France visa

France visa is a document required by nationals of certain countries from outside of the European Union (or more precisely, so-called Schengen zone) upon entering France. A France visa is a part of the Schengen system of visas. Before signing the Schengen Agreement in 1995, France used to issue national visas which were valid for the French territory only. After signing the Schengen Agreement, France became a member of the Schengen system, and the originally France visa became today's Schengen visa. The Schengen visa issued by France is what we call today the France visa.

Who needs France visa

visa to France The requirement to have France visa when traveling to France is determined mostly by the traveler's nationality. A visa for France is required from individuals of countries such as Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Botswana, Chad, Congo, Ghana, Kazakhstan, Micronesia, North Korea, Uzbekistan, Zimbabwe, and many other countries. Citizens of countries such as Australia, Brazil, Canada, Japan, New Zealand, South Korea, and United States are not required to have France visa to enter France. Citizens of member countries of the European Union and the European Economic Area (EEA), Andorra, Monaco, and Switzerland are also exempt from the visa requirement. A complete list of countries whose citizens need a France visa to enter France can be found at the following page: Who needs Schengen visa. As the visa requirements change, we advise you to check with your embassy for up-to-date information.

In addition to the nationality factor, French visa is also not required from holders of a valid residence document in France and from holders of a residence or travel document issued by a Schengen country. When traveling to France, passports are required from Britain, Australia, Canada, and USA citizens. Among visa-exempt travelers, other EU and EEA nationals need to hold a valid national ID card.

Types of France visa

France visa A French visa is available in several categories. A visa for France can be issued for the France territory only, or it can be issued for the whole Schengen area. In case a France visa is issued for the France territory only, the line "Valid for" on the visa reads the France country code "F". In case the France visa is good for traveling to the whole Schengen region, then the line "Valid for" says Etats Schengen as shown in the picture.

A visa for France is also categorized by the traveler status. A France visa category C is the most common visa type issued to regular tourist for 90/180 days (see the 90/180 rule). Another French visa type is the visa category type D. This type of French visa is issued to visitors for stays longer than 90 days. See Schengen Visa Categories for a complete listing of France visa categories. The type of visa is marked on the line labeled as "Type of Visa".

A France visa can also be a single-entry visa or a multiple-entry visa as shown on the "Number of Entries" on the France visa, see the picture.

How to apply for a France visa

Visa for France A French visa is applied for on standardized forms. All France visa applicants need to hold a valid passport. The passport must be no older than 10 years, and it also must have at least two blank VISA pages. The passport must be valid for at least 90 days following your departure date from France. Travelers intending to stay in France less than 90 days apply for a short-stay France visa. Visitors with stays over 90 days apply for a long-stay French visa.

How much a France visa cost

The cost of French visa is determined by the visa category and by any applicable visa waivers and reductions. Standard, most-common airport transit visas and short-stay France visa cost €60. Visas for detached French regions (New Caledonia, French Polynesia, Saint Pierre, and other territories) cost less, i.e. €9. Long-stay French visas cost €99. Citizens of selected countries such as Albania, Bosnia, Macedonia, Serbia, Ukraine, and others pay a reduced fee of €35 for short-stay France visa.

Some applicants such as French government scholars, minors under 6 years of age, students and post-graduate students, foreign language lecturers and assistants, foreign members of an EU or EEA citizen’s family, and others are waived from the fee requirement completely.

France visa application form

   short term France visa  short term France visa form
   short term France visa  long term French visa form (long séjour)

Local practices regarding the application process for a visa for France may vary. Forms for French visa applications can be downloaded from websites of most embassies. Check your embassy for the most current France visa form.

Where do I apply for a French visa

French visa If France is the traveler's main destination, the application for visa to France is submitted to the French embassy or consulate. A list of French consulates including their addresses and phone numbers is available here:

   French embassy consulate  French embassies and consulates

What else is needed with French visa

In addition to having a valid France visa, French visa travelers entering France must be able to justify their reason for entering France, and, if required, show sufficient funds for a return journey.

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