- Ireland student visa eligibility
- What is the Long Term Study Visa?
- What is the Short Term Study Visa?
- How to apply for student visa in Ireland?
- Ireland student visa fees
- Ireland student visa processing time
- Working hours on Ireland student visa
- Student visa renewal
- What is IAS’ Student Visa Application Package?
- How can the IAS help me?
- Frequently asked questions
Ireland Student Visas
The balance of a lively student scene, rich heritage and culture coupled with some of the world’s most prestigious and well-sought after universities and colleges makes the Republic of Ireland a top destination for international students. People of all ages flock to the State to enhance their educational and career prospects while residing in the luxury of a truly picturesque and green landscape.
Yet it is not always plain sailing to get here: in order to come and study in Ireland, non-EEA students are faced with extremely stringent immigration rules that their European counterparts do not need to meet. In addition, there are two different routes that must be considered when you are planning on taking up a course in Ireland which includes if you intend on remaining in the State for longer than 3 months or if you want to pursue higher education or even employment in the country once your visa expires.
By endowing the Immigration Advice Service with your Study Visa concerns, the burden of meeting the complex requirements will be lifted. Instead, you will be able to focus your energy on moving to the country and can even prepare ahead for your chosen course. Let your IAS immigration lawyer worry about your Study Visa application for you.
Contact our client care team on (+353) 061 518 025 to hear what kind of Student Visa packages and services the IAS has to offer.
Ireland student visa eligibility
There are a range of eligibility criteria you must meet and required documents you must provide in order to be eligible for an Irish Study Visa.
These will include the following:
- Your Letter of Acceptance from your chosen school, college or university in Ireland
- Evidence that your full-time study encompasses at least 15 hours a week
- Proof of your academic ability in your chosen course, such as past exam results and any qualifications you may have
- Evidence of your English language capabilities (unless your chosen study is to learn English)
- Proof that you have paid your course tuition fees in full
- Proof of maintenance funds as you must have at least €7,000 to support yourself for your first year of studying
- Additional evidence that either you or your sponsoring body grants you access to at least €7,000 for every year of subsequent studies after your first year on top of the course fees for each year
- Proof that you have private medical insurance
- A written explanation if you have any gaps in your educational history
- A declaration that you intend to return to your home country once your course ceases in Ireland
You must also ensure that you read and understand the Policy on Non-EEA Nationals document, which sets out rules and guidelines for non-EEA citizens coming to study in Ireland.
What is the Long Term Study Visa?
A Long Term Study Visa allows you to legally reside in the State and study here for over 3 months.
However, before you travel to Ireland, you will need to secure your Study Visa in advance which necessitates already being enrolled on a full-time course outlined on the Interim List of Eligible Programmes that the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS) provides. This will then allow you to receive a Stamp 2 in your passport which comes with its own set of rules and requirements. Your stamp will also detail your expiry date, after which it will also need to be renewed if you want to remain in Ireland.
Once you have arrived in Ireland and have successfully passed border control with the right documentation, you must register with a local immigration officer in the district that you plan on living in. If you are one of few that does not require a Study Visa upon entry, you must have €3,000 when you initially register. Upon registration, you will then receive your Irish Residence Permit (IRP).
What is the Short Term Study Visa?
Not everyone who studies in Ireland wants to take on a full course in a university or a college. Some prefer to have just a taste of Ireland by picking up a short-term course that lasts just one semester. Others alternatively need to travel to Ireland to sit an important exam or to take up an internship related to their current or future studies. This Short-Term studying route also welcomes those who are travelling to Ireland to attend a training course.
However, this is not an entire visa on its own per se. The Short-Term ‘C’ category Study Visa is a type of short-stay, Visit Visa which grants applicants up to 90 days in the State.
If you are unsure about which type of Study Visa best suits your circumstances, call us today to be put in touch with a member of the client care team who will instantly assign you with an IAS immigration lawyer. Your IAS lawyer will walk you through every step of the way of your Study Visa application.
