The Italian student visa allows you to enter Italy for study purposes. As a matter of fact, non-EU citizens willing to study in Italy shall apply for an Italian student visa. In this article we will explain the requirements to obtain a study visa, in what cases it can be granted, the documents needed to apply for it, all the steps you need to follow to obtain it, the costs and other facts that is useful to know before applying.
The Italian Government recently published new guidelines to regulate the entry of foreigners who wish to participate in training courses and internships for during 2023-2025.
What type of visa is the Italian student visa?
The Italian Student Visa allows non-EU citizens to enter Italy and officially join the Italian Education System. Based on the duration of the study period, you can apply for a C or D Type of Visa.
C Visa for short-term study period in Italy
The C Visa is a short-term visa that allows you to enter Italy for stays of less than 90 days. In this case, all you have to do upon arrival in Italy is fill in a declaration of presence in order to legally stay in the country.
D Visa for long-term study period in Italy
The D Visa allows to stay in Italy for more than 90 days. Like the C type, this Visa is valid exclusively to enter Italy.
However, in this case you will have to apply for a residence permit in order to legally stay in Italy. The Italian residence permit must be applied for once you get the Student Visa and within 8 days from your arrival in Italy.
How to get an Italian Student VISA
To get an Italian student visa, applicants must:
- Prepare all the required documents;
- Fill-in the student visa application form;
- Book an appointment at the Italian Consulate or Embassy that is competent in the applicants’ place of residency.
If you need help to find the relevant Italian Institution, you can search here the one competent for your country.
List of documents to file the application
The following is a full list of the necessary documents to apply for the student visa in Italy:
- Entry visa application form;
- Recent passport-size photograph;
- Valid travel document with an expiration date at least 3 months longer than that of the requested visa;
- Proof of availability of accommodation in Italy: either a hotel reservation or a declaration of hospitality by the person who is hosting the applicant;
- Proof of the availability of means of subsistence in relation to the stay in Italy, in an amount not less than that established by Table A attached to the Directive of the Ministry of the Interior dated 1.3.2000;
- Health insurance, if foreigners are not entitled to health care in Italy under agreements or conventions in force with their country;
- Enrollment or pre-enrollment for the course to be taken in Italy.
Requirements to obtain an Italian student VISA
Pursuant to the provisions of Article 39-bis of the Consolidated Act 286/1998 as amended and supplemented, and Article 44-bis of Presidential Decree 394/1999, a short or long term student visa for Italy is granted to foreign students who belong to one of the following categories:
- Persons of age who intend to pursue higher courses of study other than those referred to in points 3, 4, 5 and 6 below, but consistent with the previous education of which the acquisition is demonstrated in the country of origin;
- Persons of age admitted to study in institutions of higher secondary education and courses of higher technical education and training;
- Minors, in any case older than 14, who participate in exchange programs or cultural initiatives;
- Foreigners called upon to participate in activities envisaged within the framework of assistance and cooperation programs of the Italian Government, within the framework of the provisions of Laws No. 49/1987, 212/1992 and 84/2001;
- Foreigners who intend to enter Italy for activities of advanced research or high culture, not included among the categories referred to in Article 27-ter of TU 286/98 and subsequent amendments and additions;
- Persons of age that, who fulfill the requirements for the issuance of an Italian student visa and intend to attend training internships within the annual quota established for that specific year. In such cases, for the issuance of study visas, the Regions will provide the foreign national with a specific authorization;
- Persons of age who fulfill the requirements for the issuance of an Italian student visa, intend to attend vocational training courses within the annual quota established for that specific year.
The cost of an Italian Student Visa
The cost for basic Visa application ranges between €80 and €120, depending on whether you need a National or Uniform Schengen Visa (find more on paragraph 9 of this article).
However, if you are planning to stay in Italy for more than 90 days, you must also consider costs for the residence permit. Prices range between €40 and €100 for stays between 3-12 months, 12-24 months or more.
Lastly, applicants need to consider administrative costs of around €80. These costs usually include stamp duties, postal kits and issuance costs.
Please note: costs presented above refer to basic Visa application and are not inclusive of professional support of third-parties. For a dedicated quotation of your case, you can contact us through the form below.
Language certificate to study in Italy
Study in Italy without IELTS
You do not need a language proficiency certificate such as IELTS if you want to attend courses taught only in the English language in the university, and if you followed courses in English in your previous education.
Students who have completed their previous education at an English-speaking high school or institution of higher education can fulfill the study requirements without a language certification.
The student must provide an official statement or certificate printed on letterhead and stamped as proof that the previous education was in English.
If, on the other hand, you did not follow courses in English in your previous education, proof of English language proficiency such as IELTS must be presented at some universities, but not all. However, it is still mandatory to take an English proficiency test.
Italian Language certificate to study in Italy
If you wish to attend courses in Italy taught in the Italian language, then you will need to prove your level of proficiency in Italian. Every university accepts different types of certificates, but the most frequently accepted are CELI and CILS. Applicants that prove their proficiency in the Italian language, in some cases, will not need to take the Italian language test before getting accepted. The presence of this test depends on the single universities.
Can I bring my spouse with an Italian student VISA?
Even those who hold a student visa in Italy can apply for visas for accompanying family members. Visas for accompanying family members (familiari al seguito) allow non-EU citizens to enter Italy accompanied by their family members.
Here you can find our guide to obtain a family reunion VISA
Can I work with an Italian student visa?
You can work a maximum of 20 hours per week. Overall, there is a limit of 1040 working hours within 52 weeks.
How long does it take to get a student visa in Italy?
According to Italian Law, processing time for visa application can take up to 90 days, depending on the applicant’s nationality.
Can you visit the Schengen countries with an Italian student visa?
Yes, you can visit Schengen countries with one of these two types of visas:
- The Uniform Schengen Visa allows access to Italy or the other Schengen countries for a stay of no more than 90 days over a six-month period. Of course, it can be issued either by an Italian representation or by a diplomatic representation of another Schengen country.
- The National Visa, on the other hand, allows access for a stay of more than 90 days in the territory of Italy, therefore it is a long-term visa. It also allows free movement in the territory of the other member countries for no more than 90 days over a six-month period.
For more information on other types of long-stay visas for Italy, check out our dedicated guide.