All citizens (except Nordic) who come to Iceland for the purpose of study need a residence permit, if staying longer than three months in Iceland. Some need to obtain the residence permit before arriving; some can apply after they arrive.
Citizens of Nordic countries that plan to study in Iceland need to register at the Icelandic National Registry upon arrival in Iceland. Nordic citizens do not need work permit.
EU and EEA member countries
Citizens of the European Union and the European Economic Area, who plan to stay longer than three months in Iceland, need a residence permit. The permit may be obtained after arriving in Iceland for most of the EU and EEA countries. The residence permit is applied for at the Icelandic Directorate of Immigration, Skógarhlíð 6, 105 Reykjavik, tel. +354 510 5400. EU and EEA citizens do not need special work permit, only residence permit.
Non European countries
Citizens of countries other than EU and EEA must obtain the visa before entering Iceland. Some nationals outside EU and EEA, are exempted from the obligation to carry a visa on arrival in Iceland for a stay of up to three months in all within the Schengen area. The total stay within the Schengen area must not exceed three months in any period of six months. (See on the Icelandic Directorate of Immigration´s website which countries are part of the Schengen agreement). The residence permit is applied for at the Icelandic Directorate of Immigration.
All citizens should bring a passport which is valid at least three months after the scheduled departure as well as get a health check upon arrival (see in health issues).
Visa assistance service
The International Office provide information and assistance with applying for visas.
For more information, please contact the International Office at RU
The Icelandic social security system is a residence-based system. To be insured with the State Social Security Institute, Tryggingarstofnun Ríkisins, a person must have been registered with a domicile in the National Registry for six months. Iceland is part of the European Economic Area.
- Citizens of the Nordic Countries
Nordic students are automatically insured and therefore they do not need to take any actions.
- Citizens of EU/EEA Countries
Students from EU/EEA countries should bring with them form E128. After the form has been registered with Tryggingastofnun, the State Social Security Institute, they will have access to the health system in Iceland.
- Non-EU/EEA Citizens
A person who is not insured in Iceland, or other EEA states must obtain medical assistance before arriving in Iceland. When using the health care system students will be required to pay upfront, and then later, that person can seek reimbursement from his/her own insurance in the country of origin, or from his private insurance plan.