How to apply for student visa in Ireland?
To apply for a Study visa, you must make an application online through the AVATS system.
Here, you will fill in the application form and enter in your personal details, details of the visa you wish to apply for and your chosen course of study.
You must ensure that you choose “Study” as your reason for travel.
During the application process, you will be prompted to enter information such as the following:
- Confirmation that you have been accepted on a course of study
- The name of the school or college
- The course title
- The course duration
- Confirmation that you’ve paid your fees in full to the school or college
- The number of hours of daytime tuition that you will attend each week
- Your educational qualifications
- Your employment history
- Details of what financial support you’ll have in Ireland
Once you’ve completed your application form, you must print it out, sign and date it, and collate it together with your supporting documents.
The application must then be sent to the visa office specified in the summary sheet of the application.
Ireland student visa fees
The fees for the Ireland Study visa are as follows:
- Single-entry visa: €60
- Multiple-entry visa: €100
Note that there may be additional fees to pay as part of the process, such as course fees, accommodation fees, translation fees for documents or fees to obtain certificates or documentary proof for your application.
Ireland student visa processing time
The specific time it takes to process your Study visa application will depend on a number of factors, including the specific visa office you send your application to, if you send your application during a busy period of the year, and if your application is a complex one.
However, applications will generally be processed within around 8 weeks of the submittal date.
Working hours on Ireland student visa
You will only be able to work on an Irish student visa if you’re studying a course on the Interim List of Eligible Programmes (ILEP).
If this is the case, you will receive Stamp 2 permission in your passport when you register with a local immigration office. Stamp 2 will allow you to work part-time for up to 20 hours a week in term time, or up to 40 hours a week outside of term time (from June to September and from 15 December to 15 January).
If your course is not on the ILEP, you will receive Stamp 2A in your passport. Stamp 2A will not allow you to take up any work or employment while in Ireland.
Student visa renewal
If you wish to renew your Irish Study visa, you must be resident in Ireland to do so.
There are two ways to renew your Ireland student visa. Which one you take will depend on where you live.
If you live in Dublin, you can use the online registration renewal service to get an extension on your immigration permission and receive a new Ireland Residence Permit (IRP) card.
In order to successfully apply for a renewal, you must provide a range of supporting documents to prove that you’re eligible for a renewal. This may include proof that you’ve paid your course fees, proof of medical insurance, proof of course enrolment, and photos of your current (or expired) IRP card.
You must submit your application for visa renewal no more than 12 weeks before your permission’s expiry.
If you live outside of Dublin, you must submit your application for renewal at your local Garda station.
How can the IAS help me with my Study Visa application?
At first glance, the Study Visa application you must fill out in order to study as an international student in Ireland can appear daunting.
Fortunately, our immigration lawyers are spread out all across Ireland in numerous offices that you can book an appointment with. Our lawyers are well versed in Irish immigration law and know how to tick all the boxes of your Student Visa application and work to help you meet the rigid Study Visa requirements.
We help students from all over the world, including those from India and Pakistan and in African countries like Nigeria and Ghana.
Each case varies depending on the person and their own unique circumstances. However, IAS offers custom-made and tailored packages to suit you and your needs.
You can opt for a one-on-one Advice Session in which one of your immigration experts will provide a rough skeleton plan for the types of documents you need to submit with your application and will assess the merits of your case.
Taking it a step further, your IAS immigration lawyer in Ireland can also offer you a full breakdown of your Study Visa application – and will even fill it out for you on your behalf.
Some alternatively like to risk making the application themselves but just want some general guidance. In this event, the Document Checking Service that IAS has on offer might be best suited to you.
Can I get a Study Visa Application Package with IAS?
Yes, you can get a Study Visa Application Package from the IAS. In fact, most students prefer to opt for this comprehensive service.
