FAQ Study Visa (D4)

Have you thought about studying at one of the best European universities? Portugal has well-known and reputable universities for any expat to study.

Last Updated on October 19, 2022 by Laila Oliveira

Will I be able to apply for the Portuguese Study Visa (D4 Visa)?

It depends.

The Study Visa, as a rule, is aimed at foreign citizens who intend to enroll in a University or, as it’s called in Portugal, a Polytechnic Education Institution, which may be private or public.

Be aware that the study period must be greater than 1 (one) year.

After collecting the required documents (including proof of enrollment at the educational institution), it will be possible to apply for the visa.

What is procedure to apply for the Study Visa?

As a rule, the procedure is divided into two stages.

The first step must be carried out in the applicant’s country of residence, more specifically at the local Consulate of Portugal or VFS Global.

VFS Global is an official representative of the Consulate of Portugal, which functions as an administrative center.

The second stage will only be carried out after the granting of the visa (which will be attached to the passport), and must proceeded directly in Portugal, at the Foreigners and Borders Service (SEF).

Can I apply for a visa while in Portugal?

Nowadays it’s possible, however, for greater security, we recommend that the procedure starts in the country of residence, before arriving in Portugal.

With the change in Portuguese legislation in 2017, the procedure for obtaining a residence permit has been simplified.

Now expats, even entering Portugal without the Study Visa, simply need to present the required documents to prove they are able to apply for Residence Permit, such as:

  • University enrollment
  • Proof of entry into the country legally
  • Criminal Record certificate

It is important to emphasize that this procedure can only be carried out if the citizen enters Portugal in a legal way.

How to choose your University?

The choice of University certainly depends on the candidate’s personal preferences.

As a rule, all Portuguese Universities are of excellent quality and some of which stand out in certain areas of study. Ex .: The University of Coimbra is a renowned institution in the area of law, as well as the University of Minho in the area of engineering.

Some of the most well-known and well-regarded universities in Portugal are:

  • Coimbra University
  • University of Lisbon
  • University of Porto
  • Minho’s University

It is worth remembering that the value of tuition varies according to the choice of the university, as well as the course to be followed.

What is the level of education in Portugal?

The level of education in Portugal is certainly excellent, both in public and private institutions.

According to the QS World University 2021 ranking, recognized as one of the most prestigious international rankings, the University of Lisbon along with Porto University leads in the 357th place, and is among the best universities in the world, as well as:

  • Universidade Nova de Lisboa – 428th position
  • University of Coimbra – 431st position

Do I need to prove income to study in Portugal?

Yes, you must demonstrate that you have means of subsistence for a period of at least 1 (one) year.

According to the Foreign Law, means of subsistence is based on the monthly value of 665.00€ (net) per person (currently 2021).

If you intend to bring a family member to Portugal, this amount must be increased by 30% or 50% depending on the family member.

Are there courses in English to apply for a study visa?

Yes, but not all universities have courses taught 100% in English.

The candidate will be able to access the website of the chosen university for further details.

Here are some good examples:

  • Master in Biomedical Engineering at Porto University
  • Energy for Sustainability Initiative at University of Coimbra

How to apply for University accommodation?

Some universities offer a range of  accommodation bedrooms, which aim to accommodate so  students, professors and researchers.

However, each university has its application guidelines.

For more information, follow the links of some of the colleges that have residency:

  • Coimbra’s University
  • niversity of Lisbon
  • University of Porto
  • Minho’s University

After finishing the course, will I be able to stay in Portugal?

It depends.

According to article 122 of the Foreigner Law, the University student who has completed the course may profit from a 1 (one) year period to search for a jobs in their area of study or create a company in Portugal, compatible with your qualifications.

By doing so, the student will be able to change his / her Residence Permit type, from the student to a job or business related visa.

For example, a student who has completed a Master’s Degree in Law can advocate in Portugal and change his / her residence permit.

What is the Erasmus+ program?

Erasmus+ is an academic exchange program from the European Union that seeks to support University and Master’s students, and also PhD candidates, making it possible to complement their studies at educational institutions in other partner countries.

The requirements depend on the country in which the university is established.

The student can even apply for a scholarship.

Some very important tips:

  • The student’s grades may be taken into account for the candidates selection in the Erasmus+ program.
  • having a good resume can be a plus.

Having a multicultural study environment can certainly improve knowledge.

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