Facilitated transit document (FTD) and facilitated rail transit document (FRTD)
Regulation (EC) No 693/2003 establishing a specific Facilitated Transit Document, a Facilitated Rail Transit Document and amending the Common Consular Instructions and the Common Manual
WHAT IS THE AIM OF THE REGULATION?
It seeks to establish a facilitated transit document (FTD)* and a facilitated rail transit document (FRTD)* for the specific and direct transit by land of non-EU country nationals who must necessarily cross the territory of one or more EU countries in order to travel between two parts of their own country which are not geographically contiguous.
Scope and validity
The FTD and the FRTD have the same value as transit visas and are territorially valid for the issuing EU country.
The FTD is valid for a maximum period of up to 3 years and transit based on the FTD must not exceed 24 hours.
The FRTD is valid for a maximum period of up to 3 months and transit based on the FRTD will not exceed 6 hours.
No FTD/FRTD can be affixed in a travel document that has expired or with a period of validity shorter than that of the FTD/FRTD.
Conditions and issuing procedure
To obtain an FTD/FRTD, applicants must meet the following conditions:
- possess a valid document, authorising them to cross external borders;
- not be persons for whom an alert has been issued for the purposes of refusing entry;
- not be considered to be a threat to public policy or the international relations of any of the EU countries;
- for the FTD, have valid reasons for frequent travelling between the two parts of the territory of their country.
The application for an FTD/FRTD is made to the consular authorities of an EU country. Applicants must submit documentation demonstrating the need for frequent travel, such as documents concerning family links or social, economic or other motives.
The fee corresponding to the administrative costs of processing the application for an FTD is €5.
The FRTD is issued free of charge.
Issuing and refusal of the document
FTDs and FRTDs are issued by the consular offices of the EU countries and may not be issued at the border.
The procedures, and appeal in cases where the consular post of an EU country refuses to examine an application or issue an FTD/FRTD, are governed by national law of the respective country.
If an FTD/FRTD is refused, the reason must be communicated to the applicant, where required by national law.
Penalties are imposed on the holder of the FTD/FRTD in the case of misuse. Penalties must be effective, proportionate and dissuasive, and include the possibility of cancelling or revoking the FTD/FRTD.
Decisions to issue FTDs/FRTDs
EU countries deciding to issue the FTD and the FRTD must communicate this decision to the Council and the European Commission and the latter will publish it in the Official Journal (OJ).
If EU countries decide to stop issuing the FTD and the FRTD they must communicate that decision to the Council and the Commission and the latter will publish it in the OJ.
The Commission will report to the European Parliament and the Council on the functioning of the FTD/FRTD scheme at the latest 3 years after the entry into force of the first decision taken by an EU country to issue FTDs/FRTDs.
FTDs and FRTDs are produced in the form of a uniform format (sticker) and have the same value as transit visas. They conform to the specifications set out in Annexes I and II to Regulation (EC) No 694/2003, adopted at the same time as Regulation (EC) No 693/2003.
FROM WHEN DOES THE REGULATION APPLY?
It has applied since 18 April 2003.
For more information, see:
Facilitated transit document (FTD): a specific authorisation allowing for a facilitated transit, which may be issued by EU countries for multiple entries by any means of land transport. The FTD must be issued in the form of uniform formats in accordance with Regulation (EC) No 694/2003.
Facilitated rail transit document (FRTD): a specific authorisation allowing for facilitated transit, which may be issued by EU countries for a single entry and return by rail. The FRTD must be issued in the form of uniform formats in accordance with Regulation (EC) No 694/2003.
Council Regulation (EC) No 693/2003 of 14 April 2003 establishing a specific Facilitated Transit Document (FTD), a Facilitated Rail Transit Document (FRTD) and amending the Common Consular Instructions and the Common Manual (OJ L 99, 17.4.2003, pp. 8-14)
Council Regulation (EC) No 694/2003 of 14 April 2003 on uniform formats for Facilitated Transit Documents (FTD) and Facilitated Rail Transit Documents (FRTD) provided for in Regulation (EC) No 693/2003 (OJ L 99, 17.4.2003, pp. 15-21)
last update 07.01.2020