Airport transit visa

1- What is an airport transit visa ?

An airport transit visa is a visa that allows you to transit through the international zone of a French airport with no access to the Schengen space, before flying back to your final destination.

But :

traveling from the USA to any Schengen country via a FRENCH airport is not considered as an airport transit neither is traveling from the USA to any country via 2 Schengen state airports. All flights between 2 or more Schengen states are considered to be "domestic" flights. Depending on your nationality, you might need a short stay visa.

2- Do I need an airport transit visa ?

If you hold one of the following documents, you DO NOT NEED an airport transit visa, whatever your nationality:

- diplomatic passport,
- service passport,
- green card,
- re-entry permit (which is a specific kind of travel document ; the advance Parole is NOT a re-entry permit),
- residency permit in one of the countries of the European Union, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway, Switzerland, Monaco, Andorra, Holy See, San Marino, Canada, Japan or the United States of America,
- valid visa issued by the United States of America in your passport.

OR if you are:
- a spouse or minor child of a European Union citizen,
- a flight crew member - national of a contracting party to the Chicago Convention on International Civil Aviation.

If you ARE NOT in one the above mentioned situations, you DO NEED an airport transit visa ONLY if citizen of one of the following countries:

Afghanistan, Angola, Bangladesh, Cameroon, Chad, Cuba, Republic of Congo, Democratic Republic of Congo, Dominican Republic, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Ghana, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Haïti, India, Irak, Iran, Ivory Coast, Libya, Mali, Mauritania, Nigeria, Pakistan, Senegal, Somalia, South Sudan, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Syria, Togo and Palestinians holders of a travel document for refugee which has been issued by Egypt, Lebanon or Syria.

3- Requirements

You have to apply with the French Consulate in Washington Dc, only if you reside in one of the following states:

Delaware, District of Columbia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia.

If you do not reside in one of those states, you have to apply with another French Consulate, depending on where you live in the United states. To know where to apply, click here.


You have to apply with all the required documents in original and one copy. The visa section does not make copies.


Note that the personal appearance is the rule, you may not send your application by mail or carrier.


- Passport valid at least three months beyond the applicant’s last day of stay in the airport. Please make sure your passport has a blank page to affix the visa.

- 1 short stay application form completely and clearly filled out. Please print in black. Indicate your phone numbers and e-mail.

- 2 photographs (more information about the photograph). All photos must be recent, identical, passport size - 1,4" x 1,7" (3,5cm x 4,5cm) and showing face front the forehead hairline and ears on a white background, the face must take up 70-80% of the photograph.

- If you are not a US citizen, a proof of your status in the USA (valid US visa along with a copy of valid I-20 or valid I-AP66, B1/B2 visas, advance parole...) (+ 1 copy).

- Detailed reservation and itinerary. Round trip airline tickets with confirmed reservations at the time of issuance of the visa (+ 1 copy).

- For a minor, if traveling alone, a notarized parental authorization) signed by both parents or guardian. If the minor travels with 1 parent, an authorization signed by the 2nd parent is required (+ 1 copy).

- Processing fees : by credit card ONLY.


4- Frequently asked questions

Q : I am an Indian citizen. I will fly from Newark to Mumbai through Paris. I will stay within the airplane during the 2 hours stop.
The US visa stamped in my passport is not valid anymore. I do not have a green card.

A : If you have a valid US visa stamped in your passport or a green card, you do NOT need an airport transit visa.


Last modified on 18/05/2015

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