SERVICES: VISA AND ENTRY
Here you will find practical information on entry procedures, visas and permits of stay. Moreover, you can access the main legal texts concerning visas and entry procedures.
Generally the main differences in visa and entry procedures are related to the researcher's citizenship (EU,EEA and Swiss nationals or Third country nationals) and to the duration of his/her stay in Italy (i.e. less than 3 months / more than 3 months). Therefore the information included in this section concerns the different types of obligations and procedures, according to nationality and length of stay.
Less than 3 months
Nationals of EU/EEA Member States or Switzerland and their family members (also EU/EEA/Swiss nationals) are allowed to freely travel and stay in Italy and in other countries of the European Union for periods up to three months without any formalities. A valid ID or passport is required.
More than 3 months
fAccording to Decreto legislativo n.30 of 6/2/2007 (application of Directive 2004/38/EC) if the researcher is going to stay in Italy longer than 90 days, he/she has to register with the "Anagrafe cittadini temporaneamente presenti" (citizens temporarily present) at the Municipality office Ufficio Anagrafe (Registry office). In order to be registered, specific documents must be submitted such as, for example, passport or valid ID, Italian Tax identification number (codice fiscale), work contract or proof of sufficient means of subsistence (i.e. study grant), proof of health insurance (EHIC card, registration to Italian National Health Service - SSN or private health policy), etc. Additional documents can be asked. It is recommended to contact in advance the Municipality office where the researcher lives.
Please note that:
- the Municipality will issue immediately the temporary Anagrafe registration receipt. It is free of charge.
- before leaving the researcher should give notice of the departure to the Anagrafe office.
In general, in order to come to Italy, an entry visa may be requested depending on the citizenship, the country of residence, the length and the reasons (study, work, tourism, etc.) of the stay.
In order to find out whether an entry visa is needed or not and which documents are required for the application, it is possible to query the data base of the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs (http://www.esteri.it/visti/home_eng.asp). The request must be submitted at the Italian Embassy or General Consulates in the country of origin (please see http://www.esteri.it/MAE/EN/Ministero/LaReteDiplomatica/Ambasciate/default.htm?LANG=EN). Once in Italy, for period longer than 3 months, foreigners are required to apply for the permit of stay.
Less than 3 months
Non-EU researchers and their family members are allowed to stay in Italy for less than 3 months for study, tourism, business or visits reasons, they do not need to apply for a permit of stay. Please note that:
- if they travel from a Schengen State, they must report their presence within 8 days after their arrival in Italy at the Questura (Police Head Quarter) by submitting the form Dichiarazione di presenza (Declaration of presence).
- if they travel from a non-Schengen states, they should report their presence to the border authorities when entering Italy. A uniform Schengen stamp will be put on their passport.
More information can be found at http://poliziadistato.it/articolo/10618.
More than 3 months
For period longer that 3 months, Non-EU citizens must apply for a permit of stay to legally stay in Italy with the visa issued by the Italian Consulate/Embassy in the country of origin.
The request for the permit of stay must be made within 8 working days after the arrival in Italy. The permit of stay is issued by the Police Head Quarter (Questura). The application form should be sent by post.
Please note that:
- in general the application for the permit of stay entails the payment of about € 70 for management costs like revenue stamps, postal giro slip, etc.
- after having submitted the request for the permit of stay, the Post office will release a postal receipt. It must be kept together with the passport as it replaces the permit of stay until the original is ready.
- if the researcher comes to Italy with a study visa (i.e. within some typology of research training fellowships), when he/she applies for the permit of stay for study, the researcher must provide also: a proof of sufficient means of subsistence, a copy of the insurance policies valid for Italy and a photocopy of the study programme certified by the Italian Embassy/Consulate. Additional documents can be asked from the Local Police Head Quarter. Please contact in advance the host organisation for further information.
- once the researcher has collected the permit of stay, within 20 day it is possible to register at the Anagrafe cittadini temporaneamente presenti (citizens temporarily present) at the Municipality office Ufficio Anagrafe (Registry office) of the city where he/she lives.
