Have you decided to go on a life-changing adventure called an English-language exchange programme? Congratulations!

To make this journey incredible, prepare before going to Ireland. Today we are going to talk about what non-European (non-EU) students need to do before getting into Ireland.

1 – Visa

Most of the students from non-European countries must obtain an entry visa to enter Ireland. Therefore, first of all, check if you need an Irish visa – http://www.inis.gov.ie/en/INIS/Pages/check-irish-visa
You can find the full list of countries that need a visa for Ireland here:


2 – Apply for a visa

Find a place where you can apply for an Irish visa. This can usually be done through the Irish embassy in your country. But in most countries, you can also apply through VFS Global service https://www.vfsglobal.com/en/individuals/index.html

Just fill in the boxes “I’m applying from” and “I’m going to” and press the button “Take me to the website”. You will be redirected to the Irish Visa Policy for citizens of your country.

3 – Choose an English course

To apply for a student visa, first you need to choose a school in Ireland. Make sure that the school is listed on the Interim List of Eligible Programmes (ILEP), which means it is approved by the Irish Government. For example, Academic Bridge is included in the ILEP.

So, to apply for an Irish short-term or long-term student visa, you must be enrolled in a course at one of the ILEP schools.

4 – Save money

One of the conditions for obtaining a student visa is to prove you have at least 3000 euro. Please check the current required amount for citizens of your country with your consultant from Academic Bridge.

So, do not forget to put the money in your bank account and get 2 copies of an official bank statement. You will send one copy to the Embassy with your visa application and you will need a second copy at Dublin airport upon arrival – a bank statement will be requested and checked at border control.

5 – Get Health Insurance

To get a student visa, you need to have Health Insurance for the duration of your stay in Ireland. Academic Bridge makes it easy for our students. We include Health Insurance and all required documents in our course packages. So don’t worry, we are here to help you with that!

6 – Get your entry visa and buy your tickets

After you get your student visa to Ireland, you can finally book your flight. Remember that you also need to buy a return ticket – the border control in Ireland may check this.

7 – Come to Ireland and start your adventure

Academic Bridge can provide you with airport transfers to your Dublin accommodation. By the way if you need help finding a place to stay in Dublin, we will help you with that too.

Don’t worry if it looks overwhelming at first. Our consultants are here to help you prepare for your English-language exchange programme in Dublin with Academic Bridge. We speak your language, so pick a consultant and ask any questions about studying in Ireland.

Written by Julia Kocherzhuk – Academic Bridge’s Consultant

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