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Schengen Visa for Indians

What is the Schengen Visa?

visa for indian travellersThe Schengen Visa is one that is required for travelling within the Schengen zone which comprises 26 member countries, all of them located in Europe. However four of these, namely Iceland, Norway, Switzerland and the newest member Liechtenstein, are not members of the European Union.

Formerly if travellers from India and some other countries wanted to travel to several European countries during a single trip, they needed a separate visa from each of these countries. But now, with the introduction of the Schengen Visa, travelling to these 26 European countries has become much easier and hassle-free. The Schengen Visa is a boon for Indians and other international travellers. That’s because now you can travel to any or even all the member countries on one trip by using just one single visa. No more hassles and extra expense for obtaining individual visas for each country.

To get a Schengen Visa, the purpose of your visit must be leisure, tourism, or business. A Schengen tourist visa allows the holder to travel freely within the Schengen Visa countries for a maximum stay of up to 90 days within a period of six months.

The Schengen Visa Countries

As mentioned earlier, 22 of these are members of the European Union (EU) and four are non-EU members. These countries are: Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and Switzerland.

Please remember that the following European countries are not a part of the Schengen zone, namely: The UK, Ireland, Croatia, Cyprus, Romania, Serbia, Bosnia & Herzgovina, Belarus, Macedonia, Moldova, Ukraine and Russia. If you want to travel to or even pass through any of these by train, bus or car, you will have to apply to the concerned country for a separate visa

Rules for applying for the Schengen Visa

You can apply for the Schengen visa from any of these countries. But there are certain rules to be followed. For example:

  • If you want to visit France, you cannot apply to the Italian Embassy or Consulates in India. You will have to apply to the French Embassy. That is, the Schengen visa has to be obtained from the Consulate/Embassy of the country where the MAIN PURPOSE OF TRAVEL lies.
  • In case you want to travel to multiple Schengen countries, you will have to make your application to the embassy/consulate of the country where you will be staying for the maximum number of days.
  • If the duration of stay is going to be the same for more than one Schengen Visa country, you will have to apply for a visa from the country which will be your first point of entry.
  • Applications for the Schengen visa have to be submitted at any of the VFS centres across India as VFS has been appointed as an outsourced partner by the different Schengen countries.

For more details about the requirements for each Schengen country, the type of supporting documents required and about transit and other types of Schengen visas please contact the concerned Embassy/Consulate directly.

Important note if you have a query:

We receive a large number of queries daily, and much as we would like to, it is not possible to answer more than a select few each day. Remember that simple queries can be answered quicker by just checking out or calling the concerned VFS centre. But if you have any individual unique queries, please first go through the website or VFS website of the country you’re targeting, as well as the different queries already answered in the comments below before posting a new one of your own, and we’ll try to help you.

Please make your queries short, not more than 4-5 lines and include not more than 2 questions. If you need more things clarified with respect to your individual situation, please opt for a consultation.

For those based in Mumbai

Complex cases facing several complicated issues require  in-depth guidance beyond the scope of this forum. For a detailed visa consultation and for checking your supporting documents or for even having your visa package delivered to the consulate and following it up wherever that is permissible, please call 022-66355555 or visit us at Shop No.3, Metro House, Opp. Sahakari Bhandar, Colaba, Mumbai 400039.

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  1. My boss is holding Indian Passport and he got Schengen Visa issued by German Consulate in India during last Sept. This is multiple entry visa valid till 10-9-2015. He has already undertaken a trip to Germany and Greece last month. Now, please advise if he can travel to Spain on this visa next month. Thanks

    • With a multiple entry visa you are allowed multiple stays and visits to one or more Schengen countries. But the total length of stay of all visits combined should not be more than 90 days and the dates of the visits should be within the 180 day period from the date of the first entry into a Schengen country. So if your boss first visited a Schengen country on this visa less than 6 months ago, he can make a trip to Spain on the same visa. But do call the Spanish Consulate and discuss all the details of the previous travel done on the current visa to ensure that your boss meets all other travel requirements.

  2. I am scheduled to travel to Czech Republic during April 2013. I would also like to include Germany and a couple of other countries during this visit. Kindly advise the procedure for obtaining Shengen Visa. What is the time period required for Visa issue?

