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Types of Irish Visas

Are you looking for a visa to enter, live, travel, or work in Ireland? We are immigration experts and assist our clients in submitting visa applications of the highest quality. Read more about the types of Irish visa that you can apply for and how we can help you.

Call us on (+353) 061 518 025 for immediate support and advice with your immigration case. We can speak over the phone or online.

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    What are the types of Irish visa?

    If you wish to come to Ireland and you are from a non-EEA country, you will be required to apply for a visa in advance of your visit.

    The visa application process can be complex and the requirements, fees, waiting times, and required documents will vary based on the specific category suited to your circumstances.

    Like most countries, Irish visa applications are not straightforward. They can be complex, requiring significant amounts of information to be submitted and any errors on your application can result in costly delays.

    Visas in Ireland are divided into two categories: short stay (C Visas) or long stay (D visas). Within the short stay category, there are tourist visas and short family visit visas.

    Within the long stay category, applicants may apply for business, work, student, spouse, family, and retirement visas.

    IAS is proud of its qualified and experienced immigration lawyers and our proven track record in supporting our clients in achieving their goals.

    We are ready to take your call on (+353) 061 518 025 or an inquiry via the online chat function. We offer our expert legal services remotely and can arrange appointments with you over the phone or video call to discuss your case.

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    Short stay Irish visas

    Please see below for a full list of short stay Irish visas and information on who should apply for each type. It is important to note that each category contains its own restrictions and conditions of entry.

    Visa category Who is this visa for?
    Tourist visa Allows tourism or study for up to 90 days
    Business visa Entry for purpose of business (90 days) or work (14 days or fewer)
    Family or friends visa Allows visits to family or friends for up to 90 days
    Conference or event visa Attend a conference, symposium, or event and stay up to 90 days
    Employment visa With approval from the Atypical Working Scheme Division, allows for short-term employment
    Exam visa Sit an exam required as part of your employment or course of study
    Internship (paid) Some forms of paid internships
    Internship (unpaid) Some forms of unpaid internships
    Join ship visa Visa category for seafarers to join a ship leaving the country
    Marriage visa Allows for travel to marry an Irish-based partner
    Medical treatment visa Entry for medical treatment
    Performance or tournament visa Allows for individuals to stage a performance or take part in some competitions
    Training visa Entry for short training courses
    Non-EEA and non-Swiss travelling with EU/Swiss family For relevant family members

    Overview of short stay Irish visas

    Short Stay Visas

    There are a number of visa types within the short stay category. All of these visas are issued for 90 days or less. There are restrictions attached to each visa and you should take care to abide by the conditions of entry.

    Tourist visa

    This visa allows visitors to travel to Ireland and stay for up to 90 days for the purposes of tourism and some short-term study courses.

    You are not permitted to undertake work (either paid or unpaid) or use publicly funded services.

    Depending on your country of origin and nationality, you may be able to use the Tourist visa to move between Ireland and the UK.

    Business visa

    You may travel to Ireland for up to 90 days for some permitted business activities relating to your employment.

    The activities include attending meetings, negotiating or signing agreements or contracts, or working in some forms for 14 days or fewer.

    You may not work for longer than 15 days or rely on Irish public services (e.g., hospitals).

    Family or friends visa

    This visa category has been designed for non-Irish residents who have family or friends living in Ireland.

    The purpose of the visa is to allow individuals to visit for up to 90 days.

    As well as adhering to all conditions of short stay visas, it is also a requirement to demonstrate that you have strong ties to your country of origin and will not overstay your visa.

    Marriage visa

    If you wish to come to Ireland to marry your partner (or enter into a civil partnership), you may be eligible to apply for a marriage visa.

    There are specific eligibility criteria for who may apply for this visa. Before applying, you must first have received acknowledgement from the Registrar of Civil Marriages in Ireland confirming that you have submitted an official notification of intention to marry.

    Your partner must be an Irish citizen or have valid settlement status. You are not permitted to stay longer than 90 days, but you can apply for a Spouse visa.

    Long stay Irish visas

    Below is a list of the types of visa that allow eligible applicants to come to Ireland for a period of longer than 90 days.

    Study visa For individuals planning a course of study longer than three months
    Join a family member visa Allows for those wanting to live with a family member in Ireland for longer than three months
    Join your UK family member in Ireland For non-EEA nationals to join their UK national family member in Ireland
    Employment visa Allows for work in Ireland after obtaining an employment permit
    Employment (researcher) visa Those coming to Ireland to carry out research under a ‘hosting agreement’
    Employment (Van der Elst) visa Allows for non-EEA nationals employed by a company in a EU country
    Minister of religion visa Enables qualifying religious personnel to enter and work for up to three years
    Volunteer visa Allows eligible volunteers to work for up to two years
    Non-EEA and non-Swiss travelling with EU/Swiss family For relevant family members

    Overview of long stay Irish visas

    Long Stay Visas

    Long-stay visas have been designed for individuals who wish to come to Ireland for longer than 90 days. This category of visa encompasses student, family, partner, employment, and other forms of visa.

    Some applicants may be able to use time spent in Ireland on a long stay visa as part of their application for Irish citizenship.

