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On 11 October 2011 the Schengen member states introduced the Visa Information System (VIS). The VIS will also be used to store the biometric data (10 fingerprins and the facial image) of the visa applicants.
The Schengen Member States will introduce the biometric visa as of 06.06.2013 in the region of Southern Africa.
Therefore, the biometric data of all visa applicants older than 12 years will have to be registered. All visa clients have to apply in person at the Regional Consular Centre in Pretoria or the Consulate General in Cape Town (please consult the link “where to apply” on our website), where the fingerprints and a photograph are scanned for the central database of the Schengen countries. All the other visa requirements remain the same.
As of 06.06.2013 no visa applications will be accepted, if not personally submitted by the applicant.
Due to the additional work process (registering of biometric data), slight delays might occur. Therefore, we urge the visa clients to apply well in advance for their visa. The procedure can be started up to 3 months prior to the commencement of travel.
Regional Consular Centre in Pretoria
The Consular Centre in Pretoria does, for the time being, not introduce an appoint-ment system. It will receive a maximum of 60 clients each day. On very rare occasions during high season (especially in May, June, November, December), some applicants might have to be turned away. The opening hours of the Call Centre
012 452 0662 will remain the same from Monday to Thursday, 13:30 – 16:00.
E-mail queries can be addressed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Consulate General in Cape Town
The Consulate General in Cape Town will introduce an appointment system.
To make an appointment, please call 021 400 7514 from Monday to Friday.
For any other visa inquiries, please call 021 400 7500 extension 4, from Monday to Thursday, 14:00 – 16:00.
E-mail queries can be addressed to email@example.com.
Please help reducing the waiting time by preparing your application correctly. Consult this website carefully.
The legislation on issuing short-stay visas for travel in the Schengen area (the 'Visa Code') has been in force for three years. The European Commission is now assessing whether this legislation has achieved its objectives and intends to propose amendments to the Code, to develop further and modernize the common visa policy.
This is one of the priority initiatives of the Commission's Work Programme for 2013. The aim is to ensure that EU visa policy fosters cultural exchanges and economic growth, by facilitating the mobility of travelers to the EU, such as students, young people, tourists and business people, while ensuring a high level of security.
As part of the preparation of this legislative proposal, the Commission launched on 25 March a public consultation on the implementation of the Visa Code in order to gather information from the main “users” of the common visa policy, namely individual visa applicants, interest or advocacy groups and professional organizations. The consultation will be running for 12 weeks and it will be posted in English on DG HOME website on Europe and on the dedicated web-site “Your Voice in Europe”. Respondents will be allowed to reply in any of the official EU languages.
Visas issued by representations abroad may be cancelled by the border control if the conditions – on the basis of which it was granted – have changed.
Collection of passports have to be organized by the applicants. Passports can only be collected by a third party upon presentation of the receipt issued by the Regional Consular Centre or a letter of authorisation.
If you do attend an international conference (UN, WHO, IMF, ITU, etc) the visa will be issued free of charge. For more information, please enquire at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Photo requirements (pdf, 225 Kb)