Your student visa is an official government document that temporarily authorizes you to be in the country you are traveling to, so providing the required documents needed to apply for a visa to the Education Abroad office in a timely manner is an important part of your study abroad application.
Student Visa Instructions for Kosovo
- All students who are planning to study abroad in Kosovo for a semester or longer must apply for a temporary residence permit in Kosovo.
- You will be informed of deadlines for submission of required documents by Study Abroad advisor, Maureen Shannon.
- You can contact Maureen Shannon ([email protected]) with any questions or concerns.
- You must submit all required documents to Maureen Shannon ([email protected])
- India and China are a few of the countries* whose citizens must ALSO apply for an entry visa before entering Kosovo in addition to applying for a temporary residence permit.
*To find out if you will need to apply for an entry visa for Kosovo, click here and choose your home country from the drop down list. If you are required to apply for a Kosovo entry visa see more information below.
Before Starting the Temporary Residence Process
- Make sure to complete your profile and application in the Compass. All students applying for study abroad in Kosovo must fill out a profile and application on the Compass database.
- Please make sure to upload a scanned copy of your passport to your profile.
- Prior to applying for study abroad, please make sure to check the expiration date on your passport. Visa approval requires that your passport be valid for a minimum of six months past the end date of your program. If necessary, you can apply to renew your passport through the local post office, or county clerk office.
- Upon acceptance in the program, you will receive an e-mail from the RIT Education Abroad office notifying you of your application status and providing instructions with next steps.
F.A.Q. For Temporary Residence in Kosovo
What type of visa will I need for study abroad in Kosovo?
Students who plan to study in Kosovo for a 16 week semester or longer must apply for a temporary residence permit.
If you are an international student and your citizenship requires an additional entry visa for Kosovo, you must also follow the entry visa instructions below. Entry visa applications must be filed at the nearest embassy or consulate office at least 3 months prior to your arrival.
You can also find more information on the Kosovo Embassy web site.
Do I follow the same temporary stay process if I am applying to the Summer in Kosovo program?
No, a temporary residence permit is not required for the 5 week Summer in Kosovo program.
International students applying to the Summer Program whose citizenship requires an entry visa for entry into Kosovo must follow the entry visa instructions below.
Does the RIT Education Abroad office help me with the temporary stay process?
Yes! Your study abroad advisor and RIT Kosovo staff will assist you with all of the requirements and paperwork.
What is the first step to get started?
Prior to departure, students are required to obtain the following and submit to the RIT Education Abroad office:
- Police background check from the residence where you have lived for the past three years, or your home country.
- Health insurance card
How do I obtain a police background check?
Contact the county sheriff, or town police department, where you have permanent residency. In most cases, you will pay a fee for the background check. If you live off campus and have established residency in Rochester, you can obtain a background check from the Monroe County Sheriff’s office.
Do I need to have the background check translated into Albanian language?
Yes. After you arrive in Kosovo, the staff will direct you to a notary office where you can have the background check translated. The fee is 15 - 20 Euros per page.
Do I need an apostille for the background check?
No, an apostille is not required.
What is the next step?
Once you obtain the police background check, please bring or mail the original background check paperwork and copy of your medical insurance card to study abroad advisor, Maureen Shannon in the RIT Education Abroad office (located in Global Village above Salsarita’s Cantina and Grill). Maureen will forward your documents to RIT Kosovo. The remaining documents will be completed after you arrive in Kosovo.
When will I submit my application?
You will submit your application to the authorities after you arrive in Kosovo. After you arrive, a staff member from RIT Kosovo will accompany you to the authorities to register your arrival and submit your temporary residence documents.
Will I need to surrender my passport?
No, students applying for the temporary stay permit in Kosovo will not need to surrender their passport.
What documents are required for the temporary residence permit in Kosovo application?
- Valid passport
- Completed application
- Letter of invitation (provided by RIT Kosovo)
- Confirmation of stay and/or residence in Republic of Kosovo (Provided by the landlord of your apartment in Kosovo)
- RIT Kosovo admission certificate (provided by RIT Kosovo)
- Proof of sufficient funds (bank account statement)
- Period of registration (provided by RIT Kosovo)
- Police background check (obtained in USA or home country)
- Copy of medical insurance card (submitted prior to arrival) (You must also bring your original insurance card with you to Kosovo)
When will I pay the application fee?
