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If you are staying in Serbia for traveling purposes for which a long term D visa or granted temporary permit are not required (link to a list) and your stay does not exceed 90 days within a period of 6 months, depending on the country of your origin, you may need to obtain a short-term C visa.

In general, citizens from the EU, USA, Turkey, Australia, New Zealand, and Balkan countries do not need a visa to enter Serbia – they may come at any time, as long as they don’t exceed the allowed 3-month stay limit within a period of 6 months. Citizens from the Russian Federation, Ukraine and several other countries can stay up to 30 consecutive days.

Image: Wikipedia – Visa policy in Serbia

In case you determine that you do need a short-term C visa to enter Serbia, even for a short stay or just for transit, instructions for obtaining it are as follows.

  • where do i file for a visa?

    All visa applications (A, C, and D) must be submitted to the embassy or consulate general of the Republic of Serbia abroad.

  • when do i file for a visa?

    You should start the procedure at the earliest 3 months prior and at least 4 weeks before your trip. Official arrangements before the competent authority (embassy or consulate) might take time and the Serbian Ministry of Foreign Affairs has a discretion to request last minute documentation, if they estimate that it is justified in a particular case.

  • general requirements

    In order to submit a complete application, you must fill in a VISA APPLICATION FORM together with the following documents:

    • Valid passport (must be valid at least 90 days from the issue date of your visa and no older than 10 years)
    • Letter of invitation:
      • For a private visit, it needs to be certified by the relevant authority of the Republic of Serbia
      • For a business visit, it needs to be provided by a company in Serbia
      • For a tourist trip, you will need a proof of payment for the trip issued by your travel agency
    • Return ticket or itinerary (copy of a driving license and insurance, if you're traveling by car)
    • Proof of sufficient funds for staying in Serbia – Sufficient funds are considered to be 50 euros per each day of your planned stay, proved by the possession of the appropriate amount of cash, a bank statement, traveler's cheques, credit cards, or a letter of guarantee
    • Health insurance – a proof that it covers the costs of emergency treatments and return to the country of origin for health issues; insurance must cover your entire stay in Serbia, covering possible medical costs to the amount of no less than 20,000 euros.
    • Proof of payment for the visa fee
    • Photo (size 3.5 x 4.5 cm)
  • how long does it take to get a visa?

    The deadline for the issuance of a visa is 15 days after your complete application, but it can be extended for an additional 30 days for legitimate reasons.

    Once your short-term C visa is granted, you will get a sticker which will be placed on the first available page of your passport.

  • please note

    If you remain in Serbia for longer than you are allowed, you may face charges of illegal immigration, high fines, and you could be deported.

    If you want to work in Serbia, even if your engagement does not exceed 90 days, you will have to file for temporary residence and a work permit – this is not possible in the event that you have a short-term C visa – you need a long-term D visa.

    Just to underline, the grounds for temporary residence and a work permit, if you come from a country the citizens of which need a visa to enter Serbia, is a long-term D visa. The trick is you cannot file for a D visa while you are in Serbia on the basis of a short-term C visa, because the application can be submitted only in an embassy or a consulate of the Republic of Serbia abroad. Therefore, if you are staying in Serbia on the basis of a short-term C visa and you wish to start working in Serbia, you will have to leave Serbia, file for a long-term D visa somewhere abroad and wait for its issuance in order to initiate the process of obtaining a temporary residence and a work permit. Otherwise, your application will be denied.

    On the other hand, if a visa to enter Serbia is not required for citizens of your country and you want to work, you do not need a long-term D visa – you can directly submit an application for temporary residence and a work permit.