We want you make the most of your time living in Belfast. Here you will find lots of helpful information and advice. Can’t find what you need? Please email [email protected] and we will get back to you as soon as possible!
Following BREXIT, as from January 2021 the following visa information is applicable for EU/EEA/Swiss students:
EU/EEA/Swiss students who study for less than six months do not need a visa
From January 2021, anyone who is in the UK as a visitor will be able to study as much as they want for up to 6 months.
EU/EEA/Swiss students will not need a visitor visa: they can arrive at the border and either show their passport, or enter through the electronic passport gates to be granted entry clearance.
EU/EEA/Swiss students who study for more than six months do need a visa
If you plan to arrive in the UK from 1 January 2021 onwards, you will need to apply for a student visa if you are studying a course which is longer than six months in length.
You will need to complete an application and have it accepted before you arrive in the UK.
You will need to pay an application fee (£348 for students) and have a current passport or other valid travel document.
Most people will be able to complete their application, including identity verification, using a smartphone app. If you can’t access the smartphone app or you don’t have a biometric passport, you may need to go to a Visa Application Centre in your country.
You will also need to pay a fee called an Immigration Health Surcharge. This gives you access to the UK’s National Health Service. Students receive a 25 per cent discount on the usual cost of this surcharge. Details of costs will be available shortly.
You can apply for a student visa up to six months before your course starts.
Police registration – is it a requirement for you?
Citizens of some countries who intend to study in the UK for more than six months must register with the police within seven days of arrival in the UK. Please check your visa to see if this applies to you. We will advise you of the process on your first day at the school.
Cost of living in Belfast
Belfast is a compact, welcoming and inexpensive place to live and study. Find out what you can expect to spend on some typical items here.
Translink is the main public transport provider in Northern Ireland. You can pay bus and train fares in cash, or you can buy multi-journey tickets online. There is detailed information on the various fares and tickets available on the Translink website.
Driving in the U.K.
You should also be aware of the Drink-driving limit in Northern Ireland.
Places of worship
- Studying full-time for more than 6 months?
International Students in the UK on a student visa are entitled to free NHS care. You will have to have paid a Health Surcharge fee as part of your visa application process, which costs £150. Please note that this must be paid even if you also have private health insurance. For more information on the Health Surcharge Fee, see the following link: https://www.gov.uk/healthcare-immigration-application/overview
You should register with a GP immediately when you arrive. Check here to find a GP near you.
- Studying for less than 6 months?
You will not be entitled to treatment except by a hospital in an emergency. You should obtain private medical insurance.
You should bring any regular medication with you as this medication will be charged at full cost.
Northern Ireland and Belfast
Northern Ireland is justifiably famous for its outstanding natural beauty and the friendliness of its people. Belfast is the region’s capital and while it is best known as the home of the Titanic, it also boasts a thriving, modern business sector and a vibrant cultural scene. It can also claim to be the most affordable city in the UK.