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Schengen short-stay visa (foreigner in France for up to 3 months)

Verified 31 May 2022 - Directorate for Legal and Administrative Information (Prime Minister)

You are a foreigner and you want to stay in France for less than 3 months? You must have a visa short-term (Type C). This visa is common to the countries of the Schengen area. It allows you to stay in France and in the other countries of space Schengen, except in exceptional circumstances. Other documents must also be held, which vary according to the purpose of the stay.

You are affected if you meet the following 3 conditions:

  • You are foreigner
  • Your stay is one maximum duration of 3 months in France (or in another space country) Schengen)
  • You don't have a residence permit or long-stay visa in a space country Schengen


this procedure does not concern a foreigner who is a national of European countrynor the members of his family living in France with him.

Depending on your nationality and the type of passport, you may be exempt from the visa requirement.

You can check if you need a visa using the Visa Assistant service.

Check if you need a visa - Visa Assistant

A visa is a sticker affixed by a country's administration to a person's passport to allow him or her to enter and stay for a specified period of time.

The short-stay visa allows you to enter and travel in France and other countries in space Schengen.

Exceptionally, it may be valid in France or in one or more countries in space Schengen only (for example, France and Belgium).

Unlike a national long-stay visa (type D), the visa Schengen does not allow you to settle in France.

On what grounds can a Schengen visa be granted?

This visa can be granted for example for one of the following reasons:

  • Tourist trip
  • Business travel
  • Family visit
  • Short Training, Internship
  • Exercise of a paid activity (for example if you are an artist on tour in France, sportsman, model, etc.), after having obtained a provisional work permit

What is the authorized length of stay with the Schengen visa?

The short-stay visa allows you to stay for a maximum of 90 days for a continuous stay or for several stays in the countries of space Schengen over a period of 180 days.

At the end of this 90-day maximum, you must leave the space Schengen.

A simulator allows you to calculate the maximum length of a non-European foreigner's stay in the Schengen area:

Calculate the maximum permissible length of short stays in Schengen countries

Depending on the reason for your stay, you must present the following documents, in addition to the visa:

  • Proof of your livelihood (cash, traveler's checks, international bank cards, etc.)
  • Proof of guarantees for your repatriation (return transport ticket, etc.)
  • Insurance covering medical and hospital expenses, including social assistance, for care you may receive in France (the minimum coverage requested is €30,000)
  • Proof of reception or proof of accommodation in a hotel or a host establishment, if your stay is part of a private or family visit
  • Documents on the purpose and conditions of your stay in France, if your trip is touristic or professional or is for hospitalization or research work


if you want to work during your short stay, you must have a work permit.

You must complete your visa application online at the earliest 3 months before departure planned.

An online service allows you to apply for a visa:

Apply for a visa

After completing your application on the internet, you must make an appointment at the French Consulate of the country in which you reside.

An online service allows you to make an appointment:

Please note

if the main destination cannot be determined, it is the country of entry into theSchengen area who is competent to issue you the visa. For example, if you plan to spend 15 days in Belgium and 15 days in France for tourism arriving through Belgium, you must make your request at the Belgian consulate.

Validity of the passport

Your passport must be valid for at least 3 months after the end date of your visa. It must also have been issued for less than 10 years.

Recording of the applicant's data

Your data biometrics are saved to a file, called Visabio.

These data are the scanned images of your photo and fingerprints (children under 12 years of age are not affected).

You cannot object to this registration. However, you have the right to access and correct the file.

To find out the cost of the visa, you can consult the Rates of the pages of the assistant France-visas:

France-Visas - Cost of visa according to country

The amount of the visa fee must be paid to the visa office at the time of application.

In countries where the State has entrusted the receipt of applications to a private provider, the application fees must be paid to that provider. The latter may also charge additional service charges abroad.

After payment, a receipt with an indication of the amount paid shall be given to the applicant.


in the event of refusal of the visa or cancelation of the stay, the amount paid shall not be refunded.

The following persons shall be exempt from the visa fee:

  • School children, students and teachers accompanying them during study or educational stays
  • Researchers traveling for scientific research purposes
  • Representatives of non-profit organizations up to the age of 25 and participating in seminars, conferences or sports, cultural or educational events organized by non-profit organizations

Grounds for refusal of visa

Your short-stay visa Schengen may be revoked by the Prefect for one of the following reasons:

  • You cease to fulfill the conditions for issuing the visa
  • You work without permission in France
  • Your behavior is disturbing the public order
  • You came to France to stay there and not for a short stay (you need clues to suggest it)

The prefect responsible for deciding on the repeal is the one of the department where you are staying or the one of the department where you have been inspected.

The decision to revoke your short-stay visa must be communicated to you, together with its reasons, by means of a standard form.

Appeal against refusal of visa

You may appeal the decision to repeal one ex gratia appeal to the prefect and/or a hierarchical appeal to the interior minister:

You can also refer a case to the administrative judge action for annulment if your administrative appeals have not been successful.

You can also go directly to the administrative judge without having filed an administrative appeal.

Who shall I contact