Student visas to study in Ireland
Travelling to Ireland to study
Citizens of certain countries who wish to pursue a course of study in Ireland must apply for a visa to enter Ireland before they travel here. Read about Visa requirements for entering Ireland.
If you are a non-EEA national coming to study in Ireland you must be enrolled in a full-time course on the Interim List of Eligible Programmes (ILEP). You can find out more in our page on the immigration rules for non-EEA students.
Visa applicants must apply online for their visa - see 'How to apply'. If you wish to study in Ireland for less than 3 months you should apply for a 'C study visa'. If your course lasts longer than 3 months, you should apply for a 'D study visa'.
You will need to provide the following with your visa application. (Please remember, original documents are required and must be in English or accompanied by a notarised translation):
- Letter of acceptance from a recognised school or college or university in Ireland confirming that you have been accepted on a course of study. This course of study must be full-time (lasting an academic year) and have a minimum of 15 hours per week study time.
- Evidence of your academic ability to pursue the chosen course through the English language (unless it is an English language course).
- Evidence that the fees for the course have been paid in full.
- Evidence that you have enough funds (€10,000) to maintain yourself for the initial part of your stay.
- Evidence that you or a sponsor have access to at least €10,000 for each subsequent year of your studies, in addition to the course fees for each of those years.
- Evidence that you have private medical insurance
- An explanation of any gaps in your educational history
- Confirmation that you intend to return to your country of permanent residence when you leave Ireland.
Remember, the granting of a student visa to study in Ireland does not confer the automatic right of anyone to join or visit you in Ireland (whether they are a relative or not).
You will find more detailed information on the exact requirements for a student visa on the website of the Department of Justice.
If I don't need an entry visa to enter Ireland, do I need a student visa to study?
No. If you do not need an entry visa to enter Ireland, you do not need a student visa to study in Ireland. However, all non-EEA nationals, including those with visas, must get permission to enter the State by reporting to an Immigration Officer at the port of entry. (The members of the EEA are the 27 countries of the European Union (EU), together with Iceland, Norway and Liechtenstein). You must still register at your local immigration office after you arrive. You need to get an Irish Residence Permit (IRP) if you are studying for more than 3 months.
You should have all documentation relating to your studies on your person when coming through immigration. In other words, you should have your letter of offer of a place at the school, or educational institution ready for inspection at immigration. You can read more in our page on permission to land in Ireland.
Permission to stay
Students from a non-EEA country who intend studying in Ireland for a period of more than 3 months must register, after they arrive, with the local immigration officer for the district in which they are living (Burgh Quay Registration Office if living in Dublin). Their passport will be endorsed with the conditions and period of time for which they have permission to remain.
Students who plan to study for up to 6 months must have access to €700 per month or €4,200 (whichever is the lesser) when they first register. Information on what documentation students require when applying for permission is available on the website of the Department of Justice.
Non-EEA students coming to Ireland for the first time may not get permission to stay in Ireland if they have their children with them or intend their children to join them later on.
You can find out how to register in our page on Registration of non-EEA nationals in Ireland.
Student visa/permission renewals
You can renew your permission with the local immigration officer for the district in which you live. If you live in Dublin, you can renew your student permission online. This means that you do not have to book an appointment to attend the immigration office in person. Your Irish Residence Permit will be sent to you by post.
If your registration is refused and you believe that you have exceptional circumstances, you can apply for an extension of your student permission by post only.
Access to employment while in Ireland on a student visa
If you are attending a course on the Interim List of Eligible Programmes (ILEP) you will have stamp number 2 endorsed on your passport when you register with your local immigration officer. You will be allowed to take up casual employment of up to 20 hours part-time work per week in term time or up to 40 hours per week during college vacation periods, that is, from June to September inclusive and from 15 December to 15 January. Your entitlement to take up employment ends when your permission to stay expires.
If you are not attending such a course, you will not be entitled to take up part-time work or engage in any business or profession. You will get Stamp 2A on your passport.
You can read information on employment rights of part-time workers in Ireland.
What do I do if I want to leave for a short while?
A visa required national with a valid Irish Residence Permit (IRP) or GNIB card will not need a re-entry visa when traveling to and from Ireland. Your IRP card (or GNIB card) and passport will be accepted.
If you want to travel to Northern Ireland, you may need a visa. You can get more information from UK Visas and Immigration.
Getting a student visa
Information on those who need a visa to visit Ireland is available in our page: Visa requirements for entering Ireland. You do not require a visa if you are from an EEA member state.
Standard non-refundable visa application processing fees are:
Single-journey visa: €60
Multiple-journey visa: €100
Certain applicants are not required to pay a fee. They include non-EU Spouses of EU citizens. In addition, applicants from some countries are not required to pay a fee. As this can change from time to time, you should check with your local Irish embassy or consulate, or with the Visa Office - see 'Where to apply for a visa'.
Nationals of the countries covered by the Short-stay Visa Waiver Programme who are long-term legal residents of the UK or the Schengen area will still require a visa but will not have to pay the visa fee.
How to apply for a visa
You must apply for a visa online.
Detailed information on the application procedures on the website of the Department of Justice.