bishop’s mitre, Sinterklaas visits Belgian (and           into decline by the 14th century, but a new golden
    Dutch) children’s homes on the eve of December            age dawned with the 15th century. The university
    5, and climbs the roof seated on his white horse,         was founded, various industrial concerns flourished
    accompanied by his faithful servant Zwarte Piet           and the main market square with its fine Gothic
    (Black Peter) to surreptitiously deliver presents         town hall was laid out. The building of paved roads,
    through the chimney. The Sinterklaas tradition is         the canal in the 18th century and the expansion of
    much older than any mention of Santa Claus or             the brewery created a great impetus for trade and
    Father Christmas, and dates back to a legend about        population growth. Unfortunately, this prosperity
    the 4th century Bishop of Smyrna (now Izmir in            came to a sudden end under the reign of Joseph II
    Turkey) who once miraculously saved some                  when the French invaded.
    children from captivity and death. Extravagant
    amounts of chocolate are consumed by both adults          The most significant development for Leuven in the
    and children to celebrate the Sinterklaas feast.          19th century was the building of the railway station
                                                              and the construction of Bondgenotenlaan leading to
    An excellent opportunity to observe Belgians              it. The two World Wars in the 20th century
    having fun in large numbers outdoors is on the            destroyed much of Leuven and a great deal of the
    occasion of a local kermis. A kermis is a typically       reconstruction work lasted well into the nineteen-
    Belgian type of fair, complete with noisy fairground      sixties.
    rides, bumper cars, smoutebollen (a variety of
    doughnut), escargots (snails) and frites (fries)          Leuven has developed into a well-equipped,
    stands, and the penetrating cries of lottery ticket       modern town with a thriving service industry
    vendors (“Everybody wins!”). When you arrive in           economy and with a good balance of old and new
    Leuven during the first 3 weeks of September, you         buildings combining to offer a well-designed
    will witness what the kermis is!                          infrastructure to suit the demands of today's
                                                              modern town with a rich tradition. On January 1st
    Though a kermis can be enjoyed by most people, it         January 1995, Leuven became the capital of the
    is quite a different matter to participate in a Belgian   province Flemish Brabant.
    carnival. Though hardly comparable to the
    bacchanalia in Rio de Janeiro, carnival in Belgium        Places of interest in Leuven are: abbeys, beguinages,
    can get very lively indeed. Some towns with a             churches, museums, the Great Market Square, the
    particularly strong carnival tradition are                Old Market, Square, cemeteries, public parks and
    completely taken over by noisy parades and rowdy          of course the Catholic University of Leuven.
    drunks for two, three or even four days before Ash
    Wednesday, the official end of the carnival season.
    For a more artistic experience, the carnival in           The University of Leuven was founded almost six
    Binche (Wallonia), famous for its colorfully clad         hundred years ago. The University's academic fame

1    Introduction
    has attracted scholars and scientists as Justus
    Lipsius, Gerard Mercator and Andreas Vesalius
    who all have made valuable contribution to
    theintellectual life. The University of Leuven can
    look back on a glorious past, but it also moves with
    the times. The University's educational concept is
    modern, with research activities focused on the
    needs and aspirations of contemporary people and
    society. The University of Leuven is famous not just
    within the borders of Belgium, but far beyond as
    well. Being a very lively city of and for students,
    Leuven aspires to maintain that reputation. In
    contrast to most university cities, Leuven does not
    have a closed campus. The University buildings are
    spread throughout the city and were originally built
    for completely different purposes.

    The city of Leuven is an agglomeration of five
    communities: Leuven, Heverlee, Kessel-Lo, Wilsele
    and Wijgmaal. Leuven has more than 90,000
    inhabitants. If we add to this the 35,000 post-
    secondary and 11,000 high-school students, it
    should come as no surprise that the streets are
    filled with young faces and that the city lives at a
    student’s rhythm: hectic weeks at the beginning of
    the academic year and, later, relative calm during
    vacation and examination periods. The centuries-
    long presence of the university has also left its
    marks in other areas of city life. The population of
    Leuven has a high average level of education,
    probably because many students remain in Leuven
    after they have graduated. Employment is primarily
    in the tertiary and quaternary sectors; though
    Leuven’s global image is also influenced by the city’s
    other large employer, Inbev (Beer brewery).

    Read more on, and

  D ocumen t Titl e

2 Arrival
  2.1 GENERAL INFORMATION                                 related to the expiration date of the work permit.
                                                          The end date of the residence permit is equal to
                                                          the one on the work permit + 1 month. With each
  Travel documents
                                                          renewal of the work permit, a renewal of the
  Before coming to Belgium you will be informed           residence permit has to be acquired at the town
                                                          hall. Since the work permit is limited to an overall
  about the right procedure to follow.
                                                          period of 4 years, the residence permit is limited to
  Which documents you need will depend on your
                                                          that same period.
  status: e.g. whether you are a student or a resident,
  or whether you are coming from a EU country or
                                                          City of Leuven: town services
  Work Permit (for non EU assignees)                      Foreigners’ office – Stadsdiensten— Dienst
                                                          bevolking – afdeling buitenlanders
  A work permit is required for non EU assignees. It
  is the responsibility of the host company to apply      Professor Van Overstraetenplein 1, B-3000 Leuven
  for the work permit. For citizens of new EU             Tel. 016 27 20 00 – Fax 016 27 29 95
  member states, a transition regulation applies.
  Host Agreement or Gastenovereenkomst                    Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday from 9:00
   (for EU payroll employees)                             a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
                                                          Thursday from 12:00 noon to 8:00 p.m.
  For non EU payroll employees who intend to stay
  in Belgium for more than three months with the          Ask for your ticket at the counter, at the latest one
  purpose of carrying out a profession or being           hour before closing time.
  employed normally a work permit must be
  obtained from the Ministry of Labor before their
  arrival in Belgium. Imec has been recognised as a       Identity card
  specialised institute for research and therefore our
                                                          The card you receive after registering at the town
  payroll employees are exempted from the work
                                                          services is your official residence permit. It also
  permit application. Instead, the relocation officers
                                                          functions as your identity card in Belgium. This is an
  will provide you with a host agreement or
                                                          extremely important document and you are
  ‘gastenovereenkomst’. With the original document
                                                          required to carry it with you at all times! Take care
  in Dutch, you can apply for the D-visa if you are
  coming from a visa submitted country.                   not to lose it.

                                                          Extend the validity of your identity card
  For students and people coming via
                                                          You should report in person to the Leuven
  KULeuven                                                Foreigners’ Office preferably before the expiry date
                                                          of your identity card. Bring a proof of extension of
  Students will receive the procedure from IMEC and
                                                          work permit/contract, a new letter of appointment
  the KULeuven will inform the registered KUL
  students, visiting professors, etc. about the           or grant attestation.
  procedure to follow.
                                                          Change of address
                      Residence permit
                                                          Every time you change your address within Leuven,
  As future employee in Belgium you are required to       you must report your new address within eight
  register at the Foreigner’s Office in your city of      days to the Foreigners’ Office. If you are moving to
  residence. For Leuven this is called town services      another town of city in Belgium, you must report
  (Stadsdiensten ) and the office is situated next to     to the Foreigners’ Office or town hall of your new
  the railway station.                                    city or town.

  The procedure and the documents to be submitted         You are likewise required to inform the health-
  depend on whether you are an EU citizen or not.         insurance, and other relevant offices of your change
                                                          of address. At the end of your stay in Belgium and
  Issuing time can be 6 weeks.
                                                          before your actual departure, you should give
  The duration of this residence permit is directly       notice of your departure to the Foreigners’ Office
                                                          and hand in your identity card.

2 Arrival
  Loss of your identity card                                town services (dienst bevolking) where a copy will
                                                            be taken and records updated.
  If you lose your identity card, you must report this
  in person at the Foreigners’ Office and sign an           Other foreigners permanently residing in Belgium
  official declaration of loss. Bring along three           and driving in the country may use an International
  passport photographs as well. After an investigation      Driving license initially, but should apply for a valid
  by the police, you will be given a duplicate identity     Belgian driving license on being issued an identity
  card.                                                     card.

  Leaving Belgium temporarily                               A Belgian driving license will be given automatically
                                                            to some nationals including Switzerland and
  If you temporarily have to leave Belgium for a            Norway. Other nationals may need to take a
  period longer than three months, you must contact         Belgian driving test to qualify.
  the Foreigners’ Office at city hall to find out what
  administrative procedures you must follow.                An application must be made at the local town
                                                            services, usually at the same time as residence
                                                            registration. It is required that you provide an
                                                            existing driver's license, two passport photographs
                                                            and a residence permit.

                                                            2.2. IMEC SPECIFIC
                                                            Depending on your status, you will find detailed
                                                            instructions in the separate guideline for students,
                                                            residents etc.

  Town Services—Stadskantoor

  Visit from the police officer
  After you register at the Leuven Foreigners’ Office,
  your neighborhood police officer will drop by your
  Leuven address to verify that you actually live
  there. If you are not at home at the time of the
  officer’s visit, you will receive a letter inviting you
  to report to the police station in your district.
  Make sure you do this as soon as possible in order
  to avoid misunderstandings or future administrative

  Before leaving Belgium permanently, please make
  sure that you visit the Foreigners’ Office to turn in
  your Belgian identity card. If you ever need to
  come back to Leuven, this will save you and the
  city’s officials a great deal of time and trouble.

  Driving license
  EU citizen can continue to drive under their
  current driving license but must submit this to the

3 Accomodation
  3.1. PRACTICAL INFORMATION                                should be concluded n writing. As of 15 June 2007,
                                                            however, all rental contracts must be concluded in
                                                            writing. There must be at least three copies: one
  Searching housing
                                                            for the landlord, one for you (the tenant) and one
  It is advisable to start looking for housing facilities   for the compulsory registration of contract.
  as soon as possible, because finding appropriate
                                                            In this written contract the following information
  accommodation takes time.
                                                            must be given: the identity of the landlord and the
                                                            tenant, the starting date of the contract, an
  A usefull website to start with is :
                                                            indication of all the rooms and parts of the rented
                                                            building and the rent. The contract is definitive
  Immoweb –
                                                            when both you and the landlord sign it.
  This website covers nearly all real estate agencies.      Your landlord is obliged to register the written
                                                            rental contract. He must present it to the
  Cost                                                      registration office in the place where the property
                                                            is situated. This will give the rental contract a
  Hotel              around € 100 per night                 “fixed date” and becomes binding on third parties.
                     (breakfast included)                   From this fixed date, you are legally protected
                                                            against eviction by the new owner if the leased
  Small studio      between € 300 and € 500 per
                                                            premises are sold.
                    month (furnished but without
                    hotel facilities like sheets,
                                                            There are different types of rental contracts
                    cleaning, etc.)                         depending on the duration of lease. Ask your
                                                            landlord detailed information on the duration of
  Furnished flat     between € 1000 and € 1500 per          the lease (1, 3 or 9 year contract), the penalty
                     month (separate bedroom and            when leaving before end of contract, deposit,
                     hotel facilities)                      expenses, etc. before signing the contract.
                                                            Conctact the IMEC relocation officers if you need
  Apartment         between € 600 and € 1500 per
                                                            assistance with the legal aspects.
                    month depending on comfort and
                    number of bedrooms but most
                    likely for renting at least on an       The deposit
                    annual basis                            When you conclude a contract, the payment of a
                                                            deposit is required. For rooms, a deposit of one
  House             at least € 1000 per month but
                                                            month’s rent is usual. For studios and apartments,
                    most likely for renting at least on
                                                            deposits may amount to 2 or 3 month’s rent. This
                    an annual basis                         sum should never be considered as payment for
                                                            rent and can only be used to compensate for
  Rental contract                                           damage to the rented property, caused by the
                                                            tenant or by third parties to whom the tenant has
  A rental contract between you and the landlord
                                                            granted access.

