How to Get Airport Transit Visa – 5 Easy Steps to Apply for Transit Schengen Visa
The Schengen area consists of 26 countries across Europe. They are:
Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, The Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland
Usually, when you wish to travel to any of these countries, you will need to apply for a Schengen short-stay visa or a National long-stay visa.
However, if you are planning on visiting a non-Schengen country, but you need to change planes in the airport that belongs to a Schengen country, you will need to apply for an Airport Transit visa.
Airport Transit Visa (ATV) Statistics for 2017
|Country||ATVs Applied for||ATVs issued||ATVs not issued||Rejection rate|
About the Airport Transit visa
Depending on your nationality, you may require an Airport Transit visa if you are traveling to a country which is not included in the Schengen state, but are transiting through the international zone of the Schengen country’s airport while you wait for your subsequent flight.
For example, you are traveling from the US to India and you have to connect with a second flight at the Frankfurt airport in Germany which will take you to your final destination in India.
However, if your final destination is a member of the Schengen states and you are changing planes in another Schengen country, there is no need for an Airport Transit visa. You should have already applied for a short or long stay visa for the country you are visiting which will allow you to enter the country.
If you are in transit through a Schengen country’s airport, you cannot leave the international zone of the airport. If you wish to do this, you must apply for a short-stay Schengen visa which will allow you to enter for up to 90 days.
Nationalities that require an Airport Transit visa
People who come from certain countries must apply for an Airport Transit visa in order to connect with a second flight on their way to their final destination. These nationalities come under the “Common List of Third Countries”. They are:
3) The Democratic Republic of the Congo
12) Sri Lanka
You should be aware that certain countries in the Schengen area insist on including further nationalities who must also apply for an Airport Transit visa.
|Schengen Member||Nationalities who need an Airport Transit visa|
|Belgium||Dominican Republic, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Nepal, South Sudan, Sudan, Syria|
|Czech Republic||Chad, Egypt, India, Kyrgyzstan, Lebanon, Libya, Mali, Mauritania, Niger, South Sudan, Sudan, Syria, Turkey, Turkmenistan, Yemen, Palestinians|
|Germany||India, Jordan, Lebanon, Mali, South Sudan, Sudan, Syria, Turkey|
|Spain||Cameroon, Côte D’Ivoire, Cuba, Djibouti, Gambia, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Jordan, Liberia, Mali, Sierra Leone, Syria, Togo|
|France||Cameroon, Central African Republic, Chad, Congo, Côte D’Ivoire,|
Dominican Republic, Guinea, Haiti, Mali, Mauritania, Philippines,
Russia, Senegal, Sierra Leone, South Sudan, Sudan, Syria, Palestinians
|Luxembourg||Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Nepal, South Sudan, Sudan, Syria, Togo|
|The Netherlands||Cuba, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Nepal, Sierra Leone, South Sudan, Sudan, Syria|
Schengen countries who do not require an Airport Transit at all
Please note, the common list of third country nationalities STILL require an Airport Transit visa, even if they are transiting through any of the aforementioned countries.
Airport Transit visa Exclusions
You are excluded from requiring an Airport Transit visa if you:
- Have a diplomatic passport
- Have a long-stay visa or residence permit for a Schengen country
- Have a short-stay visa for a Schengen country
- Have a residence permit which was issued in Andorra, Canada, Japan, San Marino, or the United States which includes re-entry
- Have a visa for the European Union (EU), the European Economic Area (EEA), Canada, Japan, or the United States
- Are a family member of an EU citizen
- Are a member of a flight crew who is national of a contracting party to the Chicago Convention on International Civil Aviation
Applying for Airport Transit Visa from the United States
If your nationality means you have to apply for an Airport Transit visa for transit through a Schengen country’s airport en route to your final destination, you can do so from the United States.
You can apply at the consulate of the country whose airport you will be transiting through. For example, if you are changing planes in Spain en route to Thailand you will need to apply at one of the Spanish consulate’s located in the United States.
Some consulates have outsourced the processing of visa applications to third parties, such as VFS Global. The consulate’s website will tell you if this is the case. However, the steps you need to follow are the same.
Each of the consulates in the US deals with applications from within their jurisdiction. So, you’ll need to find out which consulate you need to contact depending on the area you reside in.
