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Who Needs a Schengen Visa and When?

Who Needs a Schengen Visa?
Milan Šogorov Attorney at Law - Legal Consultant

While certain categorizes and nationals of countries do not need visa to enter Schengen Area, others that are not privileged need to go through all the processes of meeting requirements and attending interviews in order to obtain this Visa. But, before we go through list of countries whose citizens need a Visa, we will explain what Schengen Area is.

What is Schengen Area?

It is the world’s largest visa free zone of 26 European countries that abolished their internal borders. by doing so these countries enabled free and unrestricted movement of people. This Area covers most of the European Union (EU) countries, with the exception of UK, Ireland and countries that are in process of becoming a part of: Romania, Bulgaria, Croatia and Cyprus.

What are Member States of the Area?

The above 26 stated European countries that are part of Schengen Area 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.

What is Schengen Visa?

The Schengen Visa is the most common visa for Europe and represents a short-stay visa that allows a person to travel to any Member state, per stays up to 90 days for tourism or business purposes. It is important to know that if you want to study, work or live in on of the Member states for more than 90 days, then you will have to apply for a national visa of that country and not for Schengen Visa.

Who Needs a Schengen Visa?

Simply said, all nationals of third countries, that are not part of Schengen Area, and that did not reach a visa-liberalization agreement with the Member states, need to obtain a visa prior of their arrival in Europe.

Are there different types of Schengen Visa?

Yes, there are. If you are not citizens of a member state, you will have to apply for the Visa for the following reasons:

  • Business purposes;
  • Visiting friends and family;
  • Tourism and holidays;
  • Cultural and sport events;
  • Airport transit and transit for seafarers;
  • Official visit;
  • Medical reasons;
  • Short-term study and research purposes.

Also, depending on the reasons and the frequency of your visit to Member states you can be granted with single-entry visa, double-entry visa, or a multiple-entry visa.

Citizens of Which Countries Don’t Need a Schengen Visa to enter Europe?

Among many countries that do not need a visa to enter the Area such as Canada, Japan, Monaco, New Zealand, Singapore, visa-free regime applies to citizens of Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, North Macedonia, Moldova, Montenegro and Serbia only if they are holders of biometric passport. For holders of the passports issued by Taiwan this visa-free regime applies only if their passport contains an identity card number.

Additionally, visa-free regime applies to holders of a Hong Kong Special Administrative Region passport and holders of Região Administrativa Especial de Macau passport.

Citizens of the countries that don’t need a visa to enter the Area are permitted to stay in any of the Schengen zone countries up to 90 days every half a year, regardless of the travel reasons.

If you need any additional information regarding Schengen Area or Visa, feel free to contact Asst Office.