As you must know, the Schengen Area consists of 26 European countries that have abolished passport control at their mutual borders, allowing for the free movement of people. However, obtaining a Schengen visa to visit these countries is not always guaranteed.
In 2022, certain countries within the Schengen Area had higher rejection rates compared to others. This article explores the top four countries with the highest Schengen visa rejection rates and provides insights into the statistics.
Schengen Countries With Highest Visa Rejection Rates
Malta: Leading the Table with a High Rejection Rate of 36.4%
Malta stands out as the country with the highest share of rejected visa applications within the Schengen Area. The consulates and visa centres in Malta have rejected a significant 36.4% of the total visa applications received.
However, it is worth noting that the actual number of negative decisions made in Malta is relatively low due to the low number of applications filed by the Maltese authorities abroad. Out of 22,275 applications received, 7,915 were rejected.
Sweden: Second Highest Rejection Rate at 29%
Sweden is listed as the second country with a high Schengen visa rejection rate. Approximately 29% of the visa applications (38,652 out of 135,946) submitted to the Swedish authorities were rejected. Although Sweden has a substantial rejection rate, it falls behind Malta in terms of the total number of rejected applications.
Also Read: Estonia, Malta, and Slovenia: Toughest Schengen Visa Destinations for Indian Travellers
Belgium: Third Highest Rejection Rate at 28.4%
Belgium holds the third position with a rejection rate of 28.4%. Out of 171,966 applications, 46,569 were rejected by the Belgian authorities. While Belgium’s rejection rate is relatively high, the actual number of rejections is significant, highlighting the strict evaluation process.
France: Highest Number of Negative Decisions in 2022
France, despite having a rejection rate of 22.2%, has the highest number of negative decisions on Schengen visa applications in 2022. The French authorities abroad turned down a staggering 408,876 applications.
This high number is attributed to the fact that France received the largest number of applications among Schengen countries, totalling 1,918,515.
Overall Rejection Rate and Countries with the Most Rejections
The overall rejection rate for the Schengen Area in 2022 was 17.9%. However, if we focus solely on the number of rejected applications, disregarding the rejection rate, the countries with the highest number of rejections are as follows:
- France: 408,876 applications rejected
- Spain: 227,712 applications rejected
- Germany: 167,517 applications rejected
- Italy: 92,186 applications rejected
- Netherlands: 70,566 applications rejected
Reasons for Schengen Visa Rejections
Reports indicate that there are 12 common reasons why Schengen countries reject visa applications. Some of the main reasons include insufficient proof of financial means for the trip, lack of appropriate travel insurance for the Schengen Zone, invalid passport presentation, and past criminal records.
Also Read: Best and Worst Countries for Schengen Visas for Indian Travellers Revealed
Third Countries with High Visa Rejection Rates
Apart from examining rejection rates within the Schengen Area, it is crucial to consider third countries where Schengen countries reject a substantial number of visas. The top five countries with the highest number of visa rejections from Schengen countries in 2022 are as follows:
- Algeria: 48.2% rejection rate
- Nigeria: 45.6% rejection rate
- Sri Lanka: 44.2% rejection rate
- Ghana: 44.2% rejection rate
- Haiti: 43.2% rejection rate
Spain, especially France, has been prominently involved in rejecting visa applications from many of these third countries.
The Schengen Area countries mentioned above, namely Malta, Sweden, Belgium, and France, experienced higher Schengen visa rejection rates in 2022 compared to other countries.
Factors such as insufficient proof of financial means, lack of appropriate travel insurance, invalid passport presentation, and criminal records significantly contribute to the rejection of visa applications. Understanding these trends and reasons for rejection can help applicants better prepare their visa applications and increase their chances of success.
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