You will pay an application fee of 50 Euros when you submit your application in Kosovo, or approximately $60.00 USD. The payment must be made in cash. You can withdraw the funds from a local ATM machine.
Are there any other fees related to the temporary residence process?
No, you will only pay the application fee and translation fee for submission of your temporary residence permit application.
How long does it take to receive approval of my temporary residence application?
Processing time for your temporary residence permit application is approximately 4 - 5 weeks. The RIT Kosovo staff will assist you throughout this process.
When will I receive my temporary residence permit?
You will receive your temporary residence permit ID card once the review process is complete.
What happens after temporary residence approval is issued?
Once you receive your temporary residence permit ID card, you should keep that with you at all times, along with your passport.
F.A.Q. for Entry Visa
(Required for some international students depending on their home country. To find out if you will need to apply for an entry visa for Kosovo, click here and choose your home country from the drop down list. If you are required to apply for a Kosovo entry visa you will need to apply for it at the consulate office in New York City. NOTE: You should start the process immediately upon approval of your study abroad application.)
Why do I need to apply for two visas?
The required visa for students studying for a semester or longer is Temporary Residence Permit in Kosovo. However, the temporary residence permit application is not submitted until after students arrive in country. Because your citizenship requires you to have an entry visa in order to enter the country, you must apply for a Kosovo entry visa, and then submit the official temporary stay visa paperwork after you arrive.
What documents are required for the Kosovo entry visa?
Students applying for an entry visa to enter Kosovo are required to submit the following documents. Your study abroad advisor will meet with you to review the list of documents and answer questions about the process. IMPORTANT NOTE: Applicant must provide two copies of all documents.
- Application form
- Valid passport
- Recent passport photo (35mm x 45mm) - no older than one month
- Documents indicating the purpose of the journey (RIT Kosovo will provide a letter of invitation).
- Proof of address (provided by your landlord if staying in an off campus apartment. For RIT Kosovo on-campus apartments, RIT Kosovo will provide proof of housing letter).
- Financial document (bank account statement) indicating you have sufficient funds to pay your expenses for the duration of your stay in Kosovo.
- Confirmation of medical insurance valid throughout the Republic of Kosovo (letter from your insurance provider verifying that your insurance will provide international coverage).
- Information enabling an assessment of the applicant’s intention to leave the territory of the Republic of Kosovo before the expiration of the visa (round trip airline ticket).
- Copy of your RIT student health insurance card.
- Visa application fee - only for students who are 24 years old or older (the fee is 40 Euros).
If applying in person, the fee is payable via credit card or debit card. If sending payment by mail with your application, visa fee must be made directly to the bank account of the Consulate General of the Republic of Kosovo in New York. Please contact the study abroad advisor for more information on this process.
What is the next step?
Once you have collected all of your paperwork, you should prepare to submit your documents to the General Consulate of the Republic of Kosovo in New York City. The Consulate office is located on Second Avenue in Manhattan. You can find information about the Kosovo Consulate on the embassy web site here.
Is it required that I visit the consulate in person?
You can schedule an appointment and submit your application in person. Alternatively, the staff at RIT Kosovo can submit a request to the Ministry in Kosovo asking for approval to submit your application by mail. This may take some time, so please make this request as soon as possible.
How long does it take for the entry visa to be approved?
The entry visa takes approximately 15 working days for approval.
Will I need to surrender my passport?
Yes, you will be required to send your passport and a copy of your I-20 to the Kosovo Consulate office. Please make sure to bring a copy of your I-20, and do not send the original. The RIT Education Abroad office will give you a return federal express air bill for return of your passport.
Will I receive my entry visa before I depart?
You cannot enter Kosovo without your entry visa. Therefore, it is important to apply as soon as possible and allow enough time for the visa to be approved before you depart.
When should I submit my temporary stay application?
If you are studying in Kosovo for a semester or longer, you will submit your application after you arrive in Kosovo. A staff member from RIT Kosovo will assist you with completing the required paperwork.
How long will it take to get temporary residence permit approval?
Once you submit your Temporary residence permit application in Kosovo, the processing time is approximately 4 - 5 weeks.