The European Parliament approved the proposal to reform the rules on Schengen Visas with 428 votes in favor, 123 against and 56 abstentions. The adoption of new regulations will simplify the procedures of the visa application.
Last March, the European Commission proposed several new rules for the Schengen Visas. Applications can be submitted up to six months in advance instead of three. Travelers may also be able to fill in and sign their applications electronically.
In terms of multiple entry visas, frequent travelers can receive a gradually increasing validity period from one year to a maximum of five years.
Moreover, the visa fee will see a modest increase from 60 euros (67.76 U.S. dollars) to 80 euros (90.35 U.S. dollars) to increase staff numbers, ensure stronger security screenings, and upgrade IT equipment and software.