For Non-EU/EEA nationals
If you are a citizen of non-EU and non-EEA country and you want to finance your studies independently with your own funds, you should apply directly to the selected Lithuanian university or college. As rule of thumb, admission to studies is carried out in July.
Foreign citizens planning to study in Lithuania are advised to start application procedure as early as possible as document recognition and subject equivalence identification procedures may take up to one month or longer.
Each university is a separate institution, therefore each one has a different set of requirements and admits students through separate application processes. The requirements and admission fees vary from university to university largely depending on the chosen study programme.
First you must choose a study programme.
Once you find the study programme you want to apply to and evaluate your academic background against the prerequisites of the study programme – you must directly contact the university that provides that programme.
The university then will give up-to-date instructions on their own application process.
You must submit all documents to the selected Higher Education institution before the deadline. Don’t forget to check the deadline for your study programme as it may differ from others.
Regardless of which Lithuanian higher education institution you select, you will need all or at least some of the following documents:
- a completed application form. Each Higher Education institution has its’ own form;
- Certificate of Education (including grades), recognised by the Centre for Quality Assessment in Higher Education for recognition necessity one should double-check with the university);
- Curriculum Vitae;
- a letter of motivation;
- a copy of your passport, certified by a Commissioner of Oaths;
- photographs (3 x 4 cm);
- a receipt proving that the application and tuition fees have been paid;
- bank statements demonstrating sufficient funds for study and living throughout the duration of your study.
Holders of foreign qualifications willing to study at Lithuanian higher education institutions must:
- Contact the Centre for Quality Assessment in Higher Education (SKVC) regarding academic recognition of foreign qualifications and grade conversion and evaluation of study subjects;
- Pass the Lithuanian language test (if the selected studies are conducted in the Lithuanian language and if the applicant has no proven record of language proficiency issued by competent authority (e.g., relevant documents issued by the embassy, municipality or the Lithuanian community officially registered in a foreign country);
- The pass/fail system used to test the knowledge of Lithuanian language is executed by the Department of Lithuanian studies at Vilnius University. The test is both oral and written. The cost of the test is 31.86 Euros;
On average, the cost of studies at an institution of higher education is approximately between 1 248 – 11 587 Euros per year for 1st cycle (Bachelor) studies, from 2 242 to 12 581 Euros per year for 2nd cycle (Master) studies (the total costs for studies are indicated, including both public and private universities). More information regarding study costs can be found here.
Full-time Master’s degree studies may be covered for the cost of the studies, up to a limit not exceeding the national standard study cost. A monthly scholarship and a grant covering the standard study cost is offered to nationals of the Republic of Armenia, the Republic of Belarus, Georgia, foreign citizens of Lithuanian origin, the Republic of Moldova, and the Republic of Ukraine, Republic of Azerbaijan, the People’s Republic of China, the State of Israel, Japan, the Republic of Korea.
- Candidate must be a national of one of the above mentioned countries. Foreigner of Lithuanian origin cannot hold the citizenship from one of EU or EEA country;
- Candidate must hold a bachelor’s degree;
- Candidate must have an official letter of acceptance or pre-acceptance for full-time Master’s degree studies or integrated studies programme from one of the Lithuanian higher education institutions;
- Candidate must have good knowledge of the Lithuanian, English or another language the study programme is conducted in (the minimum B2 level of command of the language of instruction according to the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages);
- A scholarship can be granted only once. A candidate, who has already got funding under this instrument, will not be eligible;
- A scholarship cannot be granted to a candidate who is studying or planning to study an international joint degree programme with a part of the studies (as mandatory mobility period) in the candidate’s home country.
Arrival and residence permits
After you are admitted and receive a confirmation letter from the educational institution you can apply for a document allowing you to legally stay in Lithuania.
If you intend to stay in Lithuania for less than a year, you can obtain a national visa. If you intend to stay to live for a longer period, you should choose a temporary residence permit (usually, it is issued for 1 year and may be replaced later). While your application for a temporary residence permit is considered, you can obtain a national visa.
As a rule, foreigners, wishing to study in Lithuania, usually come to Lithuania with a national visa for 1 year, and after the first year, they replace it with a temporary residence permit. In any case, a foreigner must firstly apply to the chosen educational institution and be admitted to the study program. After this, he/she will be able to apply for a residence permit upon receipt of a letter from the educational institution.
If you are abroad, you should apply for a national visa or a temporary residence permit to the Lithuanian Embassy, and if you are in Lithuania, you should apply for a temporary residence permit to the Migration department that provides services in the territory where you intend to reside.
In order to acquire a national visa (based on studies) one should submit following documents:
- Online application form (filled in by the student);
- A valid travel document;
- 1 35x45 mm colour photo;
- Online mediation letter (filled in by the institution where one will be studying);
- A document confirming that one has sufficient funds for his/her stay in Lithuania (e.g., a bank account statement) and (or)receives a regular income (e.g., a scholarship confirming document);
- A document confirming that a person has a health insurance (covering the period of one‘s stay in the Lithuania the amount of insurance being no less than EUR 30,000 and valid in all participant states of the Schengen Area).
