EU eases multiple-entry Schengen visa regime for frequent travellers in India | Latest News India - Hindustan Times
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EU eases multiple-entry Schengen visa regime for frequent travellers in India

Apr 22, 2024 07:13 PM IST

EU ambassador Hervé Delphin announced the adoption of specific rules on issuing multiple-entry visas to Indian nationals by the European Commission

NEW DELHI: The European Union (EU) has adopted new visa rules that will allow frequent travellers from India to apply for multiple-entry Schengen visas with longer validity, easing travel to 29 European countries.

Passengers arriving at the Henri Coanda International Airport pass under a Schengen Information sign, in Otopeni, near Bucharest, Romania (AP)
Passengers arriving at the Henri Coanda International Airport pass under a Schengen Information sign, in Otopeni, near Bucharest, Romania (AP)

The adoption of specific rules on issuing multiple-entry visas to Indian nationals by the European Commission on April 18 was announced by EU ambassador herve delphin in a post on X on Monday.

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“Travel to Europe made easy! [EU] takes another step towards enhancing people-to-people contact with [India]. New #Schengen #visa regime gives frequent travellers access to multi-year visa (up to 5 y.) Europe delivers on the partnership!” Delphin said in his post.

The Schengen visa area comprises 25 EU member states and four non-EU countries, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland.

The new rules are more favourable than the standard rules of the Schengen visa code that applied to date, the EU delegation to India said in a statement.

The new visa “cascade” regime for Indian nationals residing in India and applying for short-stay Schengen visas will provide “easier access to visas with multi-year validity for travellers with an established travel history”, the statement said.

Under the new rules, Indian nationals can be issued long-term, multi-entry Schengen visas valid for two years after they have obtained and used two visas within the previous three years. This two-year visa will be followed by a five-year visa, if the passport has sufficient remaining validity.

“During the validity period of these visas, holders enjoy travel rights equivalent to visa-free nationals,” the statement said.

The decision was made in the “context of strengthened relations under the EU-India Common Agenda on Migration and Mobility, which seeks comprehensive cooperation on migration policy between the EU and India”. The common agenda is also aimed at facilitating people-to-people contacts “due to the importance of India as a partner for the EU”.

Schengen visas allow the holder to travel freely in the Schengen area for short stays of a maximum of 90 days within any 180-day period. The visas are not purpose-bound but they do not grant the right to work.

The Schengen area consists of Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark, Germany, Estonia, Greece, Spain, France, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Hungary, Malta, Netherlands, Austria, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovenia, Slovakia, Finland, Sweden, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland.

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