On September 14, 2015, the European Union Visa Information System (VIS) was implemented in Russia. The system requires all Schengen visa applicants to register their biometric data.
The VIS was established in 2004. The database contains information on visa applications by non-EU nationals to enter the Schengen area, as well as the decisions taken by any Schengen state’s consulate.
When applying for a Schengen visa, for the first time after the VIS has been implemented in a country, all applicants must appear in person at a consulate or external service provider to have their fingerprints and photographs taken.
This biometric data, along with the information applicants provide on the visa application form, will be stored in the VIS database for five years. Frequent travellers will only be required to complete this procedure once because their fingerprints will be copied from the previous application file in the VIS. A limited number of applicants will be exempt from having their fingerprints taken. This includes children under the age of twelve.
This article was prepared using information obtained from Peregrine Immigration Management’s website.