In this, our immigration specialists will advise you on every aspect of your application. You will feel at ease knowing that your application is being filled to the highest standard and you will receive a full consultation throughout the process.
One of the many advantages of the Application Package is that your lawyer will write and provide a Letter of Representation to accompany your application which highlights the merits of your case and person.
Other benefits of the Application Package include:
- A head-to-toe assessment of your eligibility
- A step-by-step ticking process to ensure you meet the requirements
- Having your Study Visa application organised for you with documentary evidence supported at each point
- Submitting a fully completed, high-quality application to the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS)
By seeking application advice with an immigration lawyer at the IAS, your case will be assessed from the beginning and you will be advised on what steps you need to take next to fill your application properly.
After this consultation, you have 7 days to ask any follow-up questions in regards to your application.
You will be granted a Stamp 2 to accompany your Study Visa in your passport – or a Stamp 2A if you only study for one semester in Ireland.
However, if you wish to stay in Ireland after you graduate, you can seek a Stamp 1G via the Third Level Graduate Programme.
Ireland is always open to international students and wants graduates to start their careers in the country. To achieve this, the Third Level Graduate Scheme was established for non-EEA nationals.
Under this scheme, graduates of Level 8 courses including Honours Bachelor Degree and Higher Diploma will need to apply for a Stamp 1G to remain in Ireland for a further 12 months. Graduates of Level 9 or 10 courses (Masters Degrees and PhDs) can receive a Stamp 1G which can last for as long as 24 months.
Not every non-EEA national requires a Study Visa to come and take up a course in Ireland. However, you will need a visa before you arrive in Ireland if you are from:
- Bosnia and Herzegovina
- Burkina Faso
- Cape Verde
- Central African Republic
- Congo (Brazzaville)
- Cote d’Ivoire
- Democratic Republic of Congo
- Dominican Republic
- Equatorial Guinea
- Faroe Islands
- Marshall Islands
- North Korea
- North Macedonia
- Papua New Guinea
- Sao Tome and Principe
- Saudi Arabia
- Sierra Leone
- South Sudan
- Sri Lanka
- State of Palestine
- Timor Leste
However, even if your country does not appear on the list and you may not need a visa to study in Ireland, you will still require entry clearance and pre-approval. Without proper authorisation, you may be turned away by Ireland’s border control.
For this reason, it is best you check with an Irish immigration lawyer to check exactly what you need and which requirements suit your circumstances.
However, these sessions may not be best suited to your enquiry. For example, you may need to Fast-Track your application in order to meet a deadline. If you are studying and your course starts soon, this package may be best suited to you in order to receive your visa and entry authorisation on time.
Others may have already tried to fill their application on their own but require legal guidance to check over their documents and supporting evidence. At IAS, we offer a Document and Application Check in which your IAS lawyer will assess your application from head to toe and advise on any gaps or other evidence that you could submit to strengthen your application.
Get in touch with our IAS client care team today to put you in touch with a lawyer who can walk you through your study visa application from start to finish.
You must show that you have at least €10,000 in your bank account to prove that you can initially support yourself financially while in Ireland.
You must also then prove that you or your sponsor have an additional €10,000 for each subsequent year you’ll be studying in Ireland.
If, however, your course lasts for 6 months or less, you will only have to have €700 for every month of your stay or €4,200 – whichever is lower.
Non-EEA nationals will be able to study in Ireland for a period of time up to 7 years. This includes any previous time you’ve already spent in Ireland.
Unfortunately, you won’t generally be allowed to bring any family members with you as dependents to Ireland. If your family members wish to travel with you, they must apply for a separate visa that will allow them to enter and stay in Ireland legally.
Generally speaking, IELTS is not a mandatory requirement for an Irish Student visa. Depending on your course of study or chosen school/college/university, you may be given an exception to this rule, or be asked to prove your English proficiency in another way.
It’s important to check your specific course details and eligibility criteria to confirm if IELTS will be necessary for you.