What is a Schengen visa and do I need one?
I am visiting two or more Schengen countries. Who is responsible for my visa application?
If the visit includes more than one destination, the country whose territory constitutes the main destination of the visit in terms of the length or purpose of stay is responsible for the visa application. Examples:
- You are sent by your company on a 3-day business trip to Budapest. You decide to take 2 days off and use your weekend to see Prague. Since the main purpose of your travel is doing business, Hungary is responsible.
- You are visiting your brother, who lives in Hungary, and your sister, who lives in the Netherlands. You plan to spend 6 days with your brother, and 4 days with your sister. The purpose of stay is the same, visiting family, but you will spend more time in Hungary. Hungary is responsible.
If no main destination can be determined, the country whose external border the applicant intends to cross in order to enter the territory of the Schengen area is responsible. Example:
- You fly in to Budapest for a Danube river cruise. You will spend 2 days is Hungary, 2 in Slovakia, 2 in Austria and 2 in Germany. Hungary is responsible as the country which you will enter first.
Where can I apply for a Schengen visa in the US?
If you reside in Texas, you can also apply at the German Consulate in Houston.
When should I apply?
It is strongly recommended to apply for a visa as early as possible, but not more than 3 months before your departure time. Normal visa processing time average 10-15 days but can take up to 60 days.
Will I have to apply in person?
Yes. We will register your biometric information for the Visa Information System. If the consul deems necessary, you may have to come back again for a visa interview.
If you have previously applied for a Schengen visa at the Hungarian Embassy in Washington DC and your fingerprints were collected in the last 59 months by any Schengen country, you can request permission to lodge your visa application by mail by sending us an email to appointment.WAS@mfa.gov.hu.
How much is the visa fee?
Click HERE for the visa fees.
A reduced fee has to be paid
- by children between the ages of 6 and 12, and
- by citizens of countries that the European Union has concluded visa facilitation agreements with.
All visa fees are payable by card only. We do not accept cash payments and cheques.
The visa is free of charge for
- children under the age of 6 traveling with their own passports,
- family members of EU/EEA citizens either traveling together with their EU/EEA national family members or traveling in order to meet their EU/EEA national family members
- researchers having a valid contract with a research institution in Hungary,
- pupils, students and their teachers traveling for study reasons,
- representatives of non-profit organizations under the age of 25 participating and attending seminars, conferences, sport, cultural or educational events organized and held by NGOs,
- Belarus citizens between the age of 6 and 12 years,
- Turkish citizens between the age of 6 and 12 years,
- Belarus participants aged 25 years or less in seminars, conferences, sport, cultural or educational events organized by non-profit organizations.
What form do I need to fill out?
This Schengen visa application form. Make sure that it is complete and signed.
What are the requirements for my passport?
- must have been issued within the past 10 years,
- must have 2 blank pages, and
- must be valid for at least 3 months after the end of your visit.
What are the requirements for travel medical insurance?
You must present travel medical insurance that is
- valid for the whole Schengen Area,
- has a minimum coverage of 50 thousand USD for medical and repatriation expenses.
Please present a detailed policy for verifying the above requirements. Please note that your application is inadmissible if you do not present a travel medical insurance when submitting it.
What supporting documents are required?
1. Proof of financial means (e.g. the 3 latest bank statements, proof of employment or 3 latest payslips, proof of income. If you are self-employed a business license and tax return forms),
2. Confirmed return flight ticket reservation,
3. Other supporting documents concerning the purpose of travel, for example:
- When visiting relatives or friends, please submit an official invitation letter issued by the Hungarian Office of Immigration and Asylum;
- For tourism, please submit confirmed hotel reservations, stating name, address and telephone number of the hotel, including confirmation number and/or proof of group travel participation, etc.
- If the purpose of your trip is business, please present a letter of support from the company concerned in the Schengen country where you travel to, and a letter from your employer stating your position within the company and the reason for your business travel. Either letter should clarify who is responsible for expenses and where you will be staying (such as a hotel reservation).
The specific requirements depend on the purpose of travel, the length of intended stay and the personal circumstances of the applicant. Please bear in mind that the consul may require additional documents anytime during the visa procedure and applicants may be called for a personal interview, as well.