                                                            The deposit or its balance will be reimbursed upon
                                                            return of the keys and after the landlord has
                                                            inspected the state of the property. The landlord
                                                            should have the opportunity to draw the final bill
                                                            for heating, electricity, etc. before he can return
                                                            the balance of the deposit.

                                                            Supplementary expenses (utilities)
                                                            If the cost of heating, electricity, water, etc. is not
                                                            included in the rent, it should be clearly stated in
                                                            the contract how these costs will be calculated. If
                                                            each housing unit is equipped with an individual
                                                            electricity and gas meter, the tenant and the

3 Accomodation
  landlord should make a note of the meter reading         What to do in case of problems?
  at the beginning and at the end of the rental period.
  The tenant pays for these units at the rate              In case you need advise about your rental contract
  stipulated in the contract. If no individual meters      or you have problems with your landlord you can
  are available, the landlord is allowed to divide the     always contact our relocation officers. IMEC is
  total costs proportionally among the residents of        member of the tenants association specialized in
  the house. Many contracts state that the tenants         Legal issues. Our relocation officers will be happy
  have to pay a monthly advance for the costs, over        to give you our registration number so that you
  and above the cost of the rent.                          can contact this organization for information:

  When the final bill is submitted, tenants are entitled       Huurdersbond Vlaams Brabant
  to see the individual invoices for the various               Eén Meilaan 10 – 3010 Kessel-Lo
  utilities. Tenants of apartments and houses                  Tel : 016/25 05 14
  normally have an individual contract with the gas,           Email :
  electricity and water utility companies. In this case
  they will receive the invoices directly from the
  company concerned.

  Fire insurance                                           3.2. RELOCATION
  Fire insurance is not a legal requirement however,       IMEC does not work with a Relocation Company
  if you are renting it usually forms a condition of the
                                                           to organize your relocation.
  lease.    Tenants must, therefore, insure their
  premises against damages caused during occupancy.        But the IMEC relocation officers (Marion Van
  On the basis, the tenant is responsible for damage       Tichelen and Veronique Vanautgaerden) are at
  caused by fire, water and for broken glass in            your disposal during your preparation as well as
  windows or doors. Standard lease contracts state         upon your arrival in Belgium. They will help you
  that the tenant must furnish proof of insurance to       with relocation matters from the start till your first
  the owner within 30 days of signing the lease.           days in Belgium.
  The fire insurance includes a Third Party Liability      Once your registration at IMEC is final and we get
  for accidents to non-family members. It is also          a clear view on the expected arrival date, you can
  important to have your own household content             start thinking about booking the flight. Depending
  insured                                                  on what goods you are planning to move over,
                                                           additional arrangements will have to be made
  Besides          the  insurance       agents             concerning: international moving companies,
  (Verzekeringsmaatschappijen) most of the banks           customs (importing goods), home company budget
  also offer policies                                      for relocation, etc.
  If you want to insure damage to your own                 Specific difficulties can occur while trying to bring
  property, you need to take out separate insurance        along valuables, antiques, a car, … For each and
  coverage. Tenants of apartments and houses               every topic and depending on the country where
  normally cannot insure themselves through the            the goods are coming from, rules can be different.
  landlord’s policy. They need to take out individual      That is why it is imperative to check everything
  insurance to cover the risks of damage both to the       with the airport and flight company before the
  landlord’s property and to their personal
                                                           shipment of the goods.
  belongings. An individual policy is obviously more
  expensive, and may amount to € 75.000 or more
  per year, depending on the coverage and the value
  of the property and furnishing insured.

4    Social Security & Insurances
    4.1. SOCIAL SECURITY                                      USA, Canada, Turkey …) can continue to submit
                                                              there employees to social security in the home
    Belgium has a very extensive social security system.      country during a certain period of time providing
    Foreigners also are entitled to certain allowances        they can confirm that with a document to proving
    and to social services.                                   the employee to be submitted in the home country
                                                              (E101 form in the EC). Non-EC and countries with
    The benefits which you may enjoy as a foreigner           no bilateral treaties should submit there employees
    are strictly dependent on the conditions under            to local Belgian social security.
    which you are resident on Belgian soil.
                                                              Not being submitted to Belgian social security also
    The Belgian social security system is based on the        means that no legal rights can be build up in
    payment of social contributions on your income            Belgium (child allowance, unemployment insurance,
    from work. These social contributions serve to            legal pension, health care). That is why it is
    finance the social security system. Each month the        imperative that the home company always takes
    employer pays between 30 and 40% on top of your           care of sufficient insurance coverage for its
    salary into the social security fund. The employee        employees. We strongly advise the home company
    also pays a proportion of his gross salary in social      to contact an international insurance provider to
    security contributions. This fund is then used to         cover for the health care, hospitalization, travel
    pay social security:                                      accident insurance, repatriation, and disability …

                                                              This is clearly a responsibility of the home country.
    ♦ Allowances in the event of sickness
                                                              Since IMEC is not the employer, we are not
    ♦ Unemployment benefits                                   allowed to do anything in this field.
    ♦ Allowances in the event of incapacity for work
                                                              There is a possibility also to affiliate with a ‘mutual
       through sickness or invalidity                         insurance company’ in Belgium. For a fee of
                                                              approx. 75 € a month, the employee will be
    ♦ Allowances in the event of accidents at work            covered for basic medical, dental and
    ♦ Allowances in the event of industrial disease           hospitalization treatment.
    ♦ Family allowances                                       Again, it is extremely important that the home
    ♦ Pensions                                                company takes care of all insurance related issues.
                                                              We kindly ask the home HR-departments to
    Social services                                           inform their employees of the insurance coverage
                                                              before sending over people.
    Everyone in Belgium is entitled to social services
    from the public social welfare centre, OCMW.              As mentioned before the most important fields to
    They provide social services so that everyone can         cover are:
    live with dignity. They investigate what help is most
    appropriate given the personal or family                  ♦ Health care
    circumstances, and offer the appropriate means to
    meet people's needs.                                      ♦ Hospitalization
                                                              ♦ Repatriation
                                                              ♦ Work-related accident
    Information for IMEC Residents                            ♦ Travel accidents

                                                              Besides these employee related insurances, it
    As your home office continues to be your
                                                              seems advisable to obtain liability insurance in case
    employer and as such continues to pay your salary,
                                                              one of your employees would damage IMEC and/or
    they have to check out if social security
    contributions are due in Belgium. In accordance to        one of its other residents.
    international law, social security contributions are
    due in the host country (country were the work is
    done) even when your company does not have a
    legal entity over here. European countries and
    countries with bilateral social security treaties (i.e.

4    Social Security & Insurances
    4.2. INSURANCES                                          proving you already have insurance coverage in
                                                             your home country.
    Health insurance
                                                             Any medical costs you may incur will be
    All residents of the country, Belgian or otherwise,      reimbursed by a Belgian health-insurance company
    are required by law to be covered by a health-           if you show them the EHIC. This also applies to the
    insurance policy. It is also in you own best interest.   cost of drugs and medication: ask for a 704N form
    Without insurance coverage, the cost of medical          at the pharmacist’s.
    care can quickly spiral out of control. For instance,
    a single night’s stay in the hospital can cost up to €   Care insurance
    300 not including treatment or medicine. A
    standard health-insurance policy will reimburse          In 2002 the Flemish government introduced the
    about 75% of the cost of a doctor’s visit, medicine      care insurance. It is a collective insurance to
    and hospitalization.                                     provide financial assistance to seriously ill patients.
                                                             Every year, you will receive a bill of € 25 for this
    SIS Card                                                 insurance when you live in Flanders and are at least
                                                             25 years old. You are encouraged to pay this bill
    When you take out health insurance you will              before December 31st.
    receive a membership card (known as the SIS card),
    an information booklet and a number of yellow            Hospitalization
    stickers. Please take your SIS card and stickers
    every time you go to the pharmacist, visit a doctor,     The basic health insurance will not cover all
    go to a hospital or to the health-insurance office.      hospital costs and medical costs in case of
    You may be asked to show your SIS card or use            hospitalization can amount quickly. Therefore an
    one of the yellow stickers.                              extra insurance on top of your basic compulsory
                                                             health insurance is advisable. Hospitalization
    If you have to go to the hospital and you don’t have     insurance will relieve the financial burdens after a
    your SIS card you will get an invoice of the total       hospitalization.
    cost. Don’t pay it and bring it to the health
    insurance company. They will take care of a              Repatriation
    corrected invoice.
                                                             In case of serious illness or injury during a holiday
    Coverage outside Belgium                                 or stay abroad you will get assistance (24 hours a
                                                             day), repatriation for the sick or injured person and
    Whether or not you have coverage abroad (i.e.            reimbursement of the medical costs abroad. Ask if
    outside Belgium) depends on a number of criteria.        your health insurance covers this.
    Just to be sure, you should contact your own
    health-insurance company to get advice.                  Travel accidents

    Coverage for family                                      During holiday or work-related travel problems
                                                             can occur. A car accident with your own car,
    When coming to Leuven for a visit, your parents,         sickness, theft, loss of personal goods, etc. Check if
    partner, siblings or friends are not covered by you      you are specifically insured for problems abroad.
    health-insurance policy. We would advice your
    guests to take out a temporary private insurance         Work-related accidents
    policy to cover their period of stay in Belgium.
                                                             IMEC automatically covers you for accidents on the
    EEA Nationals                                            way to and from your company and for accidents
                                                             on the workplace itself. All other accidents must
    If you are a EEA national (Austria, Denmark,             be covered by your private insurance.
    Finland, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Sweden,
    the United Kingdom, Liechtenstein, Iceland,
                                                             Third party liability insurance
    Norway and the new gary, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta,
    Poland, Slovakia, Slovenia, Bulgaria and Romania) as     This policy protects the head of the household and
    well as the nationals from Algeria, Tunisia, Turkey,     all people for whom he is responsible, from third
    and the former Yugoslavia, you should obtain a so        party damage claims. This policy covers any
    called European Health Insurance Card (EHIC)             damages to third party parties caused by you or

4    Social Security & Insurances
    one of your family members. Personal injury is not
    covered by this policy, only damage to third parties.
    The policy also covers the costs of legal assistance.   4.3. IMEC SPECIFIC
    Everyone needs to be covered, even if you are
    without family.                                         INFORMATION
                                                            IMEC provides hospitalization insurance for IMEC
    Car insurance                                           payroll employees, as well for IWT, FWO and FRIA
    Each car owner is obliged to have civil liability car   scholars.
    cover whereby the insurance company of the car
                                                            Disability and death insurance is provided for IMEC
    deemed responsible for the accident, pays for the
    repairs, injuries, or death caused to the other         payroll employees.
    party. Premiums are based on car’s horsepower
                                                            Travel insurance is provided for IMEC payroll
    and the accident record of the insured. Based on a
                                                            employees and any other co-worker making a
    bonus point system, annual rates jump rapidly, with
    point increases following accidents where the           business trip on behalf of IMEC. You are covered
                                                            against sickness, accidents, proven theft and loss of
    insured is at fault, whilst descending only a single
    point for each year of unclaimed accidents, until the   personal goods.
    lowest level of 1 is achieved. You can choose the
                                                            A Pension Plan is for IMEC payroll employees from
    range of your car insurance coverage.                   the age of 25 having a contract of unlimited

                                                            More information about these extra-legal will be
                                                            given by the HR Services on your arrival at IMEC
                                                            and is available on the IMEC Intranet.

