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05 Jun 2019

Spain Asks Moroccans for Appointment Fees in Advance in a Bid to Overcome Visa Delays

Spain VisaMorocco passport holders will need to pay a service charge in advance when booking an appointment for a Schengen visa, starting from June 10. Moroccans wishing to apply for a Schengen visa to Spain at the BLS services, will need to pay the fee of MAD 220 within 72 hours of booking the visa interview appointment.

The move has been undertaken in a bid to deal with visa delays, after it was recently reported that visa appointments for Spain were booked for over six months. Moreover, the wait times have also been continuously increasing for short-term travelers to Spain.

According to the new rules for booking a Schengen visa appointment for Spain, if the payment is not completed within 72 hours the appointment will be canceled. Thus, avoiding visa delays by eliminating false appointments and making way for new appointments.

Only yesterday, the Spanish Minister for Foreign Affairs Josep Borrell apologized for the delays that Moroccans have been facing when applying for a Schengen Visa, during a press conference in Rabat. He admitted that the Spanish consular services were under pressure due to the high number of annually received visa applications.

This year we will receive 250,000 visa applications, which is an annual increase of 10% in recent years,” Borell said during the press conference.

We apologize to the Moroccan citizens for the delays,” he added.

Spain is the fourth Schengen country with most short-stay visa applications received in 2018. The country received 1,701,379 applications last year. On the other hand, there were 662,578 Schengen visa applications filed in Morocco in total.

It is estimated that the visa centers in Morocco receive about 3,000 requests for a visa appointment daily.

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