Coming to study in Belgium


What is your situation?

You would like to study at a higher education institution or a preparatory year in an institution organised, subsidised or recognised by the Belgian authorities.

You would like to come in Belgium and do a PhD.

You want to apply for a visa to study at a private and higher education in Belgium.

Come to study at a higher education institution or take a preparatory year at an institution organised, subsidised or recognised by the Belgian public authorities.

You must apply for a visa at the Belgian Embassy or Consulate in your country of origin or residence. You can apply for the residence permit as a student from Belgium if you are in exceptional circumstances that prevent you from returning to your country of origin to apply for a visa or if you already have another residence permit in Belgium.

In the application file for a study visa, you must prove that:

  • You are enrolled in a higher education institution organised, subsidised or recognised by the Belgian authorities. In the context of a visa application, this can be a certificate of enrolment or pre-registration at the higher education institution or its entrance exam. For an application for a residence permit in Belgium, however, it must be a certificate of final enrolment at the higher education institution;
  • You have sufficient means of subsistence. In other words, you have a guarantor who can sign an undertaking to pay for you, or you can deposit the sum required by the Belgian authorities into the account of the institution where you are registered;
  • You have a standard medical certificate which will be provided to you during our exchanges, attesting that you do not suffer from any disease listed by the authorities as constituting a danger to public health. If you are over 21, you also have to attach a clean criminal record.

When you apply, you will have to answer a questionnaire about your study plans.

If you want to take a preparatory year for higher education, you must take it in an institution organised, subsidised or recognised by the Belgian authorities. You also must prove that it is part of your plan to study in Belgium the following year (study plan, e-mails showing steps taken with the institution where you wish to study, etc.).

Coming to Belgium for a PhD

In this case, the same conditions as the ones above-mentioned apply.

Coming to study at a private higher education institution in Belgium

The same conditions as described above apply. However, you will need to explain in more detail why you wish to come to this institution and why this enrolment is necessary for the realisation of your professional project.


Please note that all official documents must be certified. Furthermore, if they aren’t in one of the official languages of Belgium, they must be translated into French or Dutch by a sworn translator recognised by the Belgian authorities. We regularly work with sworn translators who work in different languages. We can therefore assist you with this type of procedure.

Etudier en Belgique

Concerning student visa applications, Immigration-plan can :


Based on the description of your situation, answer your questions and tell you whether you meet the above conditions regarding the criteria of the Belgian authorities.


List the various documents needed and send you a copy of the standard documents required to submit a complete visa/residence permit application to the Belgian authorities.


Check your file once you have gathered all the required documents to ensure that it is as complete as possible.


Write a covering letter to the file explaining, based on the relevant articles of law and court decisions, why you have the right to the visa/residence permit.

Need advice concerning your immigration procedures to Belgium?