Visa for Belgium
Implementation of visa biometrics starting 20 November 2015
Starting November 20th, 2015, all applicants for a Schengen visa will need to personally present themselves in order to have their biometric date registered.
Visa applications will be processed faster thanks to the use of biometrics (finger prints and a digital photograph). It will allow visa holders to be identified faster and this way identity theft can be countered.
The procedure to take finger prints is easy, quick and discrete. The applicant will only have to place his or her fingers on the digital scanner. If he or she wants to reapply for a visa within five years, new finger printing will not be required: the previous data stored in the Visa Information System (VIS) will be re-used. After five years the finger print data will be deleted.
When a visa holder arrives at the border, Schengen border control officers will use the VIS to check the identity and verify if the visa is genuine. Quick, easy and reliable biometric checks will help to prevent visa fraud. Honest applicants, the clear majority, will therefore be able to go through a faster procedure.
For more information about the VIS, see http://ec.europa.eu/vis.
New contribution for visa LONG stay - D
Since the 2nd of March 2015, a contribution is required for the processing of certain long stay (D) visa applications.
This contribution can be paid by either the applicant or a third person (family members, acquaintance, sponsor, guarantor, etc.). This contribution should be paid into the account of the Immigration Office in Belgium.
The proof of payment of this contribution needs to be presented at the time of the introduction of the visa application. Should the applicant be unable to provide a proof of payment, the visa application will be deemed inadmissible.
This contribution is to be paid on top of the handling fee of the long stay visa (handling fee = the equivalent of €180 in local currency). The handling fee will still need to be paid at the time of the application. An exemption for the handling fee, does not necessarily imply that one is also exempt for the contribution.
We therefore recommend you to carefully consult the website of the Immigration Office with regards to the amount of the contribution and the manner in which this is to be paid.
- Increase of the contribution from 160€ to 200€ and from 215€ to 350€ from 01/03/2017.
- Any bank charges or charges related to the transfer will need to be borne by the applicant or whomever performs the transfer.
- In the event that you have not paid the full amount, you will have an additional 30 days to transfer the additional amount. If you do not provide the proof that the full amount was paid within this period, the amount already paid will not be reimbursed and the application will be inadmissible.
- The contribution will likewise not be reimbursed in the event of a refusal of the visa.
All the information concerning visa applications for Belgium is available on the website of the Foreigners Department of the FPS Home Affairs, which is the competent Belgian authority for access to the territory, stay, residence and removal of foreigners in Belgium.
At which embassy or consulate shall I introduce my visa application?
You should apply for your visa in person at the Belgian embassy or consulate which is competent for your country of residence, where you will be requested to communicate your travel destination as well as the circumstances of it. In a number of cases, you can lodge your visa application through an external service provider (outsourcing partner). In some very specific cases, you can also be exempted from personally lodging your application. If you want to know more about it, please contact the relevant embassy or consulate. If you want to find out which Belgian embassy or consulate is competent for you visa application, please click here - countrycodes.
If you apply for a short stay visa (up to 90 days), some countries offer the possibility of having your visa application treated by another Schengen country Belgium has concluded a representation agreement with. In order to verify which embassy is competent for your country of residence and whether Belgium is represented by a Schengen partner for short stay visa, please click here - countrycodes.
Note: Representation in the matter of visa only concerns Schengen visa applications (short stay up to 90 days) for:
- Tourist visits
- Visits to family or friends
- Cultural or sports manifestations
- Business trips
- Short traineeships
- Transit through the Schengen area
Long stay visa applications (more than 90 days) or short stay visa applications aiming at a longer stay in Belgium (e.g. marriage in Belgium), are not covered by the representation agreement and must hence be lodged with the relevant Belgian embassy or consulate. If there is no Belgian embassy or consulate in your country of residence, you should apply to the Belgian embassy or consulate responsible for that country (and usually located in a neighbouring country): click here - countrycodes.
How can I have my visa extended in Belgium?
All information on this subject can be found on the website of the Alien's Department of the FPS Home Affairs.
Once the Foreigners Department has approved your request to extend your stay, you must apply to the FPS Foreign Affairs (Rue des Petits Carmes 27, 1000 Brussels - Monday to Friday, 9h30 am - 11h30 am) in order to submit your passport and, if necessary, to pay the fee (€ 30).