Coming to France

All foreign nationals wishing to enter France must be able to submit statutory documents at the border concerning the reasons for their stay, their means of support and accommodation arrangements.

A visa is generally required, in the absence of a waiver. For general information and for preparing, submitting and tracking your visa application, log on to France-Visas, France’s official visa site.

France-Visas is a single portal with all the information you need to guide you through the process and help you every step of the way (preparing the application, entering details, submitting and tracking the application).

The main steps in applying for a visa

Do I need a visa?

First, use “Visa Wizard” on the France-Visas site to check, based on your situation, whether you need a visa and if so, what type. The wizard will also tell you what documents must be enclosed with your application, along with the relevant fee.

Complete your application online.

Once you have checked that you need a visa, you can complete your application on our online portal. You will be asked to create an account and France-Visas will support you in each step of the process.

Submit your application to the visa centre.

Once you have completed your online application, all you have to do is submit it to your local visa centre. France-Visas will provide you with all necessary information on how and where to submit your application.

Track your visa application.

Once your application has been submitted, track its progress and find out how and when you can collect your passport and how to prepare for your trip to France.


Waiting times for appointments and for processing applications will vary depending on your nationality and the time of year. Users are therefore asked to submit their visa applications well in advance of their departure date.

Applying for a French residence permit

Holders of an entry and long-stay visa marked “carte de séjour à solliciter à l’arrivée en France” (residence permit to be applied for upon arrival in France) are required to contact the French prefectural authority in their place of residence, in order to apply for a residence permit within two months of entering the French territory.

Family members of a national of an EU Member State, the EEE or Switzerland who wish to submit a request for a “family member of a union citizen” residence permit must contact the competent French prefectural authority, in order to apply for a residence permit within three months of entering the French territory.

Holders of a long-stay visa marked “CESEDA R.311-3” are required to contact the French Immigration and Integration Office (OFII) immediately on arrival in France.

For more information, visit (in French):

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