    Study visa

    This visa is for non-EEA students who wish to come to Ireland for a period of study lasting longer than 90 days.

    If you wish to study in Ireland, you must secure your place in a full-time course on an eligible course. You will receive a Stamp 2 to add to your passport.

    It is possible to work in Ireland with some forms of Study visa.

    Join a family member visa

    For non-EEA individuals who wish to join their Irish family members, this may be an appropriate immigration route.

    It is a condition of stay that the Irish family members are either citizens or lawfully resident.

    This visa category can include family reunification cases, but is not relevant to EU citizens or applications from refugees or people granted some forms of humanitarian protection.

    Employment visa

    To apply for an employment visa, you must first obtain an employment permit from the Department of Jobs, Enterprise & Innovation.

    There are a number of different employment permits that you can apply for, including critical skills employment permits and other work permits.

    Minister of religion visa

    This visa enables eligible candidates to come to Ireland to undertake certain forms of religious work.

    It is usually granted for one year, and up to a maximum of three years. The role must match the criteria for Minister of religion work outlined in the immigration rules.

    It is possible to do some forms of voluntary work, study, and bring dependents (if eligible).

    Get in touch with our expert immigration lawyers to learn how to apply for a short stay visa in Ireland. Contact us

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      Other forms of Irish visas

      Although short stay and long stay visas are the most popular visa types in Ireland, there are a number of other visa categories with their own conditions of stay.

      British-Irish visa scheme Allows for Chinese and Indian nationals to use the Common Travel Area between Ireland and the UK
      Retirement visa Allows individuals with adequate financial savings to retire in Ireland
      Re-entry visa For children aged under 16 who do not have GNIB/IRP cards intending to leave and then return
      Transit visa Travelling through an Irish airport in transit
      Multiple-entry and single-entry visas For eligible applicants demonstrating a need for multiple-entry visas
      Working holiday programme Young people from eligible countries can work in Ireland for up to one year
      De facto partnership For applicants living in a marriage-like partnership with a long-term Irish partner
      Child dependent visa Allows entry for dependents of eligible visa applicants
      Critical Skills Employment Permit For highly skilled people undertaking eligible occupations in short supply
      Immigrant Investor Programme For eligible investors willing to make large financial investments in return for citizenship

      Overview of other Irish visas

      Some other popular forms of Irish visa include the following:

      British-Irish visa scheme

      This visa scheme is an agreement between Ireland and the UK which allows Chinese and Indian nationals to travel through the UK and Ireland through the Common Travel Area.

      It is for people who wish to travel under a Visitor or Tourist visa and have outlined their intentions to stay for less than 90 days.

      A requirement of the visa is that applicants demonstrate that they intend to leave the country after the expiration of their visa.

      Retirement visa

      This visa is for non-EEA citizens who wish to stay in Ireland for the purposes of retirement.

      The primary requirement of this visa is showing that you can support yourself throughout your retirement. For this reason, you must show evidence of an individual income of at least €50,000 per year.

      If you intend to apply as a couple, you must show a joint income of at least €100,000. If you are considered ‘ordinarily resident’ in Ireland, you may qualify for public healthcare.

      De facto partnership visa

      A de facto partnership refers to a relationship between two individuals that is akin to marriage. This visa allows the non-EEA partner to join their Irish-based partner.

      Applicants must demonstrate that they are in a genuine long-term relationship and are committed to one another. As well as this, they should provide evidence of having cohabited for at least two years.

      Critical Skills Employment Permit

      This employment permit is issued to eligible individuals from outside the EEA who are considered to be highly skilled or can provide evidence they will earn above a minimum threshold for their occupation.

      It is easier to apply for family reunification and residency if you are a holder of the critical skills employment permit. You may be able to apply for residency after holding the permit for two years.

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            Our Document Checking Package is a service for those who need to submit their application but choose to do so on their own but want help with ensuring their documents are in line with the requirements for the visa. Our immigration consultants will check your documents in this case.

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                Frequently Asked Questions

                It can be difficult to know where to start with some visa applications. They are often complex and time-consuming and any minor mistakes can result in delays in being able to travel to Ireland.

                Qualified and experienced immigration lawyers can help you with your visa application by ensuring that your application has no errors.

                As well as this, your lawyer can ensure that you have all the necessary documents to submit with your application.

                For more information, contact IAS on (+353) 061 518 025 or use the online chat function to speak to one of our friendly advisers.

                There are a number of routes towards living legally in Ireland. If you are an EU or UK citizen, you do not need a visa to live and work in Ireland.

                If you are from outside the EEA, you will need to apply for the appropriate category of Irish visa. After holding legal residency in Ireland for at least five years, you may be eligible to apply for Irish citizenship.

                If you have Irish relatives, you may be able to claim Irish citizenship through birth or descent. Alternatively, you may be able to apply for Irish citizenship through marriage.

                The processing times for Irish visas depend on the type of visa that you are applying for.

                The length of time it takes to receive a decision on your application will vary, so it is recommended that you give yourself plenty of time to apply before your intended travel date.

                It is likely that a short stay application will be processed much faster than a long stay application.