Tag Archives: UK

What Entrepreneur Visa Options are Available to Set Up a Business In the UK

Have you been looking into what the visa options are to start a business in the UK?
Migreat spoke to Seedcamp, a London based pan-European accelerator funded by a group of 30 investors, about visa options and what is important to know about immigration before moving to London to start a company. Here’s a recap of the podcast.

What are the main things a foreign entrepreneur needs to know about UK visas & immigration? [Minute 4.09]
  • You have more options than just the Entrepreneur visa: Investor, Graduate Entrepreneur, Prospective Entrepreneur, Exceptional Talent visas are options for you to consider.
  • People should think about their visa choices strategically and about the long term. Migreat recommends that you always ask for expert advice from regulated experts – it will save you time and money.

How to make your choice between all visa options? [Min 5.45-6.30 & Min 8.50-11]
To make a solid and informed choice, Migreat recommends you consider:

  • your current visa situation
  • the capital you have access too
  • your plans and the time you want to spend in the UK

A better deal for the Entrepreneur visa? [Min 7.25]
If you are accepted into Seedcamp or another endorsed incubator in the UK – you have to show £50K in capital to apply to the Entrepreneur Visa.

Make sure you get the paperwork right. 
[Min 13.30]
Most applications are refused because of paperwork mistakes. Understand that the UKVI judges your application by the paperwork you provide. They will not typically meet you or make a google search around how well you are doing with your business.

Immigration experts are big time (and life )savers in this regard:
Consider hiring a solicitor if you want to save time, money and minimise risks to get refused with your application.

The service of an immigration solicitor fluctuates in prices[Min 17.21]
Check what is included in the price and if it is a hourly rate or a package.
Always make sure that your immigration solicitor has the credentials and experience with the visa you are applying for. [Min 22.25]
It is an investment that is worth it. At Migreat, we strive to match foreigners with a solicitor that speaks the language, understands where you are coming from and has done similar work in the past successfully.

Resources: Migreat immigration wizard to check your visa options; and Migreat guideline of the different entrepreneur visa around the world.

Where International Students to Europe are From

How many migrants come to Europe to study each year? Migreat dug into the data about Europe’s five major education markets and has summed it up in what we think is a beautiful infographic.

Infographic Students to Europe v2-01-01-01

Main circles – Top 10 country of origin
The above infographic depicts the top 10 countries of origin for international students for each of the five major study abroad destinations in Europe.

Each circle represents a country, from the least popular of the five European countries (Spain attracts just 1.5% o international students globally) to the most attractive (the UK attracts 11% of all international students).

The bars on the edge of a circle represent the international student country of origin. The size of the bar is proportional to the volume of international students from that country compared to other nationalities for that single education hub.

You can spot a few countries like China, Morocco, Germany and  Italy – which are major sources of international students to Europe.

Bottom bars – Absolute volumes of International Students to Europe
The bars at the bottom put these proportions in perspective by their absolute values. For example, there are almost 8 times more international students in the UK than in Spain.

Comparing volumes of international students from one country to another instead of nationalities enables everything to be put into perspective.

For example, Indian students are only in the top 10 for the UK. Indians do not appear to be moving to other European hubs in significant numbers to study.

Still, from an absolute numbers perspective, there are more Indians studying abroad in the UK (almost 30,000) than Moroccans (first country of origin of international students to France) studying abroad in France (28,000 approx).

Future of International student immigration to Europe?
With immigration rules for international students in the UK changing and tightening, the volumes and the countries of origin for international students will likely be affected.

Will Indian students start studying in France after the French government confirmed to offer a Post-study work visa for Indians of two years? Or will they move to Germany where the Government is proactively looking to attract Indian workers with a job employment platform built for them to find work in Germany?

What is certain, is that continental Europe has set goals to attract more international students to its universities and for this, they have laid down attractive offers:

Need help with your student visa application? Ask online to Migreat Immigration experts.

UK Work Visa Rule change: migrant worker must earn £35,000 or more by next April 2016

Migrants with UK work visas will have to earn at least £35,000 or more to be able to apply to stay in the UK as permanent resident after April 6, 2016.

UK Visa Application

Immigrants with Tier 2 work visas will only be able to apply for indefinite leave to remain (also called permanent residence) if they meet the threshold of the £35,000 annual salary.


