Biometrics
Biometrics will be collected using a quick, discreet and non-intrusive process that captures a facial image with a digital camera and a 10-digit fingerprint scan with a digital finger scanner.

Your face must be clearly visible for a photograph to be taken. This means that you cannot:

  Have hair that covers the eyes
  Wear a hat or scarf or any other item that obscures the face, hair or neck (with the exception of religious head coverings detailed below:

If you wear a head or neck covering for religious reasons you must ensure your face is clearly visible, from the bottom of your chin to above your eyebrows including both cheeks. If possible both ears should also be displayed. You may also need to remove your glasses when the photograph is taken.

If you have cut or damaged your fingertips, you should make an appointment with the Schengen Visa Application Centre when the injury has healed.

If you have a temporary decoration, such as mehndi, you should advise the Schengen Visa Application Centre when booking your appointment to determine whether a scan will be possible.

If you refuse to submit your biometrics and you are not subject to any exception according to EU regulation (being under 12 years of age, being Head of State, etc.), your visa application will not be accepted.

If you refuse to submit your biometrics and you are not subject to any exception according to EU regulation (being under 12 years of age, being Head of State, etc.), your visa application will not be accepted.

Applicants who are under 12 years of age, persons incapable of providing consent, or those physically unable to provide a fingerprint scan, will only need to provide a facial photograph.

If an applicant is between 12 to 18 years of age, a parent or legal guardian will be asked to give consent and be present when biometrics is collected.

Certain categories of applicants are exempt from the requirement to give fingerprints, including:

  Children under the age of 12;
  Persons for whom fingerprinting is physically impossible;
  Heads of State and members of national governments, and
  members of their official delegations when invited for an official purpose

The introduction of biometric data is part of the Schengen Visa Information System (VIS). For more information about VIS, fingerprints, data protection and legal background, please see Visa Information System (VIS) or see this Information folder (pdf).