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Center for Global Education

Student Visa Guide

» Student Visa Guide

A student visa is a stamp or seal affixed to the inside of your passport that permits study in the issuing region for an established period of time. Most students studying in their host country for more than 60 or 90 days are required to obtain a student visa. Scroll down to find helpful tips, country-specific contact information, and FAQs for visa application requirements.

The CGE does not have the authority to intervene on behalf of students at the consulates or provide advice on visa requirements. However, it can offer home university documentation and facilitate connections with the students' program's visa specialist. It is ultimately the responsibility of the student to obtain a visa prior to departure.

Starting an Application

How to Apply

You will apply through the consulate of your host country. A consulate is an official office of the host country’s government in the US. You can find your host country’s visa contact information by scrolling down. Some consulates require an in‐person appointment, while others accept applications by mail or online. Sometimes you can go to the consulate with jurisdiction over Orange County (usually based in Los Angeles) or sometimes you can go to a consulate with jurisdiction over your permanent address. If you must attend an in‐person appointment, these appointments book out months in advance.

What you Need

The consulate webpage for your host country will have the most updated visa application requirements. You will need to have a valid passport, so make sure to obtain/renew one before you apply for a visa. Other application materials can range from photos, proof of funds to support you while abroad, proof of enrollment, proof of housing, fingerprints or other biometrics, a stamped return envelope, etc. Please note that consulates for the same country in different U.S. cities may have different requirements.

The cost of a student visa depends on the consulate and host country. Costs can range from $0-$500 and vary by which consulate you go to. A consulate in Los Angeles and New York for the same country might have different fees and requirements.

Tip: Triple‐check your visa application before submitting because any errors may result in a delay.

When to Apply

Visas can take a few days up to a few months to process. Carefully review the requirements and suggested timeframe of the consulate. The consulate may keep your passport during the processing time, so plan to be without it and not partake in international travel during that time. Visit the U.S. Department of State’s Students Abroad website for information about your host country.

If your country requires an in‐person appointment (Spain, Italy, Greece, etc.), Consulates can have limited time slots so it is recommended that you look now to book an appointment within the suggested time frame prior to in‐country arrival (e.g. 45‐90 days prior, etc.). If you don’t see available appointments in the time frame you need, check the appointment page daily to see if any appointments open up. Typically, you do not need to submit documentation to book an appointment, but you may need your passport to create an account.

Contact Information & Resources

If a link below is missing or outdated, let us know at globaled@chapman.edu.

Country Website Phone Number or Email
Argentina Los Angeles Consulate (ARG)

(323) 954-9155

Australia Los Angeles Consulate (AUS)

(310) 229-2300

Austria Los Angeles Consulate (AUT)

(310) 444-9310

Belgium Los Angeles Consulate (BEL)

(323) 857-1244

Botswana Los Angeles Consulate (BWA)

(213) 626-8484

Bulgaria Los Angeles Consulate (BGR)

(310) 478-6700

Chile Los Angeles Consulate (CHL)

(323) 933-3697

Costa Rica Los Angeles Consulate (CRI)

(323) 424-7112

Czech Republic** Los Angeles Consulate (CZE)


Estonia Los Angeles Consulate (EST)

(818) 340-5766

Finland Los Angeles Consulate (FIN)


Fiji Fiji Immigration (FJI)

Contact ISEP Student Services Officer

France Los Angeles Consulate (FRA)


Germany Los Angeles Consulate (DEU)

(323) 930-2703

Ghana D.C. Embassy (GHA)

(202) 686-4520

Greece* Los Angeles Consulate (GRC)

(310) 826-5555

Ireland Los Angeles Consulate (IRL)

(310) 279-5380

Italy* Los Angeles Consulate (ITA)

(310) 820-0622

Japan Los Angeles Consulate (JPN)

(213) 617-6700

Jordan D.C. Embassy (JOR)

(202) 966-2664

Lithuania Los Angeles Consulate (LTU)

(424) 341-8701

Mexico Los Angeles Consulate (MEX)


Morocco New York Consulate (MAR)

(212) 758-2625

Netherlands Los Angeles Application Center (NLD)

(347) 329-2738

New Zealand Los Angeles Consulate (NZL)

(310) 566-6555



San Francisco Consulate (PRT)

(415) 346-3400

Semester at Sea SAS Student Portal


South Africa Los Angeles Consulate (ZAF)

(323) 651-0902

South Korea Los Angeles Consulate (KOR)

(213) 385-9300


Los Angeles Consulate (ESP) 

CEA CAPA participants are strongly encouraged to use the visa batch processing service provided by CEA CAPA.

