Applying for a Visa

  • Some but not all non-EU/EEA students require an entry visa for Ireland. You can check on – Citizens of the following countries do not require a visa to enter Ireland. List of Countries (List of Countries) S.I 345 of 2011 Schedule 1. If your country is not on the list, then you require a visa. [Examples – US, Canadian, Malaysian students do not require a visa. Indian, Chinese, Russian, Venezuelan  students do]
  • You must make your visa application on-line using the AVATS on-line facility at . Completing the on-line application form is the first step. The application will only be processed when the on-line form is completed AND the required documentation, passport photograph and appropriate fee are received by the relevant officeas indicated by the on-line system.
  • If you are applying from China, India, Nigeria, Russia, United Arab Emirates or the United Kingdom, please also check the Irish Embassy website for details of further documentation which may be required.
  • You should read the visa application details very carefully. If you do not provide the documentation required, your visa will be refused.
  • Some points for you to note. When making an application you must:
    1. complete an on line application
    2. check the Irish Embassy details where your documentation is to be sent
    3. provide a passport sized photo
    4. pay the application fee
    5. provide a signed letter of application which explains why you require the visa
    6. provide evidence from ACD that you have been accepted on a full-time course of study
    7. show evidence of tuition fees paid. Where the course fees are less than €6,000, fees must be paid in full to the college. Where the course fees are in excess of €6,000, you must pay at least this amount prior to applying for your visa. This minimum amount, of €6,000 is an Immigration requirement.*
    8. ensure your passport is valid for 12mths
    9. have private health insurance (Purchase Medical Insurance here if you haven’t already)
    10. show that you have enough money to support yourself while in Ireland (bank account statements for six months previously, evidence of access to €7,000, sponsorship letter etc)***
    11. show evidence of language proficiency. INIS requires IELTS of 5 but UCD generally require IELTS of 6.5.
    12. Any other documents as requested by INIS or the Irish Embassy through which you are applying
    13. Make sure you keep copies of all documents submitted.

***INIS allows you to lodge an amount of €7,000 to an ‘education bond’. See page 3 of and   for further details on this.

Checking on your visa status

  • You should apply as early as possible for your visa as it normally takes eight weeks for it to be processed but in busy periods may take longer than this.
  • You can track your visa on which shows Current Processing Times and Visa Decisions. These are updated weekly
  • If you get approval for a visa, the Embassy to which you sent your documents will affix a visa to your passport.
  • If you are refused a visa you may appeal the decision within 2 months. However, as this would affect your date of arrival in ACD, you would need to seek advice on final acceptable arrival date from the course director/administrator.

Note: Ireland is not a member of the Schengen Agreement. You will, therefore, still have to apply for an Irish visa even if you have a visa for a Schengen country.

after arriving in ireland