Study in Latvia

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About

Studying in Latvia is a great opportunity for cross-cultural exposure and personal development. Latvia remains a fabulous country for international students to study abroad. Moreover, it is the most wonderful country that 90% is covered with old forests and it has the widest waterfalls in Europe.

WHERE IS THE LOCATION OF Latvia?

Latvia is located on the northwest edge of Europe and it is known as the “Republic of Latvia”. in addition, Russia shares an eastern border with Lithuania, Belarus borders it on its south, and Estonia to the north, also, it has a coast with the Baltic Sea.

It has five large rivers, the Guaja, the Salacia, the Lielupe, the Daugava, and the Venta. It is mostly flat and has plains and thick forests; moreover, Gaizinkalns is the highest point 1,000 feet tall.

Capital

Riga is the capital and the largest city in Latvia. Riga’s port plays a significant role in fostering trade from Russia and Belarus to European ports. 

Riga has The Via Baltica highway which is a major trucking route to Warsaw, Tallinn, and Kaunas. Riga Technical University is one of the most famous educational institutions in the European Union. 

Language

It is an Eastern Baltic language and known as Lettish that is spoken in the Baltic region. Latvian is the official language in this country and 80% of the population speaks Latvian especially in their homes. 

However, Latvian is related to the Lithuanian but Latvian developed faster than Lithuanian. High Latvian, the Middle dialect, and the Livonian dialect are dialects in Latvian. Finally, many people speak Russian fluently

Currency and economy  

Lats is the currency of the Republic of Latvia and is known in Europe (currency code: LVL or 428). And the Euro is the official currency in Latvia. You can exchange the money at banks and offices Ana’s some banks provide exchange money at ATMs.

debit cards (like Maestro, Visa, and MasterCard) and credit are accepted by ATMs but if you want to go on a trip outside the cities, it is better to take cash with you.

Education in Latvia

Education in Latvia is free and compulsory and its universities are advanced including numerous disciplines and programs offering several types of scholarships for international students. The cost of living and studying in Latvia is low-cost and most international students think of universities in Latvia as a good place to study abroad.

Who are the Latvians?

Latvia is one of the European countries and has a rich history that has shaped its unique culture which is considered influenced by the surrounding countries.

lifestyle in Latvia is very rooted in ancient traditions and customs, and they shared belief in its folklore, and they also: 

  1. people in Latvia respect the older and take in their consideration their valuable advice and wisdom 
  2. In general, Latvians are very private and formal people as well as they do not speak loudly in public.
  3. Latvian cuisine is very delicious and unique. Meat, potatoes, pastries,  and smoked fish are a major part of the diet.
  4. Literature in Latvia is rooted in its folk songs and music.
  5. Latvian families often spend lots of time together

 the most important landmarks in Latvia

  • Old City of Riga
  • Freedom Monument
  • St. Peter’s Church
  • Latvian Museum
  • Latvian Open Air Museum
  • Vermanes Park
  • Jurmala
  • Riga War Museum
  • Rundale Palace and Museum
  • Automobile Museum
  • Gauja National Park
  • National Museum of Art, City of Kuldiga
  • Museum and Rondal Palace

Study Cost

Being a student in Latvian universities is a great leap in your life. frontality, Latvia is one of the most affordable countries to study and live in compared to the rest of European countries. 

The Latvian government is a big supporter of the educational system offering many features for international students to study through its prestigious universities.

How much does it cost to study in Latvia? 

Most of the programs at Latvian higher education institutions charge tuition fees that vary greatly, depending on the institution and the study program rather than the level of study.

  •  In international study programs, the fees vary from 1,500 and 15,000 EUR annually. 
  • Study fees for international programs are higher than those taught in the Latvian language, ranging between 760 and 5,000 EUR annually.
  • Bachelor’s program costs less up to 7,000 EUR 
  • Master’s degree programs cost up to 9,000 EUR 
  • Degrees in a long-term study program, such as Dentistry cost between 2,800 and 12,000 EUR annually. 

Head up: Public universities usually have lower prices than private institutions.

tuition fees for the most popular subject

  • A humanities degree normally costs about 1600 EUR (1870 $) annually.
  • A medicine degree costs up to 15,000 EUR (17,600 $) per year. 
  • Some postgraduate degrees cost up to 25,600 EUR($30,000) per year
  • Pharmacy: between 7,500 to 15,000 EUR per year.
  • Commercial disciplines: it costs around 2000 to 6000 EUR per year
  • Management disciplines: the average costs between 2000 to 6000 EUR per year
  • Computer and engineering majors: are around 2,200 to 4,000 EUR per year
  • Mathematics: the fees range between 2000 to 4000 EUR per year 
  • Computer science: it costs about 2000 to 4000 EUR per year

Cheap Tuition Universities In Latvia

Due to the government’s support to the educational sector, there are some universities in Latvia that pay low tuition fees, however, they are very good in academics and other related university activities.

