Residence permit

For stays of less than 90 days

If you are planning to come to Italy for study for a period not exceeding 3 months you are not required to apply for a residence permit.

Non-EU exchange students intending to stay in Italy for less than 90 days must present a declaration of presence/dichiarazione di presenza within 8 days of their entry into Italy to the Police Headquarters (Questura) in the Province they are domiciled in (Potenza or Matera).

For students coming to Italy from a country that has not signed the Schengen agreement, the uniform Schengen stamp, placed on the passport during border controls, replaces the declaration of presence. Students entering Italy transiting through a country from a country that has signed the Schengen agreement, must present the declaration of presence within 8 days of their entry into Italy to the Police Headquarters (Questura) in the Province they are domiciled in (Potenza or Matera). Students must always carry a copy of the declaration of presence, as they may be asked to show it by police and public safety officers.

For stays of more than 90 days

Non-EU students intending to stay in Italy for more than 90 days must apply for a residence permit/permesso di soggiorno. The application for a residence permit must be presented within 8 days of arriving in Italy. Once in Italy,  students have to go to the International Relations Office of the University (only if you are an exchange student coming to Italy within mobility programmes) or the Student Affairs Office, in the other cases.

After registration you will be given the necessary documents to be attached to the application; if you need it the office will provide you with assistance and information on how to submit a correct application. Once you have filled in the forms and attached all the required documents, you have to go to the post office in Potenza to send the application.

Under Schengen rules, the residence permit issued by the Police (Questura) to holders of a long-stay visa allows foreigners, unless express limitations are imposed, entry to and exit from the Schengen area and to travel without restraint for a period not to exceed 90 days in any 6-month period within territories of the other Contracting States, provided that they hold a valid national passport or equivalent travel document. Nevertheless, all foreigners are required to report their presence to the police on the soil of any other Schengen State within 3 working days of entry.

The residence permit shall be issued to the student for a period of at least one year and renewable. Where the duration of the course of study is less than one year, the permit shall be valid for the duration of the course.

Documents required to apply for the residence permit

  • application form;
  • copy of your valid passport or any other equivalent travel document bearing an entry visa, if required;
  • copy of the University of Basilicata invitation letter reporting the course in which you are enrolled, which has to be stamped by the Italian Consulate/Diplomatic Representation in your country - when your visa was issued, or similar document attesting your status at the University of Basilicata;
  • photocopy of a document proving that you dispose of sufficient income to earn your living during your stay in Italy. If you have a scholarship, you have to submit a copy of the letter of the International Relations Office indicating the details of your grant.
  • 4 recent and identical passport-size photographs;
  • € 16,00 electronic revenue stamp (you can buy it at the tobacconist's);
  • copy of the Health Insurance covering the whole period of the Residence Permit (if you bought it in your Home Country, it must be certified by the Italian Embassy or Consulate - or copy of the Italian Insurance you bought in Italy).

If the stay is longer than 90 days, a payment of € 27,50 is required (to be done on payment form to fill in) and € 30.00 to pay when you give the application duly filled.

For further information, please consult the guide availble on the Post office website, or the Italian Foreign Office and the Immigration portal

If student want to apply autonomously for a residence permit, you have to obtain the kit from authorised post offices, or it is possible to complete the application for the first issue or renewal of a residence permit free of charge at the 'Patronati' or at the municipalities providing this service. Staff working in these offices will assist you in the completion of your application and then you will simply have to post it by registered mail.

The kit is an envelope (with a yellow stripe for non-EU nationals and a blue stripe for EU nationals) containing the forms and instructions on how to fill them in. Having correctly completed and signed the forms, you must go to a post office and deliver:

  • € 27,50 to electronic residence permit; for the payment you have to use a pre-printed payment slip (bollettino postale);
  • € 16,00 electronic revenue stamp to attach on the application form and pay another € 30,00 when posting your registered letter.
  • € 80,00 if you're applying (or renew) for a residence permit valid for more than 90 day and less or equal to a year; for the payment you have to use a pre-printed payment slip (bollettino postale).
  • your original passport and a photocopy of the pages containing your personal details and the entry and exit visa stamps from the country;
  • a photocopy of the health and accident insurance policy. The policy must cover the whole period of stay, and if it was purchased abroad it must be stamped by the Italian consulate;
  • a declaration from the University of Basilicata issued by the International Relations office at the time of registration (for exchange students). For students enrolled in degree programmes or single course units applying for the first issue of their residence permit: certificate of registration at the University of Basilicata issued by the competent Student Affairs office (if the student has already completed enrolment) or a photocopy of the certification confirming the degree programme to be followed, visaed by the Italian Consular/Diplomatic Representation on issue of the entry visa. For students enrolled in degree programmes applying for a renewal of their residence permit: the certificate of registration at the University of Basilicata issued by the competent Student Affairs office confirming the passing of at least one exam for the first renewal and at least two exams for subsequent renewals, without prejudice to any cases of force majeure.

When delivering the kit to the post office, students will be given an appointment at the foreign citizens' office at the competent Police Station (Questura) for photographic registration. It is very important that you keep this appointment. Upon submitting your application to the post office counter you will receive a slip asking you to report to the foreign citizens' office at the Questura on a given date, bringing your photographs. If this is your first time in Italy, you will be fingerprinted, too.

The residence permit is issued for the same reasons and for the duration indicated in the visa. If health coverage has a duration shorter than that of the visa, the duration of the residence permit will be that of the insurance policy.

Finally, students must:

  • provide a correct domicile address to the post office: the Questura will send any notices or calls in the event of problems in issuing the residence permit to the indicated address. It is important that the student's name is indicated correctly on the letterbox/door entry phone.
  • Keep the receipt given by the post office: in case of police checks, it proves that the student has applied for the residence permit.
  • Give a copy of the receipt to the Student Affairs office in your Department/School (for students enrolled in degree programmes or single course units) or to the International Relations office (exchange students).

As soon as received the residence permit, students have to provide a copy to the Student Affairs Office of their School or Department (for those enrolled in degree programmes or single course units), or to the International Relations Office (for exchange students) exhibiting the original document, too.

Those third country nationals, who already possess a residence permit, have the right to travel freely in the Schengen area. This means that you can spend a maximum of 3 months in other Schengen member states within every 6 months. If you want to spend over 90 days in another Schengen country, you need to apply for residence permit in that other country.

Renewal of Residence permit

If you are already in Italy and your residence permit is close to its expiry date, you must apply for renewal at least:

  • 90 days before expiry date if your residence permit is valid for 2 years;
  • 60 days before expiry date if your residence permit is valid for 1 year;
  • 30 days before expiry date in all other cases.

The validity of your residence permit is the same as that indicated on your visa (for example: Up to 1 year if you are attending a duly documented course of study or a vocational training course).