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Immigration - Frequently Asked Questions

Incoming Students

1. I’ve been offered a place on a course at Trinity College and must to apply for a Study Visa.

If you have yet to apply for a visa and intend on joining a course at Trinity this year, please contact your regional manager immediately. You can find their contact details from this page, by using the “choose your country/region” button. You will see names and contact details of the staff who can advise on visa applications under “Contact us”.

2. I’ve applied for and been granted my study visa for Ireland, but due to travel restrictions, I’m unable to travel and my entry visa will expire soon. Can my entry visa be extended, or will I have to submit a new visa application?

If your visa expires before you have been able to travel to Ireland, you will have to submit a new visa application. Depending on the period of time that has passed and the circumstances of the particular case, the Visa Office may consider waiving the fee for the later application or may be able to process your new application more quickly. Please contact your regional team (as in 1, above) for more advice.

3. I’m an incoming student and planning to arrive between September and January/February depending on travel restrictions. Will my visa be granted at any point I decide to arrive?

When making a visa application, students should endeavour to indicate when they are intending to travel. Where students state that they will be doing all of Semester 1 on-line and will be coming into the State to commence Semester 2, visa officials would prefer to issue a post-dated visa sticker on a student’s passport from the time when the student states on their application. This would give students 3 months from the time the visa is issued to enter the State. (I.e. if you apply for a visa in August, but you are not planning to come to Ireland until January, you should to clearly state this in your application, so that visa officials can issue your visa to be valid from January to allow you enough time to enter the country).

4. I am a non-EU student. How do I register with the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS) for the first time?

To register with INIS for the first time, non-EU students must book and attend an appointment in person at the Burgh Quay registration office.
The process and required documents are outlined here.
The appointment booking site can be found here.
If you have additional questions, contact the Global Room team: tcdglobalroom@tcd.ie
*Please note the during Level 5 COVID-19 government restrictions that INIS has temporarily closed to the public for first time registration appointments with effect from 23rd December 2020. Further updates on INIS re-opening will be posted here: here

5. How long does the processing of registering with INIS for the first time take -- starting from the valid application to the return of the verified documents?

Registration with immigration involves making an online appointment, attending the INIS registration with all required documents, having one's passport stamped and having the Stamp 2 Irish Residence Permit (IRP) card sent to the student’s Dublin address. The appointment itself takes up to 90 minutes and the IRP card is sent within 10 working days.

The length of time it takes to get an appointment depends on the availability of INIS appointments at any given time. Students can make an appointment here (for students residing in Dublin only - at 10 am and 2:30 pm Irish time are the best times to check) and here (for students residing outside of Dublin).

*Please note the during Level 5 COVID-19 government restrictions that INIS has temporarily closed to the public for first time registration appointments with effect from 23rd December 2020. Further updates on INIS re-opening will be posted here: here

Updates will be made available on the INIS website: http://www.inis.gov.ie/en/INIS/Pages/Home

6. If my classes will have some in-person elements to be attended on campus (for example, labs), what documents do I need to bring with me to show at the airport?

Non-EEA students arriving in the State must possess documentary evidence from their college/institution to show they are required to be physically present in the State for face to face classes or practical training. Failure to otherwise produce this at the point of entry, could result in a refusal of entry on public policy grounds or even a refusal of registration Students will also need a valid IRP card or visa, passport as well a letter from the Academic Registry stating that they are continuing their studies.

To get this letter from the Academic Registry, follow these steps:

  1. Log in to the portal
  2. Click on the 'My Student Record' tab
  3. You will be presented with a link to print a PDF version of the Immigration/Visa Letter

7. Can students who are not in Ireland and are unable to travel, but have their IRP cards expiring within the next 30 days apply for a renewal online from their own countries as well? If yes, what needs to be done?

No. To register with INIS, students have to be in the country. If a student is visa required and wishes to enter the country at a later date, they will need to apply for another visa. When students are making visa applications, they are advised to state the exact date they intend to arrive in Ireland. This is so that the visa can be post-dated to reflect that date to allow them enough time to enter the country and register with immigration i.e., if a student is applying for a visa now and intends to arrive in November 1st for example, they should state this on their application, so that a visa can be post-dated to be valid from November 1st.

Current Students

The following Notice was announced by INIS on December 22nd:

Minister announces further temporary extension of immigration permissions and the closure of the Burgh Quay Registration Office from 23 December 2020

This notice applies to Immigration and International Protection permissions to reside in the State that are due to expire between 21st January 2021 and 20th April 2021 and supplements all previous extension notices. This is the sixth, and expected to be the final, extension of permissions implemented since the outset of the pandemic.

