Bridging visa – everyone has heard the term but only a few really know what it exactly is, when and how to get it and what are the rules related to it. Read below and find out everything about the bridging visa.
What is a bridging visa – technically
Bridging visa is technically a visa sticker issued by the Ministry of the Interior. It belongs into long-term visa category, even though it sometimes can be issued for a shorter time then three months. Bridging visa covers the period between the end of your current visa/residence permit and the start of your new visa/residence permit or their extension. It is issued for the expected approval time.
Bridging visa – rules
Bridging visa is issued in the following cases:
- you are residing in the Czech Republic legally (visa free stay, short-term visa, long-term visa, any type of residence permit) and you want to apply for the Temporary Residence Permit as a Family member of an EU citizen (“partnership visa”),
- you are residing in the Czech Republic under a long-term visa and you wanna extend it,
- you are residing in the Czech Republic under a long-term visa and you wanna switch to a long-term residence permit,
- you are residing in the Czech Republic under a long-term residence permit and you wanna extend it,
- you are residing in the Czech Republic under a long-term residence permit and you wanna change the purpose of your stay,
- you are residing in the Czech Republic under a long-term residence permit and you wanna switch to the permanent residence permit.
Bridging visa is issued by the Ministry of the Interior. It can in theory be issued at any branch of the MOI but it is always easiest to go get it from the branch you belong under and where you solve all your residence matters.
It is best to ask for the bridging visa right when you are applying for residence permit or for extension of your visa/residence permit.
The MOI can refuse to issue the bridging visa if you are applying more than 30 days before your current visa/residence permit expires.
If you need to go get your bridging visa separately (either you applied for your residence permit or its extension more than 30 days in advance or the approval is taking that long that your first bridging visa expired), you need to either book an appointment for it or just go wait in the morning as with any other immigration agenda.
Since bridging visa belongs under long-term visas (even if issued just for 60 days for example), it allows you to travel within and even in and out of Schengen area.
Myths about bridging visa
- it can extend your 90 days visa-free stay in Schengen space – that is unfortunately NOT correct. Czech Embassies are not allowed to give you a bridging visa to allow you to stay in Schengen area after your 90 days expire. Mainly because Embassies are not responsible for any type of long-term visas or residence permits. So even if they wanted, they do not have the legal authority to do it.
We hope this article made bridging visa clear to you but if you still have questions (or you want us to help you get the bridging visa), please contact us through the contact form on the right or through some of the other Contacts.
Move To Prague relocation services – your expert in bridging visas