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BANGKOK 19 April 2019 13:44
Mapah

Need some ideas

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Hi,  I’m an expat Brit living in France for over 15 years with a business here also so France is my principal and only place of residency.  I want my Thai girlfriend to come to France for a while but I’m not sure how this will work out as I’m essentially still British living in a foreign country.  Also, I want to show her around while she is here and she will most likely fly into and leave from Geneva Switzerland as it’s my closest international airport, although we could just use Paris if required.  I understand We will need to apply for a shengen visa from Thailand but I’m not sure how this will play out especially with all the ups and downs of brexit.   Does anyone have any experience similar to this or some bright ideas?   Basically, I don’t want to apply before I get as much info as possible to make sure we have the best chance for success.  

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3 minutes ago, wgdanson said:

Brexit is on hold for six months at least.

I don't think that is quite true wgd, if a deal is agreed, we can immediately leave, it's called a guilotine extension. But the probability of 6 months extension or even longer is more than likely. Or maybe we won't leave at all, nobody knows.

 

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That’s truthfully something I didn’t think about!  I just returned home to France so I can’t visit personally but I guess I could ask the embassy here although I assume the visa would be the responsibility of the French embassy as this is my place of residence and where she will be hosted from.

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Surely your question could be answered by the British Embassy Bangkok?
The British Embassy in Bangkok don’t offer advice on Immigration matters for UK so I can’t see themselves offering meaningful advice on French Immigration matters.

The hard truth is that Brexit is causing numerous problems for Brits, their spouses and partners and I’m sure things will change by the day until it’s resolved.

I’ve seen written advice from Consulates advising that previously issued visas using the Free Movement Directive with British spouse, will become invalid after 29 March and to seek advice if you need to visit after then.

I think the OP will need to seek advice from the French Consular Staff, just because the UK may be leaving the EU and thus we and our spouses will no longer be eligible for Free Movement Directive travel, doesn’t mean that visas can’t be obtained under the same rules as those for any third country applicant.

 

 

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Isn't your nationality irrelevant to the visa(s) that she needs to apply for?

 

Brexit or not she's going to be applying for a visa on her own anyway

 

Is Switzerland in Schengen?

 

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That was my first thought. She is a Thai national applying for a Schengen visa to visit France.

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3 minutes ago, theoldgit said:

The British Embassy in Bangkok don’t offer advice on Immigration matters for UK so I can’t see themselves offering meaningful advice on French Immigration matters.
The hard truth is that Brexit is causing numerous problems for Brits, their spouses and partners and I’m sure things will change by the day until it’s resolved.
I’ve seen written advice from Consulates advising that previously issued visas will become invalid after 29 March and to seek advice if you need to visit after then.
I think the OP will need to seek advice from the French Consular Staff, just because the UK may be leaving the EU and thus we and our spouses will no longer be eligible for Free Movement Directive travel, doesn’t mean that visas can’t be obtained under the same rules as those for any third country applicant.


Thank you for that reply.    The point that concerns me is the part in the visa that asks 

 

Letter of Invitation. By the relative/friend residing in a Schengen country, attached with a copy of their passport. In case that the friend/relative is not a citizen of the Schengen country, the copy of the residency permit will also be required.”

 

As I’m a Brit I don’t “currently “ need a residency permit but......   that’s my problem,  It’s just not clear if that situation will remain for the interval/period of travel.   Your advice for talking to the French consulate is a good one.   The other alternative may be to hire a law firm in Thailand to assist with the application but it just seems so extreme if you take my point.

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Just now, GinBoy2 said:

Isn't your nationality irrelevant to the visa(s) that she needs to apply for?

 

Brexit or not she's going to be applying for a visa on her own anyway

 

Is Switzerland in Schengen?

 

Hi

 

On your first line, yes should be irrelevant.

 

It was not so when I attempted a Schengen visa for my GF for a visit she was questioned as to why I wanted to take her to Italy.

 

I am a British national/passport holder .

British father/Italian mother.

 

I prefer Italy, have available property there.

Provided proof.

 

They asked for my Italian  passport , I do not have one.

I can get one, just have not done so.

 

Of no help to the OP but just shows what a minefield the whole tourist visa for Thai nationals is.

 

This was pre Brexit.

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Is there a French immigration exit at the Geneva airport or will she have to go through Swiss immigration also, making it even harder?

And make sure she has the usual European (and US} immigration requirements like verifiable proof of ties to Thailand, like family, income and job.  She will need something that immigration believes will cause her to return to Thailand.

Edited by AAArdvark

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Yeah, that could be a problem. It will simplify things to just get a return flight to/from Paris or Lyon just to cut out that issue.    I think that’s a real good point and this is helping me just to refine the plan to reduce potential issues.  I was kinda shocked at the effort she has to go through just to come for a visit but it is what it is!

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