5    Health care
    5.1. GENERAL INFORMATION                                Medical bills and reimbursement

    There are three different levels of health care         If you do not require hospitalization, 75% of you
    service in Belgium:                                     medical expenses will be reimbursed by you health-
                                                            insurance-company. You will pay the full cost for a
    ♦ General practitioners (GPs)                           consultation with a general practitioner (about
                                                            €20) but, you will be reimbursed for about €15
    ♦ Specialists                                           afterwards.,. In cases of hospitalization, the hospital
                                                            will charge you a supplement (the charges not
    ♦ Specialists at a local or an academic hospital        covered by the insurance policy).

                                                            The main costs are paid directly by the insurance
    General practitioners (GPs) and
                                                            company to the hospital. Fees for convenient
    specialists                                             extras (e.g. a private room, telephone costs) will
                                                            never be reimbursed by the insurance company.
    If you have a health-related problem, it is best to     When buying drugs, reductions amount to 60%.
    see a general practitioner first rather than going      The pharmacist charges you only the noninsured
    immediately to the hospital.                            amount upon presentation of your SIS card.
    A GP can solve most medical problems. If the GP
    decides that you should consult a specialist, he/she
    will refer you to one who is best qualified to deal
    with your problem. You can usually reach a GP
    during office hours and in emergencies even at
    night. If your regular GP is unavailable when you
    call, you will be referred to another GP. There are
    many advantages to consulting a GP first, before
    seeing a specialist:

    ♦ GP’s are easier to reach; there could be a long
     waiting list to consult a specialist.

    ♦ A GP will keep your medical history on file. This
     is important since information from previous
     medical examinations may be relevant to your
     present condition. It also means that the GP does
     not need to repeat medical tests or examinations
     you may already have had. This can save you a lot
     of money, time and possible discomfort.
    ♦ With certain medical conditions, it is not always
     clear which specialist is best qualified. On your      In Belgium, drugs and medicines are only sold in
     own, you might have to try several specialists         pharmacies (to be recognized by the green cross).
     before finding the right one, whereas a GP can         In the yellow pages of the phone directory
     quickly diagnose your problem and refer you to         pharmacies and drugstores are listed under the
     the proper specialist.                                 word “apotheken”. Or check the online directory
                                                   They are open every
    Most medical doctors speak English, French and          day except Saturday afternoons, Sundays and
    Dutch. When discussing your condition, however,         holidays. When closed, all pharmacies will post in
    please try to make yourself clear, and speak slowly     their window a list of after-hours pharmacies
    and calmly. For consultation, make an appointment       (“wachtdienst”). This information is also published
    or go to the doctor’s office when he/she is available   in the weekly newspaper Passe-Partout (see the
    for general consultation. If necessary, the GP will     section entitled “Apothekers van dienst in Leuven
    refer you to a specialist in a private or a local       en omliggende”). Or call 0900 10 500 for the
    hospital, or to the University Hospitals.               pharmacy on duty in your neighborhood.

5    Health care
    Hospitals                                                SOS – Emergency services and numbers

    University Hospitals                                     In cases of emergency, always give your address
                                                             and Telephone number. Speak slowly. It would be
                                                             useful for you to learn a few words or expressions
             016 33 22 11 for all University Hospitals       related to such cases in Dutch or French.
    ♦ Gasthuisberg
                                                            100             Ambulance and fire department
       Herestraat 49, B-3000 Leuven (Emergency)

    ♦ Sint-Pieter                                           101             Police emergency number

       Brusselsestraat 69, B-3000 Leuven                    112             International Emergency number
    ♦ Sint-Rafaël
                                                            105             Red Cross Flanders ambulance service
       Kapucijnenvoer 33, B-3000 Leuven

    ♦ Pellenberg                                            106             Teleonthaal

       Weligerveld 1, B-3041 Pellenberg                                     Doctors on call
                                                            070 25 70 25
    Non-university hospital
                                                            070 25 40 40    Dentist on call
    ♦ Heilig-Hartziekenhuis

       Naamsestraat 150, B-3000 Leuven (Emergency)          0900 10 500     Pharmacies on duty
                                                                            (after hours and on weekends)

                                                            070 24 52 45    Poison antidote centre
    In Belgium we use Celsius thermometers. These           070 34 43 44    Card stop for bank and credit cards
    are larger than the Fahrenheit ones, and are usually
    placed in the armpit. Readings from the armpit will     02 649 95 55    Suicide prevention centre
    be one degree lower than those taken orally.
    Always tell the doctor which method you have

    Parents are required to vaccinate their babies and
    young children at regular intervals. In Belgium, this
    service is organized by “Kind en Gezin”. Please
    contact them if you have children below 3 years of

6    Money matters
    6.1. GENERAL INFORMATION                                 which the rate of interest varies according to the
                                                             ups and downs of the investments of the bank.

                                                             After opening a bank account, customers receive a
                                                             debit card, which needs to be signed and activated
                                                             by choosing and confirming a personal “PIN code”.

                                                             These services are attached to your bank account:

                                                             ♦ Cash withdrawals, either at one of the
                                                               branches of the bank or at any ATM machine

                                                             ♦ Debit card payments for items bought in shops
                                                               or commercial centers.

                                                             ♦ Forms to transfer money directly from the
                                                               bank account to somebody else’s bank
                                                               account. This is very useful for paying rent and
                                                               utility bills such as water, electricity, internet
                                                               and telephone. To be able to make use of this
                                                               service customers need to go in person to a
                                                               branch of their bank.

                                                             ♦ Transfers from any “self-banking” machine of
                                                               any branch of the bank.

                                                             ♦ Standing orders with the bank for making
                                                               regularly recurring payments such as rent, gas,
    The Belgian currency is the Euro since the 1st of          electricity, water or telephone. This is highly
    January 2002. The Euro is the currency of the              recommended since the payments are made
    following twelve European Union Countries:                 even if customers forget or are away for a
    Belgium, Germany, Greece, Spain, France, Ireland,          period of time.
    Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Austria,
    Portugal, and Finland.                                   ♦ Most banks provide Home-Banking possibilities
    Euro notes: €5, €10, €20, €50, €100, €200 and              via internet.
    €500 note.
                                                             Payments and account statements
    Euro coins: 1, 2, 5, 10, 20 and 50 cent pieces and
    the 1 and 2 euro pieces.                                 Payment by bank transfer is a very common
                                                             method of paying bills in Belgium. The companies
    Opening bank account                                     will normally indicate on their bills how they
                                                             prefer to be paid. Payments by credit card such as
    Belgium has a very efficient and modern banking          Visa, Mastercard/Eurocard, American Express, etc.
    system. Branches of the principal Belgian and            are also common practice. For a small fee to cover
    international banks can be found in all larger Belgian   postage, Belgian banks will mail daily, weekly or
    cities. Among the best known Belgian banks are the       monthly transactions statements for a current
    following: ING, KBC, Dexia, Fortis, Argenta and          account. It is a good idea to make use of this
    Citibank.                                                service. An alternative to the daily posting service
                                                             is the “poste restante”, whereby transaction
    Belgian bank accounts can be “current                    statements are kept at the bank for the customer
    accounts”       (zichtrekening),         “savings        to pick up. The easiest way of obtaining account
    accounts” (spaarrekening) or “term accounts”. The        statements is to print them out at a “self-banking”
    first are customarily used for current transactions,     terminal.
    payments or transfers; the second are self-
    explanatory; and the third are interest-bearing
    accounts fixed for a given period of time, and for

6    Money matters
    Proton: electronic payments for small                      6.2. IMEC SPECIFIC
    amounts                                                    INFORMATION
    Most Belgian banks in Leuven include a special
    facility on their debit cards, which is called ‘Proton’.
    Think of ‘Proton’ as a 21st century electronic coin
                                                               Foreigners in Belgium
    purse. As holder of the current account, you will
    be able to ‘load’ the ‘Proton’ chip on your debit          Foreigners taking up residence in Belgium are liable,
    card up to a maximum amount of €125 only and               in principle, to taxation on their worldwide income.
    the ‘loading’ is done in your bank’s self-service
                                                               This includes:
    ATM machine. You can use your debit cards
    ‘Proton’ facility to pay (small amounts) in many
    stores and shops that avail of a ‘Proton machine’.         ♦ Income from real estate property.
    There are no PIN codes to remember; all you have
    to do is press the button ‘OK’ on the machine and          ♦ Income from personal property, such as
                                                                 dividends, interest on loans and bonds, and
    your payment is done.
                                                                 income from capital invested in partnerships.
    Taxes                                                      ♦ Income from        occupation    and   businesses,
    The Belgian tax year for personal income tax begins          including
    on 1 January and ends on 31 December.If you are
    liable to Belgian taxation, you will typically receive a            • Salary, wages, pension, as well as
    tax return (declaration/aangifte) during May relating                 remuneration of directors and
    to the previous year’s income.. This form must be                     statutory auditors of companies.
    returned completed by mid July (you will find the
    exact date on the tax return from).If you don’t                     • Fees and other remuneration of
    receive a return, request one from the Ministry of                    professional men and women.
    Finance before 1 June or risk a penalty!
                                                                        • Tradesmen’s profit and those earned
    The taxpayer reports the amount of his taxable                        as a partner of a business enterprise.
    income, deducting personal and other allowances.
    In Belgium, married couples, and couples having
    made a legal declaration of cohabitation, make a
    joint income declaration.                                  Some of the IMEC foreign payroll employees are
                                                               eligible to the status of non-resident in Belgium,
                                                               which implies a special tax regime. This special
                                                               status is granted by the Fiscal Authorities and
                                                               allows a lower tax assessment.

                                                               The Recruitment & Selection and HR Services at
                                                               IMEC will give you information and assist you
                                                               during application and actions during the year.
                                                               More information is available on the IMEC intranet.