The new rules targets migrants under the Tier 2 (General) visa category and Tier 2 (Sportsperson) visa categories having stayed five years in the UK, and applying for indefinite leave to remain (ILR). The £35,000 earning requirement will not apply to anyone in an occupation that is on the shortage occupation list or to scientists and researchers in PhD level occupations.


Migrants who do not meet the new minimum income threshold now have less than 12 months until the new immigration rules come into force to find a solution if they want to continue to work in the UK. Tier 2 migrants paid below £35,000 applying for ILR after April 2016 will need to either find another visa with which to stay in the UK.

Workers who are not earning enough to apply for settlement will be allowed to stay in the UK for six years in total. They will then be required to leave the UK. They won’t be able to apply for another Tier 2 visa until they have competed a 12 month ‘cooling off’ period outside the UK.  Source: UK Parliament Research Briefings.

Sectors that will suffer most from the new rule are education and healthcare. It is expected that the number of non-European Union/EEA nationals and their dependants granted permanent residence each year will be reduced from 60,000 to 20,000 with this new measure ; and that around 16% of Tier 2 migrants would no longer qualify for permanent settlement due to the salary threshold.

The Royal College of Nursing has warned that up to 3,365 nurses currently working in the UK may have to leave the UK due to the salary requirement.

This measure will not apply to

  • People who have/had a Tier 2 (General) visa to do a job on the shortage occupation list, or to do specified PhD level jobs in science or research.
  • People who have a Tier 2 (Minister of Religion) or (Intra-Company Transfer) visa.

If you are on a Tier 2 visa and would like assistance applying for indefinite leave to remain (ILR), Migreat can connect you with a solicitor/lawyer who is an expert on immigration by visiting this migreat.com page dedicated to ILR applications.

Applying to a sponsorship Licence in the UK: Migreat Guidelines

A simple step-by-step guide to help you handle the sponsorship application for employers applying to the Tier 2 sponsorship licence.

What does it take?

To apply to the sponsorship licence, it will take you a bit of time to read and understand the rules (1), a bit of hassle to gather the right documents and having them certified (2), a bit of internet connection to fill out the online form by UKBA (3), and a lot of patience (count two months) to wait for the sponsorship to be approved (4)


1 – Read the guidance
It is not just an advice; it is necessary: read the whole sponsorship guidance and know it by heart. It will save you a lot of time paradoxically.

What’s in the Guidance? You will find information on

  • why the sponsorship licence is a tedious process. UKVI is outsourcing to your employer the authority and responsibility to play the Border Control Officer. Hence why forms are so specific, checks systematics and why officers are likely to come to your office to check them.
  • what you will need to apply: you will need documents that are specific to your organisation legal status (startup or ltd or charity) + information on fees + and will learn about responsibilities of your HR.
  • What kind of sponsorship you can have and want. There are two different kind of sponsorship that defines the type of migrant worker the company is allowed to hire. Tier 2 is for full-time work and generally for managers or senior workers. Tier 5 is for temporary workers, young people and has stricter rules on the time the worker can legally stay in the UK. You will also have to signal if you want unrestricted or restricted COS (if you are looking to hire foreigners already in the UK or living outside the UK)
  • what is a valid job position: not all jobs on the job market are accessible to foreigners. The job must correspond to a job description, SOC code and a minimum salary listed in the appendix.

Once you have read the guidelines, I would advise you to put down all the questions you have left to be answered by a solicitor or on www.migreat.com to clarify any doubts you have. You really don’t want to end up two months later after having applied and paid with a refusal later for a schoolboy error. Like asking for an unrestricted CoS or having a 3 pages document signed certified but without the number of pages indicated as certified. Documents
2 – Gather the documents
In the guidelines, it is written that only 4 documents needs to be sent (all A rated docs compulsory and B rated documents that are relevant and C rated to complete). From immigration solicitors experience, Migreat advises to have more documents ready and sent for a simple fact: if the case-worker find a document they don’t recognise as valid they can swap it for another one that is valid.

How do you like it? Original or copycat?

Take extra care in having them certified the right way, by the right person, and in the way described in the guidelines. If your certifier is certifying a document of 10 pages, make sure he/she includes the exact number of pages that are certified and that the document is bundle properly.

Pick the Right Office Guy

Assign who is going to play chief border control at the office (authorising Officer and Key contact) – if you have an HR that is usually the person that it will end up being in charge.

