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Immigration - Entry Visa to Réunion
 
 
 
 
 
 

Note: Although Reunion is an integral part of France, it is not part of the Schengen area, so it has its own immigration and visa rules. Citizens of Mauritius, for example, do not need a visa for short visits to Réunion but do need a visa to visit mainland France.

Passport

Passport valid for at least three months beyond applicant's last day of stay required by all nationals except nationals of EU countries who hold valid national identity cards.

Visa

Citizen of EU/EEA countries (all 25 European Union member countries, Iceland, Lichtenstein and Norway) do not need a visa for France.

Non-EU/EEA citizens need a visa to enter Réunion, unless there exists a special agreement between France and your home country.

These countries include: Andorra, Argentina, Australia, Bolivia, Brazil, Brunei, Bulgaria, Canada, Chile, Costa Rica, Croatia, El Salvador, Ecuador, Guatemala, Honduras, Israel, Japan, Malaysia, Mexico, Monaco, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Romania, San Marino, Singapore, South Korea, Switzerland, United States, Uruguay, Vatican and Venezuela. Citizens of these countries can stay for up to 3 months without a visa.

Before coming, however, check whether there are no changes. Up-to-date information on entry requirements regarding your nationality and/or residence is available on the official website of the French Ministry of Interior: www.diplomatie.gouv.fr/venir/visas (in French, English and Spanish).

Visas are valid for the length of time stated on them, starting on the date of arrival in Réunion. There are very big differences between visas, so make sure you know what you want (purpose and length of stay) before applying for one. It might be very difficult, or even impossible to change a visa once you are in France. For example, you cannot enter Réunion with a short-stay visa and then apply to stay longer. Neither can you change the status of your visa (i.e. change your status from student to employee) without first returning to your country of residence and obtaining the new appropriate visa. Also, it is not possible to ask a friend at home to obtain a visa for you once you're in Réunion. In any case, you have to get out of Réunion in order to apply for a new type of visa, so plan accordingly.

The main kinds of visa are:

Short-stay visa (visa de court séjour): Valid for a maximum of three months.
Long-stay visa (visa de long séjour): A long-stay visa is valid for 3-6 months. After arriving in Réunion you need to apply for a temporary stay permit (carte de séjour temporaire) which will describe your status in Réunion: visitor (visiteur), student (étudiant), private or family purposes (vie privée et familiale), employee (salarié), etc.
Temporary long-stay visa (visa long séjour temporaire de six mois): This visa is valid for stays up to six months, but you do not need to apply for temporary stay permit (carte de séjour temporaire). You cannot remain in Réunion past the visa validity date.
Circulation visa (visa de circulation): This visa is valid for 1-5 years and allows stays in Réunion up to three months, every six months.
Transit visa (visa de transit aéroportuaire): Nationals of some countries transiting Réunion from one country to another must present this kind of visa. Be aware, processing times can be long, so apply well in advance.

Formalities for Visa Applications

Visas are never issued in France/Réunion, so they must be applied for in your home or another country. If you are required to have a visa, do not attempt to enter Réunion as you are likely to be refused entry. Generally, you should apply for your visa 8-12 weeks before your planned date of arrival in Réunion – check with your local French Embassy or Consulate for likely delays.

Up-to-date information about visa requirements is available on the official website of the French Ministry of Interior: www.diplomatie.gouv.fr/venir/visas (in French, English and Spanish). The site is well organised. Based on the country of residency, your nationality and length and purpose of stay it gives all important information, such as:

• visas requirements, types and issuing conditions (such as valid passport, health insurance, proof of sufficient sources, proof of preliminary entry to the education institution in case of students, etc.);
• documentation required for an application and where to apply (with address and phone/fax numbers), which is usually the Consular section of the French Embassy in the country of residence;
• cost of the visa.

 
 

 



 


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