7    Education
    7.1. DAY CARE & BABY SITTING                                 ♦ De Villa @ IMEC
                                                                   Steengroevenlaan 1, B-3001 Heverlee
                                                                   Tel. 016 23 32 58
    Day-Care Services
                                                                   Open: from 7:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.
    There are a number of day-care centers in the                ♦ Kabouterberg
    Leuven area. Bear in mind that most day-care                   Herestraat 49, B-3000 Leuven
    centers have a long waiting list, in some cases                Tel. 016 33 08 60
    longer than one year, so you are strongly advised
                                                                   Open: from 6:15 a.m. to 8:15 p.m.
    to apply for a place as soon as possible, from the
    moment that you know that you are pregnant.                  ♦ ‘t Grootpark
    There are several channels through which                       Groot Park 17, B-3360 Lovenjoel
    organised day-care can be found :                              Tel. 016 46 31 12
                                                                   Open: from 7:00 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.
    1) Kind en Gezin                                             ♦ Day-Care for Sick Children - Kabouterberg
                                                                   Herestraat 49, B-3001 Heverlee
    Hallepoortlaan 27 – B-1060 Brussel
                                                                   Mrs. Christine Broossens Tel. 016 33 08 60
    Tel: 02 542 12 11
                                                             3) City of Leuven Day-Care
    They will send you a list of officially recognized and
    approved childcare services in your region. They         Kindercentrum Craenendonck, Lei 10, B-3000 Leuven
    also run consultancy services for infants in each -
    comune once or twice a week where young babies
    can be examined by Kind en Gezin nurses and              Anyone looking for child-care is strongly advised to
    doctors and they can get vaccinated without any          begin early. Usually, there are long waiting lists.
    cost. These nurses will also provide information         Kindercentrum Craenendonck can help you in your
    on childminding services in your area.                   search: they can provide an address list of day-care
                                                             centres, private individuals who care for children,
    2) IMEC & K.U.Leuven Day-Care                            and facilities for after-school care. Kindercentrum
                                                             Craenendonck provides the following services, all
    As an IMEC payroll employee or equivalent others         at the above address:
    you can apply for a place at the Day Care Center
    “De Villa”. The center “De Villa” is owned by            ♦ Regular day-care centre
    IMEC, but is operated by the K.U.Leuven as part of         The day-care centre receives children from 6
    its group of Day Care Centers. A place at “De              weeks to 3 years of age. They are placed in
    Villa” or in another K.U.Leuven day-care centre is         small groups according to age. The cost
    not guaranteed as they all have waiting lists.             depends on the parents’ income.
                                                               Kinderdagverblijf Craenendonck
    The following K.U.Leuven day-care centers                  Tel. 016 27 19 10
    welcome children between six weeks and three               Open: Weekdays from 6:30 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.
    years of age. The cost depends on your income and
    includes meals and regular costs. Nappies and            ♦ Day-care in a host family for children under 12
    bottle formula are not included. The day-care              This service helps you to find a place for your
    centers provide your child with the daily care and         child with a host mother or host father. The
    education that he/she requires. Children are placed        cost depends on your income.
    in small groups. The same person remains in charge         Stedelijke Dienst Opvanggezinnen
    of the same children throughout their stay there.          Tel. 016 27 19 11
                                                               Open: 8:30 a.m. to 12:00 noon and also on
        ♦ Babyhome                                             Thursdays from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m.
          Tervuursevest 105, B-3001 Heverlee
          Tel. 016 32 92 92                                  ♦ Limited day-care centre ‘t Margrietje
          Open: from 7:45 a.m. to 6:15 p.m.                    ‘t Margrietje offers a flexible solution for
                                                               children up to 3 years. Children can come for a
        ♦ Peutertuin                                           maximum of 20 hours a week.
          De Croylaan 8, B-3001 Heverlee                        Tel. 016 20 04 79
          Tel. 016 32 24 51                                    Open: Weekdays and Saturday (also during
          Open: from 7:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.                    vacations) from 8:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.

7    Education
                                                            All kinder gardens, primary and secondary schools
    ♦ Hotline for Sick and Disabled Children                have a five-day school week (Monday to Friday) and
      If your child is sick and you are unable to stay at   Wednesday afternoon off.
      home to look after him/her, a caretaker will
      come to your home to take care of your child.         The choice of schools includes :
      Maximum 10 hours a day between 7:00 a.m. and
      6:30 p.m.                                             ♦      Schools run by the government, provinces
      Tel. 016 20 04 95 or 0475 65 16 72                           and communes
      Open: Weekdays from 7:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon
      and from 8:00 to 9:00 p.m. (except Fridays).          ♦      Catholic Education
      Sundays from 8:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.
                                                            ♦      Alternative Education (Steiner, Freinet,
    Babysitting Services                                           Montessori)

    Student Employment Office                               ♦      Private schools

    The Student Employment Office of the Catholic
    University of Leuven can help you find a babysitter-
    student to take care of your children. Applications     Most English speaking expatriates coming to reside
    should be made a few days in advance.                   temporarily in Belgium opt for an English-language
                                                            education for their children. These international
    Student Employment Office                               private schools allow a child to follow the same
    Naamsestraat 80, B-3000 Leuven                          curriculum and to continue his education
    Tel. 016 32 44 34,            uninterrupted as the family moves around the
    Weekdays from 9:00 a.m. tot 5:00 p.m                    world.

    Babysitting Services of the “Gezinsbond”                When choosing between a Belgian school and a
                                                            international school , there are many factors to be
    Parents interested in making use of this service may
                                                            borne in mind.
    consult the Gezinsbond’s register which provides
    the names of the babysitters, as well as the number     The location : consider the distance between the
    of hours that they are willing to work. The
                                                            home and school
    babysitters have been screened beforehand and
     they are insured. The prices are fixed per             The reputation : your local doctor, friends or
    hour. In addition, you pay a small annual fee to the    colleagues can be most informative about schools
    Gezinsbond. You have to be a member of the              in the area.
    Gezinsbond to use this service. When your child is
    born in Leuven, you automatically and for free
    become a member of the Gezinsbond for one year.
                                                            School fees
    For information and referral services:
                                                            Except in private schools , no fees are paid for
    Baplu Lydia, Mob. 0497 60 35 10
                                                            kindergarten, primary or secondary education,
                                                            which is subsided by the government. However,
                                                            you will receive a monthly bill for various incidental
                                                            expenses such as trips, swimming, school magazine,
    7.2. SCHOOL SYSTEM                                      drinks, meals and day-care after school hours.

    Schools in Belgium provide education from nursery
    school to secondary school at little or no cost, and
    their academic standards are consistently high.
    International pupils are welcome in the public
    school system. They can study either in Dutch or in
    French, depending on the language of the town or
    district in which the school is located. Schools in
    Flanders can organize special Dutch lessons for
    children who do not speak Dutch yet (OKAN

7     Education
    Subscription                                                   The Britisch School of Brussels
                                                                   Leuvensesteenweg 19
    Parents are encouraged to examine and visit
                                                                   3080 Tervuren
    several schools in their area first to see whether
    one might be right for their children          As the          Tel : 02/766 04 30
    waiting lists are long, they are advised to apply for a
    place as soon as they have made their choice .       

    A full list of schools in Leuven can be found on :                                                  School calendar
    click on ‘onderwijs’ (= education),
    then click on ‘overzicht scholen’ (= list of schools)          All kindergarten, primary and secondary schools
                                                                   have a five-day school week (Monday to Friday)
                                                                   from around 8.30 am till around 16.00 pm. Note:
    OKAN school in Leuven
                                                                   there is no school on Wednesdays afternoons!
    Sint-Albertus College
    Geldenaarksebaan 177                                           Kindergarten: September 1 to June 30
    3000 Leuven                                                    Primary school: September 1 to June 30
    Tel. 016/40 50 60                                              Secondary school: September 1 to June 30
                                                                   School Holidays:
                                                                   One week in early November
    The International School of Brussels                           Two weeks at Christmas
    Kattenberg 19                                                  One week in February or early March
    1170 Watermael Bosvoorde                                       Two weeks at Easter
    Tel : 02/661 42 11                                             Two months in the summer: July and August                                              Higher Education: September to July (varies)

    School classification

    Age                    ENGLISH                              DUTCH                           FRENCH
                         Type of school                        Type school                    Niveau d’école

    2,5 - 6      Kindergarten or Nusery school                 Kleuterschool                   Jardin d’enfants

    6 - 12        Primary or Elementary school                  Basisschool                     Ecole primaire

    12 - 18        Secondary school containing        Secundaire of middelbare                 Ecole moyenne
                 general, technical or vocational              school

    From 18              Higher education                     Hoger onderwijs             Enseignement supérieure

                 University education Bachelor -        Universitair onderwijs            Enseignement universitair

                     Non-univesity education           Hoger niet-universitair            Enseignement supérieure
                                                            onderwijs                         non-universitaire

7    Education
    Playground activities during school                            7.3. FURTHER EDUCATION
                                                                   Belgium has an extensive network of university and
    IMEC                                                           non-university education. You can study in the
                                                                   Flemish, French and German speaking part of
    In July and August, IMEC offers to all its co-                 Belgium. Information about the different
    workers summer day-care for children between 2.5               programmes, structure of the higher education,
    and 12 years old. More information is available at             cost, admission requirements, … is available on
    the Intranet.                                         and

    K.U.Leuven                                                     Language education
    University Sports Centre organizes sports activities           Instituut voor Levende Talen (ILT )
    during two weeks in July and August at the price of
                                                                   The Institute of Modern Languages organizes Dutch
    € 60,00 per week.                                              courses throughout the academic year, both for
    Universitair Sportcentrum                                      beginners and for advanced students.
    Tervuursevest 101, B-3001 Heverlee                             These coursess can be followed either intensively
    Tel.: 016 32 91 30 016 32 91 31                                (twelve hours/week) or regularly way (six hours/
    Fax: 016 32 91 95                            week). Intensive courses are held in the morning,                          while regular courses can be followed either in the
                                                                   afternoon or in the evening.
    City of Leuven playground activities                           ILT - Dekenstraat 6, B-3000 Leuven
                                                                   Tel: 016 32 56 60 Fax: 016 32 56 56
    During school holidays, children can go to a
    playground to play with children of their own age    
    from 7:30 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. in Leuven, Heverlee,
    Kessel-Lo and Wilsele. They can play in groups                 CLT Language Centre Centrum voor
    oriented around a specific theme, or they can                  Levende Talen
    choose what they want to do. The fee is € 5.00 a               The CLT Language Centre runs language courses
    day or € 2.50 for half a day (reductions possible).            mainly in the evening. You can study Arabic,
                                                                   Chinese, English, French, German, Modern Greek,
    The “Grabbelpas”- activities (only in Leuven from              Italian, Japanese, Polish, Portuguese, Russian,
    7:30 a.m. till 6:00 p.m.) offer workshops such as              Spanish, Swedish and Turkish.
    handcraft, sport, culture, daytrips, … during school
    holidays. The fee is depending on the kind of                  CLT - Dekenstraat 4, B-3000 Leuven
                                                                   Tel: 016 32 56 61 Fax: 016 32 56 95
    Leuven: 4-15 years (Easter and summer)
                                                                   ACE Groep T
    Heverlee: 3-15 years (Easter and summer)
                                                                   ACE-Group T organizes language courses that
    Kessel-Lo: 3-15 years (only summer)                            focus on oral communication. You can follow
                                                                   courses on Italian, English, French, Dutch for
    Wilsele: 3-12 years (only summer till aug.15)                  foreigners, Chinese, Thai, Spanish and German.
    You need to sign up for all these activities at                ACE Groep T - Vesaliussttraat 13, B-3000 Leuven
    Jeugdcentrum Vleugel F, Brusselsestraat 61a,                   Tel: 016 30 11 16 Fax: 016 30 10 40
    B-3000 Leuven. You have to pay a onetime fee of
    € 5.00 for a “Youth Centre Pass”. See you in the
    More information (addresses, prices, programme, etc.) on the   Contact HR Learning & Development for
    website or tel. 016 24 66 90.              information about the language courses organized
                                                                   by IMEC.

8 Transport
  8.1. GETTING THERE                                      ♦      your national valid driving license
                                                          ♦      driving license has to valid before your
  Airport                                                        arrival in Belgium
                                                          ♦      residence permit
  The national airport of Belgium is located at           ♦      official translation of your driving license,
  Zaventem, Brussel. More information available on               done by a sworn translator in Belgium.                                     Translation should be in Dutch or French.
                                                                 You can ask a list of legally certified
  IMEC is about 30 km from the airport. You can                  translators at the local council office.
  take a taxi (around €50 fare) or public transport
  (train, bus) to reach IMEC.                             After you have submitted these documents to the
                                                          town hall, they will send your file to the police and
  There are also regional airports in Belgium. The        this can take 3 weeks. During these 3 weeks you
  most known is Brussels South Charleroi Airport.         are not allowed to drive a car.
  Information, accessibility and operating airlines is
  available on                  The police will send an approval to the town hall
                                                          and then they will invite you to come and collect
                                                          the driving license.

