COMMON INFORMATION SHEET FOR SCHENGEN VISA APPLICANTS IN INDIA

WHAT IS A SCHENGEN SHORT STAY VISA?

It is an authorisation issued by one of the Member States of the Schengen Area with a view to transit through or an intended stay in the territory of the Member States of a duration of no more than 90 days (short stay) in any 180 day period.

The processing of visa applications is based onTHE VISA CODE Regulation (EC) No 810/2009 of the European Parliament and of the Council of July 2009. Information given below is also based on this Regulation.

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WHICH COUNTRIES ISSUE SCHENGEN VISA?

There are currently 26 European countries in the Schengen Area, 22 of which are member states of the European Union. These 26 countries share a common legal framework and there are no checks on the borders between them.

The countries issuing Schengen visas are: Austria*, Belgium*, the Czech Republic*, Denmark*, Estonia*, Finland*, France*, Germany*, Greece*, Hungary*, Iceland, Italy*, Latvia*, Liechtenstein, Lithuania*, Luxembourg*, Malta*, the Netherlands*, Norway, Poland*, Portugal*, Slovakia*, Slovenia*, Spain*, Sweden* and Switzerland.

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WHAT TYPES OF SCHENGEN VISA EXIST?

1) SHORT STAY VISA:

  • UNIFORM VISA: the holder of a uniform visa is allowed to travel to the States mentioned above for a period of max 90 days during any 180-day period. In order to calculate the period of allowed stay the applicant can consult the short stay calculator available on the website of the Directorate-General for Home Affairs of the European Commission
  • VISA WITH LIMITED TERRITORIAL VALIDITY: the holder of a visa with limited territorial validity is allowed to travel to the State(s) indicated on the visa sticker but not to    any of the other Schengen States.

2) AIRPORT TRANSIT VISA: the holder of an airport transit visa is allowed to transit through the international transit areas of the issuing State and possible other States, if indicated on the visa sticker. Airport transit visa is required by the nationals of Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Democratic Republic of    Congo (Zaire), Eritrea, Ethiopia, Ghana, Iran, Iraq, Nigeria, Pakistan, Somalia and Sri Lanka.

Please note that some Member States can require Airport Transit Visas for Indian nationals, a list can be found here .

Please note that long stay visas are issued according to the national regulations of each Member State. All relevant information can be obtained from the Diplomatic or Consular Missions of the Member States. Useful information can also be obtained via the EU Immigration Portal www.ec.europa.eu/immigration/

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VALIDITY OF PASSPORTS

The applicant shall present a valid travel document (passport) the validity of which extends at least three months after the intended date of departure from the territory of the Member States (or, in the case of several visits, after the last intended date of departure from the territory of the Member States). It shall contain at least two blank pages and shall have been issued within the previous 10 years.

Please note that as per information received from the Indian Authorities, handwritten and not machine readable passports are no longer issued and manual changes in Indian passports are no longer permitted since April 1st 2010. The Schengen states’ consulates thus do not accept:

(1)  Handwritten or not machine readable Indian passports issued after 01/04/2010;

(2) Indian passports that contain a manual entry (observation) made after 01/04/2010 if the biographical data (biodata) of the passport holder were changed.

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HOW MANY TIMES CAN I USE MY SCHENGEN VISA?

On the visa sticker the “number of entries” is indicated: “1”, “2” or "MULT". The holder of a multiple entry visa ("MULT") may enter the Schengen area unlimited number of times during the validity of the visa while respecting the rules on duration of stay.

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WHO CAN APPLY FOR A SCHENGEN VISA IN INDIA?

Indian nationals and nationals of other countries legally residing in India can apply.

Persons who do not reside in India may only apply if they are legally present in India and can present a justification for lodging an application in India rather than in their country of residence.

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WHICH MEMBER STATE IS COMPETENT FOR EXAMINING AND DECIDING ON MY VISA APPLICATION?

The Member State competent for examining and deciding on an application for a uniform visa shall be:

(a)  the Member State whose territory constitutes the sole destination of the visit(s).

(b)  if the visit includes more than one destination, the Member State whose territory constitutes the main destination of the visit(s) in terms of the length or purpose of stay.

(c)  if no main destination can be determined, the Member State whose external border the applicant intends to cross first in order to enter the territory of the Member States.

For more information regarding the competent consulate of the Member State (if there are more than one) and information regarding possible commercial intermediates and external service providers, please visit the web pages of the Member States indicated below.