    • If the Czech Republic is the country associated with the main purpose of your visit or where you want to spend more days than in Germany or the other Schengen countries you’re interested in visiting, then apply to the Czech Consulate /Embassy for a Schengen visa. Call them up and ask for specific details or check out their website. A Schengen visa can take anywhere from 2 days to 10 days depending on which country’s Consulate/Embassy you’re applying to for the visa.

  3. I am planning to travel to Switzerland on a Business Visa. IT returns for three years is the one of the entries on the check list, but my salary is not taxable till now. So I don’t have any IT returns documents. Please suggest alternate ways to get the Visa.

    • Discuss your case with the embassy directly by phone or email. See that you have adequate balance in your bank accounts to pay for your ticket and stay in Switzerland, and keep a letter from your employer ready stating your designation, years of service and salary drawn at present, in addition to your pay slip.

  4. I am an Indian passport holder and will be visiting the U.K. for a year on a tourist visa, Can I apply for a Schengen visa from the U.K. as a tourist or do I have to apply from India before i leave? Thank you.

    • You should apply for your Schengen visa from India, specially if you’re a first-time applicant, and if you’re really keen on getting a Schengen visa. If convinced about the genuineness of your application they could even grant you a longer validity period than six months. You won’t be required to give the exact visit dates, but you will have to mention the duration of your stay. Contact the embassy of the first Schengen country you intend visiting from the UK for more information.

  5. I am an Indian passport holder, and I want to apply for Schengen VISA. I am looking for a tourist VISA and probable dates are during 2nd week of March 2013. I need to have basic information about the VISA process.
    1) Which embassy do I need to apply to?
    2) For how much time I’ll be allowed to stay in Schengen countries , as my travel plan is to visit almost 3-4 countries during this period.
    3) For how much time is it valid?
    4) Can I travel on dates of my choice once the VISA is cleared?
    5) What documents are required for tourist VISA ?
    6) What all things are neccessary for showing the financial support for a tourist VISA?

  6. Hi there,

    I’m planning to go to Italy (7 days), France (3 days), for my honeymoon in Feb. I’m going to apply for a schengen visa in a couple of days, however I’ve a few questions before I do that.

    1. Which embassy should I apply to for the Schengen visa?

    3. My wife and I have a healthy bank bal. of over 5 lakhs. Will that be sufficient?

    4. I’m a self employed professional and an acting director of a Pvt Ltd company in Delhi. Do I need to show my company details ( I only have last year’s company ITR) or should I put myself across as salaried. I have regular deposits made into my bank account.

    5. Finally, can you kindly provide the complete list of documents that I’ll need.

    Sachin Ghai

    • Sachin, you should apply to the Italian embassy since you’ll be spending more days in Italy. Since your’s will be a very short stay, your bank balance proof and your ITR will be more than enough. A Schengen visa in general is issued within 15 working days. For the list of documents please call the VFS office in New Delhi or check the website:www.vfs-italy.co.in

  7. How early can I apply for a Schengen Visa?

    • Generally, you should apply not less than 15 working days and not more than 90 days before your intended day of travel.

  8. I have been awarded a grant by Royal College of General Physicians, UK to conduct a study on primary health care and to attend a conference in Czech Republic starting 3rd week of June 2013. Duration of oversees travel & stay will be 2 – 3 weeks. Please advise me how I should go about obtaining visa for bith countries.

    – Rashmi

    • Rashmi, it would be better to first apply for your UK visa. This has been outsourced to VFS global. You have to download and fill the application form, fix an appointment date and then go to the most convenient visa application centre to submit the application form, biometric information and supporting documents. Apply at least one and a half month in advance (though normally just one month in advance is enough for just the UK visa) since it will be easy to apply for a Czech visa (Schengen visa) once you have your UK visa stamped on your passport. The Czech visa could take 7 – 15 working days. For the Czech visa, you have to apply to their diplomatic missions in Delhi or Kolkata. Call any of these missions for more details. (New Delhi number: +91-11-24155200). For the UK visa you can call the VFS helpline between 08-00 and 17-00 hrs Mon to Fri at (022) 67866000. Their website address is: http://www.vfs-uk-in.com
      In general, for both visas you need to show proof of sufficient bank balance, proof of the grant and the conference, employment proof, travel insurance. You can take the help of visa service providers to make things easier for you. If you are based in Mumbai, you could contact our visa services agency at:022 – 66355555.