                                                          cost : 16 €
                                                          2 passport pictures are requested

                                                          Importing cars

                                                          Experience has learned that importing a car is not
                                                          advisable. Importing a car can be very expensive
                                                          because the car is not conform to Belgian
                                                          standards and also a lot of customs administration
                                                          is involved.
                                                          Buying a new or used car
                                                          When buying a new car, the car dealer will take
  Driving license                                         care of the paperwork. At this point, you need
                                                          your residence permit. You will be given a
  EU Citizens: can drive with a European driving          registration form to complete, and you will need to
  license in Belgium.                                     insure the car. Once all formalities are completed,
                                                          registration documents will be sent to you, as well
  In case you want to switch your own driving license     as the back license plate. You will also need to pay
  into a Belgian one, you need to get an official         a “mise en circulation/belasting op de
  translation (preferably in Dutch or French), done       inverkeerstelling” tax as well as annual road tax. If
  by a sworn translator in Belgium. You can ask a list    your car is equipped with a MPG engine, motor
  of legally certified translators at the local council   diesel engine, you will have to pay an additional tax.
  office.                                                 When buying a used car, the car must be delivered
                                                          with a contrôle technique/technische controle”
  cost : 16 €                                             certificate. As with buying a new car, you will need
  2 passport pictures are requested                       to complete the registration form and insure the
                                                          car before receiving the license plate.
  NON EU Citizens: only tourists can drive with an
  international driving license, or persons who are in
                                                          Leasing/renting a car
  the process of getting a residence permit in
  Belgium                                                 Belgium tax legislation makes leasing far more
                                                          attractive than in many other countries. The added
  In order to obtain a Belgian driving license, you       advantage, of course, is that all the repair bills are
  need to submit the following:                           covered and the paperwork is arranged by the
                                                          leasing company.

8 Transport
  In case you want to rent a car for a short or long      quickly in the city centre as otherwise. For further
  term, you can contact Hertz or Avis:                    information about the above issues, you’re
                                                          welcome to contact the mobility advisors at
  Avis Head Office Leuven                        or 016 32 93 01
  Nieuwstraat 28                                          and 016 32 93 02.
  3360 Leuven (Korbeek-Lo)
  Tel : 016 25 00 55                                      Traffic Rules
  Fax : 016 25 02 08                                   Please note that the police is very strict on                                     checking the traffic rules. High fines and penalties
                                                          will have to be paid in case you don’t respect them.
  Hertz Belgium                                           Also be aware that automatic cameras are watching
  Kolonel Bourgstraat 120                                 you. You can quickly loose your driving license for
  1140 Brussels                                           speeding etc.
  Tel : 02 717 32 01
  Fax : 02 717 32 02                                            Taxi
  When showing your Imec badge, you can get a
                                                          Starting fee: € 2,40 . Price per kilometer: € 2,15
  discount with the company below:
                                                          You will find taxi companies online on
  Autocenter Hein N.V.                           or call 1207 (national
  Steenweg op Wezemaal 149                                information number) and ask for a taxi company in
  3110 Rotselaar                                          the neighborhood.
  Tel : 016 58 06 57
  Fax : 016 58 34 78
                                                          Leuven is an important hub in the Belgian railway
  Parking                                                 network.

  Too few parking spots or too many cars?                 From Leuven station, there are connections to
                                                          every other major Belgian train station. You can
  One thing is clear: it is not easy to find a parking    find the best connection and itinerary using the
  spot in Leuven or in other big cities in Belgium. No
                                                          b-rail online search engine.
  new parking spots are being created. Moreover,
  parking fines are very high and in order to use the     Leuven Station
  existing parking spots in the best possible way, the    Martelarenplein 16, B-3000 Leuven
  city has introduced time limits by means of parking     Tel. 016 21 21 11 Fax: 016 21 21 48
  machines and blue-zone rules. Exceptions are only       Info for travellers: 016 21 21 21
  made for inhabitants of the neighborhood and            International Information & Eurostar, Thalys, HST: 02
  disabled persons.                                       528.28.28
                                                          Found items: 016 21 24 10
  You can save a lot of money by using your bicycle       Fax: 016 21 24 11
  or taking the bus. If you cannot find a parking spot (possibility to buy tickets online)
  on the street, you could try one of the many car
  parks, where you will have to pay. Or even better,      Heverlee Station
  park at one of the outlying car parks in Heverlee
                                                          Naamsesteenweg 180, B-3001 Heverlee.
  (e.g. Bodart, Engels Plein parking lots), most of
  which are free. An overview of all parking facilities
                                                          GoPass and RailPass
  in the city centre can be found on the Leuven
  website:                                 With a Go Pass (-26 years old), you can make 10
                                                          one-way trips in second class (price, spring ‘08: for
  But there is also P+BUS parking. If you park on the     € 46.00. You will get the most benefit if you travel
  edge of the shopping centre, in the car park of De      between two stations that are far apart (e.g.
  Bond and on the Sint-Jacobsplein, you can take the      Antwerp, Bruges, Ghent, ...). If you hold a RailPass
  bus to the city centre and back free of charge. You     (+ 26 years), you can make 10 one-way trips in
  park cheaper in these car parks and still you are as
                                                          second class (price, spring ‘08: € 71).

8 Transport
  Practical Tip                                        quickest way to get from one place to another.
                                                       Cyclists are very welcome in Leuven, but need to
  On Fridays and weekends, ask for a “Weekend          know the traffic rules.
  Ticket”. When you travel alone, you get up to a
  40% discount. When travelling with friends, the      VELO (v.z.w.)
  first passenger gets a 50% discount. The 2nd, 3rd,
  4th, 5th and 6th passengers get a 70% discount,      VELO is a non-profit organization that promotes
  provided that all members of the group travel        the bicycle as an ecological means of transport in
  together.                                            the city by recycling, renting and repairing bikes.
                                                       VELO offers a bike rental and repair service and is
  Bus                                                  organized as a training and employment project in
                                                       the social economy.
  De Lijn (Flemish Bus Company)
                                                       Minderbroederstraat 12 U, B-3000 Leuven,
  Belgium has an extensive bus network that            Tel. 016 33 74 30
  operates in and between most cities. You can find -
  time schedules on the bus stops along the road.      Open: Weekdays from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
  Destinations, route planner, time schedules and      Tuesday: from 10:00 a.m. to 7:30 p.m.
  more information you will find on the website.
                                                       Bicycle Rental and Repair
  Bus lines nr. 2 and 616 will drop you at the IMEC
  Campus.                                              You can rent a safe, fully equipped and registered
                                                       second-hand bike with a solid lock at VELO. A
  De Lijn                                              rental contract will be drawn up (please bring your
  Martelarenplein 19b, B-3000 Leuven                   passport, student card/badge and bank account
  Tel. 070 22 02 00 (general information)              number) and you must pay the rental price plus a
  Tel. 016 31 37 11 (province of Vlaams-Brabant)       deposit. You can also come to repair your own
  Info Pass: Tel. 016 31 37 20 Fax: 016 31 37 25       bike at the bike repair shop or have your bike
  Info Groups: Tel. 016 31 37 17                       repaired for a small price. At VELO you can also -                     report bike theft and have your bike registered
                                                       (engraving + bike ID).

                                                       Some Bicycle Repair Shops

                                                       - A-Bikes, Gemeentestraat 37, Kessel-Lo
                                                       - Huis Boydens, Diestsestraat 205, Leuven
                                                       - Rijwielen Cadans, Naamsestraat 123, Levuen
                                                       - Rijwielen Hugo Jacobs, Diestsestraat 192, Leuven
                                                       - Fietsen Koen, Martelarenlaan 201, Kessel-Lo
                                                       - Fietsen Niclaes, Naamsesteenweg 76, Heverlee

                                                       Bicycle Safety

                                                       Every year the local police, together with the
                                                       K.U.Leuven and the city services, campaign to
                                                       increase bike safety in Leuven. Spot checks for
                                                       bicycle ownership are held on regular basis. A
                                                       police patrol can stop you anywhere at any time. In
  Travelling through Europe with Eurolines
                                                       the worst-case scenario you will get a fine if the
  Eurolines has direct and inexpensive connections     bike you are riding has been reported as stolen.
  from Leuven to 500 destinations in Europe.           The most important pieces of advice to prevent -                fines and bicycle theft are these:

                                                               - Do not steal a bike
  Bicycles                                                     - Lock your bike properly
                                                               - Register your bike
  Cycling is healthy, inexpensive and cool.
  Furthermore, in a city like Leuven it is often the           - Report theft

8 Transport
  Global Action Plan Cyclists                               Fietsendienst
                                                            Mechelsestraat 162-168, B-3000 Leuven
  The Leuven Police has developed a global action           Tel. 016 21 09 90 -
  plan for cyclists with four priorities: driving without   Open:
  lights when this is obligatory, ignoring a red light      Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Fridayfrom 8:00
  (one also has to stop when turning right!), driving       a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
  in the wrong direction and not giving way. These          Thursday from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.
  four priorities were set up on basis of accident          Saturday from 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon
  statistics of the last years. During the academic
  year, traffic surveillances will be held which will       Practical Tips
  focus on the movement summary offences by
  cyclists. If you want more info on how to prevent         - Rent a safe, fully equipped and registered
  expensive fines check out the website:                    secondhand bicycle.
                                                            - To prevent theft, get a solid lock.                           - To prevent accidents and fines, respect the rights
  GuideforCyclingIn-Belgium.pdf.                            of pedestrians and the local traffic rules.
                                                            - If your bicycle is stolen, please report it. Bicycle
  It has all the information about the Belgian Highway      theft report forms can be found in the offices of
  Code specialized in cycling with lots of pictures of      VELO and at the police office. By reporting theft,
  traffic situations in Leuven.                             you are supplying the police the information they
                                                            need to recover your bike and to locate you if they
  Bicycle Theft and the Bicycle Office                      find your bike.
                                                            Bicycle map
  Bicycle theft is very common in Leuven. A good
  lock to secure your bicycle is very important and         You can download the map of bicycle routes from
  always recommended. In Leuven you can get your            the City of Leuven web site. This map provides an
  bicycle engraved with an ID number. This is no            overview of all safe bicycle routes
  guarantee against theft, but it helps to prevent          showpage.asp?iPageID=5892y -to-day life
  theft. For free engraving, go to the bicycle office of
  the local police on Wednesdays from 1:00 to 3:30
  p.m. and on Thursdays from 5:00 to 7:30 p.m.

