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I’m working in a US based fully remote company. I’m have to visit Schengen area for our upcoming yearly meetup. Also, I’m going to travel two more Schengen countries after the meetup for the tourism purpose.

I can’t choose purpose of the journey as business trip since the company is not from Schengen area. Should I choose “Tourism”? Or should I choose “Other” and specify as “Company meetup”?

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  • thanks for asking this question. I had the same query few months ago, I chose tourist
    – channa
    Jul 15, 2022 at 18:41

2 Answers 2

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Who gave you the idea that you can't choose "business" because the company is not from the Schengen area? They are just asking for the purpose of visit. It is "business". Period.

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  • When asked, I say "business meetings and discussions". Jul 14, 2022 at 12:51
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If the company meet up is like a retreat/reward type of meet up then it is probably tourism. For example taking the top sales executives skiing as a reward for beating targets. You would just need confirmation of the reason for the trip and what the company is paying for, this would be from your employer, probably on the same letter you would have confirming the travellers employment.

If it is like a conference/meeting but being held at a function room in a hotel or similar it would probably be business. You would have a letter from your employer confirming your employment and another letter from whoever is organising the event (can be the same company you work for outside of the schengen area) outlining the details of the trip. Along with some kind of proof that the facilities have been booked for this event. A letter from the hotel/facility for example. This way there is some confirmation from within the country you are applying to that this is a genuine business event.

I have done this several times for groups of travellers and it is fine. Interestingly when doing this the second way I mentioned, some consulates when presented with identical documents issued visas endorsed as business and others tourism. This was highlighted to the consulates in question and the response was that it was OK because it was possible to do either activity on the visas issued, ultimately what was printed on the visa was the consulates discretion/interpretation of the code.

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  • 12
    Most "retreat/reward" trips have at least a nominal business component - a seminar to attend, a presentation to watch. This is so that the company can claim the cost as a business expense and so that attendees don't have to pay tax on the trip. Thus the purpose of the trip is almost always business. Jul 12, 2022 at 22:48
  • @messtopher -what if we're not direct employer of this company(separate company/private contractor) on paper ? does this thing work?
    – channa
    Jul 15, 2022 at 18:40
  • @Shiwangini I am not sure I fully understand the question, if this is relation to the original question, and you are not an employee but contracted in some capacity and been invited to company meet up it shouldn't make any real difference, it just might mean the documents you provide to show your employment might be slightly different, or the letters may be worded differently. It would probably depend on who was paying or if you are self employed as to who writes the supporting letters. If the question is more specific maybe post a new question and I would be happy to answer in more detail.
    – Messtopher
    Jul 15, 2022 at 19:38

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