Overview of Hungary
A landlocked country in Eastern Europe, Hungary shares its borders with Austria, Slovakia, Romania, Ukraine, Serbia, Croatia, and Slovenia. Its population of almost 10 million people speak mainly Hungarian; the country’s only official language.
Budapest, Hungary’s capital and largest city, is a top European travel destination for its rich history and beauty; a large portion of it is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Budapest contains many impressive architectural monuments, including Buda Castle, the Baroque-style palace complex located on medieval-era Castle Hill, the Great Synagogue, the largest in Europe, and Fisherman’s Bastion, a 20th century, Romantic inspired structure, which overlooks the Danube river and provides magnificent views of the city. Visitors to Budapest can dine on Hungary’s national dish, Goulash, in its buzzy new restaurants, and relax in one of its hundreds of public baths; a legacy of the Ottoman occupation. Thermal springs proliferate throughout the country, which boasts the largest thermal spa complex on the continent, as well as Lake Balaton; the largest lake in central Europe.
Hungary signed the Schengen agreement in 2003, becoming part of the Schengen area in 2007.
- Schengen visa eligibility for Hungary includes third country nationals from the following states, who are excluded from visa-free to Hungary/the Schengen area, and are therefore eligible to apply for a Schengen visa to Hungary:
14. BURKINA FASO
19. CAPE VERDE
71. NORTH KOREA
20. CENTRAL AFRICAN REPUBLIC
74. PAPUA NEW GUINEA
25. COTE D’IVOIRE
27. DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF CONGO
79. SAO TOME AND PRINCIPE
80. SAUDI ARABIA
29. DOMINICAN REPUBLIC
82. SIERRA LEONE
32. EQUATORIAL GUINEA
84. SOUTH AFRICA
85. SOUTH SUDAN
86. SRI LANKA
- Third party nationals from the following entities/territories are also required to apply for a Schengen visa: KOSOVO and the PALESTINIAN AUTHORITY.
- Hungarian Schengen visa application forms are available in Hungarian, English, or French. However, if your application contains supplemental materials written in a language other than these 3 languages, they will likely need to be accompanied by an official translation into either Hungarian or English. All documents required for your Hungarian Schengen visa must be filled in using capital Roman letters.
- Applications for all Schengen visas to Hungary will contain the following Basic Required Documents:
- Valid passport
- Passport sized photos
- Application form
- Fingerprints (biometric data)
- Travel medical insurance
- Visa Fee
- Materials related to your trip:
- Reason for visit
- Where you will stay (accommodation)
- How you will fund your trip (finances)
- Proof that you will leave Hungary before your visa becomes invalid/expires. This is often in the form of a paid roundtrip plane ticket (proof of return).
- Please note, if you are applying from a country where you do not legally reside, you must supply proof of legal residence with your application.
Note: For more information on what to include in your application, including a detailed description of required materials, please see: Basic Required Documents. Please note that you may have to submit additional Hungarian Schengen visa supporting documents related to your specific purpose for travelling.
- The standard Hungarian Schengen visa fee for an adult is 80 Euros. Certain types of applicants (most students, children under 6) are exempt from all visa fees. Please note that these fees are non-refundable. To get a Schengen visa for Hungary, you will likely have to submit a service payment with your visa application-this is a separate cost from the visa fee. Please note that these fees are non-refundable in the case of visa rejection.
How to Apply: Steps
- Step 1: Determine your Purpose for travelling to Hungary, which will determine the Type of visa you should apply for.
- Step 2: Determine how many Entries to Hungary/the Schengen area you need.
- Step 3: Gather your Required Documents.
- Step 4: Schedule a Hungarian Schengen Visa appointment (if applicable).
- Depending on the location of the consulate/visa center you are applying through, you may have to schedule an appointment in order to submit your application. Alternatively, you may be able to drop off your application without prior arrangement, so long as you do so during normal operating hours. Contact your Hungarian Consulate/visa center directly to find out if you need to schedule an appointment in order to submit your application.
- Step 5: Fill out your application.
- Applications for Hungarian Schengen Visas can be downloaded online, through the Hungarian Ministry of Foreign Affairs website via this link. Alternatively, you can collect a paper copy application at your respective Hungarian Consulate/Embassy.
- Step 6: Pay the application fee.
- Step 7: Submit your Hungarian Schengen visa application (at least 15 days prior to travelling, not before 6 months).
- While different Hungarian consulates/processing centers may have different procedures for submitting applications, in almost all cases, applications must be submitted in person to the consulate/center you are applying through.
- In rare cases, an authorized person may submit your application on your behalf, so long as the application authorization is certified by a notary. Other exceptions to personal submission include cultural/ professional/sporting associations or institutions, which may submit applications on the behalf of a member, and valid travel agencies, in the event the applicant is taking part in an organized travel trip. Please note, your application must be signed by you personally, even if someone else is submitting it for you.
- When you submit your application, you will likely also be asked to submit biometric data (fingerprints). Children younger than 12 years are likely exempt from having their fingerprints collected. If you have previously submitted fingerprints (within the last 59 months), you likely will not need to resubmit them.
- Please note, after submitting your application, you may be asked to return at a later date for a personal interview to provide further information/materials related to your trip.
When to Apply
- Submit your application at least 15 days prior to the day you intend to travel, and no earlier than 6 months before you leave.
Where to Apply
- Applications for Schengen visas to Hungary should be submitted at either a Hungarian Consulate or a visa application center that has a relationship with Hungary.
- Ideally, you will lodge your application in the country where you legally reside/hold a residence permit.
- If you must apply through a Hungarian Consulate/Embassy or visa application center located in a country where you do not legally reside, you must have a valid reason for doing so. Valid reasons include that you are legally staying in another country (on a valid visa/ permit), and that the consulate within the country has accepted your reasons for applying through them and has chosen to process your application.
- Click here to find Hungarian Consulate/Embassies nearest to you.
- In countries where there is no Hungarian consular presence, applications may be lodged via the consulate of a Schengen state representing Hungarian consular interests.
- In countries where there is neither a Hungarian consular presence nor a Schengen state representing Hungarian consulate interests, you may apply through any Hungarian Consulate located outside the Schengen area.
- The Hungarian Schengen visa processing time is generally 15 days, although it can take up to 45 days in certain cases.
If your visa was approved:
- Collect your visa and make sure the information it contains is valid and complete.
If your visa was denied:
- If you receive a Schengen visa rejection for Hungary, you (or your legal representative) have the right to an appeal within 8 days of receiving your rejection.
- Begin this process by picking up your standard issued-visa refusal form, which describes why your request was denied. Your letter of rejection should explain the detailed steps of the appeal process, including where to send it.
- Your appeal is decided by the Consular Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, which renders a decision 15 days after receiving the appeal.
- You should submit your Schengen visa appeal in writing in either Hungarian or an EU official language (if you choose to submit in a non-E.U. language, you must include an official translation of your appeal). Your appeal should be signed either by you personally or someone who is legally authorized to sign for you.
- Please note, you must also submit an appeal fee of 30 euros, which is non-refundable regardless of the outcome of the appeal (positive or negative).
Finally, once you obtain your Schengen Visa for Hungary, please note the following:
- Your visa may be revoked if you do not notify the Hungarian Consulate/visa application center of any changes to your trip itinerary that occur after you have submitted your application.
- Being approved for a Hungarian visa does not guarantee you entry to either Hungary or the general Schengen area – you can still be refused entry to both places upon arrival.
- Alternatively, you may have to show additional documents regarding your finances or accommodation in order to enter Hungary/the Schengen area.