For countries that have not joined the Schengen Agreement, there is a visa regime. For this reason, to visit Belgium, regardless of the purpose of the visit, a visa is required. Obtaining such a visa is also necessary if you plan to visit several Schengen countries, but Belgium is the main purpose of the trip or the country of first entry.
Getting a visa to this country is quite difficult. Belgium is considered the European champion in the number of failures. Even if the visa is stamped in the passport, it does not give a 100% guarantee of entry. Some documents may be required at the border. Therefore, it is better to take copies of all the documents that were submitted for obtaining a visa with you on a trip.
The main visa issued to Belgium is the Schengen visa. Only for a long stay in the country you need to apply for a Belgian national visa. Such visas can be:
- short-term (up to 90 days) for tours, business meetings or visiting relatives;
- long-term, intended for training, contract work, entrepreneurship, marriage or medical treatment;
- transit, which are necessary if you need to cross the Belgian border to travel to another country.
You need to apply for a visa at the visa application center or the Embassy / Consulate of Belgium in the country of permanent residence. If the documents are handed over to the consular department, then you will need to make an appointment in advance and bring the documents for a visa in person.
Work or labor visa to Belgium
A visa for employment in Belgium is issued to those foreign citizens who managed to find a job and receive an invitation from a Belgian employer. Getting a visa to work in this country is very difficult. Recently, the country has maintained a record level of unemployment and the main task of the authorities is to provide jobs for their own citizens.
Local personnel are serious competitors not only for our fellow citizens, but also for EU residents. In order to get a job, you really need to be a unique specialist in your field. The employer will have to prove that such a professional is needed to perform the work. Getting a visa takes a lot of time and not every employer agrees to wait for a foreign worker.
A visa is issued on the basis of an employment contract and a decision of the Office for Foreign Citizens. The employer submits documents for a visa first to the employment service at the place of registration of the company. You can apply for a visa in one of the following categories:
- visa “A” allows you to work anywhere at any time and is issued for an unlimited period;
- visa “B” is issued to work with a specific employer for up to 3 years;
- The “C” visa allows you to work in several places at the same time.
For specialists in scarce professions with high qualifications, it is planned to issue a “professional card”.
Student visa to Belgium
Education in Belgium is absolutely accessible to foreigners and most universities do not even use any selection criteria. Therefore, obtaining a student visa is much easier than obtaining a work visa. To do this, you need to have an invitation from the university, show that you have sufficient funds to live in Belgium and confirm the obligation to return to your homeland after graduation.
To take a language course or pass an entrance exam, a single-entry Schengen visa (for 90 days of stay) is usually issued. If the study process continues for a longer period, then you need to apply for a long-term visa. Before submitting documents for a visa , you need to study the requirements of the university well.
Issuing a long-term visa is equivalent to obtaining a residence permit. Such a visa must be issued before leaving for Belgium, because to obtain it you need to be outside the country at your place of permanent residence. Applying for a visa to study at a Belgian university can begin after completing the first year at home or after finishing school in one of the EU countries.
If the prospective student does not have his own funds to pay for tuition, then it is necessary to provide a sponsorship letter from a person who will act as a guarantor of payment of all expenses necessary for study and living.
Business visa to Belgium
The desire to come to Belgium arises among many of our compatriots who are striving to enter European markets and develop long-term cooperation with foreign partners. Foreign citizens can apply for a visa for a business trip if the purpose of their trip is to conduct business negotiations, conclude contracts, participate in seminars and conferences.
Usually a short-term Schengen visa is issued for 90 days with the right to multiple entries and visits to neighboring countries included in the Schengen. Issuing a visa for a period of more than 90 days requires compliance with additional conditions:
- several correctly “departed” Schengen visas;
- funds for the full provision of the trip or guarantee of the sponsor;
- strong business ties with Belgian partners;
- serious reasons for frequent trips to the country.
The main documents for a business visa are an invitation received from the Belgian side and confirmation of the guarantee of accommodation for the duration of the visit.
The invitation contains information about the Belgian company that sent it and the invited person, the purpose and timing of the trip. If the company hosting the event does not bear the costs, then you need to show enough funds on your account. You can get a visa at the Belgium visa center, if necessary, urgent processing is possible, which takes from 3 to 5 days.
Tourist visa to Belgium
Historical and architectural monuments of Belgium, beautiful nature and many cultural attractions attract a large flow of tourists to this country every year. To visit for tourism purposes and recreation in Belgium, you need a visa.
If earlier this process was often delayed, it was necessary to provide a large package of documents, including a detailed description of the route of the upcoming trip, but today it has become much easier to get a tourist visa . To obtain a visa, it is best to contact the agency where the tour is purchased directly.
This method of registration will only allow you to collect documents for a visa , and all other issues will be resolved by the travel agency staff through the visa center without the personal presence of the client. The main thing is to make sure that the tour operator is accredited by the Belgian Embassy.
Only short-term visas lasting up to 90 days can be issued through the visa center. For frequent tourist trips not only to Belgium, but also to neighboring Schengen countries, you can apply for a long-term visa with the right to multiple entries.
The condition for applying for a visa to the Belgian visa authorities is the obligatory first entry into Belgium and the main time of stay in this country. If this requirement is not met, then difficulties may arise with subsequent registration in any of the Schengen countries.
Documents for a visa to Belgium
The package of documents provided in order to obtain a visa to Belgium is standard for all Schengen visas.
Basic documents for a visa to Belgium:
- A valid passport with a validity period of at least 3 months after the trip.
- Old passports, especially if they have previous visas.
- Copies of the pages of the internal passport with personal data.
- Two photographs 50 x 50 mm (color).
- Visa Application (in French, German, Flemish or English).
- Health insurance policy valid for the Schengen countries with a guaranteed minimum coverage of 30,000 euros.
- Certificates from the place of study or work indicating the length of service, salary / scholarship.
- Guarantees of financial security (at least 50 euros / day per person).
For each purpose of the visit, there is a list of additional documents that must be clarified before applying for a visa .
Considering that due to bureaucratic difficulties, the process of obtaining an entry permit may be delayed, you should not postpone obtaining a visa . It is better to submit documents with a margin of 20-30 days, so that the validity period of the received certificates is preserved.