Limited Appointment Availability for Schengen Travel

Appointments for submitting Schengen C visa applications are limited amid increased application numbers in the period leading up to peak travel season of May to August.

Schengen C visa appointment delays have been ongoing since 2021, due to high application volumes, with Europe hosting many of the world’s most popular tourist destinations.

Travelers should plan in advance as much as possible for upcoming travel to the Schengen Area. It is also recommended that businesses and business travelers remain flexible to ensure sufficient time for obtaining the appropriate visa prior to travel to the Schengen Area.

Schengen C visa appointments are not likely to increase in availability anytime soon. However, in late 2023, the European Council in late 2023 approved rules for development of the EU’s long-awaited digitalization of the Schengen visa application process (the European Parliament had approved the rules in October 2023).

Under the approved rules, the current in-person visa application processes for all Schengen countries will largely be replaced, and applications will instead be processed digitally via a single visa application platform.

These changes are expected to streamline the Schengen country visa application process and to provide improved security features. The implementation date has not yet been confirmed, since eu-LISA – a body which manages large-scale information technology systems in the European Union – must now develop the associated application platform.

This alert, for informational purposes only, was prepared by Fragomen and originally published here. If you have any questions, please contact us.