The Schengen states have common rules for issuing short-stay Schengen visas, which are valid within the entire Schengen area. These visas allow a person to stay and travel in the territories of Schengen states for a maximum of 90 days in any six month period.
Who needs a Schengen visa?
Depending on the purpose of your travel the embassy or consulate of your Schengen destination country will issue you the appropriate visa. There are three main types of visas that are issued which include tourist visas, business visas, working visas, student visas and transit visas.
Countries whose citizens require Schengen Visa
This is the list of countries whose nationals must be in possession of a visa when crossing the external borders of the Schengen Zone.
|Azerbaijan||Guinea-Bissau||Papua New Guinea|
|Benin||Iran||Sao Tome And Principe|
|Central African Republic||Lebanon||Syria|
|Dem. Rep. Of Congo||Mali||Tunisia|
Entities and territorial authorities not recognized as states by at least one Schengen Member State
- Kosovo (As defined by the United Nations Security Council Resolution 1244 of 10 June 1999.)
- Palestinian Authority
Who is Exempt from Schengen Visa Requirements?
Whereas, this is the list of third countries whose nationals are exempted from holding a visa when crossing the external borders of the Schengen Territory:
|Antigua And Barbuda||Argentina|
|Barbados||Bosnia And Herzegovina*|
|Vatican City State||Honduras|
|Solomon Islands||South Korea|
|St Kitts And Nevis||St Lucia|
|St Vincent And The Grenadines||Trinidad And Tobago|
|United Arab Emirates||United States Of America|
*The visa exemption applies only to holders of biometric passports.
**The visa exemption applies only to holders of biometric passports. Excluding holders of Serbian passports issued by the Serbian Coordination Directorate (in Serbian: Koordinaciona uprava
Special Administrative Regions of the People’s Republic of China
- Hong Kong S.A.R.
- Macao S.A.R.
British citizens who are not nationals of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland for the purposes of Union law
- British Nationals (Overseas)
- British overseas territories citizens (BOTC)
- British overseas citizens (BOC)
- British protected persons (BPP)
- British subjects (BS)
Entities and territorial authorities not recognized as States by at least one Member State
- Taiwan – The exemption from the visa requirement applies only to holders of passports issued by Taiwan, which include an identity card number.
How Can I Get a Schengen Visa?
You should apply for a Schengen Visa at the embassy or consulate of the Schengen country you are planning to visit. If you are planning to visit two or more countries during the same trip, then you have to apply at the embassy of the country where you plan to spend more time. If you are planning to spend equal time in two or more countries, i.e. five days in France and five days in Germany, then you have to apply at the embassy of the country where you are planning to land first.
In case that in your country, there is no consulate of the Schengen country you wish to visit, then you will have to contact the Ministry of Foreign Affairs or Immigration Office of that country and get information where you will have to apply in order to get a Schengen visa.
Do UK Citizens Need a Schengen Visa?
As the UK is still part of EU, UK citizens do not need to apply for a Schengen visa to visit Europe. However, the EU has proposed visa free travel for Britons after BREXIT, which means that UK citizens will fall under the ETIAS scheme. Whether this system will be applied to the UK or not, will be known after it definitely leaves Europe, or about that time.
For now, UK residents that hold a citizenship of a country that does not have a visa liberalization agreement with EU are required to apply for a Schengen visa while in the UK.
Which Countries Can I Visit With a Schengen Visa?
If one of the Schengen Area member states has issued you a multiple-entry Schengen visa, then you can visit a wide number of countries in Europe. First of all you can visit the member states which are:
Secondly, there is a number of countries in Europe which are Non-EU countries, but they still accept visitors that hold a Schengen visa. These countries are:
|Albania||Antigua and Barbuda|
|Belarus||Bosnia and Herzegovina|
|Sao Tome and Principe||Serbia|