Sweden is one of the most well-kept secrets of scandinavia. This european nation, which focuses on the quality of life rather than quantity, is home to several top notch universities in the world like KTH, Lund University, Uppsala University, etc. which offer courses which enhance a student’s skills in learning cutting edge technologies.

Every year, a significant number of students from India get enrolled in these universities. However, very few of these students are actually aware of the process of getting a student visa for Sweden or moreover, a residence permit to study in Sweden. 

This article aims to give our readers a clear cut understanding of how they can apply and get a Sweden Student Visa and Sweden residence permit without having to face a lot of hassles along their way. The article will cover topics like the different steps which students need to take before travelling to study in Sweden, The list of documents to be submitted at the time of applying, What is to be done once a student lands in Sweden for their higher studies, The living expenses to be borne by them during their stay in Sweden, what are the sweden student visa requirements and finally, the timeline for applying for a sweden study visa to study in Sweden.

The process to Get a Residence Permit to Study in Sweden: An Overview

Before getting into the details of the steps involved in getting a residence permit which will enable non-EU students to study in Sweden, let us take a look at the overall Sweden student visa process. 

Should You Apply For a Student visa for Sweden or a Residence Permit to Study in Sweden?

Individuals from Non-Eu countries are required to procure different documents, depending on the length of their stay in Sweden. The individuals who wish to stay in Sweden for a time period of three months or less can do so on a tourist visa. If candidates wish to travel to Sweden for longer than three months, they will need to apply for a residence permit. 

Since the Master's courses offered by most universities in Sweden exceed the three month period, students who have already completed their application procedure to study in Sweden will have to apply for a permit of residence.

Steps Every Student Must Undertake Before Applying For a Permit of Residence to Study in Sweden

  1. Secure admission into a full-time course which requires the student’s presence at the respective university and pay the first instalment of their tuition fee.
  2. Prepare and gather all the documents which will help support students during their course of study in Sweden. Some of these document include:
    a. Copy of their passport
     b. A letter of admission from their respective university
     c. Proof of sufficient funds which show that students have enough money to help support their expenses during their period of study in Sweden.
    d. Health insurance
  3. Submit the online application for a residence permit in order to study in Sweden
  4. Wait for approval

Sweden Study Visa Requirements - Important Points to Note Before Commencing Your Application Process

  1. It is extremely crucial that you possess an acceptance letter in a full-time accredited university in Sweden, in order to qualify for a student visa for Sweden. This is one of the major prerequisites of Sweden study visa requirements.
  2. Students must have paid the first instalment of their tuition fees in order to study in Sweden.
  3. The process for procuring a residence permit to study and stay in Sweden may take months to complete. Hence, it is important to make the necessary arrangements related to funding your course accordingly.
  4. Students must begin their Swedish residence permit application process within a month of applying to universities there.

Now that you have had a general idea of the Sweden residence permit process, let us move on to understand it in detail.

Sweden Student Visa Requirements - Critical Documents to be Submitted For a Sweden Residence Permit

The Sweden immigration department has laid out certain criteria for individuals who qualify to apply for residence permit to study in Sweden. Having knowledge of these criteria would definitely help you in the long run if you are looking for guidance on applying for a residence permit which could allow you to study in Sweden.

The total cost of a student residence permit amounts to SEK 1,500.

All students are required to adhere to the following regulations if they are to get their residence permit to study in Sweden without a lot of hassles coming their way.

Any student who wishes to study in Sweden should:

  1. Have a valid passport
  2. They should have been admitted into a full-time course that requires their presence for the duration of their entire course period.
  3. They should have the means to support themselves financially during the time for which they plan to stay in Sweden.
  4. They should have paid a part of the tuition fee before sending in their application for a residence permit to study in Sweden.
  5. They must have sufficient health Insurance policy. 

Students Must Be Admitted into Full-Time Courses

If you plan on pursuing your higher education in Sweden, it is extremely important to note that a letter of admission from your university in Sweden is one of the first documents which you may need to procure. If your university requires you to pay part of the tuition fee in advance then this requirement has to be fulfilled. Once students complete this step successfully, their respective university gets in touch with the Swedish Migration Agency and informs them of this event.

What is Counted as Higher Education in the Sweden Residence Permit Process?

Full-time courses at the undergraduate and graduate level in any of the universities in Sweden is counted as higher education. When students apply for a residence permit which would enable them to study in Sweden, the courses mentioned above are accepted forms of higher education by the Swedish immigration department.

Students Must Be Able to Support Themselves

This particular clause is part of the criteria set by the government for individuals who wish to study in Sweden. It is crucial that students arrange for the required funds even before they apply for a residence permit which would enable them to study in Sweden. Students are also required to submit proof which exhibits that they are very well capable of covering the expenses which are likely to be incurred during the course of their study in Sweden.

The living expense requirement for students to study in Sweden is SEK 8370 per month. The figures involving living expenses mentioned in this article are true for the applications received till the month of January 2020. Students are required to show the presence of the money required for their entire course of study in Sweden in order to be deemed eligible to apply for a Sweden residence permit.