  9. I am an Indian passport holder and physically disabled.I’m planing to visit France for a 30 Days Trip. I’m self employed but I’m not a tax payee; I don’t have IT returns papers, but I can show a solid amount in my bank statement. I can’t go to the consulate office to collect the details. I want to know whether they will give the details of the schengen visa application process and requirements over the phone or not.

    • There is no discrimination against physically disabled persons for getting a Schengen visa. The same rules will apply to you as for others. If your degree of disability is high you will be allowed to take an escort with you for the interview. But then you will have to prove how you will manage on your own abroad. Mention everything clearly about your circumstances in the covering letter submitted along with your application. Call the nearest French embassy for more details. The form, phone nos and other details are also available here.
      Seek help from a travel agent or visa services agency for form completion, checking of documents,etc. if necessary. If you are based in Mumbai you could avail of our services. Call 022-66355555 for an appointment.

  10. I want to visit the EU – Paris, Madrid, Rome for vacation. Dates are 07 mar to 31 Mar.
    I and my wife have valid passports. My son’s passport expires on 08/09/2013. It has more than 5 blank pages.

    My questions are
    A. Can my son be granted a Schengen visa – based on passport validity.
    B. Can my son travel on given dates in March, as by then his passport shall be less than 6 month valid.

    Any pointers in this regard will be of great help.


    • The rule is that the passport has to be valid for three months beyond the dates of the visa. So please renew your son’s passport.

  11. I have planned a vacation to Switzerland in May. I had all the bookings in the month of Dec 12.
    Recently I have resigned from my organization and am planning to join a new organization in the middle of April 13.
    Pls advice how to go about a letter from my employer for the visa.


    • Join the new company and then get a letter from this new employer. Apply for a visa after this providing proof of present and past employment.

  12. I am planning to visit Europe this year; I am currently employed in the UAE and havent travelled before other than to Dubai for work.
    However I have heard that it is very difficult to obtain a Schengen Visa if you havent travelled internationally before. Is this the case?
    Also are there any EU countries in specific where visa applications from Indians are accepted without any hassle compared to the others?

    • All the Schengen countries have more or less the same rules and need to be convinced about 2 things as mentioned several times here: that you have strong reasons for returning to India and that you have enough money to fund your stay abroad. It doesn’t matter if you haven’t travelled anywhere else except to Dubai. Plan your itinerary and then apply to the relevant country as per the explanations on this post.

  13. I and my wife want to celebrate our birthdays in March this year in Lithuania, and we want to apply for a visa for just 15 days.

    We have valid passports, we can buy medical insurance, and air tickets. I have more than 6 lakhs in my bank account which is more then one year old and has good transactions. I assist my father in running his business similar to running a garage. But I don’t have ITR. Can I apply for a tourist visa for Lithuania and what other documents are required for this visa?

    I have a valid U.K Student visa but I have never been there.

    please guide me properly.


    Harjnder singh

    • Please remember this is not legal advice. But since your father is running a business it would be advisable to provide his business licence. You might also need to provide a convincing reason for not having an ITR when you’re earning enough. If there are unique circumstances in your case, explain all this in your covering letter. Ultimately, it all depends on the visa officer being convinced about your integrity regarding returning to your home country and that you have enough funds to finance your stay.

  14. Hi, I am an Indian Seafarer due (around mid-March) to join a ship trading within Continental Europe and Mediterranean ports. I intend that my wife should join me (as supernumerary/non-crew member) and accompany me onboard for about 3 weeks during which the ship would call at ports in the UK and various Schengen countries. Subsequent to her disembarkation from the ship around end-April, she will return home to India. On completion of my tenure onboard I would disembark from the vessel and return home around end May. We plan to holiday in the UK to meet friends and relatives (non sponsors). Will multiple entry Schengen and UK visas suit my wife’s intended travel and entry into the various countries while onboard and then to holiday in the UK?