1- Daugavpils University:

  • The tuition fees for bachelor programs are 2,400 EUR (2,635 USD)
  • for master programs fees are 2,900 EUR (3,185 USD) 
  • for doctoral programs cost 3,400 EUR (3,735 USD)

2. University of Latvia

  • The tuition fees for the complete programs cost 6,600 EUR (7,245 USD) to 58,500 (64,235 USD).
  • Most programs cost less than 12,000 EUR (13,175 USD).

3.  Latvia University of Life Sciences and Technology

  • The tuition fee is around 2,000 EUR (2,195 USD) and 3,500 EUR (3,845 USD). 
  •  entrance exams and the payment of an application fee of 160 EUR or 175 USD
  • student residences rent goes from 83 EUR (92 USD) to 135 EUR (150 USD) monthly.

4.  Riga Stradins University

  •  The tuition fees go from 1,800 EUR (1,975 USD) to 14,000 EUR (15,370 USD).

Living Cost

Students always think that living out of their country is easy and they forget to see the whole picture. However, living in a new country is a challenge, so students who want to go to Latvia have to know that the cost of living in Latvia is suitable for students.

For one person, the cost of living is €620 ($725) per month, and the average monthly living in Latvia is between 450 and 700 EUR. This money covers food, utilities, transportation, and others and the student will live a good life. 

Is the food in Latvia expensive?

You should know the Latvia culture and traditions In Riga, there are many options for an inexpensive fast food and street food:

  • Fried potatoes 1,7 USD = 1.5 EUR
  • Baked meat 200 gr 4 USD = 3.6 EUR
  • Salads 2,7 USD = 2.4 EUR
  • Cutlet 1,9 USD = 1.7 EUR
  • Soups 1,8 – 2,2 USD = 1.6 – 2 EUR

People in Latvia love dark rye bread, and it is a very good chance to experience Latvia food.

The renting in Latvia

There are many places to rent in Latvia, but this is determined by your salary. Renting a house in Latvia is not expensive, the cost starts from 350 EUR.

Riga is the most popular place to rent in Latvia, followed by Jurmala. However, the rent for one apartment is between 150 and 900 EUR depending on the location, and size.

Is Health insurance in Latvia important?

When a student applies for a student visa, it is important to know that he needs to obtain healthcare insurance. On the other hand, in the event of emergencies, state healthcare is only available. Although healthcare in Latvia is universal.

However, you will wait a long time if you go to the hospital because of a lack of treatment and access to the latest medicines. You should be aware that to receive a Residence Permit, you need healthcare insurance.

Transportation

Narvesen outlets are the places where people buy public transport tickets and this is the safest way to get the tickets and you can buy them from the driver.

However, it is better to buy a ticket before you go on a trip. Anyone who wants to know about transportation in Latvia needs to know that buses in Latvia are very good and one of the most convenient means in this country for students. 

Also, the rail network system in Latvia connects almost all the cities in Latvia. It links the capital with lines to seven cities, Valga, Zilupe, Liepāja, Tukums, Daugavpils, Skulte, and Gulbene.

Utilities 

Electricity 

electricity price undergoes an agreement with an energy producer.  electricity costs consist of four elements. 

The first element is the tariff of Latvian electricity transmission, and the second one is the mandatory procurement component. The tariff price varies depending on the electricity consumption.

Gas

People use gas for cooking and for heating, Latvijas Gaze monopolizes the Latvian natural gas market. The price for 1 m3 of natural gas is 0.81 EUR yearly.

Water

Rigas Udens Is a company that provides water in Riga, Liepajas Udens, and Daugavpils Udens. The water counter readings determine the price of water consumption.

Accommodation

Along with its high-quality education system, Latvia is a place with one of the World’s best universities that attract international students to study in Latvia 

bear in mind the accommodation in Latvia is very available and affordable, and the Latvian state offers many options for international students to choose the type to can be comfortable with. 

types of student accommodation in Latvia 

Student housing in Latvia is typically given by universities, whether you prefer to stay on-campus or off-campus.

on-campus 

This type is offered by universities in the form of dormitories, lodgings, or student hostels, Higher institutions provide suitable, comfortable, and conducive student hostel facilities in modern buildings with a safe study environment. 

