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I have a Nigerian passport and I will be transiting in Amsterdam for my flight back to Nigeria. Will it be possible to use my valid German transit visa to be able to transit in the Netherlands.

  • I can't find a reference to this situation but I suspect the answer is no. My reasoning would be that different countries mandate different citizens to have a transit visa and so the transit visa must be per country. But hopefully others can figure this out. – chx May 11 '17 at 22:55
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    Where are you transiting from? What does the visa say after "valid for" (it could be either "Schengener Staaten" or "Deutschland")? – phoog May 11 '17 at 23:10
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    @chx That's not really how the regulation is structured. There is a list of countries whose citizens require transit visa Schengen-wide (including Nigeria incidentally) and a provision for Schengen countries to add other countries to the list. And then there is a list of exceptions (holders of US visas, etc.) and requirements defined elsewhere, which Schengen countries cannot alter in any way. – Relaxed May 12 '17 at 5:59
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    I am not 100% sure that it really works that way in practice but the fact that exceptions are definitely not per-country and that ATV are generally part of the Schengen system makes me think that Schengen countries must recognize each other's transit visas. – Relaxed May 12 '17 at 6:01
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According to the Schengen Visa Code, transit visas are usually valid for all international airports within the Schengen area:

  1. An airport transit visa shall be valid for transiting through the international transit areas of the airports situated on the territory of Member States.

However there is an exemption to that rule...

  1. If the applicant is required to hold an airport transit visa in accordance with the provisions of Article 3(2), the airport transit visa shall be valid only for transiting through the international transit areas of the airports situated on the territory of the Member State(s) concerned

And Article 3(2) states the following:

  1. In urgent cases of mass influx of illegal immigrants, individual Member States may require nationals of third countries other than those referred to in paragraph 1 to hold an airport transit visa when passing through the international transit areas of airports situated on their territory. Member States shall notify the Commission of such decisions before their entry into force and of withdrawals of such an airport transit visa requirement.

Which means that if citizens of your country are required to hold an airport transit visa by a specific Schengen state, then that particular visa is only valid within the international airports of that state. However if your nationality is required to hold a transit visa for the entire Schengen area, then that visa would be valid for all Member States.

In your particular scenario Nigeria is on the common airport transit visa list, so your visa is also valid for the Netherlands. So the answer is yes, you may use your existing visa to transit.

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Absent added information on your visa, other visas you may have, and on your flight plans, here's the German Missions in Nigeria explanation of the Category A (Airport transit visa), as well as the German Missions in the United States document, with an expanded description, dated April 2017.

It states that nationals of certain countries, including Nigeria, are required to be in possession of an airport transit visa when passing through the international transit area of airports in Germany.

There are exceptions: Nigerian citizens do not need an airport transit visa if they are in possession of a valid visa

  • for a Schengen Member State
  • for state party to the Agreement on the European Economic Area of 2 May 1992
  • for Japan, Canada, Switzerland or the United States of America
  • or, if after using one of these visas, they are returning to Nigeria from any of these countries.

Please note that an airport transit visa only allows a short stay in the international transit area of some airports:

  • Frankfurt/Main (open 24 hours)
  • Munich (open 24 hours)
  • Hamburg (4:30 a.m. - 11:30 p.m. only)
  • Düsseldorf (6:00 a.m. - 9:00 p.m. only) and if the airline has arranged the transit beforehand with the authorities responsible for cross-border security (the Federal Police)
  • Cologne/Bonn (4:30 a.m. - 11:00 p.m. only)
  • Berlin (06:00 a.m. - 11:00 p.m. only) at Berlin-Tegel, for Air Berlin passengers only. The airline has to arrange the transit beforehand with the authorities responsible for cross-border security (the Federal Police). The connection time must be at least 75 minutes.

Airport transit privilege does not apply and you will need a visitor visa if

  1. you have to pick up your baggage and/or have to check-in again (please verify with your airline) or
  2. you are transiting through two or more airports in the Schengen Countries (for example: Miami-Frankfurt-Paris-India or New York-Frankfurt-Munich-India) or
  3. you hold an open ticket.
  • This doesn't answer the question at all. – Niko May 16 '17 at 3:33

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