Visa Application

If you hold a HKSAR Passport, there are no visa requirements when entering Ireland.  For students of other nationalities, you may contact the Irish Consulate to find out whether or not you require an entry visa or you may enquire from the Department of Foreign Affairs. Online application form and requirements are available at

Important: If visa application is necessary, please submit application well in advance and allow six to eight weeks for your application to be processed.

Registration for Permission to Stay in Ireland

It is a requirement for non-EEA students who intend staying in Ireland for more than 90 days to register with the Garda National Immigration Bureau (GNIB). When you register with GNIB you will be required to provide proof of the following:

– enrolled on a privately funded course which is included in Internationalisation Register;

– a Letter of Acceptance from the college, confirming you have been accepted and enrolled on a course of full-time day-time education;

– you must have proof that full fees have been paid to the college in advance;

a bank statement, from an Irish bank, showing that you have access to €3,000 at first registration, to support yourself.

– students are required to have private medical insurance, at time of registration. Thereafter at every subsequent registration students are required to have proof that they were in possession of private medical insurance for all of the previous registration period for example by way of a letter of renewal. Travel insurance will not be accepted.

Upon successful registration a student will be given a certificate of registration indicating that you have been given an immigration permission allowing you to study in the State.

The registration will be for one year and will be renewable on an annual basis, up to a maximum of 7 years.

There is currently a charge of €300 each time you register.

Working while Studying in Ireland for non-EEA Students

Casual employment is permissible where non-EEA students are

  • Registered with Stamp 2 permission
  • Enrolled on a course listed on the Internationalisation Register
  • Attending a full time course of education at or above NFQ Level 7
  • Undertaking a full time course for a minimum of 25 weeks per annum
  • On a course of at least one year’s duration
  • Pursuing a course leading to a qualifications recognised by the Minister for Education and Skills

Casual employment is defined as up to a maximum of 20 hours part-time per week during the academic semester, or full time work (up to 40 hours per week) during normal college holiday periods.


Students attending courses not on the Internationalisation Register are not permitted to work and are registered with Stamp 2A permission.

Students are not permitted to conduct business, be self-employed or work full-time in a permanent job while studying.

Tuition Fees

Tuition fees vary considerably depending on the institution and the study programme.  Costs do not remain static, so it is important to double check fees with the Institution(s) you are considering applying to.

The below figures of 2020/21 for non-EEA students are for reference only.


Course Average Fees

Medicine and related
Engineering, Science & Technology
Arts & Humanities

€ 45,000 – € 55,000
€ 10,000 – € 24,000
€ 10,000 – € 22,000
€ 10,000 – € 18,000

PostgraduateCourse Average Fees

Medicine and related
Engineering, Science & Technology
Arts & Humanities

€ 14,000 – € 45,000
€ 10,000 – € 22,000
€ 10,000 – € 22,000
€ 10,000 – € 14,000

Living Expenses

Living expenses differ depending on the location, type of accommodation and  the lifestyle of the student. The below rates of 2012 are provided for reference only.  On average a student will spend between €10,000 to €15,000 per year.


All third level institutions will have an accommodation officer or advisor who can provide information for you about accommodation on, or close to your campus.

Self Catering Accommodation

Self catering accommodation includes a large number of options from a room in a shared house to a large private apartment. While self catering accommodation can offer full independence, the prospective student should be aware that there can be significant set-up costs associated with self catering accommodation. You will be required to pay the first month’s rent and a deposit in advance. The deposit is normally the same amount as the monthly rental figure. Minimum lease period is usually 1 year and if you vacate prior to this period you will be liable to pay rent for the remaining period. Please note that miscellaneous items might have to be purchased e.g. crockery, cooking utensils, bed linen etc.

Residential School Accommodation

Most universities and a number of other colleges offer on-campus accommodation. This can range from a single, or shared room in a large apartment to a one-bedroom apartment. Your institution of choice will be able to provide you with full details of the options on offer.

Host Family Accommodation

Many international students, particularly in the first year, opt to choose family based accommodation. This means a private room in a family home where two meals (generally breakfast and evening meal), utility costs and laundry services are provided. Again the institution you are applying to will have lists of experienced families in the area who provide approved accommodation for international students.

For further details on these and other living expenses which you may incur while studying in Ireland, check the website of your institution of choice and The Irish Council for International Students


A small number of scholarships for overseas students are available from the universities and colleges. These are awarded solely at the discretion of the individual institutions who set down their own criteria for eligibility. Students are advised to contact the institution of their choice directly, to obtain information.