Suppose someone on the 90 of 180 rule leaves Schengen on the 90th day.

Then less than 90 days later, they have a flight with one or more layovers in a Schengen country.

Does it get counted if it's the same plane? Change of planes?

What if it is overnight but you don't leave the airport?

How to calculate stays against 90/180 visa rules? relates but doesn't specifically mention layovers. If you don't get off the plane, I presume nobody even looks at your passport. But in one non-Schengen airport, I had to change planes, but first was required to go through passport control, claim luggage, and re-check the luggage.

  • 11
    Do you need to pass imigration? If you fly from a non-Schengen country to a non-Schengen country, you do not need to pass imigration and you should be alright. But if you travel through two Schengen airports before leaving the area, you need to enter the Schengen zone and do need more days. (But I do not have proof, so I do not write this as an answer.)
    – Willeke
    Mar 31, 2016 at 19:25
  • 2
    Willeke is correct in that if you don't leave the transit zone and actually enter a Schengen country, then you've not entered and the time doesn't count. However remember that the 90/180 rule is a moving target and the day after you leave the zone the 180 day window keeps sliding forward, so you may actually be able to enter the zone... that's what the calculator is good for.
    – CGCampbell
    Mar 31, 2016 at 21:56
  • 1
    You can use schengen 90/180 day calculator: ec.europa.eu/dgs/home-affairs/what-we-do/policies/…. This Schengen manual also will help you. ec.europa.eu/dgs/home-affairs/what-we-do/policies/…
    – pbu
    Mar 31, 2016 at 21:58
  • 2
    Possible duplicate of How to calculate stays against 90/180 visa rules?
    – CGCampbell
    Mar 31, 2016 at 22:32
  • 3
    I am in @Willeke's camp. If a person is admitted to the zone, even for 1 millisecond, it's bookable as a full day against the 90/180 rule. I think it's not really a duplicate of calculating days because that question/answer is vague on the layover/transit corner case. Willeke can choose to add the corner case to the existing canonical, or add an answer here, or dup-vote ect ect.
    – Gayot Fow
    Apr 1, 2016 at 5:28

1 Answer 1


It's actually very simple, there are no complex rules on how to keep time, what counts or not, or anything like that. Each time you cross an external border, you should get a stamp with a date on it. The day you got an entry stamp, the day you got an exit stamp and every day between them each count as one day towards the 90-day limit.

So if you enter and leave immediately, or during the same calendar day, it counts as one day, whether it's a day trip, en errand to run, a layover or what not. In fact, if you enter 1 hour before midnight and leave 2 hours later, then your passport would show two days of stay in the Schengen area.

On the other hand, if you can transit without leaving the transit lounge/“international” area of the airport (and major European airports are set up to allow that in many cases), it doesn't matter. You won't (need to) go through an official border check or be admitted to the Schengen area and won't get a stamp so there is no need to count days. But if your route includes a flight between two Schengen airports or you somehow need to go “landside”, you have to go through the border check and get a stamp.

  • 3
    @WGroleau The rest should help understand the logic and extend the answer to many related situations. It is definitely relevant, whether you are personally interested in it or not. Remember this is a Q&A site designed to collect knowledge about travel useful to many people, not a personal helpline.
    – Relaxed
    Jun 6, 2016 at 0:53
  • A Q&A site where it is better to answer the question that was asked. The rest of it has already been said on posts where those questions were asked.
    – WGroleau
    Jun 6, 2016 at 20:41
  • 3
    @WGroleau That sentence does not even make sense, what are you complaining about exactly? You might be ready to accept any answer I provide just because I say so but others might prefer to understand why things are that way. Is reading two paragraphs really that hard? I helped you with your problem, for free, I am not going to deface my answer just because you feel like it.
    – Relaxed
    Jun 6, 2016 at 21:32
  • 3
    Be aware that flights from one schengen airport to another are treated as domestic flights. So if you have one of those in your itinery you will have to enter the area to take it which will be a problem if you have run out of days.. Jun 30, 2016 at 18:40
  • 1
    @PeterGreen this is a good point which is implicit in the answer (to paraphrase, "each time you cross an external border..." that date counts). But it is worthwhile to mention this case explicitly because many people do not realize, or overlook, that having two consecutive layovers in th Schengen area means that the traveler must cross an external border.
    – phoog
    Mar 24, 2018 at 14:31

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .