Students from EU countries and Switzerland do not need a study permit or visa to study in Latvia. International students from other countries however, will need a student visa to study at Latvian Universities. The country is known for its affordable studies and quality of the education on offer. If you are someone looking forward to study in Latvia, visa process is one of the most important steps of them all. Here is all you need to know about student visa in Latvia:
International students need a Long Stay Student Visa (Type D) for the courses that are for more than 90 days in Latvia. Before 90 days to entering Latvia or upon arrival, the students have to apply for a residence permit in Latvia.
The first step for Student visa in Latvia to register on the vfs website, from where you can also book an appointment for the application submission. The visa application can be submitted either at the nearest embassy or consulate, and for those who do not have access to that, a video conference is the way. The VFS charges are approximately 20 euros, and if there is a video conference, the additional fees of 35 euros are needed to be paid.
Students are required to pay the visa fees while booking and registering for the appointment.
Latvia Visa Fees: 60 Euros, the visa fees are non-refundable.
For the successful visa application, the Latvian Long Stay Student Visa Application form. The form should be filled and downloaded from the PLMP registration website. Along with Application form, there are some supporting documents you need to submit. Here are the documents required:
The Visa Processing time for Latvia may change with the country you are applying from, however, the average time is 15 working days from the day of the submission. If there is some information required or inspection necessary, it can take up to 60 days.
Once you have applied, wait for 2 weeks or 15 days to be notified about the visa statues, or you can track the proceedings online from your VFS account.
The documents required for the Residence is almost the same as the student visa. The invitation letter for that is filled by the Latvian university you have applied to. It is submitted to the Office of Citizenship and Migration (OCMA) in Latvia, and evaluated by it, too. The fees for Consulate is 80 euros. There are also legislation fees of 15 euros. Only if the Residence Permit is cleared by the Office of Citizenship and Migration (OCMA), the student is provided with the type D Student Visa. The whole process can take more than 40 days, so make sure you apply for the Student visa and residence permit on time.
Students are required to face a Latvian embassy interview to apply for Latvia Student Visa. Here are some of the questions you might be asked during the visa interview:
With a valid Student Visa, International students are allowed to work for 20 hours a week in Latvia. The students are required to submit proof of employment, such as an employment contract. Students might be required to apply for a separate work permit visa in Latvia.
Latvia offers a very lucrative option of staying back for the international students even after the program is over. International students who have completed a masters degree in Latvia are eligible to stay back period of six months in Latvia. This allows international students to internships, gain international experience or look for permanent jobs in Latvia to extend their stay. You can read more on that, here: Stay Back and Work In Latvia After Studies
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