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WHAT TO DO IF A SCHENGEN COUNTRY DOES NOT HAVE AN EMBASSY/CONSULATE IN INDIA?

If a Schengen country does not have an Embassy/Consulate in India, or if the present Embassy/Consulate is not issuing visas, a Schengen visa application may be submitted to the Schengen state which "represents" this country for visa matters.

Please note that applications can be submitted to an external service provider. You are encouraged to check the websites of relevant Schengen countries in order to know where you can lodge your application.

Please also take note of the following:

  • a Schengen visa application for Greece in Goa shall be submitted to the Portuguese Consulate General in Goa.
  • a Schengen visa application for Slovakia in Mumbai shall be submitted at the Consulate General of Hungary in Mumbai.
  • a Schengen visa application for Slovenia in Goa shall be submitted at the Consulate General of Portugal in Goa.
  • a Schengen visa application for Iceland shall be submitted at the Danish Embassy in New Delhi.
  • a Schengen visa application for Liechtenstein shall be submitted at the Embassy of Switzerland in New Delhi.

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WHAT HAPPENS IF THE APPLICATION IS LODGED WITH THE MEMBER STATE OR THE CONSULATE THAT IS NOT COMPETENT FOR EXAMINING AND DECIDING ON MY APPLICATION?

When an application has been lodged, the Consular post verifies whether it is competent for examining and deciding upon it. If it is not competent, it will, without delay, return the application form and any documents submitted by the applicant, reimburse the visa fee, and indicate which consulate is competent.

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VISA FEE

Applicants shall pay a visa fee of EUR 60.

Children from the age of six years and below the age of 12 years shall pay a visa fee of EUR 35.

Nationals from the Russian Federation, Ukraine, Georgia, Cape Verde, Armenia and Azerbaijan shall pay a visa fee of EUR 35. This also applies to citizens of Albania, Bosnia-Herzegovina, the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia (FYROM), Montenegro, the Republic of Moldova and Serbia NOTholding biometric passports.

In most Embassies the visa fee must be paid in local currency. Some consulates also accept payment by credit card, for modes of payment contact the Embassy in question.

APPLICANTS FOR WHOM THE VISA FEE IS WAIVED

  1. Children under six years;
  2. School pupils, students, postgraduate students and accompanying teachers who undertake stays for the purpose of study or educational training;
  3. Researchers from third countries travelling for the purpose of carrying out scientific research as defined in Recommendation No 2005/761/EC;
  4. Representatives of non-profit organizations aged 25 years or less participating in seminars, conferences, sports, cultural or educational events organised by non-profit organisations.

The visa fee may be waived for applicants belonging to one of the following categories:

  1. Children from the age of six years and below the age of 12 years;
  2. Holders of diplomatic and service passports;
  3. Participants aged 25 years or less in seminars, conferences, sports, cultural or educational events, organised by non-profit organisations.

Information regarding visa fee waivers that may be provided by Schengen states and additional visa fee waivers for specific categories of applicants can be found on the web sites of the Member States below.

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HOW LONG BEFORE THE START OF THE INTENDED VISIT SHOULD I APPLY?

It is advisable to lodge the application as early as possible and at least 15 calendar days before the intended visit. Please note that applications can be lodged no more than three months before the start of the intended visit.

Holders of a multiple-entry visa may lodge the application before the expiry of the visa valid for a period of at least six months.

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DO I NEED AN APPOINTMENT FOR SUBMITTING MY APPLICATION?

Applicants may be required to obtain an appointment for the lodging of an application. You are invited to check the websites of the Member States via the links below.

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WHAT SUPPORTING DOCUMENTS ARE TO BE ATTACHED TO MY APPLICATION?

Check the website of the Member States through the links below.

Please note that during the examination of your application the consular post may in individual cases request additional documents and you may be called for an interview.

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BIOMETRICS COLLECTION

As from 2 November 2015 following the introduction of the Visa Information System (VIS), all Schengen visa applicants in India have to appear in person in order to provide biometric data (fingerprints and digital photography).

The photograph can be digitally taken at the time of the application or scanned from an existing one.

For subsequent applications within 5 years the fingerprints can be copied from the previous application file in the VIS.

In case of reasonable doubt regarding the identity of the applicant, the consulate will collect again fingerprints within the 5 year period specified above. Furthermore, the applicant may request that they be collected if, at the time when the application is lodged, it cannot be immediately confirmed that the fingerprints were collected within this 5 years period.