Once you know which consulate will be dealing with your application, there are a number of steps that you need to follow in order to apply for your Airport Transit visa:
1) Complete the application form
2) Make an appointment
3) Prepare your documents
4) Attend the interview
5) Receive your visa
Step 1: Complete the application form
Usually, the first step is to complete your visa application. All consulates allow you to either complete your application online or you can download it from their website.
Step 2: Make an appointment
The next step is to make an appointment. Although you can complete your application form online, you must submit your application in person to the consulate. Most of the consulates have online booking systems that are easy to use and, once you have created an account, you can log on and make a convenient time and day for your appointment.
You must apply as early as possible for your visa to be processed. If you apply too late, then this could mean that it would not be processed in time and it will delay things for you. Generally, consulates aim to make a decision with 14 days, but it could take longer. You can apply anytime between 2 weeks and 12 weeks prior to your trip.
Making appointments with the embassy or visa application center is generally free and can be done yourself. However, If you are running short of time or not sure which consulate to apply to or have no idea on how to get this done yourself then not to worry, we will make the appointment for you for a small service fee!
Step 3: Prepare your documents
There are several documents that you need to prepare in order to apply for an Airport Transit visa. You should check the specific consulate’s website regarding the requirements before you start. Documents include:
1) Passport – must be valid for at least 3 months beyond your return to the US, have been issued within the last 10 years, and have a minimum of 2 blank pages for your visa to be attached
2) Visa application form – completely filled out and signed
4) Proof of legal residence in the US
5) Travel medical insurance – to cover €30,000 for medical expenses, hospitalization, and repatriation
6) Flight reservation – to include confirmation of onward journey to the final destination
7) Visa for the country you will be traveling to (if applicable)
8) Visa Fee
You must ensure you submit all the required documents for your visa application and provide originals and photocopies. Failure to do so may result in a rejected application.
If you’re planning to obtain your flight reservation for visa without paying for the ticket, all you have to do is follow the 3 simple steps below:
- Visit the Visa Reservation website to choose the right package
- Submit the travel details and make the payment online
- Receive flight itinerary in email
Step 4: Attend the interview
In order to submit your application, you’ll need to attend an interview. This is a straightforward process whereby you will hand your documents over, the staff will examine them and advise you if they need anything else. They may also ask you additional questions to confirm the information you have stated. If this happens, answer the questions politely and honestly. Visa interview questions like:
- Is this your first time traveling to the Schengen zone or the European Union?
- Are you traveling alone?
- Where do you live in the US?
- Why are you traveling to this country?
You may have to provide biometric data which includes fingerprints and photograph if this is your first time applying for an Airport Transit visa.
You will also have to pay the fee of €60/$68. You can usually pay by cash, cashier’s check, money order, or credit/debit card, but it depends on where you are submitting your application. Each one of the consulates has details about what they accept, so you should have a look to confirm what they will accept.
Don’t jeopardize your Schengen visa interview at the last minute. Use this comprehensive and thorough visa interview guide to crack the visa interview!
Step 5: Receive your visa
You will be notified when your passport and visa is ready. You will have the option to either collect it from the consulate or the third party or you can arrange for it to be mailed back to you. If you wish to have it posted, you will need to provide a pre-paid, self-addressed envelope.
Hopefully, you’ll receive your Airport Transit visa, but there may be a chance that it could have been rejected. Typical visa rejection reasons are:
- Missing documents
- Passport not valid for 3 months after the trip
- Application form not signed
- Travel insurance not for the required amount
Do everything you can to stop your application being refused. Submit ALL the required documents, sign the application form, and make sure you have the correct amount of insurance. Also, check to see if your passport is valid.
There are just a few simple steps to follow to apply for your Airport Transit visa. Most importantly, make sure you need one!
- Find out which consulate you need to apply to
- Complete your application
- Make an appointment
- Attend your interview
- Receive your visa
Then, you can be sure that you will be allowed to transit through your chosen Schengen airport on your way to your final destination.
At Visa Reservation, we strive to simplify the visa process by providing free visa consultations, cover letter templates and no objection letter templates for our clients from US, UK, Canada, Philippines, India, China, UAE, Europe, Nigeria and globally. We also offer flight itinerary for visa, travel medical insurance, hotel reservations for visa , Book Visa Appointment, Travel Guides, Visa Interview Guides and many more. To learn more about how we can help you with our visa services, please feel free to contact us today.