Applying for a student visa to study abroad

Updated: Jun 30

To study in a university/college abroad, a student must have a valid visa to travel to the respective country in which the university has its campus. The student has to share his passport details along with other academic documents while applying to the university for admission. The passport number of the student will be in the letter of acceptance issued by the university, and this is the proof for the immigration department of any country for further verification.





What is a student visa?

A visa is an entry permit issued by the immigration department of a country, which one needs to carry when traveling to the country. The travel visa is either stamped on the passport or issued as a document. A student visa is a visa issued to students who travel abroad for their higher studies. This visa allows you as a student to do things in a foreign land apart from your studies.


When to apply for a student visa

One should apply for a student visa at least two months before the course start date. It usually takes a minimum of 20 working days to receive the status of a student visa. However, the duration period may vary from country to country. Hence, if you are applying for admission to a university abroad, you need to plan well in advance, at least 5 to 6 months before the intake.


Universities give the unconditional letter of acceptance (final acceptance) only once they receive the entire documents. This document is mandatory while applying for your student visa.

Documents required to apply for the student visa

Following are the documents required to apply for a student visa. Even though the requirement varies from country to country as per each country’s immigration laws, these documents are essential for a student visa.


Passport




A valid passport is required to apply for the visa. The validity of the student passport may be different for each country. For a few countries, the passport should be valid for a minimum of six months, but for the other few, the passport should be valid until the course ends. It is applicable at the time of applying for the visa. You need to check with the respective country’s immigration rules to know more about the requirement.


Student Bonafide

As mentioned earlier, a student bonafide is required to apply for the student visa. Bonafide is a document which serves as proof that the student is going to the country for study purpose. It is the unconditional letter of acceptance by the university where the student has sought admission.


Academic Documents

As students are going on a student visa, complete academic documents such as 10th mark sheet, 12th mark sheet, bachelors mark sheet, work experience if worked anywhere, need to be submitted along with other documents.


Proof of English Language


Students must submit the English language test score. Each country has its prerequisite for language proficiency. For example; Canada accepts students with IELTS 6.5 with no band less than 6.0 while New Zealand accepts overall 6 with no band less than 5.5. However, most of the countries IELTS requirement depends on the program requirement. Similarly, few of the countries don’t accept PTE scores, and few other countries don’t recognize TOEFL scores. Hence one needs to cross-check with the concerned counselor as to which country you want to apply to for further studies.


Proof of Funds


A student’s financial capability is one of the main criteria for sanctioning a student visa. Every country has the rule to ensure that students coming to the respective country for studies are financially capable of paying the tuition fees and other expenses but also have enough funds to afford their stay during their studies.


How to apply for a student visa

Students can apply for the visa either online or offline.

Online Visa Application: Students can apply online. The portal of the immigration department of the respective country allows you to create a student login, and the documents can be uploaded by simply following the procedure. There is a visa application fee that a student has to pay at the time of applying.

Offline Visa Application: The application has to be downloaded and filled in by the student without any mistakes and submit physically to the authorities.