To get your passport you must make an application, follow all the instructions and provide the
required documents and photographs.

Get forms and apply at: Central Market Post Office or at most branch U.S. Post Offices

Cost: $100.00 for a regularly processed passport – officially takes between 4 to 8 weeks (Study
Abroad Office recommends that you allow at least 3 months for processing.)
Expedited passports are also available at additional cost. Passport photos: $15.00 (photos taken
at post office)

Go online to read more information:


WHAT IS IT? A visa is permission from the government of the country in which you will study,
to be there for a specified purpose (in this case, a student). It is a document that is printed in or
attached to your passport, so you cannot apply for a visa until you have a valid passport (one that
will not expire for 6 months after the expiration of the visa).

WHEN DO I NEED IT? Some countries require a student visa for any length of stay if your
primary purpose is education. Others require a student visa if you stay longer than 90 days.
Others, only if your stay is longer than six months. Apart from the usual required documents and
photos, plus your passport, you must have an ORIGINAL acceptance letter from the educational
institution which you will be attending. You MUST have this letter when you apply for the visa.

HOW DO I GET A VISA? Each country has its own rules and regulations concerning the visa
application and how to go about it. Some visas are free for students, while others entail a fee. In
some cases you must go to the consulate of the host country in person, taking all supporting
documents with you. (In most cases the consulate is located in Houston.) You can usually find
all the information (and forms) you need at the government website of the country concerned.

HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE? Getting a visa can take up to 3 months depending on the time of
the year and the country. So you must make allowances by getting your application to the school
done as early as possible so you can receive the acceptance letter in time. And, of course, you
must have your passport before you can get the visa!


ITALY: No cost for students. Upon admittance to the host school you will receive the
acceptance letter and various other forms to fill out. Complete them and the visa application and
bring all with a passport picture – and your passport – to the Study Abroad Office. From there
they will be mailed to the Italian Consulate in Houston and your passport with the visa inside
will be returned by mail. You must allow at least four weeks before travel for this process.

                                                                                    Updated March 2008
FRANCE: You must register online through Campus France (an official government
organization ( ) and send them all the required
documents and pay a fee. Once all the papers are confirmed and sent back to you, make an
appointment online with the French Consulate in Houston. Then go to the consulate in person
with all the documents and your passport; pay another fee. Your passport will be mailed back to
you. You must allow at least five weeks for this process.

UK: No visa is required if staying under 6 months. However, you will be required to show your
original letter of acceptance and prove means of support (bank statements may be required) upon
entering the country. The Study Abroad Office will give you a letter of support if you are
attending a Sister School. If staying over 6 months, a visa is required. Follow instructions on
official website.

SPAIN: A visa is required for study periods longer than 90 days. (Generally that means one is
not required for summer study, but certainly for all semester-long terms.) You should apply for a
visa immediately after receiving the acceptance letter as it may take up to 2 months to process.
You will have to go to the Consulate in person. The address of the Spanish Consulate General in
Houston is:
1800 Bering Dr., Suite 660
Houston, TX 77057
Tel. (713) 783-6200/05/14
Fax: (713) 783-6166

IRELAND: No visa required, but you may be asked to report to Immigration officials and be
required to register at a cost of 100 Euros.

JAPAN: Visas are required for students and can only be requested after documents are sent to
Japan (to the host school) for verification and the necessary clearance given. A certificate is
returned and then you must go to the Japanese Consulate General to obtain the visa. Allow
several months for this process.

KOREA: Visas are required for all students. You may apply by mail to the Korean Consulate
General in Houston: 1990 Post Oak Blvd # 1250 , Houston, TX 77056.
See the website for detailed instructions: tel: (713) 961-0186

                                                                                  Updated March 2008

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