In light of the uncertainties caused by the Coronavirus pandemic, COVID-19, the following notice applies to all persons with a current valid permission due to expire from 21st January 2021 to 20th April 2021, whether pursuant to domestic law or powers of the Minister, or Directive 2004/38/EC (Free Movement Directive).

All such permissions that are due to expire from 21st January 2021 - 20th April 2021 are automatically renewed by the Minister to the 20th April 2021. The renewal of permission is on the same basis as the existing permission and the same conditions attach. In relation to persons with existing permission under Directive 2004/38/EC (Free Movement Directive), the automatic renewal is subject to the requirement that the person is complying with the requirements of the Directive.

Any permission that was renewed by the previous notices which therefore has a new expiry date between 21st January 2021 and 20th April 2021 is automatically renewed by this notice until 20th April 2021.

All renewals in the Dublin area are now being processed online only and the system has been available for all applicants since 20 July 2020 at https://inisonline.jahs.ie, and renewal applications will continue to be accepted.

Please note that due to the recently introduced Covid 19 restrictions the Registration Office in Burgh Quay is closed from the 23 December 2020 until further notice. Customers with appointments for first time registrations are being contacted directly by the Immigration Service and they will be prioritised for appointments once the Registration Office can safely reopen.

Registrations outside of the Dublin area are processed by the Garda National Immigration Bureau through the Garda Station network. Information on the contact details for all the registration offices outside Dublin is available at: https://www.garda.ie/en/about-us/our-departments/office-of-corporate-communications/news-media/reopening-of-registration-offices.html.

*Please note, this notice applies to residency only and does not apply to travel and re-entry into Ireland. If students must travel without registering with immigration, there are implications to consider as outlined below*

8. Is the Irish Naturalisation and Immigration Service (INIS) office still open? Where can I find up to date immigration information for students?

During Level 5 COVID-19 government restrictions INIS has temporarily closed to the public for first time registration appointments with effect from 23rd December 2020. Further updates on INIS re-opening will be posted here: https://burghquayregistrationoffice.inis.gov.ie/ . Students with appointments for first time registrations are going to be contacted directly by the Immigration Service and they will be prioritised for appointments once the Registration Office can safely reopen

For students who have previously registered with INIS and wish to renew, you can do so online only. Please see more information here. The INIS renewal website can be found here.

Full updates and notices can be found on the INIS website here. INIS have also developed more extensive FAQs which can be found here.

If you have additional questions, contact the Global Room team: tcdglobalroom@tcd.ie

9. I am a student who has recently finished my course and awaiting my stamp 1G application. Does this extension apply to me? Can I continue to work 20 hours per week on my stamp 2?

Yes, we have confirmed that this does apply to students who have finished their course and still have a valid stamp 2. Students who have completed their course will still be permitted to work 20 hours per week while on a valid stamp 2 and while they await the processing of their stamp 1G application.

10. Can I travel out of Ireland on my automatically extended IRP even though my IRP may appear out of date?

The extension of residency permit notice applies to residency only and does not apply to travel and re-entry into Ireland.

As travel restrictions have been introduced in Ireland as well as various parts of the world in response to Covid-19, travel may not be possible at this time. It is not advised unless essential.

If you are visa-required and you travel with on an outdated IRP card, you will have to apply for a visa to re-enter Ireland regardless of the automatic extension.

Further updates can be found on the INIS website here.

See also HSE Guidelines on Essential travel: https://www2.hse.ie/conditions/coronavirus/travel.html

If you have additional questions, contact the Global Room team: tcdglobalroom@tcd.ie

11. I have returned to my home country due to concerns of Covid-19. Can I re-enter the country even if I have been out of Ireland for more than 3 months due to Covid-19?

Yes, as long as students have a valid stamp 2 on their IRP card on their return, and their reasons for leaving and returning were related to restrictions and measures due to COVID-19, they will be permitted to re-enter the country in September, even if they have been out of the State for longer than 3 months.

Further updates can be found on the INIS website here.

If you have additional questions, contact the Global Room team: tcdglobalroom@tcd.ie

12. I am currently in my home country (or considering returning to my home country), and I have not been able to register with INIS for my stamp 2 for the first time. I intend to return but my current permission expires before then, what do I do?

All non-EEA students arriving in the State, must possess documentary evidence from their college/institution to show they are required to be physically present in the State for face-to-face classes or practical training (from their School/Department). Failure to produce this at the point of entry, could result in a refusal of entry on public policy grounds or even a refusal of registration. Students will also need a valid IRP card or visa, passport as well a letter from Academic Registry stating that they are continuing their studies.