Accommodation in Campuses
Most universities offer the opportunity of living in a hall of residence. Some of the halls of residence are situated near the universities, others – further away, so you will have to use public transport to get to the university. Most halls of residence have been renovated and equipped with modern appliances and internet access.
Residents of the hall usually share common showers and kitchen area. Students share their room with one or two others.
What should you expect from living in halls of residence in Lithuania?
- Most likely you will have to share a room with one or two other students;
- One shower/bath is intended for two or more rooms;
- You will be provided with the necessary furniture in the room – bed, wardrobe, table and chairs;
- There may be internet access in each room, however this is not included into the price;
- You will be able to make breakfast, lunch and dinner in a common kitchen area with other students. There is usually an equipped kitchen on each floor;
- Guests are not permitted to sleep in the halls of residence. When entering the premises, they will have to submit ID and register in the guest book;
- The residents of the halls must keep noise to a minimum during particular hours (usually from 11pm to 6am);
- Consumption of alcoholic beverages and/or psychoactive drugs is prohibited by law. Smoking is allowed in specified areas only;
- Please inquire your selected university about the conditions of your accommodation, applications for a room in a hall, prices and rules prior to your arrival.
Renting a flat
Shared accommodation doesn’t have to be the only option. If you prefer to live alone or more comfortably, you might also want to consider renting a place.
Rent prices in Lithuania can still be considered relatively low, compared with older EU member states. The rental price depends on the city, location within the city, the size of the flat and its condition, the duration of the agreement, type of heating and many other factors. In three largest cities (Vilnius, Kaunas, Klaipėda) average rental prices fall between 190-300 euros/month for a studio flat. A one and two-bedroom flat rent can be on average 340-450 Euros/month and 400-600 Euros/month respectively. The prices can differ significantly in different areas and cities. For example, in Vilnius city centre the price of a newly furbished studio flat can reach 500 Euros per month, a one and two-bedroom flat – respectively 600-1000 euros.
There are also plenty of possibilities to rent a room in a shared-flat. This is especially common among young people, and is a good way to make new friends, practice another language and have a cultural exchange.
You can search for flats and homes advertised online: Aruodas, Domoplius, Rebaltic. Alternatively, you can contact an agency (on the website of the Lithuanian Association of Real Estate Agencies you can find contacts of all the main real estate agencies that for a fee will find you a place to rent).
Registering as a resident
Each person who becomes a resident in Lithuania and/or upon changing his/her place of residence must declare it, i.e., he/she has to inform the local authorities about where he/she lives and how his/her place of residence has changed.
In terms of non-EU/EEA citizens, only those who reside in Lithuania with a permanent or temporary residence permit or with the Residence Card of a Family Member of the European Union Citizen permitting to reside in the country can declare their place of residence. Foreigners who are holders of a long-term (national visa) visa cannot declare their place of residence.
As of 22 March 2016, foreigners who had not declared their place of residence in Lithuania earlier, can do that at the Migration Office when collecting a certificate permitting temporary or permanent residence in the Republic of Lithuania (EU citizens) or a permit card to reside in the country (family members of the EU citizens). The Migration Office forwards the data to the Centre of Registers.
The place of residence shall be declared at the local municipal ward according to the person’s address upon arriving at the ward in person. It is important that declaring the place of residence at the address of premises, which belong to someone else by the right of ownership or lending, a permit of that person is needed (a permit is issued by signing the form obtained at the ward).
In order to study in Lithuania (to receive either a national visa or temporary residence permit), one will have to acquire a private medical insurance covering at least 30,000 EUR for national visa and 6,000 EUR for temporary residence permit and valid throughout the Schengen zone for the minimum period of one year. Here you may find a list of Lithuanian Insurers Association members (it is important to note that the insurer company does not necessarily have to be Lithuanian one).
Like many other European States Lithuania has put in place the compulsory health insurance (privalomasis sveikatos draudimas or PSD in Lithuanian) system which means that residents of Lithuania are obliged to obtain health insurance coverage (i.e. pay compulsory health insurance contributions).
PSD contributors have state-guaranteed free health care provision in state and municipal health care institutions (except where certain medical tests or procedures are not paid from the National Health Insurance Fund (Valstybinė ligonių kasa) budget) and private institutions that have concluded agreements with Territorial Health Insurance Fund (Teritorinė ligonių kasa). The individuals not covered with the compulsory health insurance are required to pay for health care services themselves.
Foreigners who are not considered as permanent residents of Lithuania (those with the Schengen visa, national (D) visa, temporary residence permit cannot be insured with PSD, except if they are employed, or have worked in Lithuania for 6 months and registered with the Labour Exchange after that). In 2019, the monthly PSD contribution is 38,74 EUR.
Working during/after studies
Working during studies
International students have the right to work while studying in Lithuania as long as they are enrolled in a Higher Education Institution and have acquired temporary residence permit. Students are allowed to work 20 hours per week in accordance with the legislation of Lithuania. During the official university holidays (summer), one may work 40 hours per week. PhD students may work 40 hours per week year-round.
Working after studies
Generally non-EU/EEA citizens need a work permit to be able to work in Lithuania but if one has acquired a university degree in Lithuania there is no such obligation. Recent graduates (up to 3 months after graduation) have a possibility to apply for a new temporary residence permit for 12 months to look for a job in Lithuania.