I am going from Istanbul to Miami and have to stay in the Lisbon airport for 20 hours until my next flight departs to Miami.

I am a Colombian citizen with a US residency but since I was only going to be there for transit, I did not apply for a Uniform 'C' visa. Unfortunately, I wasn't expecting my layover to be so long.

Now, I can't leave the airport since I would require a Uniform 'C' Schengen visa if I was to leave, which I cannot get because it is too late now.

Thus, Are there any issues I can run into at the Lisbon airport considering that my stay will be about 20 hours long and will be overnight?

  • So as far as I can see, your question is more about what to do at the Lisbon airport rather than the fact whether you need a visa or not. Am I correct? Commented Jul 10, 2014 at 1:31
  • 1
    Sounds to me more like it's about whether he'll be allowed to stay without a visa. Commented Jul 10, 2014 at 3:05
  • How much time is left? Even if there is only a week, you could still try to apply.
    – Relaxed
    Commented Jul 10, 2014 at 8:43

2 Answers 2


Lisbon airport is open 24 hours a day so you could probably stay overnight even if that's uncomfortable. In practice, if you make it to Lisbon (i.e. the airline does not deny boarding), I don't think you would get in trouble.

The problem is that the transit must also be “short”. Countries do not always publish a strict guideline beyond that and I haven't been able to find any authoritative source for Portugal but in Germany for example it means less than 12 hours so you might not qualify for “airport transit privileges”.


Truly authoritative information (i.e. directly from the government of Portugal) is proving very difficult to find, though several tourism sources (e.g. 1, 2) state that a transit visa is not required for citizens of most countries as long as you remain airside.

The countries whose citizens do require an airport transit visa to transit Portugal even when remaining airside are listed as: Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Congo (Dem Rep), Eritrea, Ethiopia, Ghana, Iraq, Iran, Liberia, Nigeria, Pakistan, Senegal, Somalia and Sri Lanka.

There was no information I could find about a restriction on length of stay airside, except that you must take the "same or first connecting aircraft."

  • Those are the general Schengen rules, airside transit is indeed possible for Colombian citizens (incidentally, the question suggests the OP already knew all that). Authoritative sources for that are detailed in travel.stackexchange.com/questions/30569/… Only question is whether the layover is short enough to qualify.
    – Relaxed
    Commented Jul 10, 2014 at 16:24

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