Rising up the ladder of popular study abroad destinations, Sweden is observing a peak in the number of student visa applications made. International students aspiring to study in Sweden are required to obtain a student visa and residential permit based on the duration of their stay.
Sweden Student Visas issued to Indian students saw a rise even amidst the pandemic. Around 1648 visas were granted to Indian students who had made applications for the same. International students who wish to obtain a student visa for Sweden are required to send an application to their choice of Swedish university. When the university admits them, then the student needs to pay the first part of their tuition fees. The universities in Sweden require international students to begin with the application process only after this fee is paid.
Sweden Student Visa: Covid-19 Regulation
The Covid-19 infection has increased in Sweden from 1,00,000 cases in October 2020 to 7,65,000 in March 2021. The embassy of Sweden has extended the temporary ban on entry to the EU via Sweden. As a result, most of the recent visa applications are getting canceled due to rejection. This entry ban is under the control of the Council of the European Union and is regulated by the EU member states.
However, students who are already enrolled with colleges in Sweden are currently being offered education virtually. Visa applications for Swedish Student Visa are expected to resume post pandemic.
Sweden Student Visa vs Residence Permit
Both the student visa and the residence permit are for those who are non-EU/ EEA citizens and planning to stay and study in Sweden. However, whether you need to obtain a student visa or a residence permit will depend on the duration of your stay.
|Visa Type||Duration of Stay|
|Student Visa||Less than 90 days|
|Residence permit in Sweden||More than 90 days|
Before Applying for Sweden Student Visa
Whether the student needs a visa to study in Sweden depends on the factors like:
- Their country of origin.
- If the student previously has a residence permit of any other Schengen country.
- If they are a permanent resident of the EU.
There are some particular mandatory requirements to apply for a student visa to Sweden. Discussed below are the same:
- The student must own a valid passport
- The student must have taken admission to a full-time course requiring their presence in higher education.
- The student needs to be able to support their expenses until the duration of the residence permit they are applying for.
- The student must have paid a viable tuition fee before applying.
- The student must have applied for health-insurance in Sweden in case they are planning to reside for less than a year.
Sweden Student Visa: Application Process for Residence Permit
Below is the process of applying for the Sweden student visa. The students can follow the given steps to apply for their permit:
Where to Apply for Sweden Student Visa
You can apply for a student visa for Sweden online with Swedish Migration Agency website or through the local Swedish embassy in your home country. Here are the steps of filling up the application form online:
- The student will have to fill-up the Sweden student visa online application form in the Swedish Migration Agency Portal.
- Enter all the information required.
- The student will have to provide the necessary documents required. This includes copies of their passport, proof of admission from the Swedish university, proof of their health insurance in Sweden(for staying less than a year), an account statement that verifies they have enough funds for their living expenses or proof of any scholarship/ stipend.
Note: Processing time for online applications is lower than the time invested while applying through Swedish Embassy or Consulate. The Swedish Migration Agency takes approximately 3-4 months to process the online application. They take approximately 3-5 months to process the offline application.
Permit Processing Fee for Student Visa
- The student has to pay the fee for the application through a Credit Card or Charge Card.
- In case the student is applying from the Swedish embassy, the fee needs to be provided in cash simultaneously.
- The fee will not be returned in case the application is rejected.
The fee structure for the residence permit of the applicant and their family member(spouse or others) is the same. Here is the approximate fee structure for the Residence Permit of Sweden:
|Category||Fees in SEK||INR Equivalent|
Visit to the Embassy/ General Consulate
- The student will have to submit their application to their respective Swedish embassy or general consulate.
- The student will have to pay the fee for the application in cash.
Interview Student Visa for Sweden
- The student will receive an email invitation for the interview.
- The student will have to appear in the interview within the stipulated time.
Sweden Student Visa Application Results
- The student will receive the result about the decision of the embassy via mail.
- Then the student will have to visit the embassy after booking an appointment with them.
- The student will have to carry all the documents along with them on their visit to the embassy.
Documents Required for Sweden Student Visa
To receive a Residence Permit for studying in Sweden, a student must have the following:
- A passport valid for at least three months after the expiry of the visa, has at least two blank pages and was issued in the last 10 years.
