I am from Canada and i have booked my entire trip to Europe...I booked round trip flight to and from Paris for four months because it was the cheapest. I have booked hostels, car rentals, for the first month. I got everything I needed and my trip was ready all I thought i needed to do was jump on the plane and explore all of Europe. Just recently I was told about needing a visa if i stay in europe for more then 90 days(i will be there 116). I do not have a visa because i figured the trip was like a vacation to a bunch of different countries so i would have a stamp for each country for a couple of days. My flight is next week....I don"t know if I will be able to get a visa in time for my trip are they really strict about visa's....like in Paris my flight shows the return trip in 4months will they say right away wheres ur long stay visa? And is there enough time to get a visa for my trip?
I dont want to cancel the last month of my trip because i know they have a 3month period where I dont need a visa.....Any suggestions?????
It's probably not as worrying as it seems.
Yes, you are only allowed 90 days within countries that are part of the 'Schengen Agreement'. Your trip is 116 days so that leaves around 26 days to spend outside the area.
Here are the easy options (ie. countries that aren't a part of the agreement):
- The UK
- Ireland (I think, even though it uses the Euro, it gets complicated)
Check if Canadians need a visa for these countries, but I don't think they do.
Some more adventurous options would include: Romania, Bulgaria, Turkey, Morocco (venture over from Spain) etc. But for these you might need a visa prior to going (could try an embassy in a country that you'll stay a couple weeks in), Turkey you could prob get on arrival but I'm not sure.
I don't think they will drill you that much, if they do just say you intend on visiting the UK or Eastern Europe before you fly back out.
I had a similar issue in my gap year type thing...instead of risking to overstay in Europe I decided to do a tour of 30 days through the Middle East which turned out to be sweet...you could use this opportunity as an excuse to visit some really cool places outside of Western Europe, they might be refreshingly different places too.
[ Edit: Edited on 30-Apr-2009, at 22:37 by Erik85 ]
You don't need a visa for practically any country in Europe provided you don't plan to stay more than 30 days in any one of them. For more info, see Visa Waiver Program
EDIT: I've just read on the Wikitravel - Netherlands site that citizens of a number of countries which includes Canada do not need a visa to enter a country which is a signatory of the Schengen Agreement. But to be certain, it would be advisable to contact your own Embassy to clarify the matter.
[ Edit: Edited on 01-May-2009, at 00:29 by Blinq ]
You've no need to worry. Just ask at the borders what their restrictions are. They'll give you all the advice you need. The only 2 countries that'll be a bit of hassle without the correct visas, are Ukraine and Russia.
Erik85 is correct. The countries in the Schengen zone are listed on Wikipedia. As a Canadian you can spend 90 days in that area without getting additional visas. If you wanted to stay longer, you would need to get a visa from an individual country, and you'd still be restricted to spending 90 days in the other areas. That means if you are going to spend more than 90 days in the Schengen zone, you'll really need to spend a good portion of it within one country to qualify for the visa there.
As others have pointed out, some of the countries in Europe are not in Schengen, including the UK and Ireland and much of Eastern Europe. If you can arrange your trip such that you spend 26 of your days in those areas, you are fine.
Note that it is often the responsibility of the traveller to show they haven't broken the rules on the visa, so if you leave Schengen and want to re-enter, or once you are finally leaving, be prepared to be able to demonstrate how you haven't broken the rules. You might not be asked, but you may.