    • Multiple entry Schengen visas are given when the applicant can provide a convincing reason for needing the same (in your case for accompanying you, as her husband, on your voyage) and of their integrity regarding returning to their home country. According to your itinerary, your wife will need a multiple UK and Schengen visa. Mention your joint travel plans and situation in detail in your covering letter for both.

  15. Hi there,
    I am planing to visit Austria in June for a month, I have already bought round trip flight tickets, and I’ll be staying with a friend there and he will also provide Electronic letter of guarantee of sponsor – “EVE – Elektronische Verpflichtungserklärung”, now I am confused if I should apply for tourist visa or Visitor Visa, please guide me

  16. I am travelling with my family to Switzerland, Germany and Austria. Will be entering the Schengen area through Zurich and will exit from the same city. I will stay for 4 days in Switzerland, 5 days in Germany, and 4 days in Austria.

    Which country’s consulate should I apply to for a Schengen visa ?
    Do I need to apply for single entry or multiple entry?

    • You’ll be spending maximum time in Germany, so apply to the German Consulate. On the other hand, the difference in stay between Germany and the other countries is very minor, so you could call the Swiss Consulate, explain your itinerary and ask if you could apply to them instead of Germany. In any case, you will need a single entry visa.

  17. Thanks. do you suggest that I go for Swiss consulate as compared to Germany, because the former is easier?

    Secondly, I will exit Germany once and re-enter Munich from Salzburg during my trip. Likewise I will enter Switzerland twice. Does this then require a single or multiple entry visa?

    • There’ll be no difference in applying to either of the two countries. Since you’ll be travelling between Schengen countries but won’t be leaving the Schengen zone during your entire stay, you need a single entry visa.

  18. Thanks for the advice. Actually I emailed the embassy in New Delhi regarding the visa and my documents. They replied that additionally I have to submit the Schengen visa application form with one photo, Hotel Reservation, Consular fee and original marriage certificate. But as you said I need to prove why I don’t have any ITR when I’m earning enough. Will they ask me for Income Proof and ITR?

    I have got this money from my father last year because I had to apply for a U.K. student visa. I got the visa but I’ve never been there. And since then I have these funds in my saving accounts. So how can I prove this….

    And if I prepare my file through you… how much you will the payment be?
    Harjinder singh

    • Harjinder, I said you should have a credible answer in case you’re asked different types of questions regarding your funds since you don’t have a regular job with salary slips, etc. Your father could give a letter to show that you two run a business and your father’s ITR could also be included in your package. Just tell them the truth in your covering letter. If your pass book entry shows the money has been transferred to your account by your father that would be a proof of the source of the money. No one can predict what will be convincing proof for a visa officer.
      To find out about our visa services please call 022-66355555

  19. My son is studying in the UK, has a valid UK visa upto 9 aug 2013, and will be completing
    his studies towards May end 2013.
    He wishes to travel to Switzerland, France, Italy for 15 days after his studies are over.
    We his parents want to visit him in the UK and along with him we plan to proceed on the Schengen countries tour.
    Where should he apply for his visa as he is presently in the UK?
    Can he apply now / is he eligible?

    • Kiran, your son can apply for the Schengen visa from the UK itself. As his parents you have to apply for the UK and the Schengen visa from India. Just remember that you all have to make your hotel bookings and air ticket bookings first before applying for the visas, and the hotel booking confirmation proof should have the names of all three of you, or one of you but it should confirm booking of accommodation for three persons. In addition, you should send a letter to your son addressed to the visa authorities of the Schengen country he will be applying to for the visa (the one where you’ll be staying for the maximum days) mentioning your travel plans after your son completes his studies in the UK (with exact dates), and he in turn will have to send you two different letters, one addressed to the UK authorities and the other to the Schengen visa officials likewise mentioning the travel plans for all three of you. He will also have to send you his passport and UK visa copies which you will need for applying for your two different visas.

  20. Hi,

    I have to travel to Switzerland for a business meeting from 12-mar-13 to 18-mar-13. I will be coming back to India on 19-mar-13, and hold a valid Schengen visa from 21-jan-13 to 13-Apr-13.

