Schengen Visa - FAQ

1. What is a Schengen visa?
A Schengen visa is a document issued by a corresponding authority, which allows its holder to travel to a signatory of the Schengen Agreement or to the Schengen Area. The Schengen Visa was introduced to make travelling faster and easier between all the EU countries that signed up for the agreement.
2. Which countries are part of the Schengen Area?
The Schengen Area comprises 26 member countries. Those countries are: Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland.
3. Who doesn't need a Schengen Visa?
The Schengen Area covers most of the European countries. The exceptions are the UK and the future signatories of the Schengen Agreement: Romania, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus and Ireland. Norway, Switzerland, Lichtenstein and Iceland are also within the Schengen Area, although they are not the EU members. Citizens of the Schengen countries do not need a visa to travel to other countries within the Schengen Area. They are, however, required to get a residence permit if they intend to move their residence to another country of the Schengen Area. Also, UAE citizens only need a valid passport (for a short stay uo to 90 days) to enter any of the Schengen countries.
4. What is the fee for a Schengen visa?
The fee for a Schengen visa costs 60 euros. The visa for children under 6 years is free. The fee for children 6 - 12 years of age costs 35 euros.
5. What are Schengen visa photograph requirements?
Two identical photos need to be submitted and only colour photos are acceptable. Photos should not be older than 6 months. Photos should be submitted in the required format (35x45mm).
6. How long before planned date of departure can I apply for a visa?
You may submit a visa application 3 months before your planned date of departure.
7. Can I send my application by courier or fax?
No. Each applicant has to present its application in person.
8. Am I required to have medical travel insurance?
Visa applicants are required to have medical travel insurance. Medical travel insurance is valid for all Schengen countries. The minimum coverage must be EUR 30,000.
9. At which Embassy or Consulate do I need to apply for the visa?
You should first check if you really need a visa for the country you’re travelling to. In case you do, you have to apply at the appropriate embassy or consulate of the country you will be travelling to.
10. Which documents do I need to submit for my application?
Please check the list of documents to be submitted upon application on our website. Bear in mind that the list of additional documents is changeable at any time. The Consular office may ask for additional required documents.
11. My visa got rejected? Will I know why that happened?
The reasons for refusing a short-stay visa must be given. In the case of long-stay visas reasons for refusal are not given, except for certain categories.
12. Can I apply again for a Schengen visa if my application has been refused earlier?
You are free to apply again for a Schengen visa if your application has been refused earlier.
13. My visa has been issued by the German consulate, can I use this visa to travel to other countries (ex. Sweden or France)?
Yes, you can. You are allowed to visit all the States in the Schengen area.
14. Can I convert my type C multiple entry visa into type D national visa?
You cannot convert your type C multiple entry visa into type D national visa, but you can apply for a type D visa.
15. What is type C multiple entry visa?
Type C multiple entry visa does not restrict the number of entries into the Schengen Area. However, its validity is limited to 90 days within six months. The day of the first entry into the Schengen Area counts as the first day of the validity of the visa.
16. Do I have to submit all the documents required for a visa?
The Visa applicant must present all the documents that are listed on the requirements page.
17. How long will it take to process my visa application form?
The minimum visa processing time is 5 or 10 working days, depending on the nationality of the applicant, provided that a complete visa application is submitted. Bear in mind that the process can take longer.
18. Which family members of EU/EEA citizens are exempted from the visa regime?
The following family members of EU/EEA nationals have the right of free movement (have the right to travel to EU/EEA Area) to join their family for settlement or to travel there for a short visit:

1. the spouse
2. the partner with whom the EU citizen has contracted a registered partnership
3. the direct descendants who are under the age of 21 or are dependants and those of the spouse or partner
4. the dependant direct relatives in the ascending line (e.g. parents) as well as those of the spouse or partner

Additional: Family members who are not nationals of a Member State may have to show an entry visa and they must carry a valid passport. Also, the visa fee is free for the family members of EU citizens. Visas should be issued within 7 - 10 working days.

19. What are the requirements for family members of EU/EEA citizens?
1. Application form (fully completed and signed by the applicant)
2. One recent photo (color photo, not older than 6 months)
3. Valid travel document of the applicant (passport must be issued within the last ten years, also passport must be valid for three months past the visa expiration date)
4. Passport of the EU/EEA citizen
5. Marriage/ Birth certificate (document which proves family relationship of an EU/EEA citizen with the applicant
6. Confirmed flight reservation
7. For minors (birth certificate, written consent signed by both parents with their phone numbers if the minor is not traveling with both parents)

Note: Additional documents may be required and they may vary from country to country.

20. Is it possible to receive a Schengen visa as an unemployed person?
As long as you are able to prove your intention to return to your home country, because that information is really important for consular officers there won't be any problems.
21. What are the requirements for a Schengen visa for children under the age of 18?
- application form must be signed by both parents/legal guardians
- child's birth certificate (original)
- consent letter signed by both parents (if a minor is traveling alone)
- copies of the parent's passports

22. What documents do I have to provide as a proof of financial support for a short stay Schengen visa?
- bank account statement of the past three months (for at least 3 last months)
- proof of regular income

23. What does Schengen travel insurance usually cover?
For more information, please click here.

24. Can I extend my Schengen visa?
It is possible under certain circumstances. Those exceptional cases are:

- humanitarian reasons
- serious illness
- extraordinary circumstances (airline strikes, force majeure)

Bear in mind that your visa can only be extended if your current visa is not expired and if you have stayed less than 90 days within 180-day period.

25. What is the minimum amount I'm required to have in order to enter and stay in the Schengen zone?
Each country has different guidelines for minimum amount a person must spend per day. Here you can have a look at the reference amounts for each country.
26. What is the Schengen visa cover letter?
The Schengen visa cover letter is a letter which summarizes your intent to travel to a country that is part of the Schengen area. In your cover letter you should explain:

- the purpose of your trip
- when and where you intend to travel
- how your trip is going to be funded
- day-by-day itinerary for your trip
- duration of the trip