Applying for a student visa

International students hoping to study in Ireland at University College Dublin International Study Centre must apply for a Study Visa (Long Stay).

How do I apply for a student visa?

Firstly, you need to apply to a course at the International Study Centre and receive a Letter of Acceptance. You can then apply for a visa online via the Irish Nationalisation and Immigration Service's (INIS) website, AVATS. Make sure you read the visa application details carefully, and provide all the required documents. The process is as follows:

  • Complete the online application form.
  • Send the requested documents, as well as a passport-sized photo, to your local Irish embassy.
  • Pay the application fee.
  • Make sure your passport is valid for 12 months.
  • Include a signed letter of application, explaining why you need the visa.
  • You must also give evidence that you have sufficient funds to cover your tuition fees and living expenses, without needing to work.

When should I apply for a visa?

You should apply for your visa as early as possible to make sure there is enough time for it to be processed. This normally takes eight weeks, but can take longer in busy periods.

What if my visa application is refused?

If your visa application is rejected (as long as you did not provide incorrect information in your application), you can challenge the decision within 2 months of receiving the letter of refusal. Write a letter explaining in detail why you believe the wrong decision has been made. You should refer to the reasons why the application was refused, and add any new information you believe is relevant.

Re-Entry Visas

Please note that if you are planning on returning to your home country during the holiday period, INIS have announced that anyone seeking a Re-Entry Visa must submit their application using the postal service and not using the online service. This process can take up to 6 weeks, so you are advised to book your appointment in advance to avoid any disruption to your travel plans.