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France Visa FAQs

Is it possible to get a French Visa (if I need one) at the airport?

As a foreign national who needs a Visa to travel to a France territory you CANNOT get a French visa in an airport. Instead, you MUST apply for a French visa well in advance to the diplomatic office of France, typically three months earlier from the date of your travel.

As a French short-stay visa holder Can I extend my visa while in France?

Yes, you can extend your French Schengen visa but only in exceptional cases where new facts and special reasons arise after entry in France. Please read How to Extend a Schengen Visa to understand in what circumstances and what are the conditions you must fulfill in order to be eligible to Extend your French Short-stay Visa.

As a US or UK national, do I need a French visa to travel to France?

United States and United Kingdom nationals are FREE to enter and stay in a French territory WITHOUT a French Visa for short-stays (up to 3 months or 90 days).


Exception from the above rule make Nationals of the United States:

  • Who NEED having a French Visa if they intend to study in a French Overseas Départment or Region
  • Who hold a diplomatic or official or other service passport and aim to stay in these French territories in a diplomatic or official mission there
  • Who intend getting a gainful job, or, entering and staying in a French Overseas territory for journalistic purposes.

>> Who can apply for a France Visa in the UK?

Should I apply for a French Visa if I am planning to stay in Belgium for 5 days and in France for another 4 days?

Whenever you plan traveling throughout the Schengen Area, you MUST apply for the Schengen visa of the Schengen country where you plan to stay the most of your trip. In this case, the correct visa to apply for, is a Belgium Schengen Visa.

Can I change my visa type or my residence status once in France?

From the moment a French Visa Holder arrives in the territories of France, there is NO possibility to make any changes as regards of visa type or residence status. Make sure to apply for the appropriate visa type, and/or, residence permit as an alternative.

If my French short-stay multiple entry Visa is valid for a year, how long can I remain in a French territory?

A short-stay visa allows you to enter and stay in a French territory for 90 days the most at once, within a period of six months.

Can I use my Schengen valid visa to enter and stay in a French overseas department or territory?

A Schengen Visa DOES NOT authorize you to enter and stay in any of the French overseas departments or territories, unless you are released to possess a visa for doing so. If you are not exempted, you MUST apply for the relevant French visa at the French diplomatic office in your country (if in your home country), or to a French Prefecture (if already in France).

Is it possible for me to visit other Schengen countries if I hold a temporary French long-stay visa with “residence permit exemption”?

Sure, you CAN travel everywhere within the Schengen territory if you hold a temporary French long-stay visa with “residence permit exemption” or French D long-stay visa. However, possessing such a visa you can only stay in Schengen Zone not exceeding 3 months or 90 days at once within the period of 6 months. Additionally, you must present an evidence of the purpose of your stay as well as sufficient means.

Can I travel to France if I hold a French long-stay visa constituting a residence permit and yet the French Immigration and Integration Office has not validated it?

Holding such a French long-stay visa constituting a residence permit, you CAN enter and stay in France and other Schgengen countries and beyond, not exceeding 3 months or 90 days of stay. You CANNOT stay in France, other Schengen countries or outside Schengen Area, if after 3 months of stay you DO NOT possess the OFII validation or OFII sticker affixed to your visa or an OFII certificate of application to travel outside France.

If you CANNOT get the OFII aforementioned validations within the period of 3 months, you must return home and re-apply for another long-stay visa from your home country.

Do I need a visa to go to France if I am US citizen?

Generally, the US citizens are NOT required to possess a France Visa for entering and staying in French European territory, in French Overseas Départments, or, in  French Overseas Territories. However, they MUST possess a visa if intending to get involved in a gainful job in a journalistic activity in any of French European territories, Overseas Départments, or, in the Overseas Territories.

As well, US citizens MUST have a French Visa to enter and stay in French Overseas Départments if they intend to study there, possess a diplomatic, official, or other service passport, or, those who want to get involved in a diplomatic or official mission there.

>> France Visa Requirements for U.S. Citizenship and U.S. Passport Holders

How long can a US citizen stay in France without a visa?

Despite that US citizens enjoy the right to enter and stay in any of French territories without a visa, the allowed days of stay in these territories are limited though. The permitted days of stay, at once, for US nationals is 90 days or 3 months, considered a short-stay.

If my French Visa is denied, am I allowed to appeal?

You absolutely CAN appeal against the French diplomatic office’s decision to reject your French Visa. You might do this within the period of 2 months from the date of notification of the refusal, at the Board of Appeals against decisions to refuse an entry visa to France.

Can I apply for another French Visa, immediately after a previous French visa denial?

You are ALLOWED to apply for a new French Visa immediately and at any time after a previous French visa denial, since there is no penalty applied to the applicants whose visa is rejected previously.

What is a flight itinerary for France Visa application?

Flight itinerary is a confirmed document which can be verified online about the schedule of a given flight. Learn more How to get flight itinerary for France Visa Application!

What is means of subsistence for France Visa?

France visa applicants must prove that they have enough financial resources during their stay or transit in the French area.

As the European Commission specifies, any foreigner seeking to enter France, since 19 June 2014, when applying for France Visa must be able attesting to the France Embassy or Consulate possessing the daily money amount of 120€ if holding no proof of prepaid accommodation. If the applicant has a prepaid hotel, then this amount reduces to 65€/daily for the period of covered hotel accommodation, while the rest is 120€. Also, in case the applicant proofs cheaper forms of accommodation the amount decreases to 32.25€/ day.

What is Proof of Hotel reservation for France

Proof of Hotel reservation confirmation required from the actual hotels throughout the whole itinerary showing the hotel’s full contact details and applicant’s name. If visiting friends/relatives; a French certificate of board and lodgings (Attestation d’ Accueil) must be obtained from local French Town Hall or Police Station – It should be noted that the embassy will only issue a visa valid for the duration of the stay with friends/family – Proof of accommodation is required throughout the entire trip. >> Find and Book Cheap Hotels in France!

Where can I get a France visa application form?

Visa applications will only be accepted on an official form (or legible photocopy of a form). You can find the France Visa Application Form here!

Must I complete the form at the consulate or must it be completed before I go to the consulate?

You will only be allowed into the visa department if you can present a properly completed and signed visa application form.

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