To get this letter from the Academic Registry, follow these steps:

  1. Log in to the portal
  2. Click on the 'My Student Record' tab
  3. You will be presented with a link to print a PDF version of the Immigration/Visa Letter

Visa-required students who have left the country with their Irish Residence Permit (IRP) expiring before their return (e.g. if they have been given permission until May) will have to re-apply for a study visa to re-enter the country. Please mention on your application that you are a student and wish to return to continue your studies after having to leave Ireland due to the pandemic.

Full updates and notices can be found on the INIS website

If you have additional questions, contact the Global Room team: tcdglobalroom@tcd.ie

14. My immigration permission/Irish Residence Permit (IRP) expired while the INIS office was closed. What can I do?

For students who have previously registered with INIS and wish to renew, you can do so online only. Please see more information here. The INIS renewal website can be found here.

If you have additional questions, contact the Global Room team: tcdglobalroom@tcd.ie

15. I have recently graduated and am looking for employment. I’m currently in the process of applying for the Stamp 1G, can I still work full time on my stamp 2 while waiting for my stamp 1G

No, students on a stamp 2 IRP card are not permitted to work full time (40 hours per week) after September 30th. Students will have to wait for the status of their stamp 1G application. More information can be found here

If you have additional questions, contact the Global Room team: tcdglobalroom@tcd.ie

16. I recently graduated and want to apply for a Stamp 1G (Third level graduate scheme). How do I go about applying for it?

Students can now apply for the Stamp 1G by using the INIS online renewal system, if you live in Dublin (this does not apply to students who live outside of Dublin). More information on how to apply can be found here

Full updates and notices can be found on the INIS website. Further general information on the 3rd Level Graduate Scheme is here: https://www.tcd.ie/Careers/students/international.php

If you have additional questions, contact the Global Room team: tcdglobalroom@tcd.ie

17. I am a final year Non-EU student, who has gone home for the rest of the semester due to the college closure, but I would like to come back and apply for the stamp 1G or the Third level graduate scheme. Is this still possible?

Yes, you can still apply for the stamp 1G through the online renewal system as outlined above, as long as if you are still on a valid stamp 2 when you return to Ireland (valid IRP).

18. I am currently back in my home country and have recently finished my course. Can I apply for the stamp 1G from my home country?

INIS has provided a temporary measure for applying for students who wish to apply from the stamp 1G but have been in their home country due to Covid-19 restrictions. Please see more details on the temporary measure here

19. I have been studying remotely from my home country for most of (or all) my final year/postgraduate year, can I still apply for stamp 1G?

Yes, you can apply for the stamp 1G even if most of your study for this year was done remotely. For final year students, you may renew online from Dublin as outlined above. Students who have studied remotely from their home country for the whole duration of thier course (on year postgraduate student) will have to register in person, so will need to come to Ireland to register in person.

For students currently studying remotely, they can apply for the Third level Graduate programme (1G), when they successfully complete their course (summer 2021) and will have to provide the following documentation:

  • Letter from their higher education institution stating that they were a student for the academic year 2020/2021;
  • Letter from their higher education institution stating that this course was taught 100% remotely, and that they were not required to attend classes in person.
  • Letter from the relevant awarding body or institution that they have achieved the award for which they were enrolled as a student.

In addition to the above criteria, students who will have completed a one year Masters with an Irish higher education institution, and were unable to travel to Ireland to register their permission as a student in the State (for academic year 2020/2021), will have to travel to Ireland prior to the issuance of their final results in order to register their permission and qualify for the Third Level Graduate Programme. These students should delay their arrival until the Autumn, shortly before they receive their results.

When students are returning to Ireland for essential academic purposes, or to avail of the Third Level Graduate Programme in the Autumn, it is extremely important that they comply with all current public health requirements and the key principles adopted by the Higher Education sector outlining the procedures in place to safely manage international students’ arrival into Ireland to study, which were introduced as a result of Covid-19.

More information and updates can be found here

If you have additional questions, contact the Global Room team: tcdglobalroom@tcd.ie

20. Now that most students would be converting into a Stamp 1G, what is the type of private health insurance that is acceptable?

For converting to the Stamp 1G permission, as long as insurance meets INIS requirements (see here), it should suffice. As moving on to a Stamp 1G (or extending a stamp 2) would be considered a type of renewal, students will have to purchase Health Insurance from an Irish company.

Here is a sample list of insurance companies:

More information on INIS Health Insurance requirements can be found here.