All travelers, regardless of origin or destination, can apply for a digital Schengen visa

The European Commission has published amended regulations on the digitalization for Schengen visas and the movement of third-country nationals within the border-free zone.

According to a SchengenVisaInfo report, the updated regulations outline the transformation of Schengen visas into a digital format, featuring a 2D barcode cryptographically signed by the Country Signing Certificate Authority of the issuing Member State. Digital visas will include the facial image of the visa holder and will be both printable and accessible for all travelers, regardless of origin or destination.

During the transition period, Member States interested in joining the platform must notify the Commission and eu-LISA. The digital visa application platform will utilize the domain Europe.eu, consistent with official EU websites.

The platform will automatically determine the responsible Member State for processing applications, storing them temporarily as needed for relevant tasks. Physical visits to the embassy will be required only in specific instances, such as first-time Schengen visa applications or the acquisition of a new travel document.

Visa fees payment through an EU VAP-linked gateway, with payments directed to the relevant Member State. Electronic payment details will not be stored in the VIS (Visa Information System), and consulates or authorized service providers will collect visa fees if electronic payment is not possible.

The amendments also anticipate the integration of the EU VAP with other EU systems like the Entry Exit System (EES) and the European Travel Information and Authorization System (ETIAS), maximizing utilization while considering technological constraints and Member States’ investments in national systems.

While citizens from over 60 countries, including Australia, Britain, Canada, New Zealand, and the United States, usually do not require Schengen visas for short visits, they will still need to apply online for pre-screened entry through the European Travel Information and Authorization System (ETIAS), expected to be operational in mid-2025.

Source: TheEconomicTimes

Read Today's News TODAY...
on our Telegram Channel
click here to join and receive all the latest updates t.me/thetimeskuwait

Back to top button