9    Communication
    Postal Services                                       Telephone and internet services
    In Belgium mail is delivered by the Postman to your   Country Number for Belgium: 32
    address. Post boxes are red in color and are          Area Code Leuven: (0)16: international call, skip 0
    situated in towns, shopping centers and road sides.   (0032 16 …); when calling within Belgium, always
                                                          dial the full area code, 016. Other examples of area
    National mail may be placed in any letterbox in       codes: Brussels: 02; Antwerp: 03; Ghent: 09;
    Belgium or posted at a post-office counter and may    Bruges: 050; Louvain-la- Neuve: 010.
    be open or sealed. Postage of a standardized letter
    costs € 0.54. For international mail: the items may   Useful Numbers
    be open or sealed and weigh a maximum of 2 kg.
    See                                     National Information: 1207
                                                          International Information: 1204
    Post Office Addresses in Leuven
                                                          Fixed Lines
    Leuven Philips
    Philipssite, B-3001 Heverlee, tel. 016 50 93 60       There are two main providers of fixed telephone
    Open:                                                 lines in Belgium: Belgacom and Telenet.
    Weekdays from 9:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
    and from 1:30 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.                        Belgacom operates a special toll-free number for
    Tuesdays until 6 p.m.                                 expatriate services (0800-32005) if you call from
                                                          Belgium, and +32 2 819 80 04 if you call from
    Leuven Centrum                                        abroad). To get a fixed line, phone this toll-free
    Jan Stasstraat 12, B-3000 Leuven,                     number or visit one of the Belgacom Teleboutiques
    Tel. 016 50 95 60 Fax: 016 50 95 70
    Open:                                                 ( or go to a recognized
    Weekdays from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. except for       Belgacom dealer. Belgacom has a toll-free customer
    Thursday : 9:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m.                     service line for general information: 0800-55800.
                                                          There is a network of 60 private retailers
    Heverlee Ambassade                                    authorised to order new lines or sell you Belgacom
    Naamsesteenweg 380, B-3001 Heverlee,                  equipment. Belgacom Teleboutiques also sell or
    Tel. 016 40 60 06                                     rent a full range of Belgacom telephones, fax
    Open:                                                 machines, answering machines, pagers and mobile
    Weekdays from 9:00 12:30 pm. and               telephones. Belgacom also provides internet and
    from 1:30 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.                           television.
    Saturday from 9:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
                                                          Telenet provides broadband telephone, internet
    Postpunten (in case post offices are closed)          and multimedia services via cable. For further
                                                          information about Telenet and its services call 0800
    SuperGB Heverlee - Tervuursevest 113, Leuven          66000, free of charge, or consult their website:
    AD Delhaize Luna - Tervuursesteenweg 154, Heverlee
    SPAR Sint-Jacob - Brusselsestraat 124, Leuven

9    Communication
    Cable television and digital television                 Calling Cards
                                                            Calling cards have two main advantages over
    Cable & Digital TV is available in each commune.        regular lines: since the card is pre-paid there is no
    Each commune provides exclusive rights to various       bill at the end of the month; and calls can be made
    cable TV operators and each operator chooses the        from any telephone (public, private, mobile, etc.).
    channels it wishes to offer. The cable operator can     Calling cards for international calls are available at
    also provide internet and telephone services.           newsagents, post offices, supermarkets, train
    Contact your local commune or local telecom             stations and night shops.
    shops to establish which operator is authorized to
    provide services in your commune.                       Always ask which card is the most suitable for the
                                                            call and the country you want to call.
    Without cable you will receive two Dutch
    channels: Eén and Canvas. Cable television will         Radio
    provide you with more channels, such as: VTM,
    KA2, VT4, VijfTV, Vitaya, Jim TV, BBC, RTBF, …          Here are some radio channels which you can tune
                                                            in to in Belgium:
    Mobile Telephones (Cell phones)
                                                            Radio 1, Radio 2, Klara, Radio Donna, Studio
    Newcomers from most European countries can              Brussel and PureFM.
    continue to use their mobile telephones in Belgium
    if their contract includes a roaming feature,
    although this will be rather costly in the long term.
    However, newcomers from the United States are
    generally unable to use their American cell phones
    in Europe. For them, connection to the Belgian
    telephone and mobile networks remains the most
    cost-effective solution. Mobile telephones or cell-
    phones are widely available in specialized shops and
    large retail outlets. Many specialized dealers are
    also official agents for one of the three major
    Belgian mobile operators: Proximus, Mobistar and
    Base (main shops in Diestsestraat and
    Bondgenotenlaan). These operators are authorized
    to open an account for you and have various
    payment formulas, including pre-paid cards and

    Please don’t sign any contract without fully
    understanding its terms and implications!

10 Security, police and legalities
   Leuven Police Headquarters                          Births, Marriages and Deaths
   The police department is in charge of maintaining   Registry Office Burgerlijke Stand
   law and order.                                      Prof. Van Overstraetenplein1, B-3000 Leuven
   Police officers are there for your security         Tel. 016 27 20 00 – Fax 016 27 29 95
   whenever you need them.                   
   Philipssite 4, B-3001 Heverlee                      Births
   Tel. 016 21 07 40 Fax: 016 21 07 39
                                                       You are required to inform the Registry Office of
                                                       the birth of your baby within 15 days of the birth.
   Open:                                               The hospital will give you the necessary papers and
   Weekdays from 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon and from      information. Ask the HR Services at IMEC or at
   12:30 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. (or by appointment)         your home company for information on including
   For emergencies (24 hours a day) please contact:    your child in the insurance policy.
   Interventieafdeling Algemene Politiezorg
   Philipssite 4, B-3001 Heverlee
                                                       Civil Marriages
   Tel. 016 21 06 10 Fax: 016 21 06 09
                                                       The municipal authorities in Belgium only recognize
                                                       civil weddings, not church weddings. If you plan to
   The local district station Leuven Center is at      have both a civil and a religious marriage ceremony,
                                                       the civil ceremony must take place first. You do
   Grote Markt 8                                       not need to have both on the same day. All
   3000 LEUVEN                                         information concerning marriage and the
    Phone (016) 21 09 00 (switchboard)                 documents required, can be obtained at the
                                                       Registry Office.
   Opening Hours:
   from 0.00 to 24.00 (for all emergencies)
                                                       The Registry Office must be informed of all deaths.
   Quarter Section:                                    If death occurs in a hospital, this formality will be
   from 08.00 to 22.00, Sat 08.30 to 12.30             normally done by the undertaker, but has to be
                                                       paid. You can do this yourself, but you then need
                                                       to inquire at the Registry Office. If death occurs
                                                       outside a hospital, a doctor must be called first to
                                                       certify the death and to determine the cause of
                                                       death. After that, the registry office must be
                                                       informed. It is advisable to ask for several copies of
                                                       the death certificate, since they may be needed for
                                                       insurance, banks, embassies, etc

11 Day-to-day life
   11.1. CONTACT                                              Supermarkets, Shops and Markets

   The K.U.Leuven organizes activities for their              Most supermarkets and shops are open every day
   international students. There are international            except on Sunday. Some will have a closing
   students associations (,      weekday. There are a few supermarkets that do
   activities at the International Meeting Centre             open on Sunday morning: GB Express
   Pangaea ( and activities           (Brusselsestraat 60, Tiensevest 10 and
   with the International Contact Club (ICC                   Naamsestraat 48, open until 8 p.m), Super GB                                       Partner (Koning Albertlaan 147, Kessel-Lo), Evin’s
                                                              Winkel (Leeuwerikenstraat 23, Heverlee). Bakeries
   On the intranet of IMEC you will find some                 are usually open on Sundays and holidays. Many
   references to other international associations in          Night Shops open after 6 p.m. until late at night.
   Belgium.                                                   Evening Shopping in the centre of Leuven on
                                                              Thursdays until 8:00 p.m.
   Cost of living

                                                              Mgr. Ladeuzeplein (food and goods),
         Bread – white, sliced: € 2
                                                              H. Hooverplein (food),
                                                              Brusselsestraat (flowers)
        Milk, 1 liter, skimmed: € 0.66
                                                              Wednesday afternoon from 3:00 p.m.:

         Eggs, white (container of 6): € 1.41                 A. de Becker-Remyplein (Kessel-Lo)

                                                              Sunday morning until 1:00 p.m.:
         Rice, 500g: € 1.80
                                                              At Heverlee station
                                                              (Naamsesteenweg, Waversebaan)
           Pasta, 500g: € 0.80

         Sausage, 1kg: € 7.50
                                                              (M. de Layensplein, Mechelsestraat)

          Steak, 1kg: € 14
                                                              (vegetables, cheese, etc.) on Brusselsestraat

         Grilled Chicken, per kg: € 8

         Apples, 1kg: € 1.30

        Carrots, 1kg: € 0.60

            Pizza, medium: + 10 €

   Indicative prices as per Jan 1st, 2009 (please note that
   vegetable and fruit prices are strongly influenced by
   supply and weather conditions)

11 Day-to-day life
   Food                                                  Zara
                                                         Bondgenotenlaan 75-79
   Weldadigheidsstraat 58 and J. P. Minckelerstraat 76   Wibra
                                                         Bondgenotenlaan 74
   J.P. Minckelerstraat 116, Leuven                      Carrefour
   Vlinderlaan 2, Kessel-Lo                              Vlinderlaan 1, Bierbeek
                                                         (also has an extensive collection at very fair prices)
   Lombaardenstraat 2, Leuven                            INNO
   Tiensesteenweg 237, Kessel-Lo                         Diestsestraat 67
   Groenveldstraat 71, Heverlee

   Tervuursevest 113

   GB Express
   Brusselsestraat 60
   Tiensevest 10
   Naamsestraat 48

   AD Delhaize
   Tervuursevest 19
   Brusselsestraat 31
   Tervuursesteenweg 154

   Bondgenotenlaan 58

   Diestsestraat 93/2
   (furniture, household, electronic appliances
   and school supplies at very affordable prices)

   Parijsstraat 2
   (clothes, houseware, gadgets and food)

   Weiveldlaan 19(close to E40), Zaventem

   Bondgenotenlaan 169
   (Ikea-style furniture)

   Bondgenotenlaan 64

   Bondgenotenlaan 69

11 Day-to-day life
   Health and beauty products                         De Gouden Draad
                                                      Tiensestraat 204
   Diestsestraat 55                                   Quick Shop
   Bondgenotenlaan 95                                 Diestsestraat 224
   Jodenstraat 1
   DI                                                 Slachthuislaan 1
   Brusselsestraat 22
                                                      Het Leuvens Strijkatelier
   Second hand shops                                  Frederik Lintstraat 37

   SPIT                                               Wassalons het Poederke
   IJzermolenstraat 10-12                             A. Vesaliusstraat 16

   Rawette                                            De Washoek
   Parijsstraat 53A (only clothing)                   Tervuursevest 12

   Cyaankali                                          For prices, ‘how to use a washing machine’, see
   Diestsestraat 217 (only clothing)                  brochure ‘Housekeeping tips’,
   ‘t Pand
   Tiensestraat 225 (children’s clothing and needs)   11.3. DINING

   International food shops                           Leuven has a lot of restaurants, cafes and pubs.
                                                      Situated mostly in the centre, around the Great
   Thai House Supermarket                             Market. You will find a list with restaurants on the
   Alfons Smetsplein                                  website of Leuven. Expect to pay
                                                      about €1.80 for a drink – cola, water or beer.
   Asian Market
   Naamsestraat 28                                    11.4. ENVIRONMENT
   African food shop Voodoo                           The educational and civil authorities are fully
   Tiensestraat 220                                   committed to sustainable development and the
                                                      creation of an environmentally friendly city. They
   La Méditerrannée for north-African food            encourage citizens and students to reduce their
   Maria-Theresiastraat 52                            garbage production, to properly sort their garbage,
                                                      to use energy in a responsible and sustainable way
   Fair Trade Shop (products from Africa, Asia and    and to adopt sustainable transportation.
   Tiensestraat 273
   Naamsesteenweg 133

   Laundrettes, laundries and dry cleaning
   Pressing nr 1
   L. Melsensstraat 4

   Strea Net
   Tervuursesteenweg 187

   Brusselsestraat 214

   De Lelie
   Maria Van Belstraat 7

11 Day-to-day life
   Waste Prevention, Selection and                          your green waste is to start composting or to get
   Reduction                                                some chickens.

