WHAT IS THE PROCEDURE FOR GETTING A SCHENGEN VISA? I ARRIVE IN MUNICH ON MAY 16, DEPARTING THE NETHERLANDS ON AUGUST 27. AS MY STAY IN EUROPE WILL BE LONGER THAN 90 DAYS, FROM WHICH COUNTRY DO I GET A VISA? F. WIDITZ, MATRAVILLE NSW
A Schengen visa is granted at the first Schengen Area country when you arrive in Europe, Germany in your case, and it's valid for 90 days and no longer. If you stay longer you're in breach of your visa, and subject to a heavy fine plus a stamp in your passport identifying you as a violator. However, if you are entitled to a European passport, either by birth or by descent, this is a much safer choice. For example, according to the website of the Immigration and Naturalisation service of The Netherlands, "You are a Dutch citizen by law if your father was a Dutch citizen at the time of your birth. It does not matter whether you were born in the Netherlands or abroad." If that definition includes you, you are entitled to a Dutch passport, which costs €128.44 when issued abroad. You can apply for your passport at the Dutch Consulate-general in Sydney netherlandsworldwide.nl/living-working/passport-and-identity-card/applying-for-a-passport/applying-for-your-first-dutch-passport-abroad/australia, (02) 9387 6644.