Austria is one of the European countries that belong to the Schengen Area. The Schengen Area represents 26 countries that allow their residents to travel freely without restrictions within their borders.
As you plan your visit to Austria you might ask yourself “do I need a visa for Austria?”. The answer to that is really not that simple as a visa requirement depends on your nationality. Below you’ll find a detailed answer as to whether you need a visa to visit Austria, what kind of visa you need, and whether you’ll need one to study or work in Austria.
Do I Need a Visa to Visit Austria?
The answer to this question really depends on your nationality and other factors such as your reason for visiting, the duration of your stay, and whether you’ll be using Austria as a transit stop.
- If you are a resident of a country within the Schengen Area or the EEA/EU you won’t need a visa.
- If you are from the U.S., Canada, New Zealand, Australia (provided you’re staying only for 90 days) you won’t need a visa.
- If you are a resident of a country that has a visa liberalization agreement with the Schengen Area you won’t need a visa.
Below you can find a list of countries that need a visa to visit Austria:
- Burkina Faso
- Cape Verde
- The Central African Republic
- Cote D’Ivoire
- Rep. Of Congo
- Dominican Republic
- Equatorial Guinea
- The Gambia
- Liberia Tanzania
- Northern Mariana’s
- North Korea
- Palestinian Authority
- Papua New Guinea
- Sao Tome And Principe
- Saudi Arabia
- Sierra Leone
- South Africa
- South Sudan
- Sri Lanka
Do U.S. Citizens Need a Visa to Visit Austria?
Technically speaking, U.S. citizens don’t need a visa to go to Austria for trips up to 90 days. But there are a few things to keep in mind.
- You will need a visa if you are planning on staying for more than 90 days in Austria.
- You will need a visa and a work permit if you are planning on working in Austria during your stay.
If you pass your 90 days limit and continue your stay in Austria, you may be subjected to fines, arrest, and deportation. You can calculate your stay with the online calculator.
Do I Need a Visa to Transit in Austria?
Most foreigners passing through Austria as a transit stop won’t need a transit visa as long as they remain within the international transit zone.
There are a few countries whose residents are required to have a transit visa when passing through Austria even if they don’t leave the transit zone:
- The Democratic Republic of the congo
- Sri Lanka
*Please note that citizens from this country list will need a transit visa for any other country within the Schengen Area and not just Austria.
There are a few exemptions from the transit visa:
- You hold a valid visa for the Schengen Area, or you are a resident within the Schengen area.
- You hold a valid visa for the EEA/EU Area or are a resident.
- You have a diplomatic passport.
- You are a resident of Japan, Canada, the U.S., the Republic of San Marino, or the Principality of Andorra.
It’s very important to remember that transit visas are always issued in your country of origin. You won’t be able to get a transit visa at the border, please make sure to check before you depart whether you’ll need one.
Do I Need a Visa to Study in Austria?
Yes, you need a student visa to study in Austria. Depending on the duration of your study course, you can either apply for a short-term visa or a long-term visa:
- C Visa. This visa allows you to stay in Austria for up to 90 days within a 180 day period.
- D Visa. Allows you to stay in Austria for up to 6 months.
If you are planning to stay more than 6 months you must apply for a residence permit after you’ve entered Austria.
If you are a resident within the Schengen Area, EEA/EU, or Switzerland you won’t need a visa. But keep in mind if you are a resident from any of these countries and you plan on staying more than 90 days you’ll need to get a “Certificate of Registration” at the local Immigration Authorities.
Student Visa C or D are free of charge.
Do I Need a Visa to Work in Austria?
You need a work visa in order to work in Austria. There are different types of visas based on how long you are planning to work. If you are planning on staying and working longer than 90 days, you must also apply for a residence permit.
A typical work visa fee is around 150€. Though the fee may vary depending on the length of your visa.
Who Can Visit Austria Visa-free?
With the exception of residents within the Schengen Area, EEA/EU here is a list of countries that can visit Austria visa-free for 90 days:
- Albania (biometric passports)
- Antigua and Barbuda
- Bosnia and Herzegovina (biometric passports)
- Costa Rica
- El Salvador
- Hong Kong
- Marshall Islands
- Moldova (biometric passports)
- Monaco (biometric passports)
- Montenegro (biometric passports)
- New Zealand
- North Macedonia (biometric passports)
- Saint Kitts and Nevis
- Saint Lucia
- Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
- San Marino
- Serbia (biometric passports)
- Solomon Islands
- South Korea
- Timor Leste
- Trinidad and Tobago
- Ukraine (biometric passports)
- United Arab Emirates
- United States
- Vatican City
- United Kingdom
How Long Can I Stay in Austria Without a Visa?
If you are a resident of any of the countries that don’t need a visa to enter Austria (see above), then you are allowed to stay up to 90 days within 180 days. Keep in mind that if you visit any other country in the Schengen Area that time is also counted.
After your 90 days period is over, then you must leave Austria or otherwise you’ll be subjected to paying fines or might be arrested.
Requirements When Entering Austria Without a Visa
If you don’t need a visa to enter Austria then you must present proper travelling documentations. This can either be a passport, residence permit, or personal ID. All your travelling documents need to be up to date. Please note that a driver’s license, tax note, or bank statements are not valid documents.
If you are travelling with children they should also be equipped with their valid passports or personal ID. If the child is travelling alone, with only a parent or adults who are not their legal guardians they must have a signed permission certificate from the parents/legal guardians.