You shall present the original of each document.
What if I am a family member of an EU/EEA citizen?
The following persons qualify as family members:
- the spouse;
- the partner with whom the EEA citizen has contracted a registered partnership, on the basis of the legislation of any EEA country, if the legislation of the host Member State treats registered partnership as equivalent to marriage;
- the direct descendants who are under the age of 21 or are dependent as well as those of the spouse or partner as defined above; or
- the dependent direct relatives in the ascending line and those of the spouse or partner as defined above.
If you are a family member of an EU/EEA citizen, and you are traveling together or you wish to join him or her in Europe
- the Schengen Visa is free of charge for you,
- you do not need a travel medical insurance, although it is still recommended to have one,
- supporting documents are your EU/EEA national family member's passport or ID card, an official certificate of the relationship (for spouses of Hungarian citizens, only a marriage certificate issued by Hungary is acceptable), and a flight ticket is you are traveling together, or an invitation letter from the family member, if not.
Where do I find more information?
General information can be found on the website of the Hungarian Consular Service.
Information on the Schengen Information System can be found here.
Information on the Visa Information System can be found here.
GDPR regarding personal data provided upon visa application can be found here.
How do I get my visa?
You can collect your passport at the Embassy during regular business hours without a prior appointment.
If you are not able to collect your passport in person, please provide a prepaid, trackable self-addressed envelope.
- Schengen visa application form (English)
Short Stay Visas
What is a short stay?
A short stay is one not exceeding 90 days. If you wish to stay in Hungary for longer, you will need a residence permit.
What is the Schengen Area?
It is an area without internal border controls in Europe, comprised by 28 countries, including Hungary.
How long can I stay in the Schengen Area?
You are free to visit all these countries during your stay, which shall not exceed 90 days in any given 180-day period. If you have visited Europe recently, you can consult this calculator to see how long you can stay in the Schengen Area on your next trip.
If you are travelling with a Schengen visa, the visa will include the maximum days of stay allowed and any limitations to the countries you can visit.
I am a US citizen. Do I need a visa?
US citizens can enter the Schengen Area without a visa for the purpose of tourism for a period not exceeding 90 days.
Your US passport’s validity must exceed the date when you intend to leave the Schengen Area by at least three months.
I am a US-Hungarian dual citizen. Can I use my Hungarian passport for traveling?
Of course, as a Hungarian citizen it is your constitutional right to stay in Hungary indefinitely.
I am not a US citizen. Do I need a visa?
Which documents do I need to submit?
I. General requirements:
- Fully completed visa application (signed by the applicant, only Hungarian and English version accepted). You can download the visa application form here.
- Valid passport (which must be valid for at least 3 months after returning from Hungary, issued within the last 10 years and containing 2 empty pages).
- 1 passport-size color photo (US standard size, not older than 6 months).
- Original of valid US alien registration card (residence permit, aka: green card) or valid US resident visa (type A, E, F, G, H, I, J, L, O, R).
- Roundtrip airplane ticket reservation.
- Hotel reservation or official letter of invitation signed by the Hungarian Immigration and Naturalization Office.
- Confirmation letter from your health insurance company stating that you will be covered for at least 50.000 USD for any medical and repatriation expenses, for the whole period of stay and for the territory of every Schengen State.
- Confirmation of financial resources (the last 3 months of bank statements).
II. Additional requirements:
- Visa(s) - if necessary - obtained for the country/ies where applicant intends to go after leaving Hungary.
- In case of an entry with an educational or other scientific or professional training purpose: the certificate of the receiving institution, the certificate of the envisaged place of accommodation in Hungary.
- In case of visiting friends, acquaintances: the letter of invitation issued and endorsed by the Office of Immigration and Nationality or the letter of invitation in the form of a public notarial document and a photocopy of the personal identification document/passport of the inviting party in Hungary.
- For the purpose of the cultivation of family relations: an invitation letter as described in the previous indent or a letter signed by the applicant in full awareness of his/her criminal liability describing the degree of the family relation, giving the name, address and phone number of the family member and the purpose of the entry and stay.
