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I am applying for a Schengen visa to Spain.

I wanted to get the Airbnb first, but when contacting the Spanish embassy, they said that they do not accept Airbnb as proof of stay in Spain.

I reserved a hotel with free cancellation until a week before my entry, but then I found a cheap and much better deal on Airbnb. Can I cancel my hotel and reserve the Airbnb instead? I heard there were cases of visa annulations for tourists traveling to the Czech Republic, but I have no idea whether that's the case with Spain.

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  • Does this answer your question? Can I Change/Cancel My Hotel Bookings after getting Schengen visa, will that get my visa cancelled?
    – mlc
    Commented Jan 14, 2023 at 5:16
  • Not sure, because in my case the embassy said they don't accept Airbnb. I would also like to know if there was anyone with the case of Spain in particular. That question didn't have any follow-up, so I assumed asking this question would bring more anecdotal evidence. After all, some regulations may have changed after the pandemic - it's been 4 years since that question. Commented Jan 14, 2023 at 5:55
  • @sowhatnowhuh If you change your accommodation, will you still meet the subsistence requirement (minimum amount of €100 per person per day)? home-affairs.ec.europa.eu/system/files/2022-07/…
    – Traveller
    Commented Jan 14, 2023 at 7:58
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    @jcaron I've definitely read similar stories about Germany revoking/cancelling (not sure about the terminology) an already issued visa after hotel cancellation. Back in 2012 and 2014 for sure.
    – yeputons
    Commented Jan 14, 2023 at 21:43
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    You should also remember that a visa is not a guarantee you'll get in, you still have to go through immigration and if an officer there wants to check you, there's a chance they go by the same rules the embassy mentioned, and won't let you in if you only have proof of stay in an airbnb. Commented Jan 15, 2023 at 8:31

2 Answers 2

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  • You may make minor adjustments to the itinerary after getting the visa. This goes as far as changing the flight you take, and thereby changing the member state where you first enter the Schengen area. If you applied for a trip to Vienna via Paris and back, and then re-book for Vienna via Amsterdam, it would still be a trip to Vienna.

  • You must not misrepresent your itinerary to get the visa. That means everything you say or write must be true at the time you write it.

  • There may be problems when honest adjustments of the itinerary give the impression that you misrepresented your itinerary. The problems could come during the entry, if you do not have the documentation (like bookings) you said you would have, or it could come with your next visa application if the records of your previous trip do not match the application.

In your specific case, from what you say, the decision to change your plan was made before the application was made, and that is deception. Plain and simple. It would also be deception if you book one hotel and plan to cancel that and stay in another hotel, but that one is highly unlikely to be noticed. But in this case, from the information you received, it makes a difference if you book a hotel or Airbnb. So if they find out, they should conclude that you deliberately lied to get your visa. That's not permitted.

There is probably a good chance that they will not find out, but that's gambling with your travel history. Being found out will cost you more in the long run than paying the hotel.

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    It is still unclear to me what would be definition of "gaming the system". I provide proof of booking for a hotel, because airbnb is not accepted. I stay at airbnb because it's cheaper and more convenient. Does that constitute intention to deceive? I understand that they do not accept airbnb for accommodation proof, but am I prohibited to stay in airbnb with this visa? In some countries they put employer in your work visa and it makes it explicit that you cannot work elsewhere, I would imagine if the place to stay was similarly important not to change, they would at least tell you that? Commented Jan 15, 2023 at 3:01
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    @AndrewSavinykh That seems like it is straightforward deception. You never had any intention of staying in a hotel, but you told them you were going to anyway. It's not like you wanted to stay in a hotel at first but then changed your mind. Commented Jan 15, 2023 at 3:16
  • @JosephSible-ReinstateMonica this is probably more suited for chat, but I'm not sure that this is as clear cut. I'm willing to stay in the hotel if that's what it takes to get the visa. Once I got the visa though, my circumstances has changed, and I'd like to re-book my accommodation, if I'm allowed to without violation of conditions of my visa. The question is am I? Commented Jan 15, 2023 at 3:54
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    @AndrewSavinykh, in this case you plan to change your mind and that is deception.
    – o.m.
    Commented Jan 15, 2023 at 7:06
  • @AndrewSavinykh AFAIK Spanish hotels have a legal duty to register the passport details of tourists on check-in. So in theory at least that gives the authorities the opportunity to check
    – Traveller
    Commented Jan 15, 2023 at 7:29
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It is possible that your visa application may be denied if you cancel your hotel reservation and book a stay at an Airbnb instead. This is because when you apply for a Schengen visa, you are required to provide proof of accommodation for your entire stay in the country. The Spanish embassy specifically states that they do not accept Airbnb as proof of accommodation, so booking an Airbnb instead of a hotel could be seen as providing false information on your visa application.

It is not uncommon for embassies to request proof of accommodation for the entire stay and for this reason, you should be very careful when making any changes to your itinerary.

If you wish to change your accommodation, it is best to contact the Spanish embassy and ask them if they will accept a different type of accommodation such as a different hotel or hostel. It's also a good idea to have a backup plan in case your visa is denied.

Also, it's worth noting that different countries may have different rules and regulations when it comes to Schengen visa applications. Therefore, you should always check with the embassy or consulate of the country you are applying to for specific information about visa requirements.

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  • That seems to repeat what the previous answer stated. Do you want to edit it to focus on what is novel?
    – mdewey
    Commented Jan 15, 2023 at 14:11

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