    My passport will expire on 22-Aug-13. The travel agent states that my passport should have 6 months validity. However, I have already travelled to Switzerland in the first week of Feb-13.

    Can I proceed to book my tickets? Hope the immigration people do not create any problem. Please guide me.

  21. Hi,

    I have to travel to Paris for a business meeting from 18-mar-13 to 29-mar-13. I will be coming back to India on 29-mar-13.

    It may be possible that after this business meeting, I will have to go back to Paris again for my technical training and will have to stay for a longer time (2 months or more) .

    How do I plan my visit, which VISA shall I apply for, please guide me.

    • If both your trips are for business reasons and the total number of days of stay for both trips is up to 90 days but all within a period of 180 days, as a businessman you could apply for a multiple entry short stay/visitor’s visa. For multiple entry visas your reasons for requiring one should be very convincing and without any element of doubt. Otherwise, before each trip you’ll have to apply for a separate single entry short stay/visitor’s visa.

  22. We are holding an Indian Passport and having a B1/B2 visa for US for the next 5 years. This year we have planned to visit the US in April . Accordingly we have booked our flight to Chicago by Air France with a stopover at Paris for 6-7 hours. We will be exiting De Gualle airport and visit neighbouring tourist spots to return to airport for our flight to Chicago.

    From Chicago we will be flying to Paris again in August and exit again and then fly to Rome and spend 14 days in Italy before returning to Mumbai via Paris again.

    We applied for the Schengen Visa from the Italian consulate through VFS as our stay in Italy will be maximum and less than 90 days during the 180 days from the date of entry into first port of Schengen area (France-Paris).

    Italian consulate is insisting that we can apply for Schengen Visa not before 90 days of our entry into Italy in August.

    Is it not contrary to the Schengen agreement between all the member states?

    Can you guide us?

    • You can’t argue about the rules. You’ll have to change your travel plans to fit within the rules. Since you will also not be able to apply for another short stay Schengen visa for Italy from the US, you will have to return sooner from the US and visit Italy within three months of the date of applying for the Schengen visa from the Italian Consulate in India, and also mention in the covering letter your travel itinerary that includes the date of your stopover of a few hours in Paris.

  23. I will be applying for a Schengen visa through the Italian Embassy as a tourist and will be visiting Itay(6 days) and France(6days). What I want to know:
    1. What activities take place on the day of the appointment? Do all the original documents need to be submitted on this day?
    2. After how many days after the appointment is one usually called for an interview?

    • After taking an appointment by calling the VFS centre, you have to go there personally on that day and submit all the necessary documents along with the completed application form. People are called for an interview only if necessary. After submission you can track the status of your application and if an interview is necessary before a visa can be given to you, you’ll be informed by the VFS centre accordingly. If you have paid the courier fees, your passport and visa will be delivered to you at home within less than a week. Otherwise you’ll have to go to the centre and collect it. Detailed information is available at: http://www.vfs-italy.co.in

  24. Hello,
    I want to go to Germany to stay with my uncle and aunt for 3 months. They have already sent me an invitation letter for the same inviting me from April 2013 to June 2013. The company I am working with wouldn’t give me leave for 3 months, so I decided to resign. I have the valid documents for the same stating the acceptance of my resignation from my employer. I intend to take up a job once I come back to India by June end or July. Will the embassy have any problems if I am unemployed during this tenure? I have all other documents stating my 6 months bank statements and IT returns, etc. Please help and let me know what is the best I can do to get the visa. Thanks a lot for your help and time.

    • Mention your unique circumstances in your covering letter and see that your relatives mention that they’ll be providing you accommodation and taking care of all your living expenses. No one can guarantee if you will be granted a visa or not. It all depends on how convinced the visa officer is by all your documentary proof. Always tell the truth, don’t try to bluff about anything for that will go against you. Once refused a visa, you can reapply at any time. There is no fixed gap in time to be observed.

  25. Hello.
    I am a doctor and have travelled on a Schengan visa earlier in 2010. I had applied for a visa again to attend a conference, from 13 to 16. My documents are complete. I’ve been called for interview at Delhi, but because of my current schedule, I shall not be able to go for the same, as I can’t leave the hospital. So if I withdraw, will it affect my future visa processes. If I do manage to go, can a visa be issued within such a short time to Switzerland?

