The new digital visa will put an end to the risk of falsification and theft of the visa sticker, says minister
The European Union member states' ambassadors have agreed to a proposal to migrate the Schengen visa procedure to an online application digital format.
The change aims to make the procedure more efficient for all those travelling to and within the Schengen area, with visa currently available for tourism or visa purposes for up to 90 days.
Under the new system, all visa applications will be made through one platform.
Visa applicants will be able to add all relevant data and upload electronic copies of their travel documents and any required supporting documents through the platform. They can then pay their visa fees and wait to be notified with regards to the outcome.
An in-person appearance at the consulate will only be needed for first-time applicants or for applicants whose biometric data is invalid.
Approved visas will then be issued in digital format and will consist of a 2D barcode that is cryptographically signed, making them harder to steal or forge.
Commenting on the news, Swedish minister for migration Maria Malmer Stenergarz said: “A digital Schengen visa will make it easier for legitimate travellers to apply and will at the same time help make the Schengen area safer.
She added: "Online applications will reduce the number of trips to the consulate for travellers and make the process smoother for national administrations. At the same time, the digital visa will put an end to the risk of falsification and theft of the visa sticker.”
For more information, visit www.schengenvisainfo.com/who-needs-schengen-visa