From this post, I understand that there is no real distinction between a Schengen tourist visa and a Schengen business visa as long as they are both for short stay only (Type C). So, if I have an existing tourist visa can I also attend a business trip (training/meeting/conference)?

  • The form is the same for both and the only difference is additional documentation in the form of invitation letters from the company. There doesn't seem to be any difference in the visa and it's restrictions itself. So, for example, if I go to Spain for holiday can I swing by the office in Italy for a couple of days to meet some of my colleagues and clients? Feb 17, 2015 at 4:12
  • Thanks for the link, but what's the alternative? Should I cancel my tourist visa (if that's possible) and re-apply for a business visa even though the main intention of the travel is tourism? Feb 17, 2015 at 4:32
  • Cool, thanks for that! I'll check with the consulate. Feb 17, 2015 at 4:41

1 Answer 1


There is no sharp distinction between tourism and business visas in the Schengen area. So if you have a multiple entry visa with long validity it's perfectly fine to use for both purposes and more (business or tourism are only two of half a dozen purposes like medical travel, cultural travel or short studies).

On the other hand, a single or double entry visa is issued for a specific trip. Even if the details are not mentioned on the visa sticker, you are not expected to make any major change to this trip, like going to another country or changing its purpose. In practice, YMMV of course.

See also Use of unused Schengen visa to travel to Switzerland for someone's first-hand experience with a similar issue.

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