Indians Can Now Stay In Switzerland, Amsterdam For Up To 2 Years Like Visa-Free Nationals. Check Details


(MENAFN- Live Mint) "With European Union (EU) adopting favourable Schengen visa rules for Indians, the strength of Indian passport is arguably set to grow with travel to 29 European countries getting seamless and hassle-free.
Incidentally, Indian passport is currently ranked at 85, as per Henley Passport Index for 2024 that ranks 199 nations based on the strength of their passports. Our neigbouring country Pakistan is ranked at 106, while Bangladesh at 102 the new Schengen visa regime, Indians will now be able to enter any of these European countries multiple times for two years, which is further extendable by 5 years, and stay there like visa-free nationals.
This is a stark departure from the current practice. Until now, when Indians intend to travel to one or more European countries, they are meant to apply for the much sought-after
Schengen visa, which is given for a maximum of three months.
ALSO READ: Indians can now apply for multiple entry Schengen visa with longer validity. Check detailsBut now, under the cascade regime -- guess what? You can stay in Switzerland, Amsterdam, and/ or any other European countries such as Austria, Hungary, Poland, Belgium, Germany, France, among others, for as long as two years, which is extendable, without any hiccups.
According to a report in Aug 2023, Scandinavian region in Europe saw a substantial growth of 140 percent as of August 2023 in comparison to pre-COVID levels in 2020, according to insights from MakeMyTrip us understand how this will work:How will this work?This is primarily beneficial for those Indians who frequently travel to one or more of European countries. And if you have travelled to Europe on a Schengen visa for two times in the past three years, then you are eligible for this new visa category 'cascade regime' under which you will be given two-year multi entry visa and you can travel and stay in any of these countries just like an individual who does not require a visa to be there.
But the only catch is that you won't be allowed to work and earn there like a local citizen two-year visa will then be followed by a five-year visa so long as the passport has sufficient validity. For example, if the passport is set to expire three years later, then the visa seeker won't be able to get the Schengen visa extended by five years.
\"The two-year visa will normally be followed by a five-year visa, if the passport has sufficient validity remaining. During the validity period of these visas, holders enjoy travel rights equivalent to visa-free nationals,\" reads the statement shared by Herve Delphin, Ambassador, Delegation of European Union to India on 'X' Platform.
5-year post-study visa in France
This Schengen move is testimony to growing partnership between Europe and India. Last year, France also eased its visa rules for inbound Indian students.
When Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited France in July 2023, the European nation had extended five-year post-study visa to Indian students who had completed their master's degree there.
Earlier, Indians were given two-year work visa after completing their master's degree.

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