Argentina’s educational system is considered the best in South America. Not surprisingly, students and young professionals from all over the world choose to enroll in Argentina’s many universities. The combination of quality education and the rich culture offers an unparalleled opportunity for students desiring a unique experience both in their studies and daily life.
Each year Argentina receives tens of thousands of foreign students into their universities and study programs. Given this large influx of foreign students, the official procedure and documentation necessary to study abroad rarely presents major problems or difficulties. However, a common question of potential or future study abroad students is whether they will need a student visa to live and study in Argentina. The answer to this question depends on a few factors: the student’s country of origin, the planned duration of their stay, and sometimes, the particular type of program the student enrolls in. The last two factors are often interrelated.
The first thing to find out is whether citizens of a student’s country of origin are required to have a visa to enter Argentina. Note for most countries a visa is not required prior to entry into Argentina, rather a 90 day tourist visa is issued at customs upon arrival. Furthermore, for students coming from these countries a student visa may not be necessary if their course of study will last less than 90 days. If duration or program requirements dictate that a the student obtain a student visa, the student will need to visit the Dirección National de Migraciones. At the DNM they will need to present the inscription certificate of the participating university, passport, and a certificate attesting that the student does not have a criminal record over the past 3 years for students from MERCOSUR countries (Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay, Bolivia, Columbia, Peru, Ecuador, Chile, and Venezuela). Students from outside MERCOSUR countries must provide these same documents as well as proof of the absence of a criminal record for the past 5 years and a legalized birth certificate.
For students wishing to study in Argentina from countries that are required to have a visa to enter the country, the process is slightly more complex. First, the Argentine institution at which these students wish to study must request a form from the DNM that will authorize these students to come into the country. Once this has been obtained, the student will then need to visit the Argentine consulate in their country and present proof of their identity, absence of a criminal record over the past 5 years, a legalized birth certificate, as well as additional evidence of their ability to support themselves in Argentina.
In general, this process proceeds smoothly and many university programs will provide detailed instructions to students if a student visa is necessary for their course of study. For more information we suggest you check out the DNM’s website or the Argentine consulate in your country. Additional information about Argentina and studying her can be found here.