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Education Exchange Visa and immigration FAQ immigration

First application

  • How do I apply for a visa and/or residence permit for the Netherlands?

    The University of Groningen helps students who have been admitted (or provisionally admitted) to a degree or an exchange programme to apply for a residence permit. Under Dutch law, students cannot apply for a residence permit individually. 

    Students will be automatically notified by the ISD via email with an immigration package explaining the steps that need to be followed. 
  • When will the ISD start my visa and/or residence permit application?

    After you are accepted for your exchange programme or you are conditionally, provisionally or unconditionally admitted to your degree programme, you will be informed via email about the next steps of your visa and/or residence permit application.

    The actual visa and residence permit application will start about three months prior to your arrival date in order for your entry visa to remain valid until that date.

    Please be informed that your application can be withdrawn when you do not meet the visa and/or residence permit application deadline. The Immigration Service Desk needs to receive your application before the application deadline in order to make sure that your visa and/or residence permit are ready before the start of your programme. This is necessary to finalize your enrolment.


  • How does the visa/residence permit application procedure look like?

    In the immigration package that you will receive, you will find all the necessary information regarding your immigration steps. We will guide you through the process step by step.

    Once you have completed all the required steps we will submit your application to the Immigration and Naturalisation Service (IND). If the IND has made a decision on your application, we will let you know by email.

    If your application has been approved, you will be asked to make an appointment with the Dutch embassy or consulate general in your home country to pick up your visa (mvv). If a visa is not necessary in your case, you will be able to travel to the Netherlands.

    Please be informed that your application can be withdrawn when you do not meet the visa and/or residence permit application deadline. The Immigration Service Desk needs to receive your application before the application deadline in order to make sure that your visa and/or residence permit are ready before the start of your programme. This is necessary to finalize your enrolment.

  • How can I upload my documents?

    In the immigration package that you will receive, you will find a link to the “Student visa application form”. This form can only be filled in via the University of Groningen website. 

    Please make sure that you have transferred the correct amount to the bank account of the University of Groningen. It is advisable to add a copy of your transfer receipt to speed up the process

    Documents to submit:
    • the antecedents certificate: make sure the signature matches the signature on your passport and is written by hand (digital signatures will not be accepted)
    • your passport: make sure that you include all pages with personal details, signature of bearer/holder and all pages with stamps and visas. Your passport should be valid for more than 6 months after the starting date of your programme.

    The scans of all documents must meet the following requirements:
    • in colour and of good quality
    • PDF format
    • altogether should not extend 20 MB
    • no fingers/hands visible on the scans
  • How long will it take to process my application?

    You will receive a confirmation email as soon you have uploaded your documents and submitted your application form. Please check your email, as it could have gone to your junk mail. 

    It will take approximately 10 working days for the Immigration Service Desk (ISD) to submit your application to the Immigration and Naturalisation Service (IND). We will let you know via email if your application is complete or if we still need more information.
  • I was not able to arrange all documents yet, can I upload my documents anyway? (Incomplete application)

    The ISD needs to receive complete applications (all applicable documents and the necessary transfer) before they can apply for your visa and/or residence permit application. 

    When you received an email from us stating your application is incomplete, you should upload or transfer the remaining amount as soon as possible. We cannot apply at the IND if your application does not yet meet the requirements.


  • What amount of money do I need to take into account when I apply for a visa/residence permit?

    The total amount that you need to transfer to the ISD, consists of:
    - The application fees from the Immigration and Naturalisation Service (IND)
    - The sufficient funds
    - The tuition fees of your degree programme

    You can find the current amount of the tuition fees of your study programme on the website of the University of Groningen. The amounts of the application fees and the amount of sufficient funds are set by the IND and are subject to change. Please check your immigration package for the applicable amounts.
  • What is meant by proof of sufficient funds?

    In order to submit your application, you will have to make a transfer to the University of Groningen. One of the amounts is the proof of sufficient funds, which is a requirement from the IND (Immigration and Naturalisation Service).

    For the application for a visa and/or residence permit you have to show you have sufficient money to live and study in the Netherlands. ‚ÄčThe amount you need to have, is called the study norm. 

    The study norm is currently EUR 950.00 per month. Sufficient funds should correspond with the duration of your programme (with a maximum of 12 months equals EUR 11,400.00, also if you enrol for a programme of more than one year). The amount does not include tuition fees.

    Degree student: EUR 11,400.00
    Exchange student 1 semester: EUR 4,750.00
    Exchange student 2 semesters EUR 9,500.00

    The ISD will refund your money once you arrive in the Netherlands and after you have opened a Dutch bank account.

  • Why do I have to prove financial means?

    According to Dutch law, non-EU students are required to provide proof of sufficient funds if they wish to live and study in the Netherlands.
  • How can I prove my financial means?

    You can provide proof of sufficient funds by:
    - transferring the funds into the University of Groningen bank account; and/or
    - sending us a scan of your scholarship letter; and/or
    - sending us a scan of your loan letter.

    Unfortunately the board of the UG has decided that the UG will no longer accept any bank documents as financial proof for immigration applications. 
  • I have a scholarship and/or loan, do I still need to make a transfer to the UG?

    If you receive a scholarship or loan letter that (partially) covers your sufficient funds and/or tuition fees, then you must send us a scan of your scholarship letter or a statement from the loan supplier as proof of income. Please make sure that if you receive a scholarship or a loan, the payment of the tuition fees should be transferred to the Central Student Administration (CSA) department before the start date of your degree programme. 


    If your scholarship or loan does not cover the full amount of sufficient funds and/or tuition fees, then you must also transfer the (remaining) amount to meet the financial requirements. Please check our website for the criteria a scholarship letter and loan letter must meet. You always have to transfer the application fee. 

  • What do I need to know if I have to do a bank transfer?

    For international bank transfers, the bank will sometimes charge a transfer fee. Please be aware that all additional fees that the bank may charge for the international bank transfer must be covered by yourself. It is advisable to check in advance with your bank how much they charge for an international transfer. Every bank transfer should include a payment reference to match the transfer to your application. For this you should always include your student number and surname.

    Be advised that transfers should not be made through Earthport, as they do not add any references and thus remove any link to the sender of the transfer. We will not be able to match your transfer to you if you transfer via Earthport and your money transfer might be lost.

  • What will happen to the transfers that I have made?

    We will make sure that the application fees are paid to the Immigration and Naturalisation Service (IND) and that your tuition fees are transferred to the Central Student Administration (CSA) department within the University of Groningen before the enrolment deadline.


    You will subsequently receive a confirmation from us with instructions on how to fill out your tuition fees payment details in Studielink when you have transferred all the required fees.

    As soon as you have arrived in the Netherlands and opened a (IBAN) bank account, you can submit your online reclaim form for the refund of the sufficient funds you transferred. The ISD will send you a personal link to the online form soon after your arrival.