Most students feel that getting a visa is the most unpredictable part of getting a foreign education. But just like everything else, with proper preparation you can make sure things go your way. So here we will talk about the most common questions that are asked about applying for a student visa to help you make your application process swift and easy.
While we will try to cover as much information as we can, it is imperative that you stay updated about the latest visa requirements. This will bring you closer to making sure your visa application for your chosen destination is a success.
- Where to start?
You cannot apply for a visa as a student until you have been accepted for a course. So if you haven’t done that yet, you need to submit the application for the course you want as early as possible. Not just that, but you also need to ensure that the course adheres to the country’s visa requirements. Your student visa acceptance is determined by numerous factors:
- Country of citizenship
- Chosen destination country
- Course you wish to study
- Institution you wish to join
- Financial status
Each country has its own system and acceptance procedure. But they are all more or less the same:
- UK – You must first receive an offer for a spot on the course you are opting for. Additionally, you need to prove your fluency in the English language, including reading, writing and speaking.
- US – You first need to prove that you are a permanent resident in the country of your citizenship. Next you need to show that you have the funds to support your education, your stay is intended to be temporary and you will return to your home country once you complete your studies.
- Australia – You need to prove you have enough funds to support your study fees and cost of living. There’s also an additional assessment based on your chosen course and your country of citizenship.
- Europe – If your country of citizenship is an EU member then you do not require a visa. If you are from outside the EU, you should check the specific visa requirement for your chosen destination.
- Where to apply for a student visa?
Like any other visa, you will need to apply for a student visa in your home country. You will either need to visit a visa application center or fill a form and apply online. If you have applied online, you will need to visit an application center to provide any biometric information the embassy or consulate requires.
- What type of visa is needed?
If you are planning to travel abroad to study for your post-16 education you need a general student visa. These visas are addressed using different terms in different countries, such as:
- UK – Tier 4 (General Student) visa
- US – F-1 visa
- Australia – The visa type depends on your country of origin and the chosen course
- How much money is needed?
This is one of the most common and important questions as it plays a major role in the application process. It is important to prove that the applicant has enough funds to cover the course fees and living costs. However, the amount you need to have can vary region to region within the same country at times. Sometimes the embassy may ask you to prove that you have funds for entire period of your stay and some may ask for proof of funds only for the first year.
For UK, you need to prove you can finance the following:
- First year course fees
- £5,400 (£7,200 inner London) to cover living costs
For Australia, you need to prove you can finance the following:
- Course fees
- Return air fare
- AU$ 18,000 living cost per year
For US, you need to prove the following:
- Proof of finances to cover the cost of the first year of your course and the related living expenses
- Proof that finance to cover remaining years of study can be arranged in time
Generally finances are considered to be the trickiest part of securing a student’s visa. That’s why almost every applicant applies for a student loan to ensure they meet all requirements. Therefore, when it comes to choosing a student loan partner, people tend to choose Auxilo. Because good isn’t enough when you can choose to go with the best.
- How good must your English be?
For certain student visas you may be required to complete an English language certificate. Immigration rules of several countries require the applicant to display a good understanding of English at the immigration points. For example a UK student visa can be denied if the applicant is unable to communicate without a translator.
- Can your family travel with you?
Your family can travel with you if they meet the visa requirements of the destination country. For UK, you need to be pursuing a post-graduate course at a recognized university that is at least 12 months long. That or you must be a government sponsored student.
For US, you need to prove your relationship with dependent. The dependent also needs to apply for their own visas.
For Australia, you need to prove that you have sufficient funds to support yourself and each dependent.
- Can you work on a student visa?
Usually a student visa allows you to work for up to 20 hours per week. However, you can only start work once the course has started. The same rules apply for any dependents most of the time.
- How long can the stay be?
A student visa is valid for the duration of the course, which is specified in the visa application. You are usually allowed to stay for a short time once the course is completed, but the period varies depending on circumstances. This can range from 60 days to 4 months depending on the country.
- Are governments making it harder for foreign students to get a visa?
International news reports might make it look like countries are making it difficult for foreign students to study in their country. On the contrary, immigration laws actually make an effort to protect international students with the added restrictions. The restrictions actually try to prevent fake colleges from offering valueless study courses to foreign students.