So those of you who plan to borrow an abroad education loan to fund your studies in Sweden need to apply at least three months prior to beginning their residence permit process. However, if you happen to apply for an abroad education loan through the financial team of WeMakeScholars, you can get one sanctioned within 12 days of applying. So get in touch with their team at the earliest to avail funding on time.

Students who are on a stipend or already have been granted fully-funded scholarships which cover the entire costs of studying in Sweden must submit their application at least three months prior to applying for a residence permit. Such students are required to submit a document which mentions complete details of their funding. The exact schedule of disbursement of funds, the exact amount available for living expenses, etc. are some of the specific details which Sweden immigration officials look for while processing the residence permits.

When scholarship winners and those who receive a stipend that can help support their higher studies submit this document to the Swedish Migration Agency, there can be a significant reduction in the total amount of money required from them. The following table will give you a rough idea of the total expenses which students are likely to bear during their stay in Sweden.

Permit Validity Period

Living Expenses Required by Students alone

Living Expenses For Dependents (Spouses, children, parents)

Support requirement per child

6 months

SEK 51,084 (6 x SEK 8514)

SEK 21,000 (6 x SEK 3,500)

SEK 12,600 (6 x SEK 2,100)

12 Months

SEK 102,168(12 x SEK 8514)

SEK 42,000 (12 x SEK 3,500)

SEK 25,200 (12 x SEK 2,100)

13 Months

SEK 110,682(13 x SEK 8514)

SEK 45,500 (13 x SEK 3,500)

SEK 27,300 (13 x 2,100)

Health Insurance

Nationally registered individuals in Sweden are assumed to have comprehensive healthcare insurance. However, students who are enrolled in a course in Swedish universities for more than one year are not registered nationally. Hence, it is important for them to have health insurance in place. This insurance has to be either provided by their respective universities or an individual health insurance provider.

The health insurance must be valid for the entire time of a student’s course of study in Sweden. It must cover the costs for emergency and other medical care. In addition to that, the insurance must cover transportation costs due to medical reasons if applicable.

Read about Top Education Loan Lenders: How to Choose The Right One?

What Happens Once Students Submit their Applications 

Once students submit their application for a residence permit to study and live in Sweden, the following developments take place at later stages in the process.

  1. The application is received at the Swedish migration agency.
  2. The application remains in queue
  3. The Swedish Migration Agency checks whether all the documents mentioned in this article are in the correct format and order. If any discrepancy is found, the individual candidate is intimated via email of the same and the application is pushed back into the queue.
  4. Once the candidate sends all the relevant documents, the application is again verified by the Migration Agency.
  5. The agency makes the final decision to approve or reject a student’s application.

 The general waiting time required by the agency to approve a Sweden residence permit can take anywhere between 1 to 3 months. It is extremely important to submit the documents mentioned in the checklist provided in the application.

Steps to Be Taken When Students Decide to Cancel Their Application

If you want to withdraw your application, you must say so in a written letter to the Swedish Migration Agency. In the letter, you must state your name, date of birth, personal identity number (if you have one) and your case number. Also state your telephone number and address so that the Swedish Migration Agency can reach you if we have any questions. You must sign the letter. If you have given a power of attorney to someone, that person can withdraw the application on your behalf.

How long the permit is valid?

You can receive a residence permit for the time your studies require, but never longer than the validity of your passport. Even if you have been admitted to several years’ studies, you can usually receive a residence permit for a maximum of one year at a time. If you will continue to stay in Sweden after your permit has expired, you must submit an application for a new residence permit. You should apply for the new residence permit before the current permit expires

As a student in a mobility programme within the EU, you can receive a residence permit for the entire programme. As a mobility student, your residence permit card will be marked with the programme’s name.

The Swedish Migra­tion Agency can revoke a permit

Your permit can be revoked if you provided incorrect information in your application or did not tell about something of significance to your residence permit. The permit can also be revoked if the conditions for the permit are no longer met, such as if you are no longer studying.

Also, read about India Government Scholarships For Higher Education

If you Are Granted a Residence Permit

If you applied online, you will receive an e-mail that the decision has been made.

You can then contact the embassy or general consulate to receive the decision and possibly book an appointment to collect it. When you collect your decision, you must bring your passport with you. Some embassies and general consulates send out the decision and the permit card in the post. Contact the embassy or general consulate for more information.

Resi­dence permit card

If you receive a residence permit for more than three months, you will receive a residence permit card. The card is a certification that you have permission to be in Sweden and contains your fingerprints and a photo of you, among other information.

Indian students need an entry visa to travel to Sweden. If you were not photographed and submitted fingerprints when you applied, you must visit the embassy or general consulate so that a permit card can be made for you. Not all embassies or general consulates have the possibility of making appointments to photograph you and get your fingerprints. Therefore, always contact the embassy or general consulate before your visit for more information. When you visit the embassy, you must bring your passport with you.

Note: WeMakeScholars is an organization funded and supported by the Government of India that focuses on International Education finance. We are associated with 10+ public/Pvt banks/ NBFCs in India and help you get the best abroad education loan matching your profile. As this initiative is under the Digital India campaign, it’s at free of cost. The organization has vast experience dealing with students going to various abroad education destinations like the US, Canada, UK, Australia, Germany, Sweden, Italy, China, France among others