I am an American citizen living in Poland for 6 months.

I arrived in Poland on March 1, 2016 without a work visa (i.e, on a business trip).The count toward my Schengen days began.

I received my National Long-Stay Work Visa to legally work in Poland on April 7, 2016 at the consulate in Chicago and then returned to Poland on April 10th.

The work visa expires on July 7th. I intend to travel Europe until my scheduled departure on July 31.

My question is as follows: Because I entered the Schengen area on February 1, and received my entry tourist stamp - do I need to exit and reenter the Schengen area on July 7th in order to reestablish myself as a tourist in the Schengen area?

Or, am I allowed to remain in the Schengen area from July 7th until July 31st without exiting and reentering - since I already have my Schengen entry stamp from February 1?

Please note: The Schengen Borders Code states:

Periods of stay authorised under a residence permit or a long-stay visa shall not be taken into account in the calculation of the duration of stay on the territory of the Member States.

  • 3
    No do not have to exit and reenter. The Schengen clock starts ticking on the day after your national visa expires. The days you spent in March will be counted against your Schengen leave just as they will from 8 July onward
    – Gayot Fow
    Commented May 31, 2016 at 11:45

2 Answers 2


There's no such thing as an "entry tourist stamp", only a Schengen entry stamp or a Schengen exit stamp; third-state nationals get the same stamp no matter what their basis for entering is. (With the single exception of EEA family members holding an Article 10 card, with is not relevant for you).

You do not need to cross borders in order to go from a stay authorized under a long-stay visa to a stay authorized under the 90/180 day rule. Same-day or next-day "visa runs" out of the Schengen area never have any effect because the 90/180 day clock keeps ticking the same way no matter whether you leave the area or not.

When you eventually leave the Schengen area, the border guard is supposed to verify that you have complied with the 90/180 day rule. At that point you can appeal to the fact that some of your stay was covered by a long-stay visa. As documentation for this claim, the long-stay visa itself will still be in your passport. For peace of mind, you'll want to carry some additional documentation to evidence that you indeed stayed in Poland rather than another Schengen state during such-and-such period -- e.g. receipts for accommodation -- but chances are excellent that you won't even be asked to show that.

  • 1
    Of course article 10 card holders don't get a different stamp either, they just don't get a stamp.
    – phoog
    Commented May 31, 2016 at 14:19

As you probably noticed, there is no explicitly requirement to do so in the Borders Code and there is no other source that would be more authoritative. Another thing to understand is that the length of stay allowed in the Schengen area is entirely defined by the visas you hold and the relevant rules and regulations. There is no notion of being granted a certain amount of time upon entering, as there is in the US.

Article 12 also explicitly mentions the possibility to prove you followed the rules by other means. Not having a recent entry stamp can make things more difficult but it's never punishable as such, only overstaying is and you haven't done that. You can always point to your Polish visa if any question arises!

Finally, it's anecdotal but here is an answer about someone who did just that and did not encounter any problem.

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