Ireland & the 90/180 Rule (Non-EU Citizen confused)
Replies: 12 - Last Post: Nov 6, 2012 9:17 AM Last Post By: iviehoff
Nov 2, 2012 11:11 AM
Ireland & the 90/180 Rule (Non-EU Citizen confused)Hi! I'm an American needing someone to shed some light on conflicting statements from Irish immigration consulates/entry gate and US embassy reps- I haven't received a unified answer from them and I wondered if any persons on the internet could elaborate more clearly the Shengen 90/180 rule and how that plays with other countries in the EU (p.s. obviously, I do not have a visa yet):
Starting August 2012 I spent 90 days in Finland and immediately following flew into Ireland and was granted 90 days on arrival here. My intention/plans, which actually changed due to Hurricane Sandy shutting down airports in the US at the time of me needing to leave the Finnish border, was to spend 90 days in Ireland instead of going back to the United States and simply returning to Finland (where I intended to fly back to anyway after returning to the US for the appropriate time frame).
Unfortunately for me the representative at the Irish entry gate told me I would be violating immigration laws between all EU states and Shengen zone- which is contrary to what I had thought I understood about 90/180 rule regulations. He said I would have to return to the US otherwise if I showed up at the Finnish gate after staying in Ireland, that they would ban me from the EU for a year! I was still confused as to why and his Irish way of speaking didn't help me understand any further. So I went to the US Embassy in Dublin the next day (not knowing they couldn't shed any more light about what immigration law I would be crossing) and was referred back to the airport to talk to immigration there- however the guy I spoke to told me that he didn't know what the first guy was talking about and that I should have no problems in returning to Finland after 90 days here! This only makes me skeptical.
Does anybody have an understanding on current regulations between EU states and the Shengen zone? I feel really ridiculous having purchased a new flight into Ireland and not taking my return ticket to the US- which I would have had rebooked due to Hurricane Sandy but still, already paid for, so now I don't know what to do! Return to the US as soon as possible?
Really need the advice!
Nov 2, 2012 1:41 PM
Nov 2, 2012 3:48 PM
2If you have spent 90 consecutive days in Finland (which is part of Schengen), then you must now spend 90 days out of schengen before you can go back.
If, say, you only spent 80 days in Schengen. then you are allowed another 10 days back in. The safe way to look at it is;
from today's date, look back 180 days. Count the number of days within that period that you were in Schengen countries (including days of entry/exit). If that number is less than 90, then you can spend the difference back in.
Your booked flight to the US is when? From where?
Nov 2, 2012 8:00 PM
3Okay, point is I spent 90 consecutive days in Finland, am now counting 90 days in Ireland, then hope to return to Finland (instead of US) but Irish immigration said I can't do that? I assumed they were outside Shengen but there's something still to do with being a part of the EU that marks a different violation, according to the entry gate officer?
Nov 2, 2012 9:55 PM
4No....you are in or out of schengen, form the point of view that any Schengen immigration person will care about.
You need to spend 90 days outside of schengen since you left. Perhaps head to somewhere like the Netherlands and travel up...
Nov 3, 2012 1:11 AM
5After spending 90 days in Finland (= 90 days in Schengen) you need to spend 90 days out of Schengen, for example in Ireland. Then you can go back to any Schengen country. I don't know what the first immigration officer told you, he either had no idea about the Schengen rules or it was some kind of Irish humour?
Nov 3, 2012 4:59 AM
6See that's the issue- the first officer had conflicting statements than the second officer, above were what I thought were legal which is why my return ticket was set to Finland, but with laws constantly changing I'm still concerned. There seems to be a number of Americans being deported back to Ireland from other EU countries for stepping over Irish immigration laws?
Nov 3, 2012 5:43 AM
7Just hop on the ferry to the UK, then (after your 90 days out of Schengen; careful counting, though, as you might also only be allowed 90 days IN Ire/UK), get a train to France. Then you deal with UK exit and French Entry customs.
From France, get to Finland; that is effectively domestic travel, as you'll be inside Schengen.
Nov 4, 2012 1:40 AM
8#6 the rules aren't constantly changing - after 90 consecutive days in the Schengen Area, you need to spend at least 90 days outside of it before you're allowed back in. In the end, that's still subject to the individual immigration officer's discretion, but unless you've left out an important piece of information about your situation, I don't see why you wouldn't be allowed back into Finland provided that you've spent at least 90 days outside Schengen.
What I don't quite understand is why you're asking immigration in Ireland or the US embassy about your chances to be allowed back into Finland. It's the Finnish embassy you should give a call.
Nov 4, 2012 1:43 AM
Nov 5, 2012 5:13 PM
Nov 6, 2012 12:35 AM
11I don't understand what law he things you are violating.
Just leave Ireland to the UK (no immigration for that trip), then leave the UK back to Schengen; UK has different laws.
Nov 6, 2012 9:17 AM
12The thing I would worry about is the partial days when one travels from one country to another, which are likely to be counted in both places. So your day 90 in Finland is also your day 1 in Ireland. Which means that day 90 in Ireland, when you leave to Finland, would only be day 179 since you first arrived in Finland, and thus two days too early to return there, since you need it to be day 181.
Would be most secure if you spend a few days in UK on the way between Ireland and Finland.
Edited by: iviehoff
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