Bulgarian Visa Overview
Who Needs a Visa for Bulgaria?
Visas are typically the starting point for foreign citizens to travel, work, or reside in Bulgaria. Visas are official government endorsements which allowing foreign citizens to enter and stay in the country.
In Bulgaria, visa applicants may obtain 1 of 3 types of visas available for entry, depending on their goals and status with regard to Bulgarian immigration laws. Visas can be granted for visits, work, study, and for foreign citizens who plan to reside and engage in economic activities in Bulgaria.
What Types of Bulgarian Visas Are Available?
The following list provides the 3 types of Bulgarian visas (as defined by The Foreign Nationals in the Republic of Bulgaria Act), as well as their purpose and the length of validity:
- Type A Visa for Airport Transfer
- Foreign citizens who intend to use Bulgaria as a transit route towards their final destination may require a valid transit type A visa. This does not apply if your country already has an agreement with Bulgaria that permits citizens to either travel to Bulgaria without a visa or transit through Bulgaria without a visa.Note: I do not currently offer services for Type A visas.
- Type C Visa for Short-Term Stays
- Short-term type C visas are issued for the purpose of either transit or planned stays. Both types of C visas allow foreign citizens to remain in Bulgaria for no more than 3 months within a 6-month period from the date of the first entry.
- Type D Visa for Long-Term Stays
- Type D visas are long-term visas that allow its holders to enter Bulgaria multiple times. They are issued for the period of either 6 or 12 months. This document is an essential requirement for all eligible applicants to be considered for a Bulgarian residence permit.
How to Get a Bulgarian Visa?
Acquiring a visa to visit Bulgaria typically involves setting up an appointment and filling out an application form with the Bulgarian embassy/consulate in the applicant’s home country. Check out this detailed article will help you understand the Bulgaria visa application process and procedures you need to go through in order to obtain a visa to Bulgaria.
Once in Bulgaria, foreign citizens have the option to apply for an extension of the current visa or replace it with a residence permit. They should be aware that certain entry types may prevent extensions or may change to another entry type.
How to track Bulgarian visa application status?
A detailed background check and review of the required paperwork are essential for all individuals and may cause significant delays in some cases. Visa application status tracking is not available. The applicant is contacted via telephone by the Bulgarian embassy/consulate when the visa is ready to collect.
Foreigners Who May Be Ineligible for a Bulgarian Visa
Some applicants may be ineligible for a Bulgarian visa due to prior conduct issues like an order of removal, criminal record, communicable disease, or national security risks. This may be established when individuals apply at a Bulgarian embassy or consulate, upon arrival at their port-of-entry, or at a later point.
Limitations to obtaining a Bulgarian visa are crucial to understand since, in many cases, they can be contested by taking appropriate actions to address why the visa was refused.