How to get a D visa to Italy

Как получить визу D в Италию

Immigration to Italy begins with obtaining a D visa, which can be converted into a residence permit. This is a national visa, and it is more difficult to get it than a Schengen one. Let’s figure out how to legally move to Italy.

The D visa to Italy is a national long—term visa that allows you to live in the country for more than 90 days per half-year, unlike the Schengen visa. A national visa, in fact, is the basis for obtaining a residence permit. It is issued for entry into the country, since a residence permit can only be obtained in Italy. If a foreigner does not plan to live in Europe for more than three months, then to get to Italy, it is enough for him to apply for a Schengen visa.

The grounds for obtaining a D visa coincide with the types of residence permit. At the same time, the Italian authorities issue a residence permit strictly on the same basis as a D visa. For example, a student visa can only be converted into a student residence permit. 

It is much more difficult to get a D visa than a Schengen one. After all, if the Italian authorities issue such a visa, then they allow a foreigner to permanently reside in Italy with all social guarantees. The Italian consulate carefully checks the applicants’ documents, and if it almost does not refuse to issue Schengen visas, then it issues national visas less generously. The main reason for refusal of a long—term visa is non-compliance with immigration rules.

A national visa to Italy is valid for three months to a year and, as a rule, is converted into a residence permit. The first residence permit is usually issued for a period of one year and can be extended if the basis for obtaining it remains. A category D visa, as well as a residence permit, gives you the opportunity to travel and live in other countries of the Schengen area, but not more than 90 days per half year.

Important. Within eight working days after entering Italy on a D visa, you must report to Questura and request a residence permit (Permesso di soggiorno).

Who can get a D visa?

  • Close relatives of an EU citizen or a foreigner living in Italy with a residence permit or PERMANENT residence — spouse, children under the age of 21 or dependent (including children of the spouse), parents, grandparents who are dependent (including the spouse).
  • Financially independent foreigners who choose Italy for permanent residence.
  • Patients who go to private or public clinics in Italy for long-term treatment.
  • Students enrolled in Italian colleges, institutes or long-term Italian language courses.
  • Employees who have received a job offer from Italian companies.
  • Persons of a free profession (autonomous work).
  • Entrepreneurs.
  • Volunteers who received an invitation from an Italian organization. 
  • Religious figures who have received an invitation from an Italian religious organization.
  • Those who already have a residence permit in Italy, the validity of which has expired, but it can be extended, or when the document has been lost. 

How do I get a D visa?

First, you need to collect a package of documents, depending on the type of visa. Make an appointment at the Italian visa application center in advance, submit documents and take fingerprints on the appointed day. You can monitor the readiness of the visa on the website of the visa application center or receive an SMS notification. 

Family reunion

A national visa to Italy is issued to close relatives of EU citizens or foreigners with a residence permit for permanent residence in the country. A spouse, children, parents, and dependent grandparents can apply for a visa on the grounds of “family reunification”. 

The main requirement is to prove kinship. To do this, you need to provide a birth or marriage certificate, apostilled and translated into Italian. In addition, it is required to obtain a Nulla Osta — an official permit from the Unified Immigration Service when The prefecture. A copy of the passport of a European citizen or residence permit of the inviting person must also be attached to the documents.

The chosen place of residence

A long-term visa based on the motive of “chosen place of residence” is issued to financially independent foreigners who have a high passive income. This type of visa does not give you the right to work or do business in Italy. The implication is that wealthy foreigners should already have sufficient capital to live in Italy and confirm a “continuous income in the future.”

Possible sources of income are commercial activities, real estate, interest on deposits, stocks, bonds, bills of exchange, pensions, etc. Income from employment is excluded. The minimum income level of the applicant should be 31,000 euros per year. The amount increases by 20% if the visa is also issued by the spouse and by 5% for each dependent child. 

Another important requirement is to buy or rent a property in Italy for a long time. The foreigner must also write a motivation letter in English or Italian and tell why he wants to move to Italy.


A medical visa is issued to foreign patients who plan to undergo long-term treatment in a public or private clinic in Italy. The basis for obtaining this type of visa is an invitation from an Italian clinic indicating the type, timing and cost of treatment. In this case, the patient must pre-pay 30% of the cost of treatment. 

It is important to provide medical documents confirming the diagnosis — a copy of the medical record or an extract from the medical history from the country of residence. This type of visa is also issued to the accompanying person if their assistance is required.


A student visa is issued for studying at a university, college, internship or Italian language courses. The validity period of the visa depends on the duration of the study. Applicants provide an invitation from an educational institution in Italy, a certificate of enrollment and documents on the payment of the training course.


A work visa is issued for employment, running a business, starting a startup, or autonomous work. You will need to provide a contract with an Italian company or a business project, as well as confirm the availability of financial resources. In addition, it is required to obtain a special Nulla Osta permit from the authorities. As a rule, the first working residence permit is issued with a validity period of up to one year.

General list of documents for the D visa

  1. Documents confirming the basis for obtaining a long—term visa – a contract with an employer, a certificate of admission to a university, a marriage or birth certificate, etc.
  2. Nulla Osta — permission from the Unified Immigration Service for The Prefecture of Italy. The document is valid for no more than six months.
  3. Proof of income sufficient to live in Italy.
  4. Confirmation of the place of residence in Italy — invitation, hotel reservation, purchase or rental of real estate.
  5. A ticket or booking a ticket to Italy (in some cases also back).
  6. A completed, printed and signed application form for a type D visa. 
  7. A photo measuring 30 mm x 40 mm or 35 mm x 45 mm.
  8. A passport valid for at least 3 months after the expiration date of the requested visa.
  9. Copies of valid and cancelled passports — pages with personal data and all pages with marks, stamps and visas.
  10. Receipt of payment of the consular fee. 
  11. Receipt for payment of the visa application center service fee.
  12. The passport of a citizen of Russia or another country is the original and a copy of the first page and the registration page.
  13. Signed and printed consent to the processing of personal data.
  14. Medical insurance with an amount of insurance coverage of at least 30,000 euros.
  15. For families — marriage certificate, birth certificate (copy and original). 
  16. For pensioners — the original and a copy of the pension certificate.
  17. For minors — a birth certificate (copy and original), a notarized consent to leave for permanent residence in Italy from another parent (copy and original) and a copy of the internal passport of the parent giving consent to leave.

All documents must be translated into Italian, except those that were originally issued in English. At the same time, translation is performed only by translators accredited by the Consulate General of Italy in Moscow. The translated documents must be legalized by the Consulate General of Italy or notarized and apostilled. 

The cost and timing of visa processing 

The consular fee for obtaining a D visa for Russians is 116 euros. A student national visa will cost 50 euros. The consular fee is paid at the Banca Intesa branch in the Italian visa application center or at other branches of this bank only in cash. This fee can also be paid online on the bank’s website, and the receipt must be printed out.

The service fee for the services of the Italian visa center in Moscow is 3,375 rubles. It can be paid by bank card or in cash on the day of submission of documents at the visa application center. 

The maximum period for obtaining a type D visa to Italy is 120 days by law. However, in practice, the consulate usually makes a decision in 10-20 days.


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