Schengen Visas

18.04.2024 - Article

For short-term stays of up to 90 days

Visa label
Visa label© colourbox

Generally speaking, holders of a BN(O), HKSAR or Macau SAR passport do not need a visa to visit the Schengen area as a tourist for up to 90 days every six-month period, provided that no employment is taken. Holders of a Document of Identity (DI) are required to have a visa for Schengen countries. Yet, some Schengen countries do not recognise the Documents of Identity. Please contact the relevant consulate(s) for further information.

Schengen visas allow people to stay in the Schengen area for up to 90 days every six-month period. 
As a German Consulate General, we are responsible for processing your application if Germany is your main destination.
(Where do I apply for a Schengen visa? What is the Schengen area? Who needs a Schengen visa? See FAQ).

The visa section of the Consulate General in Hongkong is responsible for your application if your habitual residence is in Hongkong or Macao. If your habitual residence is in Macao you can apply at the Portuguese consulate who is allowed to issue visas on behalf of Germany. Applicants from other places (e.g. Shenzhen) need to apply at their competent visa section https://china.diplo.de/cn-zh. They cannot apply in Hongkong.

Please note that the German Consulate General also issues visas on behalf of Portugal and Slovenia, which are no longer represented in Hong Kong. Therefore, if you are a Hong Kong resident and your main destination is Portugal or Slovenia, you may apply for a Tourist Visa or a Business Visa at the German Consulate General. For other types of visas, please contact the Consulate General of Portugal in Macau or the Embassy of Slovenia in Beijing accordingly.

Preparing your application

Please prepare your application as follows:

Important information:
Please do not send the Visa Section any documents unless requested to do so, particularly not before you have applied for a visa. We are not able to store such documents and will not know to which application they belong. Please always bring all the necessary documents with you to your appointment.

Submitting your application

In order to submit your application, please attend your appointment at the Consulate General in person. During this appointment, we kindly ask you to submit all of your application documents, pay the fee and answer questions about your planned trip. Your fingerprints will be taken at the Consulate General. We kindly remind you to bring your own biometrical photographs.

What happens during processing?

The Consulate General will review your application and make a decision on whether or not to grant you a visa. To this end, it will assess whether your application meets the legal requirements. Processing generally takes 5-10 working days. We hope you will understand that we are not able to answer any questions on the status of your application during this processing period. After that, enquiries can only be answered if they are made by the applicant, his/her legal representative or another person authorised in writing by the applicant.

Return of your passport

As soon as the Consulate General has decided on your application, you can collect your passport on Mondays or Fridays between 8.30 AM and 9.00 AM, Wednesday: 03:00 – 03:30 pm.
You should collect your passport in person.
There are various reasons why your visa application may be rejected. The reasons will be stated in the letter notifying you that your application has been rejected. These reasons are explained in the FAQ.
You are welcome to submit a new application at any time with complete, informative and verifiable documentation.

Have a good trip! Information for visa holders

If all the information on your visa label is correct, you are free to travel. Please check the information on the label as soon as your passport is returned to you. You should let us know immediately if there are any mistakes so that we can issue you a new visa.
Your visa will state your full name and passport number and include your photo. It will also state the period of validity. This is the time period in which you can travel. In addition, it will state the maximum number of days you can stay in the Schengen area during the period of validity of your visa. Our aim is to give you a certain amount of flexibility in planning your trip. In order to allow you to change your travel dates at short notice, visas are usually valid for 15 days longer than the maximum number of days you are allowed to stay in the Schengen area.
Please note that being granted a Schengen visa does not guarantee that you will be allowed to enter the Schengen area. The final decision on whether or not you will be allowed to enter the Schengen area will be made by the border police on your arrival. When you arrive, the border police may ask you to present additional documentation alongside your passport and valid visa with information on your financial means, the length and purpose of your stay, and your health insurance cover. You should therefore take a copy of your visa documents (including an invitation from Germany, hotel reservation and travel health insurance) with you on your trip.

Complaints about the Schengen visa application process

Schengen visa applicants may submit complaints about the conduct of the consulate staff, the external service provider VIDEX or the visa application process via the contact form. In the contact form, please select the option “Schengen Visa Complaints". Please note that complaints may only be submitted in German or English. We are unable to follow up on complaints in languages other than German or English. Please enter one of the following three options in the “Subject” field of the contact form:

  • Complaint about the conduct of consulate staff
  • Complaint about the conduct of the external service provider VIDEX
  • Complaint about the visa application process

We will follow up on your complaint once it has been received.

Important information: No legal remedies against decisions to refuse, annul or revoke a visa – in particular no remonstrations – may be submitted via the complaints contact form.

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