You have a dozen Schengen visas in your passport, including annual, and in recent years you have been trying to apply for a three-year at the German Visa Application Center, but each time you get an annual one again. Or for several years you have been collecting short-term visas issued by the Germans, and only after the sixth-seventh single-entry visa do you finally manage to move on to the next step - to become the happy owner of a multivisa. And then friends advise you to make an Italian or French visa and not to bathe with German. Familiar situations? With the introduction of new rules for issuing Schengen visas, such a lottery should be a thing of the past.
So what does the EU promise us? "The new rules for obtaining a short-term visa ... should facilitate travel to European countries for tourism, trade and business purposes, as well as prevent illegal migration and increase internal security measures." The changes will affect all countries (today there are 105), whose citizens need to obtain a visa to enter the 22 countries that have signed the Schengen agreement, as well as the four states associated with them - Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland. A standard short-stay visa issued by one of these countries entitles you to travel across all 26 countries for a maximum of 90 days for a period of 180 days.
Now it will be possible to apply for a Schengen visa six months before the trip (earlier - only three months). The EU believes that tourists or business people "will be able to better plan their trips." Multiple entry visa for a long period of time (from a year to five) "now it will be easier to get, which will save travelers time and money." Those who have a positive visa history will be issued "multiple visas, the validity of which will gradually increase - from one year to five years." In this case, it will be “carefully and repeatedly” checked whether the traveler complied with the entry conditions. The application can be submitted electronically, unless of course you need to take fingerprints - then you will have to come to the visa center or consulate in person. "Fingers" must be taken once every five years.
The processing time for documents will remain the same - 15 days. In special cases, even up to 45 days. For Russians, Armenians and Azerbaijanis, the amount of the consular fee (35 euros) will not change. For citizens of countries that do not have an agreement with the EU on visa facilitation, for example, Kazakhstan, the consular fee was increased from 60 to 80 euros. Children under 6 years of age are exempted from the fee.
As before, the applicant must apply for a visa at the consulate of the country he wants to visit. If you plan to visit several countries of the Schengen zone, you should submit an application to the consulate of the country, where it is supposed to spend the longest period of time. If the duration of stay in different EU countries is the same, then you need to contact the consulate of the country that you plan to visit first.
MNG clarified in the press service of the German Embassy in Moscow whether it is really worth counting on the fact that now the Germans will also become more generous with multi-visas. As it turned out, almost all the visas that Germany issued to Russians in 2019 were multiple. In total, according to preliminary estimates, last year German diplomatic missions in Russia issued about 350 thousand visas. Of these, more than 50% are three-year or five-year and almost 40% are annual. “Thus, only a very small fraction of the visas issued were really short-term,” the press service said. In addition, diplomats recall that only on the website of the German Embassy in Moscow and the company officially authorized by him to receive and process VisaMetric visa applications can you find complete and reliable information about everything related to applying for a visa.