The Home Office might pop at your office for an interview of the Authorising officer. If you are that person you want to make sure you are ready to answer their question, have the guidelines in mind and documents at hand.
3 – Fill the online application
You can start the online application as soon as you want and save it to complete later. Migreat advises to start the application as soon as you are finished reading the guidelines for two reason:

– At the end of the form, you will be provided with a list of documents you will need to include in your application. That is again a nice and useful reminder.

– The online application also questions the specifics of your application. It will help you double-check your understanding of the guidelines.

Pretty much like an exam, it is a good exercise to realise how much you rock at knowing the rules by heart.

4 – And when ready: Pay & Wait
If there is one thing that has been made fairly easy and straighfoward, it is probably that.money


The decision on your sponsorship licence will come in 6 to 8 weeks after applying. If helped by a solicitor, you can get it much faster returned.

Being pro-active about your application is one main criteria of success: emailing, phoning and having other documents ready to be sent will significantly increase your chances to get your application processed faster and be successful.

Nevertheless, there is nothing simple and automatic with application to the UKVI, each case is considered individually.

If you have technical questions, Migreat can help refer you to immigration  experts or you can visit Migreat visa and immigration forum. People have various experiences with the UKVI, and you can never think that your situation is exactly like the one of your friend.

(This blog post follows a previous blog post on what jobs and companies qualify for the sponsorship licence for foreign workers in the UK)

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Do I really need to hire a solicitor for my UK Visa?

When it comes to applying for a visa, there is much information to collect, paperwork to get done and questions to be answered. You may feel confused by all of the application forms and official guidelines.

Rightly so: applications are personal, differ from one case to another, and the information available is frequently not up to date and too general. This is why, in some case, it might be a good idea to enlist the services of an immigration expert to assist you in applying for a visa.


Here are the 5 reasons why Migreat would advise you to call and pay for an immigration solicitor.

  1. Save time

If your case is fairly straightforward, you will probably be able to manage things on your own. However, in most cases, people hire the services of an immigration lawyer because it saves a lot of time. On average, It will take you two to four weeks to pull together your first visa application with the correct (original) documents if it is not your only job.

A solicitor can help you reduce this time to about a week – and even faster if you have all documentation at hand.

  1. Avoid clerical errors

By hiring an immigration lawyer, you are significantly lowering the risks of having your application refused due to a mistake on a form.

Regulated immigration solicitors know the paperwork, appeal processes and where to find the most up to date rules. What’s more, an experienced immigration solicitor will be familiar with the usual mistakes and pay greater attention to details that they know are important to case-workers reviewing applications. They will be able to avoid common ‘schoolboy’ errors and even decrease back and forth by asking for more documents that help support your application while at the same time double checking the latest rules and updates from fellow experts.

  1. Support with communications to UKVI and speeding the process

You might be asked for more documents and evidence from the UKVI. Often, these requests needs to be answered in seven days. Or you might be visited by the UKVI at your office for more information and a general formal interview if you are an employer. In these cases, immigration solicitors are your most useful resource.

An immigration expert will be able to draft your communication letters to the UKVI, or even speak on your behalf. If you are applying for an entrepreneur visa or a sponsorship licence, an immigration solicitor will prepare you for the interview with the UKVI. Finally, if the process takes longer than expected, a good immigration solicitor will be able to expedite your application and facilitate the process if she/he has reasonable grounds to think the process is being delayed.

  1. They have a feel for what is best for you NOW.

Immigration rules are officially changed twice per year in the UK – Once in April and once in October. However, sometimes minor changes happen in between due to abuse or imminent security risks. Changes like these are never easy to handle concretely, and sometimes the new rule leave room for confusion and do not address all particular cases in a straightforward fashion.

Immigration solicitors are expert at interpreting these changes and digging for more information. Better yet, experienced solicitors have a network to rely on to gather more informal information and a gut feel that will help navigate the new rules and advise you on what it means for your application.

  1. An investment for the future

Hiring a solicitor is a worthy investment if you are serious about moving to the UK on a long term basis. Once you have worked with an immigration solicitor, you can rely on them to be there for you in the future. Either for the renewal of your visa or for the immigration of your family members, you have someone you trust that you can call. Moreover, by working with you on your first application, they have enough information to help you better and at a faster pace next time.

The benefits for you are mutual: you now know prices and how the solicitor can assist you best. They know your immigration history from the start and will be able to keep you informed about changes within your category that affect your rights, daily life or future in the UK.

