Visa to Finland: how will Schengen be issued now
Starting September 1, the simplified visa processing regime for Finland for residents of the northwestern federal district of the Russian Federation will no longer apply. There is no detailed information about the new rules, but something is already clear …
Change in brief
Earlier, a simplified visa regime was applied for those living in the capital, St. Petersburg, Karelia, Leningrad and Murmansk regions: travelers filled out an application and, together with insurance, a photograph, a passport with a copy, applied for a Finnish visa. A visa fee was also paid. From September 1, this document set will also have to be added to the reservation of accommodation in which the tourist plans to stay during the trip, and tickets, or, if there are none, a written description of the route. To confirm the availability of finances, you can provide a certificate from the place of work, which indicates the amount of wages, an extract from the bank, where you can see the movement of funds for the previous 3 months, documents proving that the tourist has real estate in Russia.
The diplomatic mission says that the changes have been introduced to align the list of papers requested by Finland with the requirements of the Schengen states.
The Consulate General has not yet told how much wages and the amount in the bank account will be sufficient to issue a visa. Usually for traveling to Europe, the amount is calculated taking into account the duration of the trip and may vary for different countries. But, as a rule, it is at least € 60-65 a day. By September of this year, they promise to post on the Visa Center website a complete list of documents.
What about traveling by car for 1 day?
The consulate explains that tourists who plan day trips or shopping tours need to provide a travel plan and / or tickets, or any reservation. Moreover, the department focuses on the fact that, as before, the decision will be made individually, taking into account the visa history. In other words, if a person previously traveled constantly to Lappeenranta for a day, as indicated by cliches, the diplomatic mission will most likely not have questions.
A day’s car ride is common, and all European diplomatic missions give visas in such cases. It is only important to show the route of the trip and briefly tell about the plans. The advantage will be a ready-made green card (car insurance).
You can apply for a multiple entry visa, even if the first planned trip is for one day. I must tell you what you are going to do during this trip. If in doubt about the decision of the visa center, write in the application form for additional information where and why you want to travel on a multiple entry visa.
Finland does not plan to suspend the issue of multi-visas (by the way, last year they accounted for over 99% of visas issued in St. Petersburg). Currently, Finland most often opens a Schengen for 12-24 months, less often – for 36 months.
Can I get a visa for 5 years?
The EU is going to simplify the procedure for issuing visas to law-abiding tourists. Those will be able to open a five-year visa if they comply with the rules for using Schengen. Interestingly, some states give Russians visas for 5 years today. There are no official statistics showing which states and for how many years more often than others open Schengen, but judging by reports of tourists from Russia in open sources, they are usually given a multi-visa for 5 years in France, Italy, Greece.
Finland gives few such visas. She will apply the new visa policy at the end of 2019, so the conditions for applying for a visa for 5 years will be told to law-abiding tourists later.
Is it obligatory to first go to Finland when applying for a visa?
According to the Schengen rules, if a tourist has a multivisa open, you do not need to first enter exactly the state where it was issued. The total period of stay in the territory of the state that discovered the Schengen must be greater than the period of the total stay in the territory of other Schengen countries. At the same time, it is highly desirable for Finland to enter its territory more often than to other countries.
And what are the requirements of other states?
Estonia ranks second in the number of visas issued in St. Petersburg. The package of documents to the Consulate General should include: a passport with a copy, a photograph, medical insurance, a hotel reservation with 100% prepayment (so that it could not be canceled), as well as an old passport if it was Schengen. In addition, it is important to pay a visa fee, to prove solvency (it is considered at the rate of 58 euros per day). Additionally, it is advisable to attach tickets, thereby showing the route.
When applying for a visa at the Consulate General of Italy, you need to attach tickets, hotel reservations. A financial guarantee is also needed. A fixed amount for trips up to 5 days is € 270. If the tourist plans to stay in Italy for 6-10 days, the fixed amount is increased at the rate of + € 45 day.