More information and cost related issues about permits of stay can be found at http://poliziadistato.it/articolo/10716-Residence_permit.
Please contact the Host organisation or the nearest EURAXESS Services Centre in order to get more information on the procedure, the documents and for general assistance.
EC directive 2005/71/CE (12/10/2005), researchers coming from third countries are entitled to stay in a EU Member State longer than 3 months in order to carry out research activities with a
visa for scientific research purposes. The researcher should be selected by either private or public research institutions acknowledged in an official list set up by the Ministry for University and Research and available for Italy at:
The researcher can obtain the Visa only within the framework of a hosting agreement with a research organisation which lays down the conditions whereby the researcher undertakes to accomplish the research project and the organisation undertakes to host the researcher for that purpose. According to this procedure, a researcher coming to Italy may have any of these three contract types: Self-employment, Subordinate, Grant for research training.
The procedure foresees a request for an entry clearance (Nulla Osta) by the Host organisation, and later on the release of the entry visa for research purpose. The visa is forwarded directly to the Italian Diplomatic Authorities in the country of residence of the researcher within 6 months from the issue of the "entry clearance" (Nulla Osta). The Italian Diplomatic Authority will contact the researcher for an interview in order to collect the visa. On that occasion the researcher will be asked to bring a valid passport, the entry clearance document and the counter-signed hosting agreement. Please note that, depending on Embassies and Consulates, the documents required at the interview may change. It is strongly advised, when contacted, to ask the Embassy and/or Consulate which documents are needed for the interview. The entry visa for scientific research purposes is issued in a shorter time than the other types of visa.
Once in Italy, the researcher must apply for a permit of stay for scientific research purposes within 8 days from his/her arrival, at Sportello Unico per l'Immigrazione office (Immigration Office at Prefettura).
The request must be sent by Post. The post office will release a postal receipt that must be kept together with the passport as this replaces the permit of stay until the original is ready.
Furthermore, please note that starting from march 2012, as envisaged by article 4-bis of
legislative decree no. 286 of 25th July 1995, the integration agreement has come into force. it must be signed by all foreigners,
aged over 16, coming from a third country who enter Italy for the first time for a period of 1 year or more. With this agreement the italian authorities are committed to provide language and civic education sessions and foreigners are committed to meet their civic obligations. A credit-based approach is used and the credits obtained are required to continue staying on the national territory. Before the departure foreigners are required to show the documents regarding their civic obligations.
for further information see the Ministry of Interior website (the information are in italian):
The request of entry visa and the procedure to follow in order to apply for the permit of stay is fully explained in: Practical Guide : entry and residence procedure for third-country researchers
Please note that:
- the permit of stay for scientific research purposes covers the same period of the research project as stated in the hosting agreement.
- it is possible to carry out research activities while waiting for the permit of stay to be issued.
- in case the research project is extended, the permit of stay can be renewed to cover the extended period of the research project by submitting the renewed hosting agreement.
- the permit of stay for research purposes may be requested also if a Third country citizen is already in Italy with a regular permit of stay for other purposes (i.e. study, work, etc. except as a temporary refugee). In that case the researcher must sign an agreement with the research hosting institution but he/she does not need to go back to the country of residence in order to obtain a new visa.
- if a researcher has been admitted in another EU Member State with a visa for research purposes and wants to come to Italy to continue the same research project already started in the other EU country, an entry visa is not requested, providing that the hosting agreement must also include a period of research activity in Italy.
- according to EC Regulation 265/2010 researchers with long-stay visa and valid permit of stay issued by one of EU Member States may, on the basis of that permit and a valid travel document, move freely for up to three months in any six-month period in the Schengen area. An Entry Visa for other EU countries is not required.
- in case the researcher is waiting for the first permit of stay he/she can travel in and out of Italy with the Post Office receipt only when travelling from Italy to the country of origin or through other States. Transit or flight connections in one of the Schengen States are not allowed.
For more information, contact the Host organisation or the nearest EURAXESS Services Centre.
Last update: 07/18/12 04:31