Visa applicants' biometric data can be collected by Schengen States' consulates and external service providers but not commercial intermediaries (e.g. travel agencies).

 

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WHO IS WAIVED FROM THE REQUIREMENT TO GIVE FINGERPRINTS?

The following applicants shall be exempt from the requirement to give fingerprints:

[Please note that applicants falling under category (b) must still appear personally at a consulate or external service provider]

(a)  children under the age of 12;

(b)  persons for whom fingerprinting is physically impossible. If the fingerprinting of fewer than 10 fingers is possible, the maximum number of fingerprints shall be taken. However, should the impossibility be temporary, the applicant shall be required to give the fingerprints at the following application. The competent authorities shall be entitled to ask for further clarification of the grounds for the temporary impossibility.

(c)  heads of State or government and members of a national government (Ministers and Ministers of State only) with accompanying spouses, and the members of their official delegation when they are invited by Member States’ governments or by international organisations for an official purpose;

This list is mandatory and exhaustive. Holders of diplomatic passports are not exempted as such from the fingerprinting requirement. They may be exempted if they are members of the official delegation of heads of State/ members of a national government invited for an official purpose.

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HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE FOR THE CONSULATE TO DECIDE ON MY APPLICATION?

Applications shall be decided on within 15 calendar days of the date of the lodging of an application which is admissible.

This period may be extended up to a maximum of 30 calendar days in individual cases, notably when further scrutiny of the application is needed.

Exceptionally, when additional documentation is needed in specific cases, the period may be extended up to a maximum of 60 calendar days.

 

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WHICH THIRD COUNTRIES ARE SUBJECT TO PRIOR CONSULTATION OF OTHER MEMBER STATES?

A Member State may require the central authorities of other Member States to consult its central authorities during the examination of visa applications lodged by nationals of specific third countries or specific categories.

Such consultation does not apply to applications for airport transit visas.

One or more Member States may require that their central authorities are informed of visas issued to nationals of specific third countries or specific categories of such nationals. This procedure (“ex post” information) does not apply to airport transit visas.

For information of countries that are subject to prior consultation or ex post information see: -

LIST OF COUNTRIES SUBJECT TO CONSULTATION

LIST OF COUNTRIES SUBJECT TO EX POST INFORMATION

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WHAT CAN I DO IF THE VISA IS REFUSED?

Applicants who have been refused a visa have the right to appeal.

Appeals shall be conducted against the Member State that has taken the final decision on the application and in accordance with the national law of that Member State.

Each Member State shall indicate the references to the national law and the procedure relating to the right of appeal, including the competent authority with which an appeal may be lodged, as well as the time limit for lodging such an appeal.

Such information can be found in a specific form for notifying and motivating refusal that will be handed over to the applicant for such purpose.

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WHAT DOCUMENTS DO I HAVE TO TAKE WITH ME WHEN I TRAVEL ON A SCHENGEN VISA?

Mere possession of a Schengen visa does not confer an automatic right to enter the Schengen Area.

At the external border, visa holders may be requested to produce documents justifying the purpose and conditions of their intended stay; that they have sufficient means of subsistence, both for the period of the intended stay and for the return to their country of origin or transit to a third state into which they are certain to be admitted, or are in a position to acquire such means lawfully. For full information see – Information Sheet to Visa holders

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FAMILY MEMBERS OF EU/EEA NATIONALS AND SWISS NATIONALS

If you are a family member of an EU/Iceland/Liechtenstein/Norway or Swiss national, you shall benefit from a simplified and accelerated visa procedure, including exemption from the visa fee, as long as you meet the following criteria:

  1. You are a family member (this includes a spouse, registered partner, child who is under 21 or a depending family member) of an EU/Iceland/Liechtenstein/Norway or Swiss national (or of his/her spouse/registered partner); AND
  2. That EU/Iceland/Liechtenstein/Norway or Swiss national is residing in another Member State than that of which he/she is a national or travelling there to take up residence; AND
  3. You are accompanying the EU/Iceland/Liechtenstein/Norway or Swiss national or planning to join him/her for residence.

The visa should be applied for at the Embassy/Consulate of the country of future residence of the EU/Iceland/Liechtenstein/Norway or Swiss national, not at the Embassy of his/her country of origin.

If you think you qualify for visa facilitation you will need to show proof that you meet these criteria when you submit your visa application.

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LINKS TO THE WEB SITES OF THE MEMBER STATES OF THE SCHENGEN AREA

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