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Q: EU Consultants' Visa ( Answered,   0 Comments )
Subject: EU Consultants' Visa
Category: Reference, Education and News
Asked by: doctorow-ga
List Price: $10.00
Posted: 30 Sep 2003 18:16 PDT
Expires: 30 Oct 2003 17:16 PST
Question ID: 261724
I've been told that there are EU-wide visas available to consultants
from abroad. Can you tell me if this visa exists, who is eligible for
it, and where I can find more information about it?
Subject: Re: EU Consultants' Visa
Answered By: tehuti-ga on 01 Oct 2003 05:01 PDT
Hello doctorow,

I have not been able to find anything about a visa scheme specifically
for third country experts invited by the Commission, nor have I ever
heard of one from third country participants whom I have met on
various EC working groups over the last 10 years or so.

However, the so-called Schengen visa covers you for Austria, Belgium,
Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Greece, Luxembourg,
Netherlands, Portugal, Spain and Sweden, as well as Norway and
Iceland. The UK and Ireland are exceptions in refusing to take part in
this scheme.  As a UK citizen, I know that the UK is also more
rigorous even in respect of EU nationals, granting them entry only
with a proper passport, as opposed to the more relaxed controls
operating in other member states.

You can find information about the Schengen visa, together with
downloadable application forms in several languages, at
and further information on the European Commission's Europa web site:

To summarise some of the information from these sites:

The Schengen visa lets you travel freely between the Schengen
countries, with few or no stops for being checked.

Applications are directed as follows:

If you intend to visit only one EU country: to the Embassy or
Consulate of that country.
Otherwise, you apply to the country of your main destination, or if
there is no main destination, to the country that will be your first
point of entry.

The Schengen visa can be used for business, tourism, and for
cultural/sports, medical and offical visits. You will need valid
travel documents, be able to demonstrate the purpose of your visit and
show that you have the means to keep yourself during your stay.

If you have a residence permit for one of the Schengen countries,
presentation of that permit together with your passport will let you
enter another Schengen country for a short visit, without the need to
apply for a visa.

The web site of the Luxembourg Embassy in the UK 
provides some further specific details as they apply to people making
their application to this particular embassy.  This should also serve
as a general indication of the sort of things that are needed:

1. A passport or official travel document accepted by the Schengen
countries and valid for at least three months longer than the validity
of the visa with a blank page to affix the visa sticker.
2. Completed application form with 2 passport size photos
3. Proof of purpose of visit: a letter of invitation from host or
business partner, confirmed onward or return ticket, confirmed hotel
booking if applicable.
4. Evidence of sufficient funds to cover the visit.
5. Evidence of health insurance cover.
6. Letter from your employer or from a solicitor, accountant or the
Chamber of Commerce if you are self-employed.

NB If you are coming in as an expert invited by the Commission,
evidence of this will presumably cover items 3 and 6.

The costs vary according to the issuing country.  For people applying
to the Luxembourg Embassy in the UK, the costs are (in UK ):
Transit 8 
Up to 1 month incl.(based on single entry) 19 
1-3 Months single entry 23 
Up to 3 months incl. (multiple entry) 27 
Over 3 months 37 

The web site of the Netherland Embassy in Bangladesh adds the
following information:
"Long-term visas (stay longer than 3 months) are subject to the
national legislation of the country of destination and should be
applied for at the relevant diplomatic mission." 

Search strategy on Google  1. commission, experts, "third countries"
2. CEC invited experts visa
3. "european commission" invited expert visa 
4. "Schengen visa"
NB I used the search term "expert(s)" because that tends to be the way
in which references are made to consultants working with the

I did also attempt to search the Europa web site (official site of the
However, as is often the case, the search engine was not functioning!
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