   In Leuven garbage needs to be sorted. The more           PMD (Plastic, Metal and Drink cartons -
   you produce, the more brown bags you will need           blue bag)
   and they cost money. You can reduce your garbage
   by buying fewer packages, by using glass instead of      There is a lot of confusion about what you can and
   plastic bottles, etc. The following paragraphs           cannot put in the blue bag. It is very important that
   explain the different kinds of waste, and how they       you know what goes in the blue bag, since they will
   are collected.                                           not be picked up if they contain the wrong things.

   Paper and cardboard                                      Always allowed: washed “tetra packs”, plastic
                                                            bottles, metal cans, aluminum tins and trays (from
   Paper and cardboard are collected separately from        lasagna for instance).
   other garbage. You can include any kind of paper, if
   it’s clean and if there is not any plastic attached to   Never allowed: butter tubs, yoghurt cups, plastic
   it. All paper needs to be tied up with string or         bags, plastic objects, aluminum foil, badly rinsed
   twine and left in front of the house or residence on     tetra packs.
   collection mornings between 6:00 and 7:00 a.m.
                                                            Everything else (brown bag)
                                                            All the household garbage not mentioned above
   Glass should be taken to one of the big glass            has to go in the brown bag. Large objects like
   containers located throughout the city. Light bulbs      furniture are collected five times a year. You have
   or flat glass (for instance from a window) are NOT       to put a special sticker on it that can be purchased
   allowed! Always rinse out glass bottles. Colored         at the “Stadswinkel” (see below). If the furniture
   glass usually goes in a separate container from clear    can still be used, or if you want to get rid of an
   glass.                                                   electronic appliance, contact Spit (see below).

   KGA (Small dangerous waste)                              You can find all the information on the free ‘waste
                                                            collection calendar’, which outlines the garbage
   Most people have quite a lot of stuff that is            pick-up schedule. The environment advisors also
   dangerous if it is dumped or burned since it might       provide an English translation.
   lead to soil contamination. Batteries can be taken
   to supermarkets and deposited in the green boxes         Where to buy garbage bags and stickers
   provided especially for old batteries. Expired or
   unused medication can be taken to any                    You can also find garbage bags in most
   pharmacist’s but please remove the paper from the        supermarkets, except in Aldi.
   box. There are also collections of small dangerous
   waste such as leftover cleaning products, used           City Shop - Stadswinkel
   cooking oil, cosmetics, writing materials, etc, by the   Waversebaan 66, B-3001 Heverlee (at Heverlee City
   Leuven ’chemobiel’. Dates and places will be             Hall) - Tel. 016 30 90 56
   announced via the website of the city                    Open:
   ( and via the municipal                    Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and
   infobrochure ‘Stad Leuven info’. Or you can bring it     Friday from 9:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.and from 1:00 to
   to one of the guarded containerparks.                    4:30 p.m.
                                                            Thursday from 9:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and from 1:00
   GFT (Kitchen and garden waste - green                    to 8:00 p.m.(klopt dit nog?)
                                                            City Registry Office - Bevolkingsdienst stad Leuven
   Vegetables, fruit and garden waste belong in the         Prof. Van Overstraetenplein 1, B-3000 Leuven
   green bag. Coffee filters, teabags and eggshells are     Open:
   also allowed. Please do not put anything else in the     Only on Thursdays from 4:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. (only
   green bag! In a number of residences and houses          stickers).
   little green buckets are used instead of bags. The
   most environmentally friendly way to get rid of

11 Day-to-day life
   Responsible energy use                                    Second Hand Shop (Kringloopwinkel)
                                                             IJzermolenstraat 10-12, B-3001 Heverlee
   Everybody is encouraged to consume energy and             Tel. 016 65 29 35 Fax: 016 35 92 89
   water in a sustainable way. Here are some tips that
   you can put into practice in your university              Open:
   residence or student house:                               Tuesday to Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
                                                             Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
   Turn off the lights when you are the last person to
   leave a room.                                             11.5. SPORTS
   Turn off the screen of your computer if you are           K.U.Leuven Sports Centre Leuven
   not working on it for an extended period of time.
                                                             Universitair Sportcentrum
   Put a lid on your pot or pan (60 to 70 % less
   energy wasted), and turn off the heat a bit before        As an IMEC employee you can apply for a sports
   you finish cooking. The ideal temperature for your
                                                             card from the K.U.Leuven.
   refrigerator is 5°C; try to avoid a layer of ice in the
   freezer. If you open your window, turn off the heat       The Sports Centre features a state-of-the-art
   (but do not forget to put it on minimum when it           fitness room for which you pay supplementary. To
   freezes).                                                 book a tennis court, soccer field, or any other
                                                             facility call or drop by the sports secretariat. If you
                                                             and your team mates have a sports card, everything
                                                             is free. The only thing you pay extra for is indoor

                                                             The Sports Centre yearly organizes the following
                                                             events: Bike&Run, Indoor Athletics Meeting, the
                                                             Flemish University Competition, the Belgian
                                                             University Competition, Sports Camps for kids,
                                                             Badminton Competition, the fence competition
                                                             ‘Challenge Maître Minnen’.

                                                             Tervuursevest 101, B-3001 Heverlee
                                                             Tel. 016 32 91 30 Fax: 016 32 91 95

                                                             Open: Weekdays from 9:00 a.m. to 12.00 noon and
                                                             from1:00 to 6:00 p.m. (5:30 during the summer
   Do not leave any towels or clothing on the central
   Do not wash your dishes under running water.
   Report leaky taps to the landlord.
   Copy and print on both sides of the paper.
   Realizing that you can reduce consumption without
   reducing comfort is already a good start.

   SPIT (second-hand shop)
   Spit is a centre that recycles household items. You
   can bring them your old furniture, electric
   appliances, bicycles, clothes, etc. All items should
   be in a condition that allows them to be re-used.
   Spit personnel can pick up articles from your
   house. After repairs are carried out, these items
   are then sold in Spit’s shop.

11 Day-to-day life
   City of Leuven Sports Office                         Fit-o-meter
                                                        Heverleebos, Naamsesteenweg, Heverlee
   Prof. Van Overstraetenplein 1, B-3000 Leuven                  Jeugdvoetbalcentrum Bruineveld
                                                        Domeinstraat 61, 3010 Kessel-Lo
   The city of Leuven has several sports facilities:    For information concerning fees & prices contact the
   swimming pools, indoor and outdoor facilities.       staff in charge of the facility or call the sports office:
                                                        016 44 26 50
   City’s Sports Facilities: An Overview
                                                        Sport Clubs in Leuven
   Swimming Pools
   Stadionlaan 4,                                       The Sports Office has a comprehensive list of sport
   B-3010 Kessel-Lo                                     clubs in the Leuven area. This list is constantly
   016 25 34 80                                         updated. Its content comes from information
                                                        collected by the staff of the Sports Office. It is
   Aarschotsesteenweg 730,                              available in every municipal sports facility.
   B-3012 Wilsele-Putkapel
   016 44 33 88                                         11.6. CULTURE
   Sportoase,                                           Leuven is a young and dynamic city where it is
   Philipssite 6,                                       almost impossible to get bored. Apart from the
   B-3001 Heverlee                                      numerous cafes and restaurants, there is also a
   016 74 07 40                        large assortment of cultural activities.
   Indoor Sports Facilities                             The Leuven Cultural Centre, with 200,000 visitors
   Sportoase                                            and approximately 280 activities per season, is the
                                                        most important organiser of performing arts in the
   Sportcomplex Kessel-Lo,                              region. They’ll bring you a fascinating mix of
   Stadionlaan 4, B- 3010 Kessel-Lo                     theatre, dance, classical and non-classical music,
   016 25 34 80                                         workshops, lectures, children’s performances, and
                                                        much more. There is always something for
   Sporthal Wilsele-centrum                             everybody.
   Aarschotsesteenweg 163, B-3012 Wilsele
   016 44 51 36                                         30CC holds performances, concerts and shows at
                                                        many different venues around the city: the
   Turn- & sportzaal Boudewijnstadion Diestsesteenweg   Stadsschouwburg (municipal theatre)
   288, B-3010 Kessel-Lo                                (Bondgenotenlaan 21), the “Minnepoort”
   016 89 52 12                                         Auditorium (Dirk Boutslaan 62), the “Romaanse
                                                        Poort” and the “Wagehuys” (Brusselsestraat 63),
   Sporthal KHLeuven                                    the “Predikherenkerk” (O.L.Vrouwstraat), the
   Hertogstraat 178, B-3001 Heverlee                    public library “Tweebronnen” (Diestsestraat 49),
                                                        and sometimes even on the city’s street corners.
   Outdoor Sports Facilities                            After the performance you can always continue
   Boudewijnstadion                                     chatting and meeting people in any of the various
   Diestsesteenweg, B-3010 Kessel-Lo                    halls where these activities are held. There is also a
   016 25 12 21                                         cultural café - Improvisio - in the main area of
                                                        30CC (Romaanse Poort, Brusselsestraat 63). In
   Den Bruul                                            mounting new and innovative projects like
   Brouwersstraat, B-3000 Leuven                        “Kulturama”, “Rode Hond”, “Dubbelspel”,
   016 22 95 51                                         “Kunstbende”, “Licht Gekanteld”,... 30CC plays a
                                                        pioneering role in terms of creating partnerships
   Atletiek Arena Gaston Roelants                       and collaboration with the musical groups and arts
   Diestsesteenweg, B-3010                              companies in the Leuven area.
   Kessel-Lo 016 25 12 21
                                                        30CC also has a supporting function for the musical
                                                        company “La Petite Bande”, and the theatre

11 Day-to-day life
   co mp an ies “B r a ak l an d / Z h eB il d in g ” an d   information on where you can also
   “fABULEUS”. You can also contact the centre to            buy tickets on line.
   rent some of the facilities mentioned above.              STUK has also an elegant ‘grand café’ where you
   However, you need to get there early. Contact             can drink or eat something, read a newspaper or a
   them as soon as you know that you want to                 book or go on internet for free. Friday evenings
   organise an event.                                        you can listen to a DJ and every Sunday evening
                                                             you can enjoy a free jazz concert (‘Jazz on Sunday’).
   Brusselsestraat 63, B-3000 Leuven
   Tel. 016 23 84 27 Fax: 016 29 12                          CinemaZed (see further on this page) is -                           incorporated into STUK and offers a wide range of
   In&Uit, Naamsestraat 1,B-3000 Leuven                      Naamsestraat 96, B-3000 Leuven
   Open:                                                     Tel. 016 32 03 20
   Tuesday to Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. -
   Booking by phone: Tel. 016 20 30 20
   Online tickets: on