- In case of an entry for business purposes: a letter of invitation from the business partner, proof of the existence of commercial business relations; or the certificate of the local chamber of commerce on the existence of business relations, and the certification of the address of the envisaged place of accommodation in Hungary.
- In case of an entry with the purpose of medical treatment: the certificate of the receiving health institution, including reference to the fact that the expected coverage of the medical treatment is available, and other certification of the coverage of the medical treatment, as well as the certification of the address of the expected place of accommodation in Hungary.
- In case of carriers: the certification or request of the carrier firm.
- For the purpose of visiting the grave of a deceased relative buried in the territory of Hungary: a document certifying the existence of the grave and the degree of relationship.
- For the purpose of cultural activities: agency contract with the Hungarian service provider, invitation letter issued by the host organization.
- For the purpose of sport: accreditation proving the participation in the sports event or contract with the Hungarian sport club, or the certificate issued by the delegating sport club / Olympic committee / Ministry of Sport, etc.
- For the purpose of attending a conference: invitation letter issued by the host organization, confirmation on participation issued by the host organization, and/or a certification issued by the delegating organization; receipt on payment of the registration fee.
If you are planning to visit more Schengen States, the documents submitted must also contain information on your stay in the other Schengen States (e.g. if you plan to visit Hungary and the Czech Republic, you must not only hand in proof of hotel reservations in Hungary, but also in the Czech Republic).
The consul may request the presentation of further documents in addition to the ones outlined above.
Documents shall be submitted in original.
We reserve the right to examine the authenticity of the communicated data and the submitted documents. The communication of false data in itself will lead to the refusal of the visa application.
We recommend to submit the visa application in due time, especially in periods preceding the summer holidays. We accept visa applications no earlier than 3 months before travel.
The Hungary Initiatives Foundation presents
Call for Applications
Széll Kálmán Public Policy Fellowship Fall
Application Deadline – May 1, 2018
The 15 week program includes an internship placement in Washington DC, academic credit from George Mason University, housing in the Capitol Hill neighborhood of Washington, DC, a variety of guest lectures and briefings, as well as opportunities for professional development and networking.
The scholarship covers full tuition and a living stipend for the duration of the program. The application deadline is May 1, 2018.
Live, Learn, Intern in Washington DC
The Capital Semester on Leadership and the American Presidency (LTAP) held from August 22 – December 8, 2018 in Washington, DC is a fall semester program offered by The Fund for American Studies in conjunction with the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation and Institute. It will help you define and strengthen your leadership skills and learn lessons from the American Presidency, all while giving you an insider’s view of Washington.
LIVE: Housing in historic furnished apartments in the Capitol Hill neighborhood, the oldest residential neighborhood in DC. Just blocks from the US Capitol, the Library of Congress, and the Supreme Court.
LEARN: Academic courses in international economics and government with academic credit (12 credits) through George Mason University. GMU was recently named one of the top 100 research universities in the U.S. by the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education. Classes are held in state-of-the-art facilities at George Mason University’s Arlington campus, conveniently located just four Metro stops away from student housing.
INTERN: Internships for approximately 30 hours per week with public policy groups, non profit organizations, and think tanks throughout the Washington area. Each site is accessible to public transportation, making it easy to get from home to work to class and back again.
CONNECT: Site briefings at key Washington institutions, guest lectures featuring policy experts, networking events with experts in journalism, business, public policy, international affairs and the nonprofit sector who engage students in weekly dialogues held on campus and at locations such as the World Bank and Capitol Hill.
Scholarship and Application Information
The Széll Kálmán Public Policy Fellowship, through the support of the Hungary Initiatives Foundation is a full scholarship covering program tuition and housing, health insurance and living stipend to go toward meals and personal expenses while in the United States. The opportunity is open for young Hungarian citizens currently enrolled at a Hungarian university or recent graduates. Students pursuing or having just completed Bachelor’s or Master’s degrees.
All students must complete the online application available at www.DCinternships.org.The application deadline for Hungarian students is May 1, 2018.
Questions regarding the programs or the application process may be directed Mary Stankus, Recruitment and Admissions Director, at email@example.com or 202-986-0384.
