“Is it possible to get a Schengen Visa extension?”
“How do I legally stay in the Schengen Area longer than 90 days?”
These are some of the most common questions popping up in our inbox.
We understand that time flies by for many people looking to enjoy the beautiful scenery and tourist attractions in Europe. Beautiful moments become memories in the blink of an eye, and squeezing a complete Eurotrip into just three months can be overwhelming.
Taking a complete tour of the Schengen Area (including the non-EU countries you can visit with a Schengen Visa) in 90 days can feel like you’re being deprived of a full vacation.
Here is everything you need to know about extending your Schengen Visa and legally staying in Europe longer than 90 days.
1. Schengen Visa Extension: How to Get One
After just 90 days of travelling, many people find themselves needing to leave Europe for three months to “reset” their 90-day Schengen Visa allowance.
We have written a complete and exhaustive guide to the 90/180 rule that enables you to stay in the Schengen Area for a maximum of 90 days over a 180 days period. You can find the guide here.
However, you might feel that a complete tour of the Schengen Countries can’t be done in such a short span of time and ask yourself if you could stay longer.
While it is possible to extend your Schengen Visa, the Member States only approve extension requests for extraordinary reasons.
Sadly, you can’t request a Schengen Visa extension for tourism reasons.
You can only extend a short-stay Schengen visa in emergencies, for example, if you get sick.
You may be able to extend your Schengen Visa for one of the following reasons:
- Late entry
If you enter the Schengen Area after your Visa becomes valid, your Visa extension is likely to be approved. For example, if your Visa became valid on October 1, but you entered the Schengen Area on October 21, you can apply for a three-week Visa extension.
- Force majeure
Force majeure refers to uncontrollable events such as war, labour stoppages, extreme weather, violent protests, or no flight connections. If an unexpected event or effect that can be neither anticipated nor controlled stops you from returning to your country of residence, you may be granted a Visa extension.
- Humanitarian reasons
You may extend your short-stay Schengen Visa to receive medical treatment if you get ill or participate in the funeral of a family member. You may also ask for a Visa extension in case of sudden illness of a close family member.
- Serious personal reasons
In some cases, you may request a Schengen Visa extension for unexpected delays in completing deals or transactions in the course of a business trip, an unplanned wedding of yours or a close relative, or other important personal reasons.
2. What Documents Are Required to Apply for a Schengen Visa Extension?
To have your Schengen Visa extended, most Member States require the following documents:
- Proof that you have enough money to cover your expenses for the rest of your stay in the Schengen Area. For further details, please check out our financial means test. Alternatively, you may ask someone to act as a sponsor.
- Application form for extension of a Schengen Visa (not all Member States require you to fill out a form when requesting a Schengen Visa extension. The form may vary by country, so we recommend you to request further details about this document at the National Authorities in charge of Schengen Visa extension requests).
- Your passport must be valid for at least another 6 months and must not be more than 10 years old
- Evident that you have adequate accommodation
- Return travel ticket with clear return date
- Documents proving the reasons for extending your Schengen Visa (e.g., medical certificate)
Please note that additional documents may be required according to the member State you apply from and the reasons as to why you request your Visa extension.
If you need to extend your Schengen Visa because of force majeure or for humanitarian reasons, your Visa extension is free of charge. If you need to extend your Schengen Visa for important personal reasons or due to late entry, you must pay EUR 30.
If a second extension is required, adults will pay EUR 60 while minors EUR 30.
If possible, the National Authorities will carry out your Visa extension application process on the same day.