1) General information

Where do I have to apply for visa?

Visa must be requested at Italian missions abroad having jurisdiction on the applicant's place of residence. As a rule, residence is defined as the place where a person lives and works, or generally where a person regularly has been leaving for at least six month. The application can be forwarded through VisaMetric offices or directly at the Consulate General of Italy in Chongqing.

How much does a visa cost?

The consular fees are 60 euro for Schengen visas and 116 euro for national visas. Certain categories of applicant are completed exempted from payment of the visa fee, while for citizens from certain countries are charged lower fees. For more information about current Consular visa fees click here.

I am a foreigner who lives in China. Can I apply for a short term visa here in China instead of going back to my home country?

You can. However, applicants have to provide evidence of their legal permission to reside in the country by showing their residence permit. For the purpose of establishing the residence, the consulate may require extra documents (working contract, house property..) Can also apply foreigner citizens that do not reside in China, as long as at the time of application they will be able to prove that they are legally present in the country and justify the reason why they are applying from China and not from their home country.

During my holiday I wish to visit Italy, as well as French and Germany. Durante il mio viaggio mi recherò in Italia, ma anche in Francia e Germania. What Consulate should I apply for my visa at?

If the trip itinerary includes more than one Schengen Member State, must apply at the Consulate of the Member whose territory represents the main destination of the trip. “Main destination” shall be the place where the applicant is willing to spend the longest period or where the main purpose of the trip is. If it is not possible to define the main destination of the trip, the applicants must apply at the Embassy or Consulate through which territory the applicant plan to enter the Schengen area.

I'm currently holding a multi-entry Schengen visa that is about to expire. Can I apply for a new visa in advance?

Yes you can, but the validity of the new visa will start from the expiry date of the previous one.

My Schengen visa has 6 months validity. How long can I stay in the Schengen area?

If you obtained a multiple-entries 6 month visa, you can stay in the Schengen area not more than your authorized period of stay and, in any case, up to a total of 90 days.

Which is the expiring date of my visa?

Two important dates appear on your visa: the visa expiry date ( e.g. 17th November 2015) and the duration of the stay expressed in days (e.g. 10 days). The applicant must leave the Schengen area before the visa expiry date, making sure that duration of his/her stay does not exceed the duration of the stay stated on their visa.

How far in advance can I apply for my visa?

Not more than three months in advance. If you plan to depart in September, you can’t apply for your visa before June. We recommend that you apply as early as possible.

Can I apply for a visa sending the necessary documentation by EMS?

No. Neither the Consulate Visa Section nor VisaMetric visa centre will be able to accept applications sent via courier or EMS. If the applicant can't go in person to VisaMetric Visa Application Centre to apply for your visa, you can appoint a delegate, providing specific authorization duly signed and dated.

What should I do after obtaining my visa?

Upon entering the Schengen area, you have to make sure that you hold all the documents that you already submitted for your visa application as well as proof of financial means, in the amount of about 30 Euros for each day that you planned to stay.

Should I refer to a travel agent or other advisor to help me with my visa application?

No, it is not necessary since VisaMetric Visa Application Centre can assist you on any issue related to your visa application.

Distrust people promising a speedy processing of your visa application. No one can guarantee the visa issue to you or that your application will be processed more quickly than the others.

Application forms and information are available free of charge on the Consulate website and VisaMetric website.

What are the additional services offered by VisaMetric?

VisaMetric additional services:

  • Premium service (extra charge) RMB 260,00

  • SuperPremium service (extra charge) RMB 600,00

  • Insurance (the price varies depending on the length of the trip)

  • Biometric photography RMB 35,00/photo

  • Photocopy RMB 1,00/page

  • Fax RMB 5,00/page

  • Documents printout RMB 5,00/page

  • SMS application tracking service RMB 15,00

  • Courier pass-back by express mail (passport pass-back/ documents) RMB 50,00

You can ask for further information at our VisaMetric offices.

The option to benefit from one of VisaMetric additional services will not affect in any way the consular decision and the visa issue process.

I have heard that it is better to say that I’m going for business rather for tourism or to see relatives. Is it true?

