InternationalVisas and immigration

Travelling to Europe – Schengen Visa

Whilst studying in the UK, you may wish to travel within Europe for a course trip or to explore during the holiday periods. If you are not a European Economic Area national and want to travel to Europe, you may be required to apply for a Schengen visa before you travel.

The Schengen Visa Scheme is a scheme that allows those visiting certain countries within the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland to travel between these countries using only one visa. View full list of Schengen Countries/TerritoriesPlease note that the UK and Ireland are not a part of the Schengen agreement.

Where do I apply for a Schengen visa?

If you require a Schengen visa you need to apply before travelling. You can apply for a Schengen visa at the Embassy or Consulate of the Schengen country which you will be spending the most nights on your trip to the Schengen Area. The forms for the application can be found on the Embassy website of the country that you are applying to. Some countries require that you make the application in person, and go and collect your passport once the visa is approved,

What type of Schengen visa will I need?

There are three types of Schengen visas. The type most students wanting to travel within the Schengen area as tourists or as part of a course trip will require is a Short Stay or Travel visa, which allows a visit of up to three months.

You can also get a multiple entry Schengen visa, allowing you to return to the UK and then re-enter the Schengen area at a later date. Not all Embassies issue multiple entry visas.

How long will the application take?

Most Schengen Embassies can process applications within 15 working days, however there can be delays. We therefore recommend that you apply at least 4-6 weeks before you intend to travel. Schengen Embassies will not accept an application more than 3 months before the intended date of travel.

What documents are required for the application?

  • A completed application form.
  • Student status letter (contact the International Student Adviser).
  • Itinerary (hotel booking or invitation letter) at least for the first few days. If your trip is organised as part of your course, your course leader / trip organiser can provide you with information for your application.
  • Proof of medical insurance and repatriation certificate (Travel insurance).
  • Original Passport – valid for at least 6 months.
  • Proof of funding for the trip. Evidence confirming this can be recent bank statements, and credit card statements showing the current credit limit.
  • Recent photograph(s) the exact number required varies between countries.
  • Your UK visa will generally need to have at least 3 months left on your UK immigration. You should check that your current UK student immigration permission will allow you to return to the UK after your trip.

How can the University help?

The International Student Adviser can look at completed application forms and documents before they are submitted to make sure that the information is correct. They cannot make an appointment for you or influence the decisions of the Embassy staff.

If you require any help or advice please contact the International Student Adviser.