Short stay visa for tourism, business, or family visit
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A Schengen visa, also called "C" visa, is a short stay visa (up to 90 days by semester) valid for the 25 States member of the Schengen agreement :
Therefore, you don’t need to apply twice when you travel to 2 or more different Schengen countries.
- If you intend to visit only ONE (1) Schengen country, you must apply at the Consulate of that specific country.
- If you intend to visit more than one Schengen country, you must apply at the Consulate of the country of your main destination, where you will be staying the longest.
Example 1: you arrive in France and stay for 5 days, then travel to Italy for 2 days = you must apply for your Schengen visa at the French consulate
Example 2: you arrive in France and stay 2 days, then travel to Italy for 4 days = you must apply for your Schengen visa at the Italian consulate.
- If you intend to visit more than one Schengen country for the SAME AMOUNT OF TIME, you must apply at the Consulate of your first entry.
For example : you arrive in France and stay 3 days, then you travel to Italy for 3 days = you must apply for your Schengen visa at the French consulate, as you arrive in France first.
Duration of stay : you may stay up to 90 days in the "Schengen space" with such a visa.
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• YES, if you are a citizen of the following countries even if you hold a US Permanent Resident Card ("Green Card") :
|D.R. Congo (ex-Zaïre)||Cuba||Djibouti|
|Guyana||Haiti||Hong Kong (except S.A.R.)|
|Liberia||Libya||Macao (except S.A.R.)|
|Somalia||South Africa||Sri Lanka|
|St Lucia||St Thomas||St Vincent|
|Trinidad & Tobago||Tunisia|
|Uganda||Ukraine||United Arab Emirates|
*Biometric passports holders of Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia are no longer required to obtain a visa for stays under 90 days.
**the ID card number of the holder MUST be mentionned in the passport : if not, the holder has to apply for a visa.
• NO, if you hold a passport issued by a country NOT listed above, you do not need any visa to enter France for tourism, business or family visit.
However, if the purpose of your trip is NOT tourism, business or family visit then you may still be required to get a visa before your departure. Note that not needing a visa for France does NOT necessarily mean that you do not need one to visit the other Schengen countries.
Processing time depends on your citizenship.
2 weeks is the average processing time if you are a citizen from :
|Qatar||US Re-entry permit||US Refugee travel doc|
|United Arab Emirates||Vietnam||Zimbabwe|
Applications cannot be processed more than 3 months ahead of time.
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The visa section does not make any copies. You must bring your documents and the required copies. You are also invited to sort your documents in the same order they are listed below in order to facilitate the work of the visa officer that will review your application.
1. Original passport or travel document (+ ONE COPY of the identity pages). Your passport must have been issued less than 10 years ago[, be valid for at least three months after your return to the US and have at least 2 blank visas pages left.
4. One ID picture glued/stapled onto the application form
5. A valid U.S. permanent residence card ("green card") or a valid US visa with valid I-94 and/or valid I-20 or I-797 + 1 photocopy , or an Advance Parole document.
We do NOT accept applications from B1/B2 visa holders. They must apply in their country of residence.
6. If the country of final destination is not the applicant’s country of citizenship, please submit a valid visa, a resident permit, a work permit or any other document showing that the applicant is allowed to enter or reside in such country.
7. Proof of socio-professional status (IF APPLICABLE):
- letter of employment in the U.S confirming your salary, hire date, position and dates of vacation (business registration if self employed)
- and your last 2 pay-stubs
- or letter from your school or university confirming your enrollment status, attendance and expected graduation date
8. Proof of financial means : your last 2 bank statements where we can see clearly your name, date and ending balance.
9. Your travel itinerary : you MUST BOOK your airline ticket but do not purchase until the visa has been approved.
10. Proof of medical coverage abroad : a letter from your insurance company stating that you are covered abroad or a travel insurance to be purchased from a travel agency (minimum amount of 50,000 US$). Please note that a simple copy of your insurance card won’t be sufficient.
11. Proof of accommodation:
- Confirmed hotel reservations for your entire stay in the Schengen states
- or a letter from your travel agent stating that you are part of a tour.
- or, if you are staying with friends or family, original and copy of "Attestation d’Accueil" that your host has to request at the City Hall (Mairie) in France
- For a business trip : please also provide a letter from your employer in the US or from your host company in France stating that you are in France on behalf of the company, giving the name and address of the contact person(s) in France and guaranteeing full responsibility for expenses, lodging, and return to the United States
12. If the applicant is under 18 years old and travelling without his parents:
- notarized copy of his (her) birth certificate
- notarized authorization from both parents allowing their child to travel to France or from the parent exercising full custody of the child according to the divorce decree :
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- Parental authorization
- if you are divorced : certified copy of divorce decree stating that you have full custody of the child(ren).
13. A self-addressed prepaid envelope with a tracking number from USPS OR FEDEX ONLY. You may use one envelope per family. You don’t have to provide an envelope if you prefer to pick up your passport when it is ready. For FedEx, you must choose the option “BILL RECIPIENT”, not “BILL SENDER”.
Please keep copy of your tracking number (as we are not going to do so), stick the mailing label on the envelope and fill out like this:
88 Kearny Street #600
SAN FRANCISCO, CA 94108
Your full name
- The consular administration has full authority to evaluate and request more documents than those submitted by the applicant.
- Please be aware that submitting the aforementioned documents does not guarantee the approval of the visa.
- Please note that holders of Schengen visas are still subject to immigration control upon first entry into a Schengen country. The visa itself does not grant the right to enter the Schengen space.