Since 1 January 2007, the Republic of Bulgaria has been a member of the EU and so enforces the General Visa Policy of the European Union, in keeping with the conditions of the Accession Treaty.
At present, Bulgaria issues only national visas, which do not give visitors the right to enter the Schengen area.
Visas are issued by the diplomatic and consular representatives of the Republic of Bulgaria, or by representatives of another member state of the European Union with which Bulgaria has an agreement for the presentation and acceptance of applications for visas and the issuance of visas.
Available visa types are as follows:
Airport transit (visa type “A”);
Short-term stay (visa type “C”);
Long-term stay (visa type “D”).
A fee is charged for the issuance of visas, according to the Fee Tariff No 3.
Visitors can find further information on the application procedures and required documents for the issuance of visas, as well as the address of consular offices, on the website of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs – www.mfa.bg.
Border control is implemented upon entering or exiting Bulgaria. The following border control checkpoints (BCCP) operate at the borders of the country. Along the Bulgaria-Serbia border are checkpoints BCCP Bregovo, BCCP Vrashka Chuka, BCCP Kalotina, BCCP Strezimirovtsi, BCCP Oltomantsi; along the Bulgaria-Macedonia border are the checkpoints BCCP Gyueshevo, BCCP Stanke Lisichkovo, BCCP Zlatarevo; along the Bulgaria-Turkey border are the checkpoints BCCP Malko Tarnovo, BCCP Lesovo, BCCP Kapitan Andreevo; along the Bulgaria-Greek border are the checkpoints BCCP Kulata, BCCP Ilinden, BCCP Kapitan Petko Voyvoda, BCCP Ivaylovgrad, BCCP Zlatograd; along the Bulgaria-Romania border are the checkpoints BCCP Vidin – ferryboat, BCCP Oryahovo – ferryboat, BCCP Ruse – Danube bridge, BCCP Silistra, BCCP Kardam, BCCP Durankulak; at the river ports are BCCP Vidin, BCCP Lom, BCCP Somovit – Nikopol, BCCP Svishtov, BCCP Ruse, BCCP Tutrakan, BCCP Silistra; at the sea ports there are BCCP Balchik, BCCP Varna, BCCP Burgas, BCCP Tsarevo; and at the airports are BCCP Sofia Airport, BCCP Plovdiv Airport, BCCP Gorna Oryahovitsa Airport, BCCP Varna Airport, and BCCP Burgas Airport. Verification of documents and inspection of motor vehicles, freight, and personal effects is performed at these checkpoints, and complete documentation is conducted for persons who enter or exit the country, including verification of names, passport data, final destination of the trip, and the purpose of the visit. Depending on the location of the checkpoint, people and luggage may be examined with an X-ray scanner or metal detector, and video recording equipment may be employed.