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French Visa Question / Schengen Tourist Visa Rules

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Hi everyone,

I have a type D visa, "Long Sejour Temporaire", and it is valid until 29/05/15. With this visa, I didn't need to apply for a residence permit when I got to France. I would like to stay in France after the expiration date of my student visa, just to travel as a tourist for 2 months. I have read many articles about the tourist visa in the Schengen area, and I understand that a US citizen can stay for 90 out of 180 days as a tourist. If I leave France on the date of my student visa expiration date (and go to a non Schengen area country), and then re-enter a few days later, can I re-enter France as a tourist and stay for the 90 days later? I have spoken to the prefecture here in Lyon, and he has confirmed that this is possible. However, now I am wondering how long I need to be out of the country before I can return (the prefecture won't tell me directly how long I need to be out of the country for). I am planning on leaving for London on May 29th (the expiration date of my visa) and returning on May 31st. Also, do I need to apply for a tourist visa to return to France?

Please help me, I don't want to run into any problems at passport control!

Mariah

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