Schengen visa

What is a Schengen visa?

A Schengen visa is an authorization to enter one of the Schengen Agreement member states, which allows a short-term stay or temporary visit for a maximum of 90 days in any period of 180 days. A visa obtained in one of the Schengen countries allows you to travel freely throughout the Schengen area, but it must be requested from the consulate of the main host country. If you plan to visit several countries, none of which is the main purpose of your trip (i.e. the length of stay in each country is the same), you should apply for a visa at the consulate of the country you plan to initially enter.

When you are granted a visa, the length of your stay in the Schengen area depends on the type of visa issued by the particular embassy/consulate of any country party to the Schengen agreement. Depending on the purpose of travel and other relevant circumstances, there are different restrictions applicable to each particular visa. Nevertheless, the most common type of visa issued to travelers allows a maximum stay of 90 days in the Schengen area in each six-month period starting from the date of entry.

What is the difference between a Schengen visa and a regular visa?

The national visa differs from the Schengen visa in appearance in that it does not say "Schengen countries" in the territory of validity, but only one country (the one that issued the visa).

What is the Schengen zone?

The Schengen area includes the following countries
Austria
Belgium
Croatia
Czech Republic
Denmark
Estonia
Finland
France
Germany
Greece
Hungary
Iceland
Italy
Latvia
Liechtenstein
Lithuania
Luxembourg
Malta
Netherlands
Norway
Poland
Portugal
Slovakia
Slovenia
Spain
Sweden
Switzerland

The issuance of a visa requires the holder to leave the Schengen area before the expiry of the visa. In addition, the applicant must have sufficient financial means to cover the costs associated with the stay in the Schengen area, as well as provide relevant documents confirming the purpose of the trip. A Schengen visa can also be issued upon invitation from the host country.

Afghanistan
Algeria
Angola
Armenia
Azerbaijan
Bahrain
Bangladesh
Belarus
Belize
Benin
Bhutan
Bolivia
Botswana
Burkina Faso
Burundi
Cambodia
Cameroon
Cape Verde
Central African Republic
Chad
China
Comoros
Côte d'Ivoire
Cuba
Democratic Republic of the Congo
Djibouti
Dominican Republic
East Timor
Ecuador
Egypt
Equatorial Guinea
Eritrea
Ethiopia
Fiji
Gabon
Gambia
Ghana
Guinea-Bissau
Guyana
Haiti
India
Indonesia
Iran
Iraq
Jamaica
Jordan
Kazakhstan
Kenya
Kosovo
Kuwait
Kyrgyzstan
Laos
Lebanon
Lesotho
Liberia
Libya
Madagascar
Malawi
Maldives
Mali
Mauritania
Mongolia
Morocco
Mozambique
Myanmar
Namibia
Nepal
Niger
Nigeria
North Korea
Northern Mariana Islands
Oman
Pakistan
Palestine
Papua New Guinea
Papua New Guinea
Philippines
Qatar
Republic of Congo
Russia
Rwanda
Sao Tome and Principe
Saudi Arabia
Senegal
Sierra Leone
Somalia
South Africa
South Sudan
Sri Lanka
Suriname
Syria
Tajikistan
Tanzania
Thailand
Togo
Tonga
Tunisia
Turkey
Turkmenistan
Uganda
Uzbekistan
Vanuatu
Viet Nam
Yemen
Zambia
Zimbabwe

Nowadays, there are countries whose citizens also require a transit visa to transfer to an airplane at a Schengen airport. Below is a list of countries whose citizens require a Schengen transit visa:

Afghanistan
Bangladesh
Congo (DRC)
Eritrea
Ethiopia
Ghana
Iran
Iraq
Nigeria
Pakistan
Somalia
Sri Lanka

However, there are exceptions for certain persons regarding the need to obtain a transit visa. In the following cases, nationals of the above-mentioned countries are not required to obtain an airport transit visa:

  • If the person has a residence permit in a Schengen Agreement Member State and a valid Schengen visa for a short or long term stay.
  • If the person has a residence permit in countries such as Andorra, Canada, Japan, San Marino or the United States.
  • If the person has a valid Schengen visa or a visa to enter one of the EFTA countries, as well as Canada, Japan or the USA, even if you have already returned from these countries.
  • If the person is a close relative of an EU citizen.
  • If the person has a diplomatic passport.

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