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My Chinese inlaws might come to visit us in Belgium next year. However, they live in a very remote area and Belgium only has visa centers in Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou. As their official residence in Sichuan province, they should apply for their visa in Beijing which is very far away for them. Last time they came, they were able to apply for the visa by post which worked out quite well.

Now however, the Schengen visa requires a bio-metric identification (fingerprints). We would like to avoid them going through the hassle of traveling 2000km to Beijing just to have their fingerprints taken. Would it be possible for them to have their fingerprints taken in a nearby consulate of another Schengen country ? For instance, Germany has a consulate in Sichuan's capital Chengdu.

  • First, no, you cannot. Second, even if you could apply through Germany, it seems it wouldn't help, as Germany's processing company seems to have only one office in China, in Beijing. – phoog Nov 10 '15 at 20:58
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The biometric data collection is a new requirement, in force for Belgium since 12th October 2015, and every Schengen country is now doing this.

This requires, once every five years, the visa applicant must submit fingerprints and have their photograph taken at a consulate or visa application centre for the country they are applying to.

So, they will have to make the journey to submit their biometrics for their next visa, but those will be kept on file, and for the following 59 months, they can submit future visa applications by post.

In order to submit their biometric data, all applicants must come to the Visa Application Centre of Belgium or the Belgian Embassy/Consulates the first time they apply for a visa from 12 October 2015. For subsequent applications within next 59 months the fingerprints will be copied from previous application file of the VIS.

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