The average costs of student dormitories or hostels range from 75 EUR to 120 EUR per month, depending on the luxury level of each hostel facility.

Perks of Living on Campus

  • secure
  • homely
  • most reasonably priced
  • immersion with other cultures
  • near of 
  • access to amenities and facilities 

off-campus 

private flat

For those who desire to stay independently in Latvia and have space of privacy, this option is the best for them. this type of accommodation range from

  • studio flats 
  • apartments. 

These houses have a varied price that is affected by location, building type, or if they come fully furnished or not, however, students can expect to pay around 250 EUR to 350 EUR for a rented apartment. 

an apartment sharing is popular in Latvia where two or more colleagues share an apartment and split the costs. The average costs range from 100 EUR to 200 EUR per month with or without utilities.

homestay with Latvian families

Homestays are a great option for international students to learn the culture and language of Latvian. Also, the student can share his or her own culture with the house owners. 

About 85% of the homestay students in Europe learned the Latvian language faster by living together with the natives. 

The homestay costs vary and depend on the location, size, and the offered utilities.

 

Universities

Latvia is a multi-ethnic country and the most popular destination for international students, The higher education institutions are members of international cooperation within several aspects of the study.

Top Universities in Latvia

Latvia has 58 higher education institutions which consist of six state universities and a large number of educational institutions, partly private, and other higher. the list below show the most important universities in Latvia:

1. Riga Technical University

Riga Technical University is a modern international university that is considered the largest and the only polytechnic university in the country, opened in 1862 in Riga, the capital of Latvia. 

RTU is focused on becoming a third-generation university that not only provides a strong and high education but also ensures innovation and conducts advanced research as well as technology transfer, especially implementing scientific discoveries.

with more than 100,000 students, as part of its international exchange program, it offers many types of scholarships for international students who form 15% of the students.

Riga Technical University offers five courses taught in English at the faculty, from undergraduate to PhD level, the university consists of 9 faculties:

  1. Faculty of Architecture and Urban planning
  2. Faculty of Electronics and Telecommunications
  3. Faculty of E-Learning Technologies and Humanities
  4. Faculty of Electrical and Environmental Engineering
  5. Faculty of Computer Science and Information Technology
  6. Faculty of Building and Civil engineering
  7. Faculty of Engineering economics
  8. Faculty of Materials Science and Applied Chemistry
  9. Faculty of Transport and Mechanical engineering

2. Riga Stradins University

Riga Stradins University is one of the most modern and prestigious universities in Latvia. It is a public education institution that was founded in 1950 and is located in the city of Riga.

with an extensive choice of study programs in health care and social sciences, international recognition with the best reputation in Europe, and  

a strong foundation in advanced research

The university enhances its education, and make a contribution to the creation of knowledge and new technologies, AND has nine faculties that provide undergraduate as well as postgraduate level studies in numerous programs:

  1. Faculty of Dentistry
  2. Faculty of Medicine
  3. Faculty of Pharmacy
  4. Faculty of Public Health and Social Welfare
  5. Faculty of Rehabilitation
  6. Faculty of Communications 
  7. Faculty of European Studies
  8. Faculty of Law
  9. Faculty of Continuing Education

3. University of Latvia

The University of Latvia is the largest comprehensive university with a prominent standing in the development of the entire education system. It was established in 1919 in Riga, Latvia.

It is one of the most leading universities and influential higher education institutions In terms of the total number of students and scientific research. The students’ study programs with a higher degree of specialization, internationalization, and selectivity are based on research activities corresponding to the mission of a research university.

The university campus is of urban-type and consists of 13 faculties:

  1. Faculty of Biology
  2. Faculty of chemistry
  3. Faculty of Physics, Mathematics, and Optometry
  4. Faculty of Business, Economics, and Management
  5. Faculty of Education, Psychology, and Arts
  6. Faculty of Geography and Earth sciences
  7. Faculty of History and Philosophy
  8. Faculty of law
  9. Faculty of Medicine
  10. Faculty of Humanities
  11. Faculty of Social sciences
  12. Faculty of Theology
  13. Faculty of Computing

4. Daugavpils University 

Daugavpils University is a public university in Daugavpils, Latvia, and the largest regional university, it began its academic activity in 1921. It is one of the top 20 universities in Latvia.

Every year, a lot of international students choose to study at Daugavpils University due to its strong education, offering many types of scholarships, and it also has various student exchange programs.

