Romanian visas are not required for nationals of EU/EEA countries, Switzerland, Canada, Japan and the USA. Romanian short-stay entry visas are also not required for nationals of Argentina, Australia, the Bahamas, Barbados, Brazil, Brunei, Colombia, Chile, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Grenada, Guatemala, Holy See, Honduras, Hong Kong Special Economic Zone, Israel, Macao Special Economic Zone, Malaysia, Mauritius, Mexico, Moldova, Nicaragua, New Zealand, Panama, Paraguay, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and Grenadine, Saint Kitts and Nevis, San Marino, Seychelles, Singapore, South Korea, Tonga, Trinidad Tobago, Uruguay, United Arab Emirates , Vanuatu and Venezuela, all of whom may stay in the country up to 90 days within a six month period without the need to obtain any official permission. However, a Romanian long-stay visa and a residence document are mandatory for stays of longer than 90 days.
Nationals of countries considered by the Romanian authorities to present a high immigration risk are subject to strict visa requirements and they must follow a special procedure to obtain a visa prior to their arrival. This procedure involves obtaining an invitation approval from the Romanian immigration authorities. Visas are obtained based on this invitation approval requested by a Romanian individual or company. Exceptions apply to certain categories, as provided by law. A bank deposit guarantee may also be needed, although there are some exemptions from this requirement.
Non-EU/EEA/Swiss individuals who come to Romania for work purposes or want to stay longer than 90 days within a six month period must apply for a Romanian residence permit. This is a document issued by the Romanian General Inspectorate for Immigration and is generally renewed on a yearly basis. A number of documents must be provided to secure the permits, the most important of which are:
- evidence of employment in Romania (a work permit is required in nearly all cases)
- evidence of contribution to the Romanian state health system, medical certificate (most good private clinics will arrange the medical examination)
- evidence of accommodation in Romania (ownership documents or a rent contract),
- a copy of the passport used to enter the country
- at least two passport sized photographs.
The residence permit is issued within one month, although the passport is not retained during this period.
Extensions of residence permits must be applied for at least 30 days prior to the expiry date of the old one, otherwise a fine is payable. Fees are subject to change, and the laws governing residency are altered frequently.
Highly-skilled employees will obtain an EU Blue Card, which is a special type of residence permit for employment purposes issued to highly-skilled qualified non-EU/EEA/Swiss local hires. Proof of high-skills / qualifications is mandatory. This type of residence document grants the right to reside and be employed in Romania in a highly-skilled position, is generally issued for up to two years’ validity (depending on the validity of the employment contract), and is renewable. After an 18-month legal stay, the EU Blue Card holder can move to another EU Member State to occupy a highly-skilled position.
For EU/EEA/Swiss nationals, five year registration certificates are issued, on production of an employment contract, assignment contract, or evidence of means of support, as well as proof of social health insurance – a European health card is acceptable in most cases.