What is a short-stay Schengen Visa?

The standard short-stay Schengen Visa for travel to Europe is a Uniform Schengen Visa. It allows you to stay in the 27 countries within the Schengen Area for a maximum of 90 days within a 180-day period. This visa allows you to travel and reside in your destination country and to travel freely between Schengen Area countries.

What different types of Schengen visas exist ?

Do I need a short-stay Schengen Visa?

If you are a citizen of a country outside of the Schengen Area that does not have a visa-free travel arrangement with Schengen countries, you will need a visa. The U.S., U.K., Canada, and Japan all have these arrangements in place, but countries like China, India, and all African nations do not, so their citizens require a visa.

What reasons are valid for travel on a short-stay Schengen Visa?

A short-stay Schengen Visa is the standard type of visa used for travel to Europe, and as such, can be used for a variety of reasons. These include tourism, visits to family and friends, business trips, official visits, to study in Europe for a short period, trips made for medical reasons, and to travel to Europe to attend cultural and sporting events or take part in artistic projects. There is also an ‘other’ option on your application form if you think these reasons don’t match your own. If you need to stay in a Schengen country for longer than 90 days, you will need to explore other options like a student or work visa.

How long is a Schengen tourist visa valid for?

It is important to remember that a short-stay visa will only be valid for 90 days within a period of 180 days.

Is there anything else I need to know about Schengen Visas?

You can apply for a single-entry, double-entry or multiple-entry Schengen Visa depending on your needs. The former is best if you are only planning a short trip to one country, while a double-entry visa allows you to exit and return to the Schengen Area. A multiple-entry Schengen Visa allows you to exit and return as many times as you like while it is valid. Multiple-entry Schengen Visas are available to cover periods of one, three and five years, during which you can enter and exit the Schengen Area as many times as you like, providing you do not stay for more than 90 days within a six-month period.

How do I apply for a Schengen tourist visa?

You’ll need to apply to the consulate, embassy or visa application center of your host country, or if traveling to more than one nation, then to the one you plan to spend the most time in. You’ll need to provide two identical photographs, a valid passport, proof of your itinerary, such as flight bookings, as well as proof of accommodation. You’ll also need travel and medical insurance, covering costs up to €30,000, including repatriation to your home country in case of a medical emergency or death.

How much is a Schengen visa?

  • You must pay a non-refundable application fee of €80 or $90
  • For children between 6-12 years of age the visa fee is 40€ or 45$
  • For children younger than 6 years, Schengen visa is free

How can AXA help?

You can buy your medical and travel insurance online with AXA from as little as €22 per week. Once you have purchased your medical and travel insurance, a certificate proving you are insured will be available immediately, meaning you can get on with your visa application. We also offer comprehensive Europe Travel insurance. This covers medical expenses up to €100,000 from €33 per week of your trip.

Multi-Trip insurance is also available to customers planning to travel in and out of the Schengen Area on multiple occasions. It's perfect for those traveling on business or who want to make repeat visits to family.


Related topics on Schengen visa types

Frequently Asked Questions about a short-stay Schengen Visa

Where can I get the application form for a Schengen Visa?

An application form can be downloaded from the consulate or embassy or visa page of the country you are applying to - or from the website of the firm that processes applications on their behalf.

Do I have to hand the documentation in personally at the embassy/consulate?

Yes. When applying for a visa you have to personally book an appointment at an embassy or consulate or visa application center- where you will need to present the required documents.

What should I do if I want to extend the Schengen Visa?

If you need to extend your short-stay Schengen Visa- you will need to contact the authorities in the Schengen Area country you are residing in. An application for an extension will only be considered in special circumstances.