Special Requirements for Hungarian Students
Hungarian students accepted into the program under the scholarship will be required to complete supplementary reading prior to their arrival and participate in extracurricular discussions focusing American government and the history of Hungarian-American relations. Upon the successful completion of the program, Hungarian program participants will be matched with a mentor in Hungary to help guide their future professional pursuits.
The scholarship is named after former Hungarian prime minister, finance minister, and member of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences, Széll Kálmán, whose governing philosophy and motto was “law, rights and truth.”
- monthly stipend for 12 months to cover living expenses ($7,000/mo for families; $5,500/mo for individuals)
- visa support and related fees (for the fellow as well as the fellow’s dependents)
- health insurance (for the fellow as well as the fellow’s dependents)
- dedicated domestic travel and conference support (up to $5,000 per fellow)
- books, memberships, and subscriptions (up to $2,000 per fellow)
- publications support (up to $2,000 per fellow)
- host institution tuition (if applicable, up to $15,000 per fellow)
- Full CV: in English, must include the date of birth, citizenship, and full publication list
- Research Project Statement: must include a full description of the candidate’s research project, list of area experts in the field to be consulted, other academic institutions and think tank the applicant wishes to visit
- Three Letters of Recommendation: must include at least one academic recommendation and needs to be tailored to this specific fellowship
- Host Institution Acceptance Letter: must specify the host institution’s exact department and professor who will aid and provide mentorship for the applicant during the stay
- Cover Letter: must include whether the applicant is applying alone or with family members, any previous research in the United States
ABOUT THE LIBERTY BRIDGE PROGRAM
Széll Kálmán Public Policy Fellowship - Fall 2020
Application Deadline: May 1, 2020
Applications are now open for this fall’s Széll Kálmán Public Policy Fellowship – a full scholarship for students from Hungary to participate in the Capital Semester on Leadership and the American Presidency Program organized by The Fund for American Studies and the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation and Institute in Washington DC focusing on economics and public policy.
Live, Learn, Intern in Washington DC
Scholarship and Application Information
Special Requirements for Hungarian Students
with HIF Executive Director Anna Smith Lacey
at the program's graduation ceremony
BUDAPEST FELLOWSHIP PROGRAM 2020
Application deadline: June 30, 2020
The Hungary Initiatives Foundation together with Mathias Corvinus Collegium (Budapest, Hungary) is proud to announce the establishment of the Budapest Fellowship Program, a full-time, fully-funded transatlantic fellowship opportunity in Budapest, Hungary, for young American scholars and professionals.
The goal of the 10-month program is to cultivate the next generation of American policy professionals and equip them with a thorough understanding of Central and Eastern Europe (CEE) and Hungary. The fellows will have an opportunity to conduct independent research on the topic fellows choose while gaining practical experience working at a Hungarian host institution that matches their professional interests.
The program’s structure is designed to nurture an understanding of Central and Eastern European, and specifically, Hungarian history and culture. The program will offer extensive professional and personal networking opportunities and fellows will be matched with local mentors to guide them during their fellowship journey.
The program is expected to run from September 2020 through June 2021.
The scholarship will provide:
- a monthly stipend to cover living expenses in Budapest ($1500/month for Junior Fellows, $2000/month for Senior Fellows, $2500/month for Senior Fellows with a family),
- housing in Budapest (upgraded college dorms on the campus of the Ludovika – University of public Service for Junior Fellows, private apartment for Senior Fellows),
- roundtrip air travel to Hungary,
- health insurance assistance for the fellow’s visa application process,
- Hungarian language classes,
- book stipend and research support,
- organized field trips to neighboring countries and the Hungarian countryside.
Research, Teach, Learn and Network in Hungary
RESEARCH. Fellows will conduct their own independent research guided by a mentor and will gain practical experience during the 10-month internship/fellowship experience at a Budapest-based host institution (Hungarian think tank, academic institution, government agency, parliamentary office, NGO, media outlets, etc.) corresponding with their own academic or professional fields. Mathias Corvinus Collegium (MCC) will assist them also to publish their findings.
