The Netherlands Student Visa: Requirements, Application Process and Fee

To study in the Netherlands for a long duration course, a student needs an MVV and a VVR. An MVV is a sticker placed by the Dutch representative on the passport. It works as a long stay entry visa to the Netherlands. As soon as the student reaches the country, he/she needs to acquire a residence permit (VVR) from the Immigration and Naturalisation Service (IND) desk in the Netherlands.

A non-EU student needs a sponsor to get an MVV and a VVR. The university in which the student has been accepted acts as a sponsor for the student and undertakes the entire process of procuring the visa and the residence permit for the student.

The Netherlands Student Visa Facts

Visa Acceptance RateMore than 90%
Visa FeeUSD 69-230 EUR
Minimum Monthly Financial Funds RequiredUSD 1000
Visa Sanction Period10-12 weeks

Who needs to apply for a visa to study in the Netherlands?

  • Students from the European Union or Switzerland do not need a visa or residence permit to study in the Netherlands.
  • Students from the following countries also do not need a student visa or study permit to study in the Netherlands -
    • United States
    • Australia
    • South Korea
    • Canada
    • Japan
    • New Zealand

How easy is it to get a student visa to study in the Netherlands?

The Netherlands has a visa rejection rate of 8.06% which makes getting a visa fairly easy. However, to get a student visa, you need a sponsor which is usually the university. The acceptance rate of international students is not too high as the universities only pick the best.

What type of visa does one need to study in the Netherlands?

  • If the duration of the course is less than 90 days, then one must apply for Schengen Visa.
  • If a student wishes to stay for more than 90 days, he/she needs a long stay visa(MVV).
  • A student also needs a provisional residence permit (VVR) to be allowed to stay for more than 90 days in the Netherlands.
  • The university you have been accepted in carries out the entire application process.

What is the cost of the student visa application?

  • Cost of visa - USD 220.88 is paid by the university.
  • The university also charges additional fees for carrying the entire process. The amount varies depending upon the university.

What is the application process for the student visa to study in the Netherlands?

  • To get a visa for the Netherlands, one needs to -
    • Be accepted in an accredited day program at a recognized university in the Netherlands
    • Possess sufficient funds with a minimum of USD 1001.41 per month
    • Obtain at least 50% of academic year credit to be allowed to continue to stay
  • Institution submits the request for MVV and VVR for students at the office of Immigration and Naturalisation Service (IND) in the Netherlands
  • Confirmation that application has been received is sent to the institution which, in turn, informs the student through their studielink.nlprofile
  • The time required to sanction MVV is also mentioned in the confirmation notification.
  • It usually takes 90 days for the decision to sanction the visa to be taken. Institute informs the student when MVV is sanctioned.

Special Condition for Students from China

Students from the People’s Republic of China aspiring to study in the Netherlands must acquire a Nuffic Certificate before applying for MVV.

A Nuffic Certificate is the proof of a student being sufficiently qualified to pursue higher education in the Netherlands. The assessment to grant a Nuffic Certificate is based on a student’s -

  • English proficiency
  • The authenticity of educational degrees and diplomas

The certificate is only required for the application of entry visa and residence permit and is not a credential evaluation. Receiving a Nuffic Certificate does not guarantee admission to a Dutch university. Application for a Nuffic Certificate is free of charge.

How to apply for a Nuffic Certificate?

  1. Visit the official website of Nuffic Certificate Assessment System (NCAS)
  2. Create an account and complete the profile
  3. Log in using the credentials sent to your registered email
  4. Click on “New Application
  5. Fill in the information asked in the form
  6. Submit the required documents.Check the list of documents required.
  7. Click on Submit

Verification Process

The verification of the documents submitted can take between four to six weeks.  The verification includes checking the authenticity of your English language proficiency test scores and of the academic documents submitted by you.

The status of your application can be checked on your NCAS profile. Once the verification is complete, you will receive a confirmation email of the same. The Nuffic Certificate will be sent directly to the Dutch higher education institution you have applied for.

What to do in case of a negative decision?

Reasons your visa application can be rejected -

  • You do not have enough financial funds
  • You have a serious criminal record in the past
  • You or the university you have been accepted in failed to meet a required condition

In case your visa application is rejected -

  1. You need to submit an application for review by post. Download the application from the IND website, attach a copy for IND decision and send it to IND office.
  2. The appeal for review must be made within 4 weeks after receiving the IND decision.
  3. In case you are unable to file the appeal yourself, you can seek the help of -
    • your legal representative;
    • a person with special power of attorney;
    • a lawyer;
    • your sponsor i.e. the university in this case
  4. The decision after reviewing your application is made within 4 weeks.
  5. If your application is rejected even after review, you can raise the objection in a court in the Netherlands through the university.

What to do in case of a positive decision?

  • The student needs to book an appointment with the Dutch embassy in their city to collect the visa.
  • To collect the visa, the students must provide -
    • Valid passport
    • 2 passport photographs
    • Biometrics
    • Signature
  • Visa must be collected from the embassy within 90 days after being issued.
  • The student must use the visa within 90 days after collecting it from the embassy i.e. he/she must reach the Netherlands within 90 days.
  • After 90 days, the visa will expire and the student will have to apply for a new one.

Residence Permit(VVR)

  • Institute submits the application for the request of student’s residence permit(VVR) with the IND after the student arrives in the Netherlands.
  • VVR takes up to 2 weeks to be prepared
  • Once it is ready, the Institute informs student who must make an online appointment to collect VVR from IND desk in the Netherlands.
  • To collect the VVR, the student must present -
    • Passport
    • A passport sized photo
    • Biometrics information - fingerprints
    • Signature
  • The student must get a TB test done within 3 months after receiving the VVR.
  • The residence permit is valid for the duration of education plus three months.
  • The maximum duration of validity of residence permit is 5 years.

Register with Municipality

  • Once the student has collected the residence permit, he/she must register with the Personal Record Database of local municipality of the area he/she is staying in.
  • For this, the student needs to provide his/her birth certificate at the office of the local municipality.
  • The student is provided with a BSN - social security number is issued after successful registration.
  • The BSN can be used to work part-time for up to 16 hours a week during the academic session and full-time during the academic break.
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