An important notice was posted today, 21/06/2022, on Twitter by Professor Judi Wakhungu, the Ambassador of Kenya to the French Republic. In the notice, it was stated that any Kenyan who enters the Schengen territory to change their means of transport must have a Transit Schengen Visa before leaving Kenya. There are two types of Transit Schengen Visas: Airport Transit Visa and Transit Schengen Visa for Seafarers.
Airport Transit Schengen Visa
The Airport Transit Schengen Visa is designed for people who have to change their flights at the Schengen Airport. The permit allows them to wait in the International Transit area of the Schengen Airport for their connecting flight. This Visa, however, restricts travellers from leaving the area until they board their flight.
You will only be exempted from having the Visa if you:
Have a Diplomatic Passport.
You are a family member of a citizen of the EU (European Union), EEA (European Economic Area), or Switzerland.
Hold a valid visa issued by a Schengen state, a Member State of the European Union or the European Economic Area, Canada, Japan, or the United States.
Hold a valid residence permit issued by a Schengen state, a Member State of the European Union or the European Economic Area, the Principality of Andorra, Canada, Japan, Republic of San Marino, or the United States.
Are a flight crew member national of a contracting party to the Chicago Convention on International Civil Aviation.
Countries that fall under the Schengen Area
There are 26 European countries that are part of the Schengen area. These countries include Belgium, Denmark, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, the Czech Republic, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Luxembourg, Malta, France, Austria, Estonia and Finland.
A majority of the countries on the list are in the European Union. However, there are countries that are not part of the EU but still fall under the Schengen area. There are also countries that are part of the EU but are not Schengen area.
Non-EU countries that are part of the Schengen territory
Non-Schengen EU countries
Countries that need an airport transit visa to enter Schengen Countries
The Democratic Republic of Congo
The application process requires you to have a few documents. They include
Visa Application form
You can apply for this form from the Schengen visa website.
Two recent photos of yourself
The photos should be taken within the last three months and should be in line with Schengen Visa Requirements. The requirements are:
The photo should not be older than six months
Your head should take 80% of the photo
The photo should be in colour
Use a brightly coloured background
Make sure you look straight at the camera
Avoid clothes that resemble the background of your photo
Your passport should be valid with at least two blank pages. It should also not be older than ten years.
Documents in line with your onward Journey to your destination
Return flight ticket reservation
Visa issued by the country of your travel destination (this is in case you need a visa).
Travel Insurance Policy
This covers any emergency you may have medically. You can check to find more information on the Schengen visa application site.
Applying for the Transit Schengen Visa
To apply for the Visa, you must follow the steps below.
Submit all required documents.
Submit a filled and signed Visa Application Form. Each person you are travelling with has to have a visa form. For children under 18, the form needs to be signed by a guardian.
Pay for the Visa. The fee for a transit visa usually depends on the person’s age and other exceptions. You can check out the Schengen Visa fee list to be sure.
When should you apply for the Visa?
It is usually best to apply for a visa at least 15 days before your trip. To be completely safe, you can apply for it a month or two before.
How long does it take to get the Visa?
You should be able to get a response regarding your application two weeks after submission. However, it can take more days, so the best option would be to apply earlier to avoid inconvenience.
Kenya has joined the list of the countries that are required to have a transit visa. The other African countries on the list are Ghana, Nigeria, Congo, Ethiopia, and Eritrea.