British Passport in the pocket

These are the five main reasons you might want to consider hiring an immigration solicitor in the UK. It has been said that a good lawyer can be worth his or her weight in gold and a poor one will add to your problems. So choose wisely and pick someone you trust to handle your case or ask Migreat for help choosing an immigration expert that fits your needs, budget and situation – this is what Migreat does best.

Citizenship for Sale

Henley’s Partners lavish annual Forum provides wealthy investors and high-net worth individuals with the latest information on the next frontier of wealth management: the acquisition of a second passport also called citizenship by investment.

Dolder Hotel Teaser

On the first week of May 2015, 200 people composed of global leaders like the Prime Minister of Malta and the UNHCR representative for Refugees converged on the Dolder Hotel in Zurich to discuss the relatively new and growing market for citizenship by investment schemes that offer high-net-worth individuals more security over their wealth. Migreat was there. Here are four main take-aways on the current status of citizenship by investment schemes.

1. A growing number of citizenship and/or residence by investment schemes are available

Islands of the Caribbean and of the Mediterranean are not the only ones offering the possibility for rich investors to become the holder of two passports. The conference introduced Portugal, the UK, Spain and Canada as countries that have introduced or have current processes for investors to acquire residency and citizenship. Here is a quick look at four investor programs that provide access to 172 countries in the world without the need for a visa to enter.

Portugal offers a Golden Residence Permit Program to individuals investing in Portugal either by

  • transferring capital of a minimum value of €1,000,000
  • acquiring real estate of a minimum value of €500,000
  • creating ten new jobs

And you only need to spend seven days per year in Portugal, after which you can become eligible for citizenship after six years.

Similarly, Spain offers three options to investors (capital transfer in a company or Spanish debt, investment in real estate of €500,000 or creation of a business) with less strict requirements for entrepreneurial investors starting a business (the business only needs to be recognised as “innovative, creating employment and of general interest to Spain”). The program is generous in the sense that it provides residency to wealthy investors and their families straightaway without the need to stay a minimum of days in Spain, provides access to the Schengen area and ease the possibility to apply for citizenship five years later.

The United Kingdom continues welcoming wealthy investors after having raised the minimum threshold for its investor immigration program to £2,000,000 (GBP). However, residency is a must with a maximum of 180 days spent outside the UK per year allowed – but the route to settlement can be sped up if more capital is invested: £5,000,000 or £10,000,000 invested will allow investors and their family to apply for permanent settlement after either three or two years.

Canada just ended its previous immigrant investor programme and has launched a new one this year that will grant 50 investors with over a million Canadian dollars in liquid capital permanent residency. However the application period for this year is now over.

2. With so many citizenship by investment options, there is increased competition…

Figuring out which is scheme is best for you is the new question. At the conference, experts confirmed that the UK and Switzerland are still the preferred options for high net worth individuals due to their long tradition of welcoming foreign investment and the secrecy with which they are allowed to operate. Malta is an up and comer and is becoming an attractive destination since its program has received the approval of the EU.

3. … and comes regulations

Many speakers at the conference discussed the hidden side of citizenship by investment schemes: the compliance process & personal checks that each application undergoes. Interventions from Michael Harris, an expert in due diligence at Thomson Reuters and the announcement of the recent launch of an association of professionals dealing with Investor Immigration and Citizenship-by-Investment, reaffirmed the development of expertise and high ethical standards within the industry.

4. … all of this for the greater good 

The industry often has a bad reputation for issuing passport to wealthy individuals who are trying to avoid taxes or legal issues (and even terrorists). However, more importantly it raises a sensitive moral question: can citizenship be bought and sold like a commodity? Herein lies the irony if one considers that one of the foundations of a modern state is that citizenship is a contract-based right – so can’t it be a financial contract too?

Nevertheless, these schemes have positive direct impact that cannot be ignored. St. Kitts was able to emerge from the global financial crisis far ahead of its neighbors in the Caribbean thanks to its Citizenship-by-Investment program. The UNCHR was granted 1 million Euros by Henley’s & Partners  to support registration UNHCR’s Global refugee registration activities.


Citizenship-by-Investment programs are shining a light on the passport market that has been pushed forward by the growing number of millionaires coming from developing countries that are looking to benefit from the same standards around wealth management that the developed world enjoys. Not to mention the freedom to travel the world without visa hassles.

