Bahrain has best Schengen visa approval rate in GCC

Visa applicants from Bahrain had the easiest time gaining entry into the 26-country Schengen zone, according to figures from applicant rejection rates in 2017.

Out of 22,804 Schengen visa applications from Bahrain, more than 98.4% were approved while nearly 88% received multiple entry visas, local media outlet Arabian Business.

Bahrain’s high approval rates benefit from the fact that consulates from only three countries , France, Germany and Italy, process visa applications.

The figures came from a report by, which publishes annual statistics made available by the European Commission on applications for entry made at consulates worldwide.

The number of UAE travellers keen on visiting European countries increased last year, with Schengen visa applications in the Emirates going up by 2%.

Over the past year, a total of 202,232 UAE citizens applied for a Schengen visa, slightly more than in 2016 (201,995). Compared to the total of 16.15 million Schengen uniform visa applications lodged in 2017 in all countries, the UAE applications amounted to just 1%.

With 40,558 applications, Italy received the highest number of applications among all consulates in the UAE that grant visas for entry into the Schengen Area.

Out of the 33,914 applications filed with the Italian consulate in Dubai last year, 25.3% were rejected. The rejection rate for the 6,644 applications made in Abu Dhabi stood at 17.9%.

Schengen visas allow those carrying them entry into and unrestricted cross border travel for up to 90 days across any of the 26 European countries that are party to the Schengen Area agreement first introduced in 1995.

Pedro Gonçalves
Pedro Gonçalves is Financial Correspondent at International Investment.

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