Before applying for a visa for Finland, you will need to find out whether your country has specific visa requirements in order to enter Finland and the other Schengen countries.
Who needs a Finnish visa?
Citizens of the EU, EEA and Nordic nationals do not need a visa and are allowed to enter and work in Finland for an unlimited period of time. Nationals of a number of other countries who do not have specific visa requirements may enter without a visa for up to three months, however they are not allowed to work during this time.
Citizens of countries that do have specific visa requirements must apply for a visa. This visa will enable them to stay in Finland and other Schengen countries for up to three months. They are not permitted to take on employment during this time.
The Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland has a list of all nationalities that need a visa to enter Finland. You can find it here.
What does a Finnish visa entitle you to?
A visa will give you the right to stay in any of the Schengen countries for a maximum of 90 days per 6 months. During this time you are not permitted to work in Finland unless you are carrying out employment for which a residence permit is not required.
Applying for a Finnish visa and preconditions
Visa applications can be made at any Finnish embassy or consulate general. Some countries do not have a Finnish embassy available to deal with visa applications. In this case, Finland normally has a representation agreement in place in other Schengen countries who will handle all visa applications on Finland’s behalf.
With your application you will need to provide the following documents:
• A completed and signed visa application form. You can download this form from the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland website.
• One colour passport-sized photograph of yourself
• A passport valid for 3 months after your journey
• Proof of travel insurance that covers you for the duration of the visa
• Proof that you have sufficient funds for the duration of your stay (usually a minimum of 30€ per day)
• Details of your journey home
You may also be required to present other documents that indicate the purpose of your trip, as well as how long you will be in Finland for. This can be in the form of travel tickets, confirmed hotel reservations or an official invitation. If you are making a private visit you should include details about how you know each other.
In some cases you may even be asked to attend an interview to discuss the purpose of your visit.
These conditions apply from the time at which your visa was issued, as well as the start of your stay in any of the Schengen countries. Failure to meet these conditions may result in having your visa confiscated and revoked, meaning you would have to leave the Schengen region immediately.
Types of visa
The type of visa you should apply for depends on the nature of your stay in the Schengen area. You can identify the type of visa that fulfils your requirements on the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland website.