    • If your reasons are genuine and without doubt, then not attending the interview will not go against you. But intimate the consulate about your unique circumstances and inability to attend the interview. As for how quickly a visa can be issued, that only the consulate can tell you.

  26. Hello
    My wife and I are traveling to Norway for 5 days via Frankfurt and thereafter would spend 5 days in Germany. We would be flying into Frankfurt from different places from the eastern side however.
    1) Is a transit visa required for the stopover at Frankfurt even with a Shenzhen visa issued by Norway?
    2) If so should we apply for a Shenzhen visa through the German consulate despite the main purpose of travel being in Norway?
    3) What is the procedure for transit visas?
    4)Is there a way to avoid the need for a transit visa. The days spent in each place is flexible; however the stopover at Frankfurt is necessary sans direct flights to Norway.

    • If you hold a valid Schengen visa issued by one of the member countries, you don’t need a transit visa for transiting through or visiting another Schengen country. So once you get your visa through Norway there’ll be no problem with transiting through or visiting Germany. Only make sure you don’t leave the Schengen area during your travels in Europe if you are issued a single entry Schengen visa.

  27. I’m on a UK work permit (Tier 2 ICT) and my wife and kid have dependent visas. Can I apply for a Schengen tourist visa from the UK? I also have a friend in Germany who can issue me a letter of invitation.

    • All three of you have to apply for a Schengen visa from India if your own visa is not valid for a period of three months beyond your intended period of stay in Germany or any other Schengen country. If your visa has a long enough period of validity, you all can apply for the Schengen visa from the UK.

  28. My boss wants to go Europe multiple times a year. If he gets a schengen visa does he have to attend an interview each time he travels or is there some drop box facility he can use and interview only once, and avoid an interview for consecutive visits?

    • Your boss will have to apply for a multiple entry visa valid for six months to start with. Multiple entry visas are more difficult to get and are given to those who show a legitimate need for it as in the case of frequent business travellers. Those who show they have observed all the conditions for visas of shorter validity will find it easier to get multiple entry visas valid for longer periods like one year or more.

  29. I would like to get additional clarity on Indian nationals applying for Schengen visit visas from outside India. You had advised a work permit holder in the UK to apply for a Schengen visa only from India. Earlier in another post, I believe you informed that an Indian with student visa in the UK can apply for a Schengen visa from the UK itself. So is there a specific time period of stay required in the UK on specific type of visas after which Indian nationals can apply for Schengen visas from the UK itself? Or should Indian nationals ALWAYS be in India while applying for Schengen visas.

    • That matter regarding the work permit holder was clarified separately because of lack of background information. Those on valid work permits or student visas can apply for their Schengen visa from the UK itself. The only condition is that your UK visa should be valid for a period of at least three months beyond your intended period of stay in the Schengen area.

  30. My wife will be attending a conference in Denmark with a Business Schengen Visa and I will be accompanying her with a Tourist Schengen Visa. As planned we want to stay for 3 days in Denmark and then travel to Germany for 3 days.

    Is it possible with a business visa to visit different Schengen countries? Do we require multiple entry visa in this case? Please suggest.

    • Neither of you will need a multiple entry visa since you’re travelling only to member countries within the Schengen area. But you have to mention your itinerary at the time of applying for a business or tourist visa. All those travelling for business or leisure can travel to different member countries provided they leave after their valid period of stay is over.

  31. Last year I visited Belgium and Germany on a schengen visa.
    This year I am first going to Canada for 95 days and then to the UK for 10 days. Then I want to visit Belgium again.
    My problem is – I can apply for schengen visa upto 90 days before. I am leaving India 105 days before. VFS doesn’t accept applications before 90 days.
    What is the alternative?

  32. I am making a 4-month trip to USA; while returning I want to visit Europe.
    Can I apply for a Schengen visa from India before 90 days of date of entry? Or can I apply for it from the US?

    • Usually Schengen visa applications are not accepted 3 months before the intended date of travel. You could try contacting the VFS centre or consulate directly by mentioning your itinerary. If they don’t agree, you’ll have to reschedule your travel plans and stay for less days in the US.

