Student Visa for International Students

International students who wish to study in the UAE are required to have a visa. Also, they must be sponsored by a UAE educational institution as recognised by the UAE Ministry of Education. 

International students who want to attend primary and secondary schools, or higher institutions in the UAE are required to obtain a residence visa. However, student visas are provided by all higher education institutions and a few training institutes. 

The student visa is valid for 1 year and can be renewed. Student can apply for the student visa through the immigration authorities. Start your visa application early as getting a student visa for the United Arab Emirates can be a lengthy process.

Visa Conditions

A residence visa is needed in order to go for primary, secondary or high schools in the UAE, which means pupils will be under the sponsorship of one of their parents.

Students under parent's sponsorship wishing to apply into higher level institution, can be:
  • Sons, under the age of 18 in full-time education can be sponsored by their parents
  • Unmarried daughters of any age can be sponsored by their father or their mother if she is employed in a high-level profession
Students attending a higher education institution:
  • Full-time students can be sponsored by the higher education institution (if the education institution provides this service). 

Student Visa Application Process

Students can apply for the visa through the immigration authorities. You can apply online or offline. Fill out the application form and submit it along with the required documents to the nearest authority. Some universities or institutions arrange for the student residence visas. Check with the institution before enrolling. 

Student Residence Visa 

Student Residence Visas are only valid for 1 year, but can be renewed each year during the study programme.


Following documents are required:

Application form: Completely filled

Passport copies: Must have 2 blank visa pages and have at least 6 months validity, 


Offer letter/confirmation letter: Indicating that you have been accepted by a higher education institution in the UAE

Sufficient funds proof: Submit bank statements indicating the proof of finances in the UAE

Accommodation arrangement evidence: Submit a tenancy agreement or letter from the admitted institution if staying in university accommodation

A letter of sponsorship from the university or institution

Tuition fee receipt copy for the current academic year

Visa fee receipt copy for the current academic year

Undergraduate degrees attested for post-graduate students 

Security check: Some country students have to go through a security check to ascertain they are not considered a threat to UAE security

Medical examination records: A medical test at an approved UAE medical center is needed. It should include blood test reports, tuberculosis (TB), chest X-ray for HIV (AIDS), Hepatitis B, Hepatitis C, Syphilis, and Leprosy. will normally be required. If results is positive for any of those conditions, the individual is deported, except for syphilis which is treated. To know more about the same, contact the UAE immigration department or UAE Ministry of Health 

Visa Validity

UAE issues student visa for a period of 1 year. Students need to renew visa on year to year basis. However, for deserving students visa can be issued for up to duration of 5 years.

Visa Processing Time

Visas generally take about 2 to 5 weeks to process after all the required formalities are completed
The processing time of Express visas is 1 to 3 weeks.

Cancellation of visa generally takes 1 to 3 weeks, and express visa cancellation takes about 1 to 2 weeks.
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