The University consists of five faculties

  1. Faculty of Humanities
  2. Faculty of Natural Sciences and Mathematics
  3. Faculty of Social Sciences
  4. Faculty of Music and Arts
  5. Faculty of Education and Management

5. Latvia Universities of Life Sciences and Technology

It is one of the leading universities of science and technologies in the Baltic Sea region, specializing in the sustainable use of natural resources aimed at the enhancement of quality of life for society.

The history of Latvia Universities of Life Sciences and Technology can be traced back to 1939 located in Jelgava, Latvia. the LLU OfferS a wide range of study programs for international students and consists of 8 faculties with several study programs:

  1. Faculty of Economics and Social Development
  2. Faculty of Information Technologies
  3. Faculty of Agriculture
  4. Faculty of Environment and Civil Engineering
  5. Forest Faculty
  6. Faculty of Food Technology
  7. Faculty of Engineering
  8. Faculty of Veterinary Medicine

6. Baltic International Academy 

Baltic International Academy is one of the most important and pioneer universities in the Baltic region with its advanced technologies and strategies in teaching and equipping the students to be ready for the job market.

It is a private profit higher education institution, it was founded in 1992 and is located in Riga.  The university has more than 15,000 students and the international students are most welcome forming 15%. It has numerous programs and disciplines in many fields, it has four faculties:

  • Faculty of Business
  • Faculty  of Communication
  • Faculty of International Tourism
  • Faculty of Law

7. Turiba University 

Turiba University is one of the leading universities, established in 1993 and is situated in Zemgale Suburb, Riga, it is the largest business school in Latvia, and the most famous university, especially the high employment rate of its graduates, which reaches 99.61%,

The university provides its students the chance to gain work experience during their studies and prepares them well for the job market.

Turiba University consists of four faculties, It runs 25 study programs, which include Bachelor’s Program, Master’s Program, and Doctoral study program: 

  • Faculty of Business Administration
  • Faculty of Law 
  • Faculty of International Tourism
  • Faculty of Communication

How to apply to a university in Latvia 

Admission requirements for Latvian universities vary from one university to another, the students should contact the university’s admission office to find out the requirements for the particular university.

In general, universities in Latvia require similar applications to universities in Europe such as language proficiency and academic certificate.

Requirements to Study in Latvia

  • admission application form (the application process is online for Latvian Universities)
  • CV and Motivation Letter.
  • A copy of the student’s academic certificate, 
  • English Proficiency certificate (IELTS, PTE, or TOEFL)
  • Payment Proof of University Application Fees,
  • Curriculum Vitae is also required.
  • Reveal marks for your previous school years.
  • A copy of your valid passport.
  • Recent personal photos.

Scholarships

Aside from its wonderful culture, high quality of life and breathtaking natural views, Latvia’s educational system has a long historical background that makes it stronger and world-class.

Latvia state provides affordable and quality education to its incoming and current international students as well as the students enjoy numerous opportunities and experiences.

Latvia scholarships and grants are offered to financially support students aiming to take programs in this country.

Best Scholarships in Latvia

1- Liepaja University Scholarships for International Students

  • Scholarship Amount: the average is 430 – 500 EUR
  • Eligible Degree: Master’s degree

2- Latvian State Scholarships

  • Scholarship Amount: for Bachelor’s a monthly stipend of 500 EUR while Master’s degrees and Ph.D. students a monthly stipend of 670 EUR.
  • Eligible Degree: Bachelor’s, Master’s, and Ph.D. degrees

3- Latvian Research Fellowship

Scholarship Amount: 30 EUR per day for personal use and 300 EUR for accommodation costs.

Eligible Degree: Ph.D. degrees

4- Turība University Scholarships 

  • Scholarship Amount: Full tuition fee coverage or 600 EUR
  • Eligible Degree: Bachelor’s degree

5- University of Latvia

  • Eligible Degree: Bachelor’s, Master’s, and Ph.D. degrees

Application conditions for Latvian scholarships

  1. the student must select a study program at a Latvian HEI prior to the application for a scholarship.
  2. a student should receive a letter of acceptance for the chosen study program.
  3. Excellent school achievements, Motivation, and Good health.
  4. Students must have good academic performance

Pro-Tip: Scholarships in Latvia are valid for one year for bachelor’s and master’s degree courses. while Ph.D. scholarships are valid for 11 months. Therefore, international students have to apply again for next year’s scholarships.

Financial aid by the government in Latvia

The Latvian government offers financial assistance for the international students:

  • For bachelor’s and master’s degree students are awarded 500 EUR  monthly. 
  • While Ph.D. students receive 670 EUR monthly.

Study Visa

As Latvia is a member of the European Union, so its visa requirements and rules are similar to other countries. 

