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Swedish Migration Agency

How to apply for a residence permit for studies in higher education

You must have applied for and been granted a residence permit before entering Sweden.

If you are to support yourself with bank assets, you must submit your application no earlier than three months before the date you are applying for a residence permit from. This is because you will be able to show that you can support yourself close to the beginning of the study time and that your actions will not get too old. This does not apply if you will receive regular income, such as a scholarship.

You can apply for a residence permit online. In most cases you will need to pay a fee.

Application fees for residence permits for studies


You have received a letter of acceptance

To be eligible for a residence permit, you must have been admitted to full-time studies on a programme or course that requires you to be present in higher education.

Information about studying in Sweden at studyinsweden.seexternal link, opens in new window


Pay the tuition fee

If you need to pay tuition fees, you must have paid a portion of the fee before handing in your application.

More information on tuition feesexternal link, opens in new window


Fill out an application

You may apply online. In the application, you fill out information about yourself and your studies. You must also enclose a number of documents. If your family accompanies you to Sweden you can apply for their permits too in your online application.

Enclose the following documents when applying for the first time:

  • copies of the pages in your passport which show your personal details, the period of validity and whether you have permission to live in countries other than your country of origin
  • notice of admission from a higher education provider in Sweden that shows that you have been definitively admitted to full-time studies on a program or courses that require your presence in Sweden
  • the decision on admission as a doctoral student with information about the time of admission (if you are a doctoral student)
  • a certificate with the details of the doctoral studies, issued by the place of study (if you are a doctoral student). You may refer the place of study to the Migration Agency’s checklist for these certificates. Checklists and examples of attestation of third-cycle studies (doctoral studies)PDF
  • copy of documents showing that you have, or have applied for, comprehensive health insurance in Sweden (if you are admitted to studies for less than one year). If you have an insurance through the higher education provider, you must send confirmation of such. If your notice of admission indicates that you are covered by a health insurance from the higher education provider and you apply through our web application, you can instead attach your admission letter as proof of health insurance
  • account statement showing that you have sufficient means to support yourself. This statement, which you are to enclose to your application, should be dated in connection with the time of application and be translated into English, or
  • documents issued in your name, showing that you have a scholarship or similar, including information about the monthly amount and the period during which you will receive such funds, or
  • Documents proving that you have an educational grant (only applies to doctoral students) or have been employed as a doctoral student, with information regarding the amount and the period during which you will receive such funds.

If you need permission from the central bank or equivalent in order to bring money out of your country, you should also enclose such a permit.

Make sure that the information on the documents you enclose is clearly visible. Check that the numbers and characters at the top and bottom of the passport pages is clear and legible.

Read more about the requirements for an online application

Permits for family members


Pay the application fee

In most cases you will have to pay a fee. When you apply online, you pay the fee with a credit or debit card in connection with the application. The card must be enabled for Internet payment. Contact your bank for more information. 

Application fees for residence permits for studies


The Swedish Migration Agency processes the application 

If you have applied online, the Migration Agency can start work on your application right away.

For the Migration Agency to make a decision about your application, all the details need to be filled in and all necessary documents enclosed. This means that the processing time will be shorter if all the necessary information is included from the start than if information is added afterwards.

Note that the Migration Agency may in some cases need to further examine your application even if you have included all the required information and documents.

If you change your mind and no longer want to apply

If you want to withdraw your application, you must say so in a written letter to the Swedish Migration Agency. In the letter, you must state your name, date of birth, personal identity number (if you have one) and your case number. Also state your telephone number and address so that the Swedish Migration Agency can reach you if we have any questions. You must sign the letter. If you have given a power of attorney to someone, that person can withdraw the application on your behalf.


Visit the embassy or consulate-general

If you need an entry visa for travel to Sweden, visit the Swedish embassy or consulate-general as soon as you have been granted a visa, to have your picture and your fingerprints taken. This is so that you can be given a residence permit card and travel to Sweden. You need to do this even if you have previously had a residence permit card, as the information is not saved. Not all embassies or consulates-general have the possibility to take your picture and your fingerprints. Contact the embassy or consulate-general before your visit for more information.

If you do not require an entry visa, you can also travel to Sweden without a residence permit card, but you must be able to show a decision from the Migration Agency to enter Sweden. In that case you do not have to go to the embassy to get your residence permit card. You instead hand in the documentation for a residence permit card to the Migration Agency once you have arrived in Sweden. However, your permit must be granted before you travel to Sweden.

Swedish embassies and consulates-generalexternal link, opens in new window

Countries whose citizens need a visa to enter Swedenexternal link, opens in new window

Read more about the residence permit card


You receive the decision

You will receive an email stating that a decision has been made.

You must contact the embassy or consulate-general to get your decision, and possibly book an appointment for this. When you come to collect your decision, you must bring your passport. Some embassies and consulates-general will send the decision and residence permit card by the post. Contact the embassy or consulate-general for more information.

Information about a pilot project on two-year permits for degree programme students

During the period 16 October 2019 to 16 October 2022 a pilot project in cooperation between the Swedish Migration Agency and five higher education institutions enables students to apply for two-year residence permits for studies.

The higher education institutions taking part in the pilot project are:

  • Jönköping University
  • KTH Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm
  • Linnaeus University
  • Lund University
  • Umeå University.

During this period a student admitted to a multi-year degree programme at any of these higher education institutions will be able to apply for a two-year residence permit for studies in Sweden. This providing that all conditions, including the student’s ability to support, are met for the whole of the permit period applied for.

If you do not apply online

If you are not able to apply online, you must fill out the form Application for a residence permit for students - First-time applicants, number 113011, and submit it to a Swedish embassy or consulate-general in your country of residence. The application form specifies which documents to enclose. Contact the embassy or consulate-general before you submit your application.

If there is no possibility to submit an application in your country, you must apply at the embassy or consulate-general closest to your country of residence. Contact the embassy or consulate-general before you submit your application for further information.

If your family is accompanying you to Sweden, each family member must submit their own application.

Application for a residence permit for students - First-time applicants, form number 113011PDF

Application by co-applicants to students and doctoral students, form number 135011PDF

Swedish embassies and consulates-generalexternal link, opens in new window

If you are applying at an embassy or consulate-general, you pay the fee when you hand in your application. For more information about the fee, contact the embassy or consulate-general where you are applying, as they do not have the same fees and terms of payment as the Migration Agency.

Last updated: 2020-02-28

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