Located in Southeast Europe is Albania, a country known for its rich and diverse culture. Apart from its stunning beauty, it’s considered by most as a good destination for international students.
As with most of Europe, Albania offers quality education. It’s also cheaper than its neighboring countries, which is perfect for students under a budget.
If you’re setting your sights on Albania, then here’s a guide on how to get your student visa.
What documents do you need to apply for a student visa in Albania?
International students need to apply for a Visa Type D or long-term visa. It’s issued to foreigners who need to stay in the country for 90 days within a 180-day period.
Schengen visa holders – and those who have residence permits from the US or UK – are not required to apply for a visa.
However, they will need to obtain one since it’s a requirement for a residence permit. This is another form that foreign students must get upon arrival in Albania.
Here are the documents needed for a Albanian student visa.
Check Also: Programs in Europe for International Students
Accomplished application form
You may access this form through the E-visa application website.
Important: you should print, sign, and date this form after completing it.
Make sure to provide one photo that is less than six months old from your application date.
Photocopy of passport page
Your passport should be valid for three months after your intended leave date.
Proof of registration or admission to an Albanian institution
To qualify for a student visa in Albania, you need to submit documents that prove that you are enrolled in an Albanian university. This could be your acceptance letter, registration papers, etc.
Proof of language proficiency
Many Albanian institutions teach in English, which is why it’s a popular destination amongst many students. That said, you need to show proof of English proficiency through any of the following exams:
Proof of financial capacity
Likewise, you need to show the Albanian consulate that you can shoulder the cost of studying in the country. This could take the form of bank statements, proof of loan, or a scholarship letter, if applicable.
Proof of accommodation
You need to provide a copy of your rental or accommodation contract. This will serve as proof that you have somewhere to stay while in Albania.
Travel health insurance
This should cover your entire stay in Albania.
This document of good character should be legalized according to the country where it was sourced.
This document is only applicable to students aged 18 years old and below.
How much money do you need for an Albanian Student Visa?
According to the Albanian Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs, the service tariffs for Albanian student visa are free of charge. This applies to undergraduate and graduate applicants who will fly to Albania for the sole purpose of study.
Although this is the case, Albania may levy fees according to reciprocity. For example, if Albanian students need to pay EUR 80 for a Belgian visa, Belgian students are expected to pay the same fees.
The cost for the residence permit, on the other hand, will depend on its validity.
Steps on Applying for a Student Visa in Albania
If you need to apply for an Albanian student visa, then make sure to follow these steps:
1. Complete all the required documents.
Before you apply for a visa, you need to ensure that you have completed the documents above. If not, the lacking papers may delay the processing.
2. Apply online.
Go to the visa authorization application page and create an account. Once you have opened one, you can go ahead and start filing your application.
Note: It’s advisable to start your application at least three months before your intended entry date.
3. Wait for the consulate to verify your application.
If the officer sees that your application is in order, they will change the status of your Albanian student visa application to “accepted application.”
If not, the status will be set to “upload the document.” This is a cue for you to provide the documents that the embassy requires.
If the embassy sees that you don’t meet the requirements, the officer will change the status to “refused to accept the application.” They will also provide the reason/s why they denied your application.
4. Pay the necessary fees.
As mentioned, student visa fees are free of charge. However, the embassy might levy specific fees. If this is the case, you need to pay the amount before they process your application.
5. Wait for the notification from the consul.
Once the consul has granted your Albanian student visa application, you will be notified.
If denied, they will notify you about the reason for cancellation/rejection.
Note: Applicants may re-apply three months after this visa refusal.
6. Go to the Albanian Embassy to apply for a visa personally.
Even if you have been granted a visa authorization, you need to go to the embassy personally to apply.
For your appointment, you will need to bring the following:
- All forms used in the application process
- Application form printed and signed
- Payment invoice, if applicable
7. Wait for the visa to be issued.
The embassy usually releases the student visa for Albania 15 days after the in-person appearance date. But in some cases, the processing may take as long as 30 days.
8. Fly to Albania.
Students coming from countries affected by epidemics need to present their vaccination cards to the Immigration officer.
9. Apply for a residence permit.
As mentioned, students need to secure a residence permit to live legally in Albania.
This permit may be granted for a duration of three, six, or 12 months. Long-term permits range from two to five years.
This may be renewed according to the duration of your studies in Albania.
What’s great about this requirement is that you can get it online. Students may fill up the virtual application form and upload the necessary documents in PDF form.
The State Police should be able to process your permit within 30 days of your application.
I hope that this article on getting a student visa in Albania was helpful! If you are interested in studying in Europe, make sure to check out Available Programs in Europe for International Students.