Nina Kaverinen

Special swimming card 

Special swimming card application instructions and issuing criteria 

A special swimming card is granted to disabled or chronically ill Helsinki residents for the purpose of independent swimming. The swimming card is valid for all indoor and outdoor swimming pools in Helsinki and the validity period is one year, starting from the date of purchase. The special swimming card also entitles its holder to use the gyms at the Itäkeskus, Jakomäki and Pirkkola swimming halls as well as the Swimming Stadium.  

The price of the card is €60 + loadable personal access control and customer card €4. The card can be used once a day at most (1 time per day). When obtaining the card, you must prove your identity and present the grounds for issuing the card. An unused card will not be redeemed, and unused time cannot be refunded. Misuse of the special swimming card will result in the cancellation of the card. 

Special swimming cards are sold at the following locations: 

There are two ways to apply for a special swimming card: 

Method 1: You can buy a special swimming card at the above locations by presenting your ID card and 
1. Parking card for people with disabilities OR 
2. Taxi card issued for transport service in accordance with the Act on Disability Services and Assistance OR 
3. Visual impairment card OR 
4. Kela card with one of the following codes: 

  • Asthma, COPD, Kela card code 203 
  • Diabetes, Kela card code 103 
  • Neuromuscular disorder, Kela card code 108 
  • Multiple sclerosis, Kela card code 109 or 303 
  • Parkinson’s disease, Kela card code 110 
  • Psychiatric disorders, Kela card code 112 or 188 
  • Rheumatism, Kela card code 202 
  • Coronary artery disease, Kela card code 206 
  • Heart failure, Kela card code 201 

Method 2. A special swimming card may be issued to certain disabled or chronically ill persons on the basis of a medical report in which their diagnosis, degree of disability or disability category is clearly indicated. The following disabled or chronically ill persons are entitled to a special swimming card: 

  • Children and adolescents under 18 years of age who are disabled, chronically ill or in need of special support
    • medical report 
  • Cerebral palsy (diagnosis G80)
    • Kela’s care allowance decision or medical report 
  • Progressive central nervous system diseases (diagnoses G10–G13)
    • medical report 
  • Intellectual disability
    • Statement from services for persons with intellectual disabilities, Kela’s care allowance decision with information on the intellectual disability or other medical report 
  • Neuromuscular disorders (diagnosis G70–G73)
    • medical report 
  • Multiple sclerosis (diagnosis G35)
    • medical report 
  • Complications from polio
    • medical report 
  • Psychiatric disorders (diagnosis F32.2 or F33.2)
    • medical report 
  • Permanent degree of disability due to illness or disability of at least 55% or disability category 11
    • medical report, disability category clearly defined 
  • Breast cancer (post-operation)
    • medical report 

In Method 2, you can apply for a special swimming card from the Sports Services in free format. The application must include the customer’s name and home address and be accompanied by a medical report in which the diagnosis, degree of disability or disability category is clearly indicated.  Swimming hall cash desks do not process medical statements. 

Applications are usually processed within 2–3 weeks. A response is sent to the customer by post, and the customer must present the response at the swimming hall cash desk when obtaining a special swimming card. Responses will not be sent by email. The customer must re-apply for a special swimming card issued on the basis of a medical statement every five years. Medical reports are not stored by the Sports Services, but are returned to the customer or properly disposed of after the application has been processed.  

A free-form application with appendices must be sent to the following address: 

City of Helsinki, Sports Services 
special swimming card application 
P.O. Box 51400 
00099 City of Helsinki 

If you would like to submit your application electronically, please send an email to erityisuimakortti(at), indicating your wish to submit a special swimming card application. After this, we will send you an encrypted email, and you can submit your special swimming card application, including attachments, by replying to the message.  

Need for an assistant 

On a discretionary basis, the customer may be granted a special swimming card 2, allowing entrance for one adult assistant. If the customer needs two assistants, a special swimming card 3 may be issued, allowing entrance for two assistants. Assistant cards are always applied for from the Sports Services (Method 2). The need for an assistant/assistants must be indicated in the medical report. The cardholder must always be accompanied at the swimming hall by an assistant when using special swimming card 2 or 3, and the assistant must provide assistance in the swimming facilities as necessary. 

If the customer has a special swimming card without the right to an assistant, the need for an assistant can also be demonstrated at the swimming hall cash desk with the A symbol of the EU Disability Card, HSL’s Companion Pass or a written certificate from the social welfare or healthcare services indicating the right to a personal assistant. 

The assistant receives a one-time pass from the swimming hall cash desk. 

If the cardholder is of school age or older, the assistant must be of the same gender as the cardholder unless the swimming hall has a unisex changing room (= the same changing room for all genders). 

The following swimming halls have a unisex changing room: 

  • Itäkeskus swimming hall (no sauna) 
  • Pirkkola swimming hall (only one customer + assistant at a time) 
  • Töölö swimming hall (no sauna) 
  • Mäkelänrinne swimming hall (no sauna) 
  • Vuosaari swimming hall (to be booked separately) 

Accessibility information for sports facilities can be found at Accessibility information is also available directly from the swimming hall. 

For more information about the special swimming card or application procedures, please send an email to erityisuimakortti(at) or contact the sports planner by telephone: 09 310 87509 (telephone hours Mon and Thu 14:00–16:00). 

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