- The student must be able to describe the purpose of their visit.
- The student must have an invitation or proof of acceptance from a Swedish university.
- The student must have money to support themself(SEK 450 per day, equivalent to INR 3,850) and sufficient money to return home any time.
- Have individual medical travel insurance that covers the cost of at least EUR 30,000(INR 25,80,000).
- Will have to show that they have an intention to leave the country within the last day before the visa expires.
- A passport format photograph that is not older than 6 months.
- Any other documents that the embassy asks for.
Language Requirements for Sweden Student Visa
International students from non-native English speaking countries are expected to have decent skill and proficiency in English language. Swedish universities, on the other hand, need a language proficiency score for admitting students.
- IELTS- Overall 6.0 and with each section more than 5.5.
- TOEFL iBT- Overall 72 with 17 in writing.
Sweden Student Visa: Evidence of Finances
A student needs to provide proof of being able to spend at least SEK 450(INR 3,800-3,900) for each day of their stay in Sweden to get the Residence Permit or Visa.
Here are the particular regulations for the pieces of evidence required:
- The student needs to submit the statement of their own bank account when asked.
- Only the statements of a personal bank account will be accepted. Shared bank account details will be marked as invalid on submission.
- If the student keeps money in multiple bank accounts, they will have to provide the information of all the accounts.
It is important that a student can show enough finances to cover his/her tuition fees and living expenses while staying & studying in Sweden.
Work-Study on Sweden Student Visa
Finding a part-time job in Sweden is tough but not impossible. The government has no restriction on part-time jobs and no limit to the working hours for international students.
In the part-time jobs, the average salaries of students visiting Sweden for studies vary between EUR 700-1000 (equivalent to INR 60,000-86,000) per month. However, besides work, the student will go through approximately 40 hours of studying each week.
There’s a high possibility of international students getting internships while studying. This will provide a lump sum amount of stipend to live in the costly environment of the country.
Sweden Student Visa: How Long Visa Extension Takes
If the academic course of the student is lesser than a year, then the residence permit will remain valid for 1 year. In cases when the continued course might extend, the student will have to apply for the extension long before the end of the course.
If a student already has a residence permit and wants to extend the permit, they will have to apply for the extension at least 6 months before the date of expiry of the existing residence permit.
Documents Required to Apply for Residence Permit Extension
The student needs a few documents for the extension of the residence permit in Sweden. We’ve made a list of the documents required here:
- The student must have a valid passport.
- The student needs to be admitted to a higher educational institution in Sweden.
- The student must’ve made acceptable development in their studies.
- The student should be able to support themselves financially for the period they want to stay back in Sweden.
- In case, the student does not have an active health insurance policy in Sweden, at least they need to have applied for the same.
Sweden Student Visa: Student Visa Rejection Reasons
The Swedish migration agency is extremely strict about the rules to be followed to apply for a residence permit extension. The rejection rate of Swedish residence permits is 40-50% for the year 2019-2020. Here is a stack of the primary reasons for the rejection of the student visa or residence permit:
- Inadequacy of funds
- Missing documents
- Counterfeit documents
- Inability to explain the factors for their preference in the particular university
- Poor communication skills
- Unsatisfactory answers to the interview questions
Sweden Student Visa: Post Denial Actions and Reapplications
If the request to apply for a residence permit extension is denied by the Swedish Migration Agency, this means that the student will have to leave the country. The agency will determine when the student will have to leave the country. This period will be communicated to the student through the decision.
The student can opt to accept the decision or they can appeal against it. In case they appeal against the decision, they’ll have to wait while their case is reviewed in the native court.
Here are the probabilities for cases when the student chooses to appeal against the decision:
- The student will still need to make a backup plan to return to their country of origin or any country they have permission to stay in.
- The ‘Decision Acquires Legal Force’ within 4 weeks, means the decision has become effective and can no longer be appealed against.
The progress, sustainability, availability of good colleges and the free lifestyle of the Swedish culture are attracting young students from all around the globe to study in Sweden in recent days. Obtaining a student visa for Sweden is not very difficult if you have covered all the grounds and your paperwork is complete. The rising shift to European education among the international students opens a wide range of opportunities to student planning to study in Sweden.