Schengen visa applications from Turkey drop for first time in years

Schengen visa applications from Turkey have dropped by 9.5 percent in 21018 as compared to the previous year, marking a decrease for the first time in five years, the official Schengen Visa website reported.

A total of 879,238 short-term visa applications to the Schengen Area were filed at the consulates located in Turkey, according to the latest Schengen Visa Statistics by, with figures showing that while in the last 5 years the number of applications has been increasing continuously, a decrease in this number was marked in 2018.

As the number of applications dropped, the visa rejection rate has steadily increased, from 4.4 percent in 2014 to 8.5 percent in 2018, it said.

From the total number of applications lodged, 799,862 received a positive answer, while the rest were turned down and 537,138 out of the overall visas granted were Multiple Entry Visas, which enable the Schengen visa holder more than one visit to the Schengen area.

In fact, the number of MEVs issued in 2018 dropped from 675,104 in 2016 and 666,043 in 2017.

Istanbul’s German consulate was the busiest with 125,702 applications received, followed by the French Consulate in Istanbul, which received as many as 101,411 applications. The Italian and Greek consulates, both in Istanbul, placed third and fourth on the list, respectively.

Meanwhile, Ankara’s consulates of countries as Malta, Estonia and Portugal located in received the least amount of visa applications in Turkey in 2018.

A Schengen Visa for Turkish applicant currently costs €60. However, children under the age of 6 are exempt from paying this fee and those under 12 can pay a decreased fee of €35.

Turkish applicants are estimated to have paid about 30 million euros for Schengen Visas in 2018, the site said.

Turkey in February of last year submitted a plan regarding a working deal, which would allow for Turks to be able to travel to Schengen states, visa-free.

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