No. On the contrary, problems arise when the applicant deliberately mislead the interviewing officer during the interview or providing false documents. In this case it will be difficult to believe any other information supplied by the applicant, and the visa application will be probably denied.

Shouldn’t I conceal the fact that I Have relatives that live in Italy or that I have previously been denied visa? What are the consequences if an applicant conceals or misrepresents information or submits false documents to the Consulate?

The risks are serious. Applicants who provide incorrect information will be denied visa. It is recalled that further checks are conducted as appropriate to verify the validity of the information provided. Applicants submitting fraudulent documents will be reported to the Italian Authorities.

I'm holding a regular and currently valid residence permit in Italy. If I want to go back to China for a short period of time and then come back to Italy, do I have to apply for a new visa?

No. If your residence permit is currently valid, you do not need to apply for a new visa to go back to Italy. It will be sufficient to show at the border control your passport and the residence permit.

I am currently in Italy and my visa is about to expire, but I'd like to stay longer and extend my visa. Can I extend it at the Police Station (“Questura”)?

No. You must necessarily leave the National territory before your visa expires. Visas can be extended only for extremely important reasons at the Police Station in charge.

2) Business Visa

I often go to Italy for business and I'd like to apply for a one year multiple-entry visa. Do I have to buy a one year insurance policy?

No. The insurance policy has to cover only the first period of stay, which has to be documented. It is implied that the applicant will have to provide himself/herself with an insurance policy every time that he will go to Italy during the validity of the visa. The validity of the insurance policy can be checked by boundary authorities every time that you’re about to enter a Schengen Member State.

The invitation letter issued by the inviting Italian company is for a period of 10 days. I will then go to Paris for a 3-day conference. Can I apply for a Schengen visa whose duration covers both visits?

Yes. However, it is necessary to submit the necessary documentation to prove the reason of the trip to France, where the applicant will stay ( hotel reservation ) and make sure that the insurance policy is long enough.

I’m going to Italy on a 10 day training course for a company based in Milan. Before returning to China I would like to spend 3 days in Vienna for tourism. Do I have to apply for a business visa or tourist visa?

You can apply for a business visa. However, you are asked to provide your travel itinerary (or booking references) of your travel from Italy to Austria and also your accommodation booking for your stay in Vienna.

We are 3 colleagues invited from the same Italian company for a 10 day training course in Rome. I’m the holder of a passport with previous Schengen and American visas, meanwhile my colleagues never have travelled. Can we apply together for the visa?

Yes you can, but your colleagues will need to have an interview at the Consulate while you will be exempt from the interview.

3) Tourist Visa

I already hold different Schengen business visas. I would like to go to Italy for a long holiday. Can I obtain a multiple entry visa?

Usually a tourist visa is issued for short periods. The Consulate will evaluate that the applicant in the past had already obtained and correctly used other visas.

I wish to go and visit a relative who lives in Italy. When applying for a visa, is it sufficient enough for me to provide proof of financial means?

If the applicants have a solid financial position or have already travelled to the Schengen Member States in the recent past, it is sufficient for them to provide proof of financial means. Otherwise, the inviting person has to arrange a bank guarantee (fidejussione) for the applicants. Upon application for visa, the original certificate of the bank guarantee has to be submitted. If the applicant holds this there will be no need to provide any other proof of financial means.

How much is the amount of the bank guarantee supposed to be?

The amount is set by the Directive of the Italian Ministry of the Interior which is circulated amongst all Italian banks.

I am an Italian citizen registered with A.I.R.E and I reside in China. I have lived with my Chinese girlfriend for two years and I want to marry her. I would like to invite her to Italy for a short stay. What kind of visa should I apply for?

You can only apply for a tourist visa.

I’ve been studying at Madrid University for the last six months and I’m currently holding a regular residence permit which was issued by the local Spanish authorities. I would like go to Italy for touristic purposes for 2 weeks. What documentation should I prepare?

None. Because being a resident and holder of a residence permit issued in a Schengen Member State, exempts you from needing another visa.

4) Employment Visa

How should I apply for the Working Permit in Italy?

The application can only be submitted by the Italian or foreign employer at the Unified Immigration Desk “Sportello Unico”.