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Travel Guide

Passports and Visas

Visa & Passport Requirements for France

PASSPORTS: Passport valid for three months beyond length of stay required by all, except:

1. Nationals of EU countries, Andorra, Liechtenstein, Monaco, San Marino and Switzerland holding valid national ID cards.

Note: Nationals of Belgium, Italy, Luxembourg and The Netherlands may seek employment in France on the basis of submitted national identity cards.

VISAS: Required by all except the following for a period not exceeding three months:

(a) Nationals of Argentina, Bermuda, Bolivia, Brazil, Brunei, Bulgaria, Chile, Croatia, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Hong Kong, Iceland, Israel, Korea, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand , Norway, Panama, Paraguay, Romania, Singapore, Uruguay, Vatican City and Venezuela;

(b) Transit passengers continuing their journey by the same or first connecting aircraft, provided holding valid onward or return documentation and not leaving the airport. The following nationals always require an airport transit visa when not leaving the airport, unless they are permanent residents in the UK, EU, Andorra, Canada, Iceland, Japan, Liechtenstein, Monaco, Norway, San Marino, Switzerland or the USA: Afghanistan, Albania, Angola, Bangladesh, Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Congo (Rep), Côte D'Ivoire, Eritrea, Ethiopia, The Gambia, Ghana, Guinea, Haiti, India, Iran, Iraq, Liberia, Libya, Mali, Nigeria, Pakistan, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Somalia, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Syrian Arab Republic and holders of Palestinian refugee travel documents issued by the Egyptian, Lebanese or Syrian authorities.

Note: (a) Pupils traveling on a school trip may also be exempt from visa regulations if their names are entered on a 'List of Travellers' obtainable from the British Council (Tel: (0161) 957 7755), for those resident in the UK.

(b) Nationals of Bermuda, although visa-exempt when entering France, may still require visas to enter other Schengen countries.

(c) Visa-exempt nationals may still be required to produce proofs of financial means of support, hotel bookings or a return ticket to country of residence, either at borders of entry or within the Schengen area.

Types of visa and cost: A uniform Schengen visa is issued for Short-stay visits (tourist, business and students), Airport transit, Transit and Long-validity (circulation) visits. Visa application fees must be paid at the time of application. No visa application fee can be refunded, whatever the result of the application. All Schengen visa applications are now charged at €35, irrespective of the duration of stay requested (except for long-stay visas: stays over 90 days). The fee remains payable in Pounds Sterling only, approximately £22-26.

Validity: Short-stay visas are valid for a maximum of six months from date of issue for single or multiple entries of maximum 90 days in total. Transit visas are valid for single or double entries of maximum five days per entry, including the day of arrival. Visas cannot be extended; a new application must be made each time.

Application to: All persons wishing to apply must make an appointment by telephone before attending and submitting their documents in person at the consulate. An automated telephone appointment booking service is available; see Contact Addresses section. Travellers visiting just one Schengen country should apply to the Consulate of that country; travellers visiting more than one Schengen country should apply to the Consulate of the country chosen as the main destination or the country they will enter first (if they have no main destination).

Application requirements:

(a) Passport valid for at least three months longer than validity of the visa with blank pages to affix visa stamp.

(b) One completed application form

(c) Two passport-size photos

(d) Evidence of sufficient funds for stay (eg a recent bank statement of less than one month or traveler's cheques; a minimum of £40 per day spent in France is required)

(e) Proof of occupation with letter from employer, accountant, school or university (less than three months old), or last three pay slips. If self-employed, submit up-to-date letter from solicitor/accountant/bank manager/local Chamber of Commerce; if student, submit up-to-date letter from educational institution (less than three months old), stating course, type of studies and attendance record; if inactive and married, submit letter from spouse's employer, spouse's valid passport and marriage certificate.

(f) Return ticket to country of residence, and visa for next destination if required, or confirmed booking from travel agent

(g) Evidence of hotel reservations, a certificate of board and lodging to be obtained by your French host from the local town hall, means of support or proof of official invitation from host or company

(h) Evidence of medical insurance (including repatriation and covering the duration of the requested visa)

(i) Fee; payable by cash or credit/debit card. If applying by post, fee may be paid in credit cards or postal orders only

(j) For business travelers: a letter of invitation from a French company

(k) For student trips: a letter from school stating dates of trip, address in France and name of persons responsible for student.

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