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ABOUT VISAS - SCHENGEN VISA INFORMATION

One Visa Access to 25 Schengen countries in Europe

The Countries participating in the Schengen Agreement;

The 25 Schengen countries are:

Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland.

A Schengen visa issued by an Embassy or Consulate of the above countries allows the holder to travel freely in all of the member countries, unless the issue has restrictions. All these countries except Norway, Iceland and Switzerland are European Union members.

Note; United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland are NOT participants in the Schengen Agreement.


How does the Schengen Agreement work?

Each participating country continues to issue visas in the normal way but the visa issued is a Schengen visa. With a Schengen visa, you may enter one country and travel freely throughout the Schengen zone. Internal border controls have disappeared; there are no or few stops and checks. This means that internal air, road and train travel are handled as domestic trips.

Single, double or multi-entry visas are issued, but this will depend on the support supplied when you apply for your visa.

How can I use a single entry visa?

A single entry visa is for one trip to the Schengen States, for example United Kingdom to Germany and back to the United Kingdom. Alternatively, one trip can include United Kingdom to Germany to France to Italy and back to the United Kingdom.

How can I use a Multi-entry visa?

A multi-entry visa is usually issued for 3 or 6 months and allows unlimited visits up to a maximum number of days. (The number of days is entered on to the visa). With this visa you can enter and leave the Schengen States as often as required within the validity of the visa.

Where and how do I apply for a Schengen Visa?

If you intend to visit only one Schengen country, you must apply at the Embassy or Consulate of that particular country. You apply at the Embassy or Consulate responsible for the state where you live.

If you intend to visit several Schengen countries, you must apply for a visa at the Embassy or Consulate of the country which is your main destination.

If you intend to visit several Schengen countries but do not have a main destination, you should apply for a visa at the Embassy or Consulate of the country which is your first point of entry.

All of the Schengen States operate an appointment system to lodge a visa application. You must phone a premium rate telephone number and arrange an appointment which is usually for a date 3-4 weeks ahead. Ensure you allow plenty of time to get your visa. After you have made the appointment and lodged the application your visa will take up to a week to process. For some nationals this process can be extended to one month.

Register now and obtain personalised visa advice through our visa search facility, including appointment telephone numbers, processing times, visa requirements and application forms.

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