Bulgaria Visa Policy

Find everything you need to know about Bulgaria’s visa policy and discover the entry requirements for citizens of your country.

Visa Policy for Bulgaria

The visa policy of Bulgaria is the set of rules and regulations that outline if a foreign national requires a visa or travel authorization to enter the EU country.

Several factors affect which documentation a traveler requires to visit Bulgaria, including the individual’s citizenship, the length of time they plan to spend in the country, and the purpose of their trip.

In accordance with Bulgaria’s visa policy, nationals of many countries must obtain a national visa by applying at an embassy or consulate prior to making the journey.

Different types of visa are required depending on whether the foreign traveler is coming to Bulgaria for a short-term visit or whether they intend to stay and live in the country in the long run.

Bulgarian immigration policy dictates that foreign nationals must hold a Bulgaria D Visa (long-stay), a residence permit, and a work permit to live and accept employment in the country.

Citizens of a number of countries enjoy visa exemption for Bulgaria under the terms of the country’s current visa policy and can enter using only their passports.

At present, Bulgaria has no electronic visa (eVisa) or electronic travel authorization (eTA) system in place. However, this may change in the future.

As a member of the European Union (EU), Bulgaria is obliged to join the Schengen Area and announced its intention to do so.

When it becomes part of the open borders region, Bulgarian visa policy will change to be in line with the rest of the Schengen zone, including accepting Schengen Visas for entry and implementing the upcoming ETIAS system.

You can find a comprehensive guide to Bulgaria’s policy for visas, immigration, and travel to the country from abroad.

Tourist Visa Policy for Bulgaria

International tourists visiting Bulgaria fall into 2 categories: those that require a Bulgarian tourist visa and those who may enter visa-free.

Bulgaria’s tourist visa policy requires that nationals of around 150 countries apply for a visa for short visits for the purpose of tourism.

Tourist visas can be obtained from a Bulgarian embassy or consulate by submitting an application and supporting documents in person. They are also referred to as “short-stay” or C visas.

Bulgaria C visas permit multiple entries over the course of a year for the purposes of tourism and leisure. Each stay can last for up to 90 days per 6 months. In exceptional cases, a 5-year C visa may be issued.

Under Bulgarian visa policy, tourist visas for Romania, Cyprus, and Croatia can be used to visit Bulgaria for up to 90 days for tourism. The same is true for foreign nationals who hold a valid Schengen visa. In these cases, a tourist visa for Bulgaria specifically is not required.

Travelers from various other countries enjoy exemption from tourist visa requirements for Bulgaria and may enter for tourism visa-free.

See further information about which nationalities require a tourist visa for Bulgaria below.

Electronic Travel Authorization for Bulgaria

At present, Bulgaria does not have any electronic visa (eVisa) or electronic travel authorization (eTA) system in place. Digital entry permits such as these are becoming commonplace, with many countries having either an eVisa or eTA for certain foreign nationals.

Although there are no plans to introduce a Bulgarian eVisa or eTA, there is an upcoming online travel authorization for Europe planned for release in 2022, which may cover entry into Bulgaria.

The European Travel Information and Authorization System (ETIAS) is an initiative for the Schengen Area — 26 countries from the European Union (EU) and European Free Trade Association (EFTA) that have a shared immigration policy and only maintain border checks on travelers entering from outside the area. Borders between member states are open.

ETIAS will be an electronic travel authorization that will allow eligible citizens to register their details online to be able to visit any and all countries in the Schengen Area visa-free.

Bulgaria is not currently a member of the Schengen Area, but plans to join in the near future (as a member of the EU, it is also obliged to join when it meets the requirements). Once part of the open-borders zone, travelers from certain countries will have to apply online for the ETIAS to visit Bulgaria.

Embassy or Consular Visa Required for Bulgaria

Most travelers require a Bulgaria visa to enter the country. This can be obtained by going to a Bulgarian embassy or consulate and filling out an application.

Different embassy visas for Bulgaria are required for different purposes of travel and lengths of stay.

Those who wish to stay in the country in the long term must apply for a long-stay, or D visa for Bulgaria.

Bulgaria D visa holders can apply for a residence permit and work permit if they plan to live and work in the country.

Travelers who intend to pass through Bulgaria en route to another destination can apply for a transit visa (type A visa) from a Bulgarian embassy.

The short-stay Bulgaria visa, also known as the type C visa, can be used for tourism, leisure, visiting family, business, cultural exchanges, sport, or medical treatment and allows the foreign national to stay for up to 90 days within a 6-month period.

A C visa for Bulgaria usually permits a single entry, but multiple-entry C visas may be issued to individuals who meet certain conditions that mean they may have to re-enter the country, such as business travelers with interests in Bulgaria or family members of residents of Bulgaria.

Travelers of around 150 different nationalities must apply for a Bulgaria C visa at an embassy to visit the country.

See the list below for all the countries whose citizens require an embassy tourist visa for Bulgaria.