  33. Travel health insurance of Euro 30000 per applicant is a must?

    • The travel insurance should have a minimum coverage of 30,000 Euros per person, but the actual insurance costs just around Rs50-100 per day and is not very costly. There are several insurance companies in India that satisfy schengen visa requirements.

  34. My name is Kapil and I hold an Indian passport. I want to travel to the Netherlands to visit my friend. But I don’t know which other countries I’ll be visiting apart from the Netherlands. I am employed in Maldives, and as there is no Netherlands embassy here, from where can I apply for my visa?

    My over all stay in the Netherlands would be around 2 weeks. So do I have to show any bank statement or itinerary? Where can I apply for the schengen visa? Is it possible to apply online ?
    Or can I apply for one through the Indian embassy in Maldives?

    • You have to apply at the nearest Netherlands mission in person after downloading and filling the application form. You could call the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in The Hague (070) 348 4844 or + 31 70 348 4844) to ask where the nearest mission is located. Or else you can apply from India. Your friend will have to send you a letter inviting you to stay with him, but besides this you have to show a good enough bank balance and provide your itinerary too or at least show that the Netherlands will be your main destination and you’ll spend just a few days in some other Schengen countries.

  35. I want to apply for a Schengen Visa(Short term). First, I want to go to Hungary for an International Railway Mission from August 1 -8,2013 and then I want to visit Paris.

    Can you guide me suitably please?

    • If you are going to spend more days in Hungary than France, then apply to the Hungarian consulate. If you have an invitation to attend the Railway event, submit the invitation with your application and itinerary, along with proof of sufficient funds if the expenses will be borne by you, and proof of ties to India by way of flat and property documents and details of your family here in India. You will also need to provide proof of hotel bookings in Hungary and Paris if you’re going to stay in a hotel.

  36. In May 2013, my wife and I will travel to the US for which we have already got our US Visa. But our travel itinerary has two stopovers in Europe – in the onward leg we stop at Frankfurt for half the day and on return leg we stop at Munich for half day. We want to utilize these stopovers to visit these two cities. Can we get a Visa on arrival for such casual half day visits or must we apply for a proper Schengen Visa in advance? What is the website at which we can submit the visa application?

  37. Hi,
    My friend is travelling to Germany, Hamburg for an official purpose. He travels often all over Europe. This time I am planning to travel with him. I am a self employed professional and have a proprietor ship firm since last 10 ten yrs. We will be staying in the same hotel. I will be sponsoring my own trip. My stay is for 1 week and his is for 10 days. We plan to roam around either Holland or Denmark on one weekend. Both of us are males and have kids and wives who will not be travelling with us. My concern is, he will be travelling on a business visa where as I will be travelling on a tourist Visa. Will that in any way affect my chances of getting a visa? Will it be fine to apply with him or apply separately?

    • Your application will be reviewed on its own merits and on the strength of the evidences you show of your finances, and your business and family connections/ties to India. There is no harm in mentioning that your businessman friend and you will be travelling together, but make it clear that you are funding your own holiday.

  38. Hello Veena, I am on a research fellowship in Germany from Bangalore India till mid june, and with my wife, we are both on a German National Visa converted into a German residency card. Our 13 year old son is on a Schengen visa. We want to travel to the UK in May. Will this be complicated in that UK embassy will have to send our passports back to India (Bangalore/ Chennai)? How much processing time should we keep?

  39. Hi,
    I am on a 1 year break from working since October last year and am not in service at present. I am planning to do a 1.5 month backpacking trip across Europe in May-June. I have been to Italy before and have travelled across the world.
    Please let me know the issues I need to tackle while applying for the visa. Also do I need to present a confirmed itinerary or can I apply to the embassy of my country of entry itself without it?
    I have sufficient bank balance and can show my 2012 ITR.

    • You will have to provide your past job profile, your complete itinerary, and proof of ticket and hotel bookings.

  40. Hi, I will be travelling to Germany for a business meeting for about 3 /4 days, however I intend to stopover in Zurich to spend 5 days with my Family before taking a connecting flight to Hamburg. My company will process my Schengen visa via the German embassy.
    Will there be any problem if my first point of entry is Switzerland and not Germany?

