In the Czech Republic, the administration of visas and residence permits is divided between the Ministry of the Interior (MOI), which handles foreign nationals already residing in the Czech Republic (go there if you come to the CR with a single entry visa to collect a residence permit or a long-term visa for the stay of over 90 days - code D), and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs
(MFA), which runs the consular service at the Embassy of the Czech Republic where you will lodge your initial visa application (go there if the purpose of your stay is a short-term visit or a stay of up to 90 days – code C).
Both ministries have extensive English-language information pages regarding visas and immigration, and we recommend that you read them before starting the whole visa process.
The most important websites for student visa applicants are as follows:
Under current Czech immigration law, you can apply for two different kinds of immigration documents at the consulate before you come to Prague – A long-term visa or a long-term residence permit.
In general, the long-term visa is primarily intended for persons who expect to stay in the Czech Republic for several months – for example, a study programme lasting several months etc. The long-term residence permit is primarily intended for persons who expect a longer stay in the Czech Republic, for example, a study in a university programme, employment, etc.
All non-EU (and non-EEA) students are legally obliged to register with the Foreign Police within 3 days after the arrival if it has not been done by the accommodation provider (e.g. hall of residence, hostel, hotel, etc.)
If the student has visa with validity period shorter than one year, he/she can extend it up to 1 year (which is the maximum duration of this type of visa). He/she can apply for the extension in person at regional offices on the Ministry of the Interior of the Czech Republic or via post (how to extend a long-term visa). Student who was already granted by a long-term visa can also directly apply for a long-term residence permit for the purpose of “studies”. This new application has to be made in person at an OPC´s office (how to lodge a new application for a long-term visa).
If a student already has long-term residence for purpose of “studies” which validity is expiring soon, he/she can extend it in person or via post (how to extend a long-term residence permit). This is applied only in case the student continues his/her studies at the same school/university.
There is a special OPC office at Hládkov for foreign students with residence in Prague.
In some cases there is an application fee required. If you send your application via post, please do not forget to attach fee stamps of respective value. More information can be found under corresponding hyperlinks. Overview of fees can be found here.