Migreat will continue report on visa programs and visa opportunities. For questions related to visa and immigration to Europe, please visit Migreat.com




British Citizens bringing non-EU partners in the UK : Love comes with a price tag

To bring a partner or spouse in the UK, British citizens have to show income of at least £18,600 or more if they have children – rule which does not apply to settled Europeans living in the UK.

Credits: Lena Vasiljeva
Credits: Lena Vasiljeva

Under European law, EU nationals living in the UK are allowed to bring in spouses or partners and their families from anywhere in the world, according to their country of origin immigration rules.

But for British citizens who want to bring in a husband, wife or partner and family from abroad, they must first show they have an income of £18,600 or more.

This rule was implemented in 2012 as to guarantee that dependants dot not become a burden on the UK taxpayer. Since then, many british have chosen to bypass these new rules by going to work and live in another EU country, and from there bring their spouse or partner. 

This method, known as the Surinder Singh route, involves leaving the UK and working in the EEA for about three months.

Exercising their rights under European freedom of movement, British citizens working in another country of the EU get their European citizen status taking priority over their status as a UK citizen.

Credits by BBC. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-23029195
Credits by BBC. http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-23029195

This means that upon return to the UK, a British citizen is allowed to bring his/her Non-EEA spouse without having to meet the £18,600 minimum earnings requirement which applies to Britons.

Now this route comes with a little paperwork for the non-EU nationals and it has been well documented by Colin Yeo, barrister specialising in UK immigration law at Garden Court Chambers in London.

Colin produced an e-book full of hints and tips are on how to avoid problems with this route for members of the public exploring their options and for lawyers practicing in this field.

Each year around 20,000 non-European family members come into the UK this way.


Want to know more about how to bring your spouse or partner to the UK, Germany, Italy or France? Ask @migreat and go on migreat.com

What the world thinks of Romania

Georgiana, Community Manager at Migreat asks a very simple question – What is a Romanian? – that most people can’t get right or just an answer to. 

Brasov - Lonely Planet voted the city a top destination in 2015
Brasov – Lonely Planet voted the city a top destination in 2015

What the world thinks of Romania

An ex-communist country, now finding its way into democracy, governed by corrupt politicians.

They speak russian, and the capital city is called Budapest.

They have beautiful women, and most hackers come from Romania.

Romanians are in fact Roma people.

Dracula lays at the origins of this nation, so watch out for vampires when you find yourself near romanians.

While outside their country, romanians will suck Europe’s benefit system dry. They are all vampires after all.

Watch your pockets, they are natural-born thieves. Vampires and gypsies, a deadly combination.

They can’t wait to trade their nationality for yours. Who wants to be romanian when you can be british, french, german…

Roma people by Caritas Alba Iulia & Fabian Weiss
Roma people by Caritas Alba Iulia & Fabian Weiss

Let’s get things straight

We are an ex communist country, recently converted into democracy, and trying to fix the corruption problem.

We actually don’t speak russian, we don’t even have the same alphabet. We have in fact a latin language with some slavic influences. Not to mention that our capital city is BUCHAREST.

We have beautiful women, and probably most hackers do come from Romania.

Romanians and Rroma are of different ethnicity. Romania happens to have a big group of Roma people living on its territory for a long time.

Dracula, or Vlad Țepeș for his other name, is not the father of all romanians, and we are not really vampires. Or, at least not more than any other human on this planet. If you know what I mean.

Romania doesn’t have a ‘social benefits’ culture, which makes it somehow surreal for them to come to a European country with this goal in mind.

Romanians are not gypsies, and being a gypsy doesn’t automatically make you a thief. A thief is a thief, no matter what nationality.

Not many know that a romanian passport opens the doors of no less than 141 countries in the world. So why would a holder of such passport want to trade it for another just as good?!

Mind my words, you will meet one day a romanian who might prove you wrong.

Romanian advert about Kate and Pippa MiddletonLiked what you read? Read more from Georgiana on Migreat for Romanians.


How much does it cost to become citizen of another country?

In most European countries, to be provided with citizenship rights will cost you to prove numerous years of legal residence within the country.

Exception made of a few islands in the Caribbeans, Malta and Cyprus where a handful of investment can get you a passport and full new citizenship straight-away.

This grant of citizenship – also called economic citizenship – is sought after by wealthy people as a way to escape political unrest, manage the value of their wealth and enjoy greater flexibility to travel the world.

