Key Points

  • The European Commission introduced guidelines to assist EU member states in implementing new changes for the handling of short-term visa applications from Russian nationals


The European Commission introduced guidelines aimed at assisting European Union (EU) member state consulates in handling short-stay visa applications lodged by Russian citizens. The EU will continue to remain open to Russian visa applicants traveling for essential purposes.

According to the guidelines, the European Commission recommends that member states' consulate offices implement the following approaches:

  • Deprioritize visa applications submitted by Russian nationals for non-essential travel purposes, such as tourism.
  • Extend the decision processing time period for applications submitted by Russian nationals. Consulates have the potential to expand timeframes from 15 days to up to 45 days for some cases so that more thorough checks on applications can be conducted.
  • Requesting additional supporting documents to be provided, such as criminal background checks.

The Commission also advised that member states take the following steps:

  • Ensure a stricter approach is taken when reassessing valid short-term visas that have previously been issued to Russian nationals.
  • Revoke short-term stay visas that have been issued to Russian nationals who may present a security threat to the EU.
  • Refrain from issuing multiple-entry visas with long validity periods and instead issue single-entry visas with shorter validity periods.

For additional information and insight into the proposed guidelines for EU member states and their process for issuing short-term stay visas to Russian nationals, check here.

What are the Changes?

The European Commission introduced recommended changes for EU member states' consulates to consider when issuing visas to Russian nationals.?According to the announcement, these guidelines are intended to assist member states in ensuring that consulates can implement proper measures for the processing of short-term visas following the suspension of the EU visa facilitation agreement with Russia.

Originally published 22 September 2022

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