Happy Holidays: New Schengen Visa Rules Ease Travel to Europe

The European Union has made getting a Schengen visa much easier. The news rules will significantly streamline travel plans and enhance the overall travel experience for those planning to travel to Schengen visa countries.

By Sam
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Schengen Visa

Indians can look forward to easier visas this holiday season

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The European Union (EU) has recently introduced a revamped visa system targetted at Indian nationals. The new Schengen visa system offers substantial advantages to Indian citizens, allowing them access to long-term, multi-entry Schengen visas. The new rules will significantly streamline travel plans and enhance the overall experience for those planning to visit Schengen countries.

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The Schengen area comprises 25 countries out of the 27 European Union countries except the Republic of Ireland and Cyprus. It includes countries such as Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, and Spain, along with Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, and Switzerland. These countries allow seamless travel across borders for visa holders.

A Schengen visa permits a brief stay of up to 90 days within a 180-day timeframe. This visa may be issued as either a single-entry, enabling one entry into the Schengen area, or a multiple-entry, allowing multiple visits for the duration of its validity.

Under the new rules, Indian travellers can now obtain a two-year Schengen visa, far higher from the short validity periods previously available. To qualify for this extended two-year visa, applicants must have acquired and appropriately utilised two Schengen visas within the preceding three years. Upon successful utilisation of the two-year visa, travellers can typically expect to be eligible for a five-year Schengen visa, provided their passport maintains sufficient validity.


The new rules say that Indian travellers can move freely within the Schengen member countries for short stays, typically up to 90 days within any 180-day period, without the need for additional permits or authorisations. Under this system, eligible travellers with a proven track record of travel will have simplified access to visas with extended validity, provided their passport's validity permits.

The news system is called the Cascade system and it is designed to reward frequent travellers with longer visa durations. It begins with a two-year visa, and upon successful use, travellers can potentially qualify for a five-year visa. While these visas do not restrict the purpose of travel, they do not allow the right to work within the Schengen area.

The decision to tweak the rules comes in the broader context of improving relations between the EU and India

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