Business visa to France

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Alexey Nosovsky

A representative of the Legal Department at iWorld. Author of articles on Migration Law.

Update: 19 April 2024 7 minutes read
French city attractive for Russians to do business in France

Foreign entrepreneurs, going to the French Republic for the purpose of negotiations, visiting exhibitions, seminars and conferences, should obtain a special entry permit. Business visa to France entitles its holder to stay in the country for up to 90 days within a six-month period. The document allows the entrepreneur to make single or multiple visits to the Schengen countries.

Business visa to France is opened on the basis of an official invitation from business partners. In this article, the peculiarities of obtaining a permit to enter the country for commercial purposes are described in detail, as well as the sequence of steps to be taken by the applicant.

Documents for French business visa

The basis for obtaining a visa is confirmation of the business purpose of the visit, which is an official invitation from the host company. The entrepreneur also submits to the consulate an application form and documents according to the following list:

  • 2 colored photos;
  • international passport;
  • insurance policy;
  • proof of financial security;
  • certificate of employment;
  • copies of all pages of your internal passport;
  • proof of accommodation in France.

The invitation

The application letter for a business visa is prepared by a company registered and carrying out commercial activities in France, in the French or English language. The following information shall be included in the text of the invitation:

  • full details of the French organization;
  • personal information of invited businessman (full name, number and period of validity of foreign passport, position and other data);
  • description of the purpose of the visit (business negotiations, participation in an exhibition, conference or other);
  • exact period of foreigner’s stay in France.

If the host guarantees to cover all costs of the guest’s stay in the country, the letter must state this. The authorized person signs the invitation and certifies it with a company stamp.


The applicant downloads the form from the official website of the French Visa Center. Application forms are available in French, English, Spanish and Chinese. The applicant enters the data electronically and prints out the document. Below, you will find instructions on how to correctly fill in the points of the application.

Clause number Filling in instructions
1–9 for entering personal information about the applicant
10 only for minor children, thus skipped, in this case
11 identification number (if any) is indicated
12 the type of travel document is selected
13–16 the number, date of issue and expiry, country of registration of the passport is written in
17–18 if the applicant has close relatives who are citizens of the European Union
19 home address, phone number and e-mail of the applicant
20 the country of residence differs from the country of citizenship
21–22 information about current employment in the country of residence (profession, employer’s contact details)
23–24 the purpose of the trip; the applicant for French business visa should tick the option «Business»
25 country of destination
26 the first state visited after crossing the Schengen border
27 the number of entries on the business visa is indicated
28 refers to the collection of biometric data (the applicant indicates whether he/she has previously submitted fingerprints)
29 to be filled in when applying for the transit visa, in this case it is skipped
30 is intended for filling in the information about residence in France
31 information about the inviting company is entered
32 information on financial security is provided

Next, the applicant for a French business visa puts his personal signature at the bottom of the application form and indicates the date.

Application for a business visa to France


The applicant’s color photos must meet the following criteria:

  • 35 mm by 45 mm;
  • the picture is no older than 6 months prior to filing the application;
  • face represents 70-80% of the total area of the frame;
  • high quality, good sharpness, no spots;
  • looking straight into the camera, eyes open;
  • skin color – natural;
  • printed on high-quality, high-resolution photographic paper.

International passport

The original document is submitted by the applicant to the consulate; in addition, a copy of the first page with a photo and personal data is submitted. The required validity period of the passport is the full duration of the trip plus a minimum of three months after the completion of the trip. The identity document must have at least two blank pages in order to paste the French visa.


The package of documents for the French business visa application includes an insurance policy covering medical expenses, hospital accommodation and possible repatriation to the country of permanent residence in the amount of at least 30,000 EUR. The applicant should take out insurance for the entire period of his/her intended stay. The purchased policy must be valid throughout the Schengen Area.

Proof of solvency

Applicants for French business visa must prove their financial security: submit a current bank account statement on the availability of funds sufficient for travel (at least 1,000 EUR).

Certificate of employment

The applicant must provide a certificate of employment. The document must include the address and telephone number of the business, the applicant’s salary, and the name and position of the authorized signatory.

Confirmation of accommodation

Applicants for business visa need to attach to the file documentary proof of accommodation in France. As proof, the applicant can provide a hotel reservation or an official invitation from the host company, which indicates the place of residence of the traveler.

How to get a business visa to France

In order to obtain an entry permit for business travel to France, the applicant must go through the following steps:

  1. Preparing a set of documents. The applicant obtains a certificate of employment, bank statements, requests an official invitation from the host. You also need to prepare photographs, fill out the questionnaire and take care of the rest of the documents.
  2. Making an appointment. The applicant makes an appointment by phone or sends a corresponding letter by e-mail.
  3. Visit to the authorized state body. Applicant must apply in person and pay the fee. The applicant must bring a printed confirmation of the appointment, if required by the procedure in the particular country. The visa center staff accepts the dossier and takes fingerprints.
  4. Tracking the status of the application. Applicant can monitor the status of his application through a special service, when submitting the application to the foreign representative office. In order to track the status of the application, the applicant enters the date of birth and the number of the receipt issued at the time of acceptance of documents.
  5. Obtaining an entry permit. After notification of the positive decision of the Consul, the applicant collects passport with visa sticker, appearing in person or ordering delivery by post. Waiting period after documents submission is up to 30 days.

Business visa conditions for travel to France

Permit to enter the republic is suitable for business partner search visits, establishment of international trade and transportation, participation in seminars and conferences, visiting exhibitions. The document allows to stay in the country up to 90 days within 6 months. The business visa to France for foreigners refers to the category of Schengen visa and entitles to visit all countries-participants of the agreement without the right to work. For more detailed information and assistance in obtaining an entry permit, it is recommended to request an individual consultation with a professional immigration company.

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