Embassy or Consular Visa Required for Bulgaria: Country list

  • Afghanistan
  • Aland Islands
  • Algeria
  • American Samoa
  • Angola
  • Anguilla
  • Antarctica
  • Armenia
  • Aruba
  • Azerbaijan
  • Bahrain
  • Bangladesh
  • Belarus
  • Belize
  • Benin
  • Bermuda
  • Bhutan
  • Bolivia
  • Bonaire
  • Botswana
  • British Indian Ocean Territory
  • British Virgin Islands
  • Burkina Faso
  • Burundi
  • Cambodia
  • Cameroon
  • Cape Verde
  • Cayman Islands
  • Central African Republic
  • Chad
  • China
  • Christmas Island
  • Cocos Islands
  • Comoros
  • Congo
  • Cook Islands
  • Cuba
  • Curacao
  • Democratic Republic of the Congo
  • Djibouti
  • Dominican Republic
  • Ecuador
  • Egypt
  • Equatorial Guinea
  • Eritrea
  • Ethiopia
  • Falkland Islands
  • Faroe Islands
  • Fiji
  • French Guiana
  • French Polynesia
  • Gabon
  • Gambia
  • Ghana
  • Gibraltar
  • Greenland
  • Guadeloupe
  • Guam
  • Guernsey
  • Guinea
  • Guinea Bissau
  • Guyana
  • Haiti
  • India
  • Indonesia
  • Iran
  • Iraq
  • Isle of Man
  • Ivory Coast
  • Jamaica
  • Jersey
  • Jordan
  • Kazakhstan
  • Kenya
  • Kuwait
  • Kyrgyzstan
  • Laos
  • Lebanon
  • Lesotho
  • Liberia
  • Libya
  • Madagascar
  • Malawi
  • Maldives
  • Mali
  • Martinique
  • Mauritania
  • Mayotte
  • Mongolia
  • Montserrat
  • Morocco
  • Mozambique
  • Myanmar
  • Namibia
  • Nauru
  • Nepal
  • New Caledonia
  • Niger
  • Nigeria
  • Niue
  • Norfolk Island
  • North Korea
  • Northern Mariana Islands
  • Oman
  • Pakistan
  • Palestinian Territory
  • Papua New Guinea
  • Philippines
  • Pitcairn Islands
  • Qatar
  • Reunion
  • Russian Federation
  • Rwanda
  • Saint Barthelemy
  • Saint Helena
  • Saint Martin
  • Saint Pierre and Miquelon
  • Sao Tome and Principe
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Senegal
  • Sierra Leone
  • Sint Maarten
  • Somalia
  • South Africa
  • South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands
  • South Sudan
  • Sri Lanka
  • Sudan
  • Suriname
  • Svalbard and Jan Mayen
  • Swaziland
  • Syrian Arab Republic
  • Tajikistan
  • Tanzania
  • Thailand
  • Togo
  • Tokelau
  • Tunisia
  • Turkey
  • Turkmenistan
  • Turks and Caicos Islands
  • Uganda
  • United States Virgin Islands
  • Uzbekistan
  • Vietnam
  • Wallis and Futuna
  • Yemen
  • Zambia
  • Zimbabwe

Visa Not Required for Bulgaria

Nationals of a number of countries do not require a visa to enter Bulgaria. These visa-free travelers need only their passport to gain entry to the country.

Holders of passports issued by over 90 different countries are exempt from visa requirements for Bulgaria.

These include citizens of fellow members of the European Union. Although not all EU countries are in the Schengen Area (including Bulgaria at present), they all permit nationals of other EU member states to enter without a visa.

Various other countries also enjoy visa exemption for Bulgaria at present.

When Bulgaria joins the Schengen Area, its visa and immigration policies will shift in line with the rest of the bloc. After 2022, this may mean that some visa-free travelers will have to register with ETIAS in order to take advantage of their visa exemption for Bulgaria and the rest of the Schengen zone.

Consult the list below to find out which nationalities can travel to Bulgaria without a visa.

Visa Not Required for Bulgaria: Country list

  • Albania
  • Andorra
  • Antigua and Barbuda
  • Argentina
  • Australia
  • Austria
  • Bahamas
  • Barbados
  • Belgium
  • Bosnia and Herzegovina
  • Brazil
  • Brunei Darussalam
  • Canada
  • Chile
  • Colombia
  • Costa Rica
  • Croatia
  • Czech Republic
  • Denmark
  • Dominica
  • El Salvador
  • Estonia
  • Federated States of Micronesia
  • Finland
  • France
  • Georgia
  • Germany
  • Greece
  • Grenada
  • Guatemala
  • Honduras
  • Hong Kong
  • Hungary
  • Iceland
  • Ireland
  • Israel
  • Italy
  • Japan
  • Kiribati
  • Latvia
  • Liechtenstein
  • Lithuania
  • Luxembourg
  • Macau
  • Macedonia
  • Malaysia
  • Malta
  • Marshall Islands
  • Mauritius
  • Mexico
  • Moldova
  • Monaco
  • Montenegro
  • Netherlands
  • New Zealand
  • Nicaragua
  • Norway
  • Palau
  • Panama
  • Paraguay
  • Peru
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Puerto Rico
  • Republic of Cyprus
  • Romania
  • Saint Kitts and Nevis
  • Saint Lucia
  • Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
  • Samoa
  • San Marino
  • Serbia
  • Seychelles
  • Singapore
  • Slovakia
  • Slovenia
  • Solomon Islands
  • South Korea
  • Spain
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland
  • Taiwan
  • Timor Leste
  • Tonga
  • Trinidad and Tobago
  • Tuvalu
  • Ukraine
  • United Arab Emirates
  • United Kingdom
  • United States
  • Uruguay
  • Vanuatu
  • Vatican City
  • Venezuela

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