We list here below and compare these five island where you can buy your way in. They are ranged from the most expensive to the least.

  • Cyprus: €2,500,000 to €5,000,000
Cypris citizenship is highly attractive to wealthy Russians, photo credit by Leonid Mamchenkov
Cypris citizenship is highly attractive to wealthy Russians.Photo credit by Leonid Mamchenkov

Applicants are required to either

– make an investment of at least €2m in shares and/or bonds of the Cyprus State Investment Company and donate at least €0.5m to the Cypriot Research and Technology Fund, or;

– make an investment of at least €5m in Cyprus. The following types of investments qualify

  • Property (but not undeveloped land)
  • Cypriot businesses or companies
  • Bonds, securities, debentures
  • Investment or participation in public works, or;

– deposit at least €5m in a Cypriot bank for three years on fixed terms.

– own, or partly-own, a company which has paid a certain amount taxes and other fees to the Cypriot government and which employs a certain number of people in Cyprus.

Cyprus is part of the EU. As such, you gain the right to live, work and study in the EU and the right to travel to 157 countries visa-free, including the EU.

  • Malta: starting at €1,050,000
Maltese Passport. Photo credits Jon Rawlinson
Maltese Passport. Photo credits Jon Rawlinson

Requirements: Applicants are required to make

– a non-refundable contribution of €650,000 to the National Fund and Economy of Malta,

– an investment in property of at least €350,000,

– finally, an investment of €150,000 in Gov bonds for the next five years.

Benefits: Malta is part of the EU. As such, you gain the right to live, work and study in the EU. As well as gain access to travel to 166 countries visa-free, including the EU.

  • St Kitts & Nevis* & Antigua & Barbuda: $250,000

    a panoramic view of English Harbour and southern Antigua from Shirley Heights by David Stanley
    a panoramic view of English Harbour and southern Antigua from Shirley Heights by David Stanley

Applicants to St Kitts & Nevis Citizenship are required to make either

– a non-refundable contribution of US$ 250,000 to the national Charity

– an $400,000 investment in real estate in the country.

Exceptions* The program is now closed for applicants from Afghanistan and Iran.

Applicants to Antigua & Barbuda Citizenship are required to make either

– a contribution to the National Development Fund (NDF) of a minimum non-refundable amount of US$200,000 (for a single applicant), or;

– an investment of at least US$400,000 into one of the approved real estate projects, or;

– an investment of a minimum of US$1,500,000 directly into an eligible business as a sole investor or a joint investment involving at least 2 persons.

Along investments,  both programs include significant administrative fees to be paid to the Government.

Citizens of Antigua & Barbuda and St Kitts & Nevis can travel like to 132 countries without the need to obtain a visa.

  • Dominica: $100,000
Photo Credit by Patrick Nouhailler
Photo Credit by Patrick Nouhailler

Applicants are required to make

– an non-refundable investment of $100,000 to the Dominican Government and;

– Pay administrative fees associated with the application.

Dominica is a Commonwealth nation. Its citizens get special privileges in the UK, and can travel up to 91 countries, including Switzerland, without a visa.

Dominica’s economic citizenship does not require residency terms. Dominica allows dual citizenship.

This second citizenship is a legal way to reduce taxes; revenue generated outside of Dominica is tax free, it is not subject to capital gains tax, or inheritance tax or any other tax. The application process is strictly confidential, with no disclosure or exchange of information


Interested in economic citizenship? Ask Migreat for more information and for support with your application.

Need help with citizenship to the UK? France? Germany? Italy or Spain? Ask us for help on migreat.com

The top European countries where International Students are welcomed in 2015

Studying abroad has become more accessible. In 2014, 4 million students chose to study abroad, 2 million more than back in 2000.

Yet, going on a study abroad program remains a risk: most international students will use of a loan or family money to pay the university fees and living costs- without a guarantee that he/she will be able to pay it off back.

Here is a list of what the top 5 European countries have to offer for international students in terms of visa, tuitions fees, work while studying and courses compared.

It is ordered from the cheapest to study at (fees + costs of living) to more expensive.

Studying in Germany by migreat.com

1. Germany

Germany is actively looking to recruit International Students in the next years. Germany has lots to offer:

Germany has abolished tuition fees at public institutions: This means that will only have to pay for admin fees around €100 to €250 a semester  and living costs (this does not apply to private universities and for most Masters students expect if you have studied a bachelor in Germany before)

– A simple student visa process; and a no-visa policy for courses of less than 3 months for international students coming from Australia, Canada, Israel, Japan, South Korea, New Zealand, Switzerland and the USA. 

