Updates on 2024 Schengen Visa Fee Increase and Digital Transition

Hey there, it’s Dylan from Europe Incoming, your trusted European DMC, welcoming you back to EI’s Insights—your prime source for all things related to European travel. Today, we’re unpacking something crucial for anyone with their sights set on Europe—the Schengen visa. It’s the golden ticket for many travellers outside the EU, allowing access to 28 European countries. But here’s the headline: in 2024, the cost of this ticket is going up.

We’re here to guide you through the “5 Essential Facts About the Schengen Visa Fee Increase in 2024,” ensuring you and your clients are fully prepped for this change. Whether it’s planning budgets or advising on travel itineraries, understanding these updates is key to smooth sailing—or should we say, travelling—across Europe. Let’s dive into the details together and navigate these changes with ease.

Fact 1: The Basics of the Fee Increase

The European Commission has laid down a proposal that’s set to adjust the landscape of European travel as we know it. Starting in 2024, the basic fee for a Schengen visa will see a 12% rise, moving from €80 to €90 for adults and from €40 to €45 for children. This increment, although seemingly modest, marks a significant shift in the cost structure for travellers aiming to explore the Schengen zone.

Fact 2: Additional Costs for Non-Cooperative Countries

Here’s where things get a bit more nuanced. The proposal includes a provision to impose higher fees on nationals from countries deemed to have shown “insufficient cooperation on readmission.” In layman’s terms, if a country isn’t playing ball in accepting back individuals expelled from Schengen states, its citizens could face visa fees of €135 to €180, up from the current €120 to €160. This move underscores the EU’s commitment to stricter immigration controls and the financial implications it holds for travellers from certain regions.

Fact 3: The Approval Process and Timeline

The wheels of bureaucracy turn slowly but surely. The draft for this fee increase was presented in early February, following a consensus among member state experts. The EU has opened the floor for feedback until March 1, after which it can proceed with implementing the changes. These adjustments are expected to kick in 20 days post-publication in the Official Journal of the European Union. This timeline suggests that travellers have a narrow window to plan their trips under the current fee structure.

Fact 4: Inflation and Its Impact

Why the increase, you might wonder? The EU cites rising inflation rates as the culprit. The Schengen visa fee structure undergoes a review every three years, and this time, inflation has necessitated an upward adjustment. This explanation, while reasonable, adds another layer for travellers and travel professionals to consider in their planning, emphasizing the need to stay informed on economic trends affecting travel costs.

Fact 5: The Shift Towards a Digital-Only Visa

In a nod to the digital age, the EU is also paving the way for a digital-only Schengen visa by 2028. This revolutionary move will see the traditional sticker visa replaced by an online application process, streamlining the procedure for travellers. While this transition is a few years off, it represents a significant leap towards making travel more accessible and efficient, promising a smoother experience for visitors and authorities alike.


As we navigate these changes together, it’s clear that staying ahead of the curve is more important than ever. Whether it’s adjusting budgets or rethinking travel plans, these updates to the Schengen visa fees and processes demand attention and action.

Until we meet again with more travel tips, keep discovering and stay smart. This is Dylan from Europe Incoming, saying goodbye. Safe travels and see you soon!

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