All About Visas
What is a Schengen visa?

The Schengen visa is granted in the form of a sticker affixed on a passport, a travel document or another valid document which entitles the holder to cross the border. Possession of a Schengen visa does not confer automatic right of entry. Entry will only be granted if the other conditions laid down by the Schengen Convention are met, i.e. the justification of the purpose and the conditions of the trip and the possession of sufficient funds.

Short Stay Schengen Visa

The short-stay visa is the most common Schengen visa. It entitles travellers, subject to the visa requirement, to enter the territories of the 26 Schengen States to pay a continuous visit or several visits (depending on the number of entries granted by the consulate), the duration of which does not exceed three months (90 days) in any half-year from the date of first entry in the Schengen area. The short-stay visa is issued for one or several entries its period of validity shall not exceed five years.

If you plan to go to Italy on a short stay visa for a period not to exceed 90 days and your country is not on the visa-free list, you need a Schengen travel visa (Visa C). This visa is not a work permit.
Please note that in order to apply for a travel visa at the Embassy of Italy, your only destination or your main destination (longest duration of stay) must be Italy. In the absence of a main destination (e.g. same duration of stay in two or more countries) you should apply at the country of first entry because your passport will show the entry stamp of your first destination only.

When to apply?

You can apply for a visa minimum 15 days or maximum 3 months before your intended date of travel. Applicants are strongly advised not to confirm their travel arrangements until they have received their visa.

Short stay visa applications cannot be submitted more than 90 days in advance before the proposed date of travel. In order to ensure the smooth processing of visas, applications shall be submitted at least 15 calendars days prior to the proposed date of travel. Applicants applying for Re-Entry Visa can visit any of the VFS office in north India without prior appointment.

Schengen Information

A Schengen visa has to be obtained from the Embassy/Consulate of the country where the main purpose of travel lies. Therefore, please check your travel plans before making your application. In case of travel to multiple Schengen countries, please make your application to the Consulate where you will be staying for the maximum number of days, and from the Point of First Entry into the Schengen Countries, if the duration of stay is the same in more than one Schengen Country.

Schengen visa is valid for
Austria Belgium Denmark
Finland France Germany
Greece Iceland Italy
Luxembourg Netherlands Norway
Portugal Italy Sweden
Estonia Latvia Lithuania
Poland Czech Republic Slovakia
Hungary Slovenia Malta
Switzerland Lichtenstein  

Please note that holders of a Schengen visa are still subject to immigration control and are not guaranteed entry into any of the Schengen countries, even though they may hold a valid visa for these countries.