When you think about studying in Latvia, take in your consideration the required documents and types of a student visas in Ireland.

types of the Latvia student visa

  • long-term visa (type D)

The students whose studies require them to stay for more than 90 days should apply for a long-term student visa.

The holder of this visa has the right to enter the Schengen Zone as well as he or she can renew the visa without returning to their own home.

  • short-term visa (type C)

is known as a Schengen student visa, this type is issued a duration up to 90 days in 180 days period. This visa can be issued as multiple entries, single entries, or double entries. 

How to apply for a student visa in Ireland?

  1. Student visa in Latvia to register on the vfs website
  2. The visa application can be submitted to the Latvian embassy or consulate.

Head up: The VFS charges are around 20 EUR, and if there is a video conference, the additional fees of 35 EUR are needed to be paid.

Requirements

Studying in Latvia will benefit the international students to get a European Degree, which is recognized all over the world, in the selected course along with specialization. 

Therefore, after you decide on which university or high institution you want to study in and receive the acceptance letter. it is time to collocate the requirements of the Latvia student visa 

Student Visa in Latvia Checklist

  • Proof of your intended residence in Latvia
  • a recent, colored, white background photograph 
  • Bank Statement of Last three months showing that a student is able to support him or herself during their stay in Latvia.
  • a valid passport for more than three months of intended stay in Latvia and it must have at least two blank pages.
  • Latvia Invitation Letter for Visa: Invitation Letter or the admission letter by University in Latvia which is approved by the OCMA.
  • Diplomas, Mark Sheets, Diplomas, and Degrees of previous education and their photocopies
  • Travel Insurance (minimum coverage 42600 EUR)

HOW LONG DOES THE STUDENT VISA TAKE? 

The average time is 15 working days, starting from the day of the submission. sometimes, it can take up to 60 days If there is some information required or inspection necessary, 

Once you have applied, wait for 2 weeks or 15 days to be notified about the visa statutes, or from VFS (online).

Remember, The Visa Processing time for student visas in Latvia may change with the country you are applying from.

Specific conditions for international students

  1. The international students must submit a certificate of secondary education that meets Latvian standards. 
  2. All the certificates, academic degrees, and qualifications submitted in a foreign country will be evaluated by the Academic Information Centre.
  3. the selected university will decide on the recognition of the submitted documents by the student depending on the AIC standards.
  4. The university will assess which study program is the closest equivalent of the studies for the student

Why Study In Latvia

Latvia has many wonderful programs which attract international students. When you are looking for good universities, you have to keep an eye on everything you find. 

So, if you look closely, you will find out that Latvia has a great Education System. Students in Latvia have to study hard to keep enhancing their skills, in addition to attending 20 hours per week part-time jobs. Universities provide students with a comfortable atmosphere for academic life that motivates the students to be creative.

What makes studying in Lativa so special? 

1- Students can study in English: Master / Bachelor/ Doctorate level Programs.

2- Universities are approved by the government.

3- Low-cost Tuition Fee

4- Students can bear the cost of living.

5- There are many leisure activities and sports.

Studying in Latvia gives you benefits 

Anyone who wants to go to Europe, studying in Latvia will open the gate of Europe, so you can go to travel in European countries without effort to search for a job. 

There are several highly ranked world-class universities in Latvia such as the University of Latvia, Riga Technical University, and Stradins University and these universities will give you a high level of education.

what are the TOP REASONS TO STUDY IN LATVIA?

  • Several great programs are offered to international students in the most prestigious universities.
  • Latvian degrees are globally recognized.
  • The wide work market for international students.
  • The Latvian government offers many facilities for international students such as scholarships and financial aid.
  • You can work during your student years, which may help you to pay for your studies and living expenses.
  • You can study Latvian, English or even Russian in some programs.
  • The nature in Latvia is very beautiful, it will be easy for you to enjoy its beautiful scenery and unspoiled nature.
  • Latvia is one of the quietest countries in Europe, 
  • Latvian people are elegant people and love the family atmosphere.
  • Transportation is permanently secured with accurate timings and advanced equipment.
  • Latvia is a safe country, this will make you feel comfortable and stable.

Why Latvian Universities for International Students are unique?

Latvia is one of the biggest names in Eastern Europe with its pioneer universities which are ranked at the top universities worldwide.

These are the top reasons that make it the preferred destination for international students:

  1. Latvia is Multi-Ethnic
  2. World-Class Jobs in Latvia
  3. Safety, sustainability, and high quality of life.
  4. People in Latvia are less buzz and more harmonious.
  5. visit ancient castles and picturesque towns
  6. The education system is involved in multi-national cooperation in the aspects of education and research