TEACH. Fellows will have an opportunity to work out teaching plans for lectures, courses, and workshops for BA students of specialized training programs in MCC, and for MA students of the MCC Leadership Academy as well as for the participants of the postgraduate programs (e.g. MCC Women Public Leadership Program, Transylvanian Political School, Subcarpathian Public Leadership Program).
LEARN. The program will also feature thematic seminars on the history of Hungary, Hungarian democratic traditions, the post-communist legacy in CEE, Hungary’s foreign policy orientations, Hungarian cultural geography, US-Hungary and EU-Hungary relations, and current human rights issues. The program will also include monthly organized field trips to neighboring countries in the Carpathian Basin and cities in the countryside of Hungary to better understand the regional differences and dynamics within Hungary, the Visegrád countries, and the Carpathian basin. Fellows will also be enrolled in a basic Hungarian language course to support their cultural immersion process.
NETWORK. The program will hold regular discussions with respected, area experts, scholars, and business leaders allowing the fellows to refine their leadership skills, advance their professional development, and deepen their economic, political, historical, and cultural understanding of Central and Eastern Europe. Continuous mentoring will be provided for fellows to help set realistic personal goals, research and/or teaching plans, as well as to develop strong personal connections with key individuals in their respective profession or field of study. Upon completion of the program, participants will be integrated into HIF’s alumni activities in Washington and Budapest and will be invited to participate in MCC research projects, as well as to return back to Hungary to participate in MCC-organized events.
ELIGIBILITY AND APPLICATION
The Budapest Fellowship Program is open for two categories of applicants:
Junior Fellows: senior graduate students
Senior Fellows: post-doctoral researchers and early career professionals
The Program will host two Junior and two Senior Fellows starting September 2020.
All applicants must:
- Be US citizens,
- Have a research interest in Central and Eastern Europe,
- Have outstanding research and academic credentials,
- Have demonstrated leadership potential,
- Develop a research plan specifically tailored to Hungary focusing on one of the following areas: economic development, human rights, foreign and defense policy, energy security, public diplomacy, EU-Hungary relations, US-Hungary relations, the history and legacy of communism in Hungary, contemporary Hungarian society and the neighboring countries.
All applicants must submit their application online available at:
Budapest Fellowship Program Application – Junior
Budapest Fellowship Program Application – Senior
Questions regarding the program or the application process may be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org
ABOUT THE CO-ORGANIZERS
Mathias Corvinus Collegium (MCC) – Budapest, Hungary
MCC is an extracurricular educational institution and knowledge center in Hungary with an outstanding reputation for its academic excellence. With almost 25 years of experience in non-profit talent promotion, MCC aims to educate well-prepared intellectuals with critical thinking who are also able to responsibly address the challenges of our time. In its capacity as a university think tank, the Collegium aspires to elaborate on relevant, socially divisive topics through scientific research, while communicating them for the public, applying clear and straightforward language in a thoughtful, logical manner.
HIF is an independent, US-based non-partisan and non-profit organization committed to strengthening the understanding and cooperation between Hungary and the United States of America. This program is part of HIF’s Liberty Bridge Program, launched in 2020, with the goal of reinvigorating the US-Hungary relationship through programs that will bolster the professional, academic, public, and people-to-people dialogue between the two countries. The idea behind the program is the core conviction that the US and Hungary share value-driven bonds built on the concept of Liberty. As part of this program, HIF invests in scholars and fellows who have demonstrated leadership skills and will serve as future bridge-builders between the two countries.
In Partnership with
Ludovika – University of Public Service – Budapest, Hungary
Ludovika is a specialized higher educational institution, the principal aim of which is to educate highly qualified personnel for the civil service, the military as well as the different branches of law enforcement. Besides the faculties, the Ludovika research institutions focus on topical international questions as well as the theory of the state. In the autumn, new programs like the College of Visegrád and the Hungarian Diplomatic Academy will be launched. The beautifully restored old Royal Ludovika Academy symbolizes the important heritage of the university, while the newly built educational facilities are equipped with state of the art technology to help the educational activities. The campus in Orczy Park is easy to reach by public transport and home to sports facilities, like a swimming pool, a sports hall as well as horse riding stables. The dorms for visiting fellows are self-contained units. Erasmus, as well as Stipendium Hungaricum students, ensure vibrant international student life.
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