Do I need a residence permit?
In general, all students from countries outside the EU/EEA need to have a residence permit to study in Sweden if they are planning on staying for more than three months. Students should not apply for a visa (which is generally only for shorter visits in the country), but for a residence permit for studies.
You need to apply for, and receive, your permit before you travel to Sweden. The permit must be valid and you need to bring it with you when you travel to Sweden.
Applications for residence permits are processed by the Swedish Migration Agency, NOT the University. The residence permit application is your responsibility.
If any family member is accompanying you to Sweden (your spouse and/or children) you can also apply for a residence permit for them at the same time.
Applying for a residence permit
If you are a degree/course student admitted via www.universityadmissions.se and require a residence permit, you should not apply for your residence permit until after you have received your Notification of Selection Results and paid the first tuition fee instalment. You are however advised to start preparing for your application as soon as possible – but please do not submit it earlier than four months before the first day of your residence permit period. Please be advised that any bank account statements may not be older than four months from the first day of your residence permit period.
You make your application online through the Swedish Migration Agency's website. Residence permits are granted for one year at a time. Students must apply to extend the permit for the next year of study.
If you are coming to Lund University as an exchange student from a partner university and need a residence permit, you should not apply for your residence permit until after you have received your Letter of Acceptance (LoA). You are however advised to start preparing for your application as soon as possible – but please do not submit it earlier than four months before the first day of your residence permit period. Please be advised that any bank account statements may not be older than four months from the first day of your residence permit period. You make your application online through the Swedish Migration Agency's website.
(Please note that "mobility studies", as it is mentioned on the Migration Agency's website, is not the same as regular exchange studies)
If you are coming to Lund as a part of a programme that shares administration with two or more other institutions (for example Erasmus Mundus Joint Master's degree) you may be able to apply for a permit for mobility studies. For more information, contact your programme staff.
Residence permits – please note (all applicants)
Making your online application
- The entire residence permit process can take up to several months!
- Submit your application immediately once you have your complete documents and fulfil the requirements. Please check the Migration Agency website carefully to make sure that you have prepared the necessary documents.
- As a part of your application, you will need to demonstrate that you have enough money to support your living costs (and those of any accompanying family member) during your study period.
- The Swedish Migration Agency also requires that you show that you have health insurance when applying for the residence permit. It is usually enough that you refer to our webpage on health and insurance to fulfil this requirement. You can also attach the 'Terms & Conditions' document for the FAS+ or Student IN insurance.
Biometrics and passport check
- All applicants will need a valid passport to obtain a residence permit. Check that your passport does not expire during the duration of your studies and that it is correctly signed.
- All applicants must present their passports in person at a Swedish Embassy abroad with a migration section if they are applying for a first-time residence permit. Please learn more about this step on the Migration Agency’s website, and find a relevant Swedish Embassy on Sweden Abroad. See a list of the Swedish embassies on the Sweden Abroad website.
- In general, applicants will also need to visit a Swedish embassy or consulate in their home country for their biometric data (photos and fingerprints). However, applicants who are visa-exempt for travel to the Schengen area may complete this step upon arrival in Sweden.
- All applicants must have received a positive residence permit decision before coming to Sweden. Unless you are visa-exempt for travel to the Schengen area, you must also have received your residence permit card before entering Sweden.
Important note on ETIAS
In 2024 (date to be announced), the European Travel Information and Authorisation System (ETIAS) will be introduced, meaning visa-exempt visitors travelling to the European Union or the Schengen Area will need to apply for prior authorisation to do so. This application will cost 7 EUR and most applications will be approved within minutes. Kindly note that this authorisation system will not replace the Swedish migration process, and you will still need to hold a Swedish residence permit for studies if originally required to do so. Please visit the ETIAS website to learn more about this system, and to file your application when the time comes: