Non EU/EEA citizens
If you are a citizen of any other country than an EU/EEA country you need to apply for a residence permit which is granted by the Swedish Migration Board. For exchange students the embassy in most countries can take the decision directly.
Students are required to have the permit before moving to Sweden and should apply for residence permit as soon as possible after their admission.
If you are a fee-paying student we urge you to pay your tuition fee invoice first, since you will not receive your residence permit before the invoice has been paid. Apply for residence permit when you have received the payment confirmation.
Please note that you can only obtain a residence permit for studies if you are admitted to full-time studies that require your presence in Sweden (i.e for the Master's in Library and Information Science you can only receive a visa for your visit(s) to Sweden).
Important to remember when applying:
- Obtaining a residence permit can be a lengthy process and we recommend you to apply as soon as possible once you are admitted, at least 12 weeks before you plan on coming to Sweden.
- You cannot receive a residence permit for a longer period of time than your passport is valid, so make sure your passport doesn't expire before the end date of your studies.
- You must prove to the Swedish Migration Board that you will have a guaranteed sum of money at your disposal throughout the entire period of your studies. The Migration Board sets the amount, currently 8064 SEK per month for ten months out of each year of your studies. Note that the money has to be on your personal bank account. Keep in mind that if you later apply for an extension of your permit the Migration Board will check that you have had at least 8064 SEK to live off every month. The money should therefore not be transferred to any other accounts than your own after you have showed the bank statement to the Migration Board. This does not apply to students who receive a scholarship from Sweden covering living costs.
- Make sure to include all the necessary documents when applying for your residence permit. You can see what documents you need to enclose on the Swedish Migration Board's website (external link). If you do not include all documents in your original application you will be moved to the back of the queue. This delay can mean you do not receive your permit in time for your studies. Keep in mind that some students need to include proof of health insurance when applying for the residence permit, and that the insurance must cover their entire stay in Sweden.
The most common document missing in an application is actually the accompanying letter from the embassy, so make sure that you remind the embassy to enclose the accompanying letter.
- Remember to state in your application the date you are going to arrive in Sweden and depart from Sweden, and not only the official semester dates (and make sure that your insurance is valid for the entire time that you are going to be in Sweden).
- Do not forget to state a contact person of your course/programme, for example the International coordinator responsible for your programme. Here you can find a list of all International coordinators at the university.
Where to apply
Embassy or consulate
You apply for a permit at a Swedish embassy or a Swedish consulate in your home country in which you are permanently resident. Addresses of embassies and consulates can be found at goabroad.com (external link).
Online at the website of the Swedish Migration Board
If you are citizen of a country whose citizens do not require an entry visa when entering Sweden as well as other exceptions you can submit a first time application for residence permits for studies electronically at the Swedish Migration Board's website (external link), but you need to be able to scan your documents and to pay the application fee online by using a credit card. You will need to go to the embassy or consulate to give them your biometric data and later to pick up your residence permit card.
The Swedish Migration Board (external link) gives you more information about applying for residence permit as a student. Click on Studying in Sweden and then on University and university colleges to find out more about the requirements and the application process.