   Tourism IN&UIT Leuven
   In&Uit (literally “In&Out”) is located in the
   sidewing of City Hall. It is a central reception desk
   where you can pick up all kinds of information and
   documentation concerning leisure in Leuven.
   Basically, In&Uit informs tourists as well as
   residents about how they can spend their free time
   in Leuven. You can learn about Leuven’s major
   sights, attractions and ongoing expositions, and
   about what is going on in music and performing            Movie Theatres in Leuven
    arts. Moreover, In&Uit sells visitor tickets
   for City Hall and other places of interest and            The Studio’s
   entrance tickets for local cultural activities (see       Burgermeesterstraat 30, B-3000 Leuven
   above).This is where you can obtain your free copy        Tel. 016 30 07 00
   of Leuven’s culture and leisure magazine ‘Uit in
   Leuven’. And while you’re there, also take a look at
   the media screens showing the cultural and tourist        Kinepolis Leuven
   highlights of the moment.                                 Bondgenotenlaan 145-149, B-3000 Leuven
                                                             Tel. 016 31 96 00
   In&Uit Leuven                                   
   City Hall
   Naamsestraat 1, B-3000 Leuven                             Cinema Zed
   Tel. 016 20 30 20 Fax 016 20 30 03                        Cinema Zed is a not-for-profit movie theatre -                  screening primarily films from the alternative
                                                             Naamsestraat 96, B-3000 Leuven
   STUK is an important venue in Leuven and one of           Tel. 016 32 03 20
   the most important arts centres in Flanders. Its          Monday to Friday from 11:00 a.m. to 10:30 p.m.;
   programming features theatre, dance, films, music,        Saturday from 7:30 p.m. to 10:30 p.m.
   fine arts, and new media. In addition to the big          Sunday from 7:30 p.m. to 10:30
   names, you can also find the work of innovative 
   newcomers. Prices are in general very affordable.
   The opening week, at the beginning of the cultural
   season, is a unique opportunity to get to know
   STUK. You can find all

12 Day-to-day life

   Museums                                                 than 30 libraries spread out over the various
                                                           campuses. The Central library has a special mission:
   Municipal Museums M. Leuven                             to collect and preserve old book collections and to
                                                           preserve old documents of general interest. In the
   Willemsstraat 7, 3000 Leuven                            reading room you will find an extensive collection
   Tel. 016 22 69 06 Fax 016 23 89 30                      of encyclopaedias, bibliographies and reference -                           works; in addition, there is a collection of basic
                                                           reference works for each discipline. Most books
   M/Treasury of Saint Peter’s Church - M/                 and periodicals are kept in closed stacks but you
   Schatkamer van Sint-Pieters                             can request them at the circulation desk. Faculty or
                                                           department libraries house books and periodicals in
   Grote Markt, B-3000 Leuven                              their respective fields.
   Tel. 016 29 51 33
                                                           The beautiful Campus Library Arenberg (W. de
   *From March 16 to October 15:                           Croylaan 6, Heverlee) is the main library for
   Monday to Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.           reseachers in the fields of Science, Bioscience
   Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.                   Engineering, Kinesiology and Rehabilitation Science.
   Sundays and public holidays from 2:00 p.m. to 5:00 pm
   *From October 16 to March 15: closed on Monday          University Library
                                                           Mgr.Ladeuzeplein 21, B-3000 Leuven
   M. M from «Museum Leuven»                               Tel. 016 32 46 60 Fax: 016 32 46 91
   Due to important renovation works, the Museum
   will be closed from May 2006 until the autumn of        Leuven Public Library
   2009. Since October 2007 the Museum operates as         “TWeeBRONNEN ”
   M.M for Museum Leuven. Until 2009 M brings -
   rather, takes - its collection to the public. Three     The mission of the Leuven public library is to
   different partners will be hosting the museum           promote knowledge and general culture among the
   pieces, each of them for one year. In 2006-2007 the     inhabitants of Leuven. The library has two floors,
   Leuven shops and businesses took the first turn         each with its own opening hours and distinct
   (Hors d’oeuvre), followed by the public sector in       character.
   2007-2008 (Main Dish) and finally by the Leuven
   enterprises in 2008-2009 (Dessert). In 2009 M will      Rijschoolstraat 4, B-3000 Leuven
   reopen with a new museum display and the                Tel. 016 22 65 22.
   prestigious exhibitions as Rogier van der Weyden
   14\1464 - Master of Passions and an exhibition with
   new work by the Belgian contemporary artist Jan
   Vercruysse.                                             Opening hours
                                                           Monday: closed
   11.7. LIBRARIES                                         Tuesday: 12:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
                                                           Wednesday: 12:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m.
                                                           Thursday: 12:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m
   K.U.Leuven University Library
                                                           Friday: 10:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
   The university library system is composed of more       Saturday: 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.

12 Day-to-day life
   The upper floor houses the reading room

   There you will find reference works in several
   languages, journals, newspapers and weekly
   periodicals (also in languages other than Dutch).
   There is a documentation centre that provides
   information on the province of Vlaams Brabant and
   its various communities, internet PC’s, online
   catalogues of the collections. The reading room has
   plenty of seating, working tables and a few
   screened-off study carrels.

   The lower floor houses the lending library

   The library has extensive collections on loan:
   novels in Dutch, French, English, German, Spanish,
   Italian, Arabic and Kurdish; non-fiction works
   (books and dvd’s) ordered by subject and a diverse
                                                              11.8. RELIGION
   collection of comic books. You can borrow books
   for up to four weeks. But there is more. The               Roman-Catolic
   library presents a large collection of cd’s and dvd’s
                                                              Church of St John the Baptist St. Jan de
   and a collection of reference works on music,
   movies and stage arts. You can borrow library              Doper Kerk Groot Begijnhof
   items for four weeks.                                      Masses in Dutch: Sundays at 11:00 a.m., Saturday
                                                              evenings at 6:15 p.m., and Wednesday evenings
   To be able to borrow library materials, you need a
   library card. The annual fee for a library card is         student celebration at 6:15 p.m.
   €2.50 for persons between 18 and 25; and €5,00
   for those older than 26. When you’re younger than          University Parish K.U.Leuven - International
   18, membership of the library doesn’t cost you             Community
   anything! Most of the materials in the library can be
   lent free of charge; only cd’s and movies have a           The University Parish has an English-speaking
   lending fee. More information can be found in the          international community whose goal is to welcome
                                                              people from anywhere in the world to form a
   users’ regulations.
                                                              Christian community. They foster an open
                                                              atmosphere where people from different
   Practical Tip                                              backgrounds, cultures and countries, and various
                                                              conducts in life, can meet and experience Christian
   In order to register as a library user, and obtain your
   library card, you will need to show your ID card.          community in the Catholic tradition.
   Enrolment is simple and easy when your ID mentions
   your address in Belgium. If you do not have an official    Every Sunday of the year, at 10:30 a.m., the
   address in Belgium, you can still get your library card,   community celebrates the Eucharist. The liturgy is
                                                              followed by a reception where people have the
   but then you will be asked to pay a deposit.               opportunity to meet informally. The community
                                                              publishes a weekly bulletin entitled “Bridges”. It
                                                              contains reflections, news, and spiritual-theological
                                                              insights. It is available at the Sunday liturgy.

                                                              Sacraments (baptism, confirmation, first
                                                              communion, reconciliation, and marriage) are
                                                              prepared and celebrated as community events.

                                                              Minderbroedersstraat 15, bus 0.09, B-3000 Leuven
                                                              Tel. 016 32 08 13 or 016 32 08 14
                                                              Responsable: Reimund Bieringer
                                                              Masses in English: Sundays at 10:30 a.m.

11 Day-to-day life
   University Parish K.U.Leuven                          Evangelical
   French speaking community
                                                         The International Church of Evangelicals in
   The University Parish has also a french-speaking,     Leuven
   african community. The community celebrates the
   Eucharist at 11 a.m. in the chapel of Leo XIII-       Services in the Pauscollege, Hogeschoolplein 3, on
   seminary, entrance via Vesaliusstraat 2.              Sundays at 10:00 a.m. (separate nursery and Sunday
                                                         School for children under 12).
   Tiensestraat 124, B-3000 Leuven
   Tel. 016 32 55 85                                     Pauscollege,            Hogeschoolplein 3, B-3000 Leuven
   Responsable: Catho Schoofs                            Worship Service: Sundays at 10:00 a.m.
   Masses in French: Sundays at 11 a.m.                  Contact persons: Kees & Toos Rosies
                                                         Beekstraat 39, 3051 Sint-Joris-Weert
   Holy Spirit College Heilige Geest College             Tel. 016 40 54 67 or 0475 83 27 46 -

   Naamsestraat 40, B-3000 Leuven                        Orthodox
   In English: Sundays at 11:30 a.m.
                                                         The Orthodox Parish of the Holy Apostel
   Saint Michael’s Church Sint-Michielskerk              and Evangelist Mattheos
   A Roman Catholic Mass is held in Spanish on           All services (liturgy – Sundays at 10:00 a.m. - and
   Sundays at 12:00 noon.                                vespers – Saturdays at 6:00 p.m.) in Dutch and Old-
                                                         Slavonic, occasionally with some Greek, English or
   Naamsestraat 57A, B-3000 Leuven                       Romanian.
   Tel. 016 20 09 06
   Contact person: Paul Aerts                            Contact Person: Priest, Father Alexander Yavarouski,
   Tel. 016 31 63 69                                     speeks Dutch and Russian,                                  Tervuursestraat 56 (Collegium pro Latina America or
                                                         COPAL), B- 3000 Leuven
   Anglican                                              Tel. 0498 83 45 56
   The Anglican community of St M&M’s: St.      (website in Dutch, Russian
   Martha and St. Mary of Bethany Anglican               and Greek).
   Church of Leuven
   The Anglican community M&M’s has a celebration
   every Sunday evening at 6:30 p.m. in the St. Martha   International Muslim Students Association of
   and St. Mary of Bethany Chapel,                       Leuven (IMSAL )
   Minderbroedersstraat, 15 (Justus Lipsius College).
                                                         IMSAL is the official representative of Muslim
   Justus Lipsius College,                               students of KU Leuven. It has its own Students
   Minderbroedersstraat 15, B-3000 Leuven                Mosque in Rijschoolstraat 25, where the daily five
   Contact person: Church Warden                         prayers are held in addition to the Friday prayer                        preceded by Khutba (sermon) in both Arabic and                                 English. Friday prayer starts at 1:00 pm (2:00 pm.
                                                         during the summer months). Celebration of Islamic
   Protestant Service                                    feasts and daily collective Iftar in Ramadan are
                                                         arranged every year.
   There is a Protestant service in Dutch every
   Sunday at 10:00 a.m. at Jesuit Church,                Rijschoolstraat 25, B-3000 Leuven
                                                         Tel. 016 33 24 39
   Waversebaan220, B-3001 Heverlee.                      For contact:
   Tel. 016 22 98 83                           
   Contact person: Ernst Veen

11 Day-to-day life
   Al Fath mosque

   The mosque belongs to the resident Muslim
   community of Leuven. Here the daily five prayers
   are held as well as Friday and Feasts prayers. The

   Khutbas (sermons) of Friday and Eid prayers are
   delivered only in Arabic.

   Penitentienenstraat 33, B-3000 Leuven
   Contact person: Mr. Bachiri
   Tel. 016 20 87 02

   Other Cities around Leuven
   Brussels and Antwerp have communities of most
   religions, including a large Muslim, Jewish and
   Orthodox community. Smaller denominations and
   religions most likely have a community in Brussels,
   Antwerp and/or Ghent as well.

   In the Belgian system there are 10 fxed holidays :

     1      New years Day        1 January
     2      Easter Monday        Depending on the

     3      “Feest van de        1 May
     4      Ascension Day        Depending on the
     5      Pentecost Mon-       Depending on the
            day                  year
     6      National holiday     21 July

     7      “OLV Hemel-          15 August
     8      All Saints           1 November
     9      Armistice day        11 November

     10     Christmas Day        25 December

   On these holidays, all shops, banks and public
   services will be closed.


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