(323) 938-0158

Sweden San Francisco Consulate (SWE)

(415) 268-0800

Switzerland San Francisco Consulate (CHE)

(415) 788-2272

Taiwan TECO-LA (TWN)

(213) 389-1215

Thailand Los Angeles Consulate (THA)

(323) 962-9574

United Arab Emirates Los Angeles Consulate (ARE)

(310) 551-6534

United Kingdom* Visa Guidelines (GBR) Contact Form


*This country will require proof of acceptance from Chapman University. The CGE will provide this document at the mandatory Pre-Departure Orientation.

**CEA CAPA will mail students the Proof of Enrollment, Medical Insurance, and Accommodation translated into Czech for their visas.

Visa FAQs

  1. How do I know if I need a visa or not?
    • Most students studying in their host country for more than 60 or 90 days are required to apply for a student visa. Find your host country’s visa contact information listed above to determine if you need to obtain a visa for a semester, academic year, or Travel Course, or international internship.
  2. I need some of my documents notarized. What is that and where can I find a notary?
    • A notary public authenticates a document to ensure its validity. You may need a notary services for your student visa forms. Chapman’s Student Business Services offers free notary services for students, contact their office to schedule an appointment.
    • Important: California Notaries are not permitted to certify a copy of a vital record, such as a birth certificate or passport.
  3. There are no appointments available before I am supposed to leave. What do I do?
    • Appointments at the consulate may be limited or filled when you view the scheduling calendar. If the first appointment seems too close to your intended departure date, keep checking the system daily because appointments may open up when other people cancel. Appointment calendars often refresh at 3pm Pacific Time daily.
  4. Who should I talk to if I have questions about my visa?
    • The consulate of your host country will have the most updated information about the process and materials necessary for your visa. Additionally, some study abroad programs may have visa specialists that can help answer questions. For example, students going on CEA programs can utilize the CEA Site Specialists trained in country‐specific visa requirements.
  5. My visa asks for proof of insurance. Is this something that is covered by Chapman’s CHUBB insurance?
    • CHUBB is a secondary travel and emergency medical insurance policy. Most countries require a specific amount of insurance coverage for medical expenses, hospitalizations, and repatriation for medical reasons. Students should check that their current plan has overseas coverage, or request the insurance information of their specific study abroad program/host university, which will function as their primary insurance while abroad.
  6. Can Chapman provide me with proof of acceptance?
    • The Center for Global Education provides acceptance letters for all students going to Italy, Greece, Spain, and the UK who obtain visas at the consulates based in Los Angeles. Acceptance letters will be handed out at the mandatory Pre-Departure Orientation.
    • For all other countries that request proof of acceptance, students are given that letter directly from their program or host university. If a student is going to a consulate outside of Los Angeles and needs a letter from the home university, you can email globaled@chapman.edu with the request for proof of acceptance.
  7. What happens if my visa does not arrive on time?
    • You must enter your host country with the appropriate documents to be a study abroad student. Talk to your program provider or host university to determine if there is a possibility for you to arrive after the required start date once you receive your documents. A delay in obtaining your visa may result in your withdrawal from the program and could incur penalty fees associated with withdrawing due to a visa delay.
  8. I am an international student in the U.S. who is going to study abroad. Where do I get my visa?
    • This depends on both your country of citizenship and the country where you plan to study abroad. Please refer to the embassy or consulate webpage of the country in which you are planning to study in to determine where you can obtain your study abroad visa. Consult with iss@chapman.edu for your visa-related questions.
  9. Do my documents need to be translated for my visa appointment?
    • Certain countries may require translations of official documents. Your program provider should give you these documents in English and the country's official language. Check the visa requirements for the country where you plan to study abroad to determine whether or not you require translated documents.

Questions about studying abroad?

Email: globaled@chapman.edu

Call: (714) 997-6830

Visit: 576 N. Glassell, Orange, CA 92867


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