I have a valid Belgium work permit and visa type D, however due to project delays, my travel to Belgium is delayed for few more months, so that visa is not utilized. However I would like to travel to Germany even before this travel.

Can I apply for a separate Schengen tourist visa for Germany in that case and travel? Will the immigration entry will be smooth for me? Or do I need to cancel the existing Belgium visa to secure a new tourist visa for Germany?

  • Will the Belgian visa already be valid when you enter Germany? In that case, I think you can go there directly (but not more than 90 days of course). Otherwise, I am not aware of any rule that would preclude applying for a short-stay visa but I am not 100% sure of that. In general, I would avoid canceling a long-stay visa, I think too much is at stake, how can you be confident you will get one again when you need it?
    – Relaxed
    Mar 20, 2014 at 13:40
  • possible duplicate of Can I visit Schengen countries on a long term German Visa? Mar 21, 2014 at 10:59
  • @Tor-EinarJarnbjo I would say this is more closely related to this one: travel.stackexchange.com/questions/17122/…
    – Karlson
    Mar 21, 2014 at 12:28
  • @Karlson: Not really. Your question relates to the potential problems having both a national long-term visa and a generic Schengen short-term tourist visa. Here, the question is: Is it at all necessary to obtain a Schengen-wide visa to visit other countries if you already have a national long-term visa. Since the national long-term visa gives you more rights in the other Schengen countries than a short-term tourist visa, you'll just run into unnecessary problems if you try to travel using a combination of two such visas. Mar 21, 2014 at 14:24
  • 1
    @Karlson: But why should he? It will only bring potential problems, which weren't there without the short-term visa. Mar 21, 2014 at 14:39

1 Answer 1


I see no reason why you could not apply for a short-stay visa from Germany. I am not entirely sure of its legal basis but everything I found on the rule that forbids people from holding several Schengen visas is along the lines of “a person cannot hold two uniform visas valid for the same period in time” (e.g. this particular phrase is from page 26 of the Schengen visa Handbook). I think that your Belgian visa is not a uniform visa (which is Schengen jargon for a short-stay visa valid in the whole Schengen area) so you could still apply for one.

That said, I don't think that it is necessary either. A valid long-stay visa from a Schengen member state gives you the right to travel for up to three months to other Schengen member states (article 5 of the Schengen Borders Code). So as long as your Belgian visa is already valid, it should be enough to enter Germany. You do need to fulfill the usual conditions for a short stay in the Schengen area (i.e. justify the purpose of the stay, have travel insurance and sufficient financial means, etc.)

Beware: Some countries issue visas that need to be “validated” after you established residence (e.g. you need to complete various formalities within 3 months of entering the country and then get a sticker in your passport). The initial visa is valid to enter the country the first time (perhaps also to transit in the Schengen area?) but I am not sure if it would be considered a valid long-stay visa in other member states or if getting an entry stamp would start the three-month validation period (I also have no idea if Belgium does something like that, so it might not be relevant to your situation at all).

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