– A two years maximum visa for international students taking on a German Language course in Germany.

– The right to work part-time while studying; and stay after graduation for 18 months on a post-study work visa, that allows work too.

– A welcoming job market for international students: the government created a website to help foreigners find jobs and has created specific initiatives to recruit foreign workers from Asia. For the record, a recent statistics quoted that 68% of International students found a job after graduation in Germany.

Studying in France by Migreat.com

2. France

France and its world known capital Paris is an attractive destination for International students speaking French or interested in learning French. However, you should know that French universities are quite picky about who they accept and expectations are high. Nevertheless you should consider studying in France because

– Education matters in France, so you are sure to get a quality and world class education while studying there.

– France excels in the following courses: Nuclear, Space and Aviation, Engineering, Teaching, Linguistics, Art, History, and Medicine.

– Annual tuitions fees are set by the French Government for Higher Education Universities: from €200 to €700 maximum depending on the course. Fees for private institutions—particularly schools of business and management—is generally higher, fluctuating between €3,000 to €10,000 a year.

– Finding a job in France is not easy because of high rates of unemployment and strict rules over employment contracts. This said, you can work while you study or look for work for a year after graduation if related to you course.

Masters’ and engineering students can apply for a further one year, non-renewable temporary residence permit, which allows to work in any job up to 60 percent of a normal working week.

If the work offers a salary of at least 1.5 times the minimum wage, students can change status from student to employee and work full-time.

Study in Italy by Migreat.com

3. Italy

Italy’s your destination of choice if you are interested in History, Arts and living a unique millenary culture. Italy’s research and higher education system has good reputation for excellent standards.

– A knowledge of Italian is highly recommended to enjoy your stay but not compulsory to get the visa.

– Italy offers incredible diversity of courses in Fine Arts, Fashion and History – especially related to the period of the Renaissance.

– The average fees at University is in between 850 euro and 1,000 euro per year.

– There are many scholarships available to International Students and an extra efforts is made by the government to help students from poorer countries.

Working while studying is allowed up to 1,024 hours a year, and international students with a masters degree or abovs can stay for up to 12 months after graduation to look for a job.

Study in Madrid by migreat

4. Spain

Spain became a hub for international students thanks to the successful Erasmus Program implementation there – European Union program to encourage EU students study abroad. Spain remains an attractive destination, especially for Latin American students who benefits from the common language and easier visa rules.

– Spanish is the third most spoken language in the world, and second most spoken in the Western world. Improving your spanish early might open to you many more doors tomorrow.

– Tuition starts at €5,500 per semester and can go up to €12,000 per semester.

– You can work part-time while studying or even full-time for less than three months if it does not conflict with your studies.

– Spain Higher Education holds great reputation for its Law courses and humanities. Studying those topics can open to you other European countries where these diplomas are recognised.


5. UK

UK remains the first destination for International Students in 2014. With an excellent Higher Education reputation and offer, UK Universities have it easy to sell themselves. However the recent changes in fees and visa rules might change UK’s leadership in the sector.

– UK has a clear advantage of being the country’s where English is from and spoken everyday. The Language commonly spoken in Business and the second most spoken language after Chinese.

– University tuitions fees are the highest of all European Countries. On average, International Students University fees starts at £10,500 and can go as high as £20,000 if you are aiming at specific courses in finance and management. There are plenty of scholarships available to check.

– Student Visa for the UK are hard to get. It requires to prove a good knowledge and practice of the English Language and that you can financially support yourself, along providing the right documents. Always ask an expert for visa guidance and advice if you have doubts.

– Working while studying is restricted to 20 hours a week . UK’s job market is quite flexible and vibrant so it is not too hard for International students to find a part-time job.

– However, work after graduation is difficult to find because of strict rules over post-study work visas. International Students to work after graduation will either need to find a job that can be sponsored by an employer; or an internship that pays the minimum wage; or start your own company.


Studying abroad can prove to be a fruitful investment if well thought through.

International students may want to think of the topic of study and the language in which they wish to study the course before looking for universities and tuitions fees.

Studying abroad is expensive make sure you make the most of the many scholarship available for international students in Europe.