Studying abroad in Italy presents Indian students with a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to immerse themselves in the fascinating culture of one of Europe’s most popular destinations. Taking the initiative and studying abroad looks great on your Resume, broadens your cultural horizons and offers some incredible educational opportunities that you may not have been able to access in your home country.
Italy has an excellent university system and boasts some of the European continent’s oldest and most respected academic institutions, including the University of Bologna which has been teaching students for almost 1000 years! Italian universities offer a wide range of courses in English that include subjects such as Law, Medicine, Biotechnology, Computer Sciences, Hospitality, Tourism, Architecture, Engineering and Fashion and Design, to name but a few.
To study in Italy, Indian students must first apply for a student Visa. You also need to apply for a student Visa if you’re planning to conduct research at an Italian university or join an internship program in Italy.
There are two main types of student Visas that you can apply for, depending on the duration of your stay in Italy.
Visa Type C – This is a short-term student Visa that allows you to study in Italy for up to 90 days. The Visa Type C is only suitable for short-term stays in the country.
Visa Type D – This is a longer-term student Visa that is valid for courses that last for more than 90 days. If you are studying for a year, or longer, at an Italian university then you need to apply for a Visa Type D.
Both Visa Type C and D also allow you to travel throughout the European Schengen area during your time in Italy. This means that you can visit any of the other countries that are members of the Schengen Zone while your Visa is valid.
How To Apply For Italian Student Visa.
To apply for your student Visa you need to fill out the official Visa form. You can get an application form directly from one of India’s Italian Visa Application Centers (VAC) or print off a copy from the website.
The easiest way to access the Visa application form is to download it from the VFS Global website, which is the official partner of Italy’s Embassy and Consulates in India, and then fill it out. Remember, you must fill out the Schengen application form to study in Italy but if you have any questions the VFS Global staff can help direct you to the correct form.
Once you have completed the application form you need to book an appointment with the local VAC in order to complete your application and the required biometric submission process. You can arrange your appointment using the VFS Global website or by calling your local Italian Embassy or Consulate.
Eligibility For An Italian Student Visa.
To be eligible for an Italian student Visa you must fulfill the following criteria:
- You must be living in India at the time of applying for your Visa. If you are Indian but living in another country then you can still apply for your student Visa at the Italian Embassy or Consulate in that country.
- You must have an Indian passport that is valid for at least 6 months.
- Your primary purpose for traveling to Italy must be to study at an official educational institution. This includes university study, research programs, training courses and internships.
- You must be able to provide a letter of invitation or acceptance from the Italian educational institution that you will be studying at during your time in Italy.
- You must be able to prove that you have the financial resources to support yourself while you are staying in Italy.
Documents Indians Need For Italian Student Visa.
To apply for your Italian student Visa you will need the following documents:
- A passport – Your passport should have at least 2 blank pages and should be valid for at least 6 months from the date of your outward travel.
- 2 recent passport photographs.
- Return flight tickets or evidence of your flight tickets.
- Proof of your accommodation in Italy.
- Proof of your medical insurance.
- Letter of acceptance from the Italian institution, including details of the start date and duration of the course.
- Financial documents that prove you have enough funds to support yourself during your stay in Italy.
Photo Specifications For An Italy Student Visa.
You must submit 2 full-color, 35mmx45mm photos with your Visa application. Your head should be centrally positioned in front of a plain white or gray background. You should have a neutral expression and headgear is only permitted if it is worn for religious reasons. It’s fine to wear prescription glasses although no thick-framed glasses are allowed for the photos. Finally, the photos should be recent and taken within the last 3 months.
Time For Processing Your Italian Student Visa Application.
Processing time does vary although on average your Visa should be ready within 2 to 3 weeks. However, to be on the safe side you should always try to apply for your Visa as soon as possible to avoid any problems that may be caused by unforeseen delays.
Italian Student Visa Fees At A Glance.
The fees for your student Visa depend on a range of factors including the type of student Visa, the cost of express delivery charges – when necessary – and the charges for your biometric submission. The fees can also be subject to change as a result of foreign exchange rates so it’s always worth checking with your local Embassy or Consulate in advance.
Short-Term Type C Visa – Approximately INR 6500.
Long-Term Type D Visa – Approximately INR 6000.
POST APPLICATION PROCESS.
After you’ve submitted your Visa application and paid the fees you just need to wait for it to be processed. Once the Visa is ready, you can either choose to collect it from the nearest VAC or arrange to have it delivered to you by post.
Can You Check The Status Of Your Visa Application?
After you’ve submitted your Visa application you can check its status on the VFS Global website. Simply visit the VFS Global website, and enter your reference number and date of birth to track the progress of your Visa application.
Tips For After Your Visa Application Is Accepted.
- Firstly, make a note of your Visa’s expiry date and other details and then keep it in a safe place for future reference. You should also make a copy of your Visa that you can refer to later – you can take a photo of it on your phone or photocopy it.
- You will need to travel to Italy within 6 months of obtaining your Visa unless otherwise specified in the application.
- While you are in Italy it’s a good idea to keep a copy of your passport, Visa and proof of residence on you at all times.
- If you have applied for a short-term Type C Visa you cannot work while you’re in Italy. However, if you have a long-term Type D you can work part-time, up to around 20 hours per week, to supplement your income.
- With your Visa, you can also visit other European countries in the Schengen Zone although there are certain restrictions in place that you need to be aware of. For instance, if you have a Type D Visa, you can only stay in other Schengen countries for 90 days out of every 180 days.
What If Your Visa Application Is Rejected?
If your Visa application is rejected you should receive an official letter that explains the reasons for this. If the reasons are minor and easy to fix, for example, that you don’t have enough funds, then you can apply again for a Visa once you have amended your circumstances. However, if the reasons are more serious, such as a criminal conviction or submitting fake documents, you may not be eligible to apply again in the future.
Italian Student Visa Will Open New Horizons.
Once you have applied and received your student Visa your life will change for the better. Your studies in Italy will be something you’ll never forget and will open up incredible career opportunities for you in the future. You’ll also make new friends and connections in Europe which may be helpful in the future.