60+ unexpected countries your Schengen visa can open doors to
Last Updated : Sep 21, 2023
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The Schengen visa or residence card is an entry document that allows you to visit or live in the 26 Schengen countries. However, did you know that if you have one, you may be permitted to travel visa-free to a broad variety of European nations as well as select places outside of Europe?
Why is that?
Schengen visas are respected by non-Schengen countries for a number of reasons. For starters, several of these are Schengen candidate countries, including Bulgaria, Romania, Croatia, and the Republic of Cyprus. Furthermore, it is safe to assume that other countries trust Schengen visa holders, who are subjected to stringent checks to ensure that they would return to their home countries during the given time period. Schengen visa holders are also given visa-free travel into countries that do not have the infrastructure, technology, or capacity to screen applicants as completely as the Schengen visa criteria.
Quick note: you must always double-check that you are permitted to visit or transit the following countries with a valid Schengen Visa before confirming your travel arrangements because it may vary from one nationality to another. For instance, some countries accept Schengen A-Type (transit) visas while others don’t.
That being said, without further ado, here's a list of countries that countries you may or may not have expected to open their doors to you if you have a valid Schengen visa-
Albania: If the visa bearer has previously visited one of the Schengen countries, they may enter Albania using a multiple-entry Schengen Visa.
Andorra: All nationalities can enter Andorra with a Schengen visa. This is partially due to the fact that Andorra can only be entered via Spain, which is a Schengen country.
Aruba: All nationals who are holders of a valid multi-entry Schengen Visa are can visit Aruba as a tourist for up to 30 days.
Anguilla and the Barbuda: If a foreigner has a valid Schengen visa, they may get a visa at the airport upon arrival. More information can be found here.
Bahamas: Indian nationals with visas or permanent resident status in any of the Schengen nations do not need a visa to visit The Bahamas.
Belarus: Citizens of these 12 countries, including El Salvador, Mexico, and North Macedonia, who have a used Schengen Visa do not need an additional visa to enter Belarus for 30 days.
Bosnia and Herzegovina: As long as you have a valid multiple-entry Schengen visa, you may enter and remain for up to 15 days.
Bulgaria: With a valid Schengen visa, visitors may remain for up to 90 days in a six-month period.
Colombia: Schengen visa holders from Cambodia, China, India, Macau, Myanmar, Thailand, and Vietnam may visit Colombia for up to 90 days without a visa as long as they have a valid Schengen visa (given that your Schengen Visa is valid for 180 days upon arrival).
Croatia: Croatia accepts Schengen visas of several types, including multiple-entry and two-entry visas.
Cuba: Citizens of 20 countries may travel to Cuba with a tourist card if they also have a valid visa or permanent residency permit from an EU member state.
Cyprus: Visitors and those in transit from other countries with valid Schengen Visas may enter and exit Cyprus.
Dominican Republic: 108 countries already enjoy visa-free access to the Dominican Republic but this extends to all nations if they have a valid visa or residence permit from an EU member state.
Georgia: Visa-free entry to Georgia is available to holders of a variety of visas, including Schengen Visas. More information is available here.
Haiti: Nationals from Colombia, Dominican Republic, Panama, and Cuba can enter Haiti visa-free if they have either a used or unused multiple-entry Schengen visa in their passports.
Georgia: All nationalities are eligible to enter Georgia if they have obtained a Schengen visa.
Gibraltar: Similar to Colombia, citizens of Morocco, China, Mongolia, India, and Russia may enter visa-free for up to 21 days if they have a valid multiple-entry Schengen Visa with at least seven days validity. All other nationalities can find out whether they need a visa or not here.
Guatemala: Visitors from certain countries, such as India, are not required to obtain a Guatemalan visa in advance if they have a Schengen Visa as long as they fulfill other conditions.
Jamaica: Passport holders from a select few countries can enter Jamaica visa-free with a valid multiple-entry Schengen visa, including Albania, Bulgaria, and the Dominican Republic.
Kosovo: A multiple-entry Schengen visa or residence permit grants you access to the territory of Kosovo.
North Macedonia: Visitors who have a Type C Schengen Visa valid for more than five days after their stay in Macedonia are allowed to visit Macedonia for up to 15 days.
Mexico: Visit Mexico for vacation, on business, or just for transit, as long as you have a valid passport and Schengen Visa.
Moldova: Citizens of 55 countries are able to enter Moldova freely if they have a valid visa (excluding transit visa) or residence permit from one of the Schengen countries. The full list may be found here.
Monaco: All nationalities are eligible to enter Monaco visa-exempt if they have obtained a Schengen visa.
Montenegro: Holders of a Schengen Visa are permitted to stay in Montenegro for a total of 30 days every 180 days.
Oman: Visitors from 25 countries may enter Oman visa-free for 30 days if they have a Schengen visa. To find out if you’re eligible, click here.
Panama: Passport holders of any country that have a valid multiple entry visa (that has been previously used), study permit, or work permit from any of the member countries of the European Union do not require a visa to enter Panama.
Peru: All valid used/unused single/multiple-entry Schengen visas can be used by Chinese and Indian nationals to enter Peru visa-exempt for 180 days.
Philippines: Indian nationals can enter the Philippines with a valid Schengen visa for a period of 14 days.
Qatar: All nationalities with a valid Schengen visa - used or unused - are eligible to obtain the Qatar ETA free of charge.
Romania: Within 180 days, Schengen Visa holders as well as specified nations may enter for up to 90 days at a time.
San Marino: All nationalities can enter San Marino with a Schengen visa. This is partially due to the fact that it can only be entered via Italy, which is a Schengen country.
Sao Tome and Principe: Sao Tome and Principe is visa-free for holders of valid Schengen visas for a maximum of 15 days.
Saudi Arabia: If you have a used Schengen visa, you are eligible to obtain a Visa On Arrival at all of Saudi Arabia’s international airports. The fee is 440 SAR.
Singapore: Indian and Chinese citizens who are transiting through Singapore and able to visa-on-arrival that is valid for 94 hours (4 days) if they have a valid Schengen visa in their passports.
South Korea: Similar to Singapore, South Korea also offers a visa-exemption for all nationalities, EXCEPT 24 countries, while transiting through one of their international airports. In addition to a valid Schengen visa, they must either be flying to or from one of the Schengen countries, Cyprus, Ireland, Romania, or the UK.
Vatican City: All nationalities can enter the Holy See with a Schengen visa. This is partially due to the fact that it can only be entered via Italy, which is a Schengen country.
Taiwan: Nationals of Cambodia, India, Indonesia, Laos, Myanmar, and Vietnam with a valid Schengen visa - whether used/unused or valid/expired - are exempt from needing a visa but must apply for a ROC Travel Authorization Certificate online before arrival.
Well, there you go! With the 26 Schengen nations included, that's more than 70 countries and territories that you can travel to with a Schengen visa! Happy traveling!