  41. I am planning a 12 days SOTC tour of Europe with my wife, daughter (15yrs) and son(6Yrs)
    I have travelled many times in the past to Schengen states on business needs. My family will be travelling with me for the first time.
    My Question is – on the Visa form – who should sign for Minors?
    Please advice.

  42. I have to travel to Slovakia which is a schengen country and Bulgaria which is a non-schengen country. Travel purpose is business. I can arrange a business invitation letter from Slovakia. Is it possible to enter Bulgaria on a multiple entry schengen visa? Also, does the Slovak person need to mention it in the invitation letter to grant me a multiple entry visa?
    Going to both the places is important.

    • You can enter Bulgaria on a multiple entry Schengen visa. But you have to provide a complete and detailed itinerary regarding number of days of stay in each country, dates of travel, etc. In the business invitation from your friend if he is concerned with your business in Bulgaria he could mention the need to travel to Bulgaria. But he cannot suggest to the Slovakian authorities to give you a multiple entry visa. Your itinerary and details of the stay in Bulgaria will make the need for a multiple entry visa clear.

  43. Both my parents are Indian passport holders. They are in the UK now on a visitor visa for six months. Can I apply here for their Schengen Visa to take them to Paris?

    • Schengen visa applicants have to apply in person. There are some exceptions, for example if you have received two Shengen visas in the last three years. Contact the country concerned for more details.

  44. Hi
    We (2 adults and 1 kid) travelled to Greece last year in June, and have a multiple entry Schengen Visa valid till June 4, 2013. Can we visit Norway again before June 4th?

    • For a one year Shengen visa you are allowed a stay of up to 90 days for every six months. If you can satisfy this condition, you can travel again to Norway. If you have any doubts contact the embassy.

  45. Hi, my wife is traveling to Slovakia for an official purpose on 21.04.2013 and I am traveling to the Netherlands on business on 27.04.2013. I want to take my 2.5 year-old son along with me to the Netherlands. My wife will join me when I arrive there. Once I finish my work we plan to visit France and Switzerland. I would like to know how I should I get a visa for my 2.5 years old son and which type of visa. I have invitation letter from my customers in the Netherlands for my visit and I am applying for the visa next week. Please help me with the procedure.

    • When you apply for your visa apply for a visitor visa for your son. Your wife and you will have to both sign the application form and you should provide your itinerary and a notarised consent letter from your wife if she is not travelling with you.

  46. Hi, I have another question. I lost my passport in march 2012 in Canada in which I had a Schengen visa (but had not travelled due to various reasons), and also a Chinese, US and Canadian visa which countries I had visited. I got a temporary visa in Canada and once I was back in India, I got a new 10 year visa. I don’t have the copy of the other previous visas. In the visa application there a question asking if I had a Schengen visa in the last three years. Please let me know what should I mention here?

  47. Thank you for your help. Can you please give me the format of notarised consent letter. I could not find it on VFS website.

    • There is no fixed format. Your wife has to write a letter stating her name clearly and that she gives full consent to her minor child (add full name, age) to travel to (add the names of the countries) with her husband (add your full name) from this date to that date (add the actual dates), and then sign this before a notary.

  48. Hi Team

    I will be travelling to Spain on a business visa for 3 months in the month of May. I want my wife to accompany me on the trip on a tourist visa. Is it easy to get the visa for her along with my business visa? Kindly tell me about the documents required for her visa. She is working in a company in India.

    • If she has all her documents in order- proof of employment, approval of leave from her employer, salary statement, income tax returns, bank statement, return ticket, accommodation proof, etc. she won’t have any problem. Please check this link for more details regarding procedure and documents for a tourist visa: http://www.vfsglobal.com/spain/india/

  49. I am in UK on a work permit which will expire in July 2013. Can I apply for a Schengen Visa and from where can I apply for that?

    • You can apply through the consulate of the Schengen country in the UK. But you’ll have to apply fast, for your UK visa has to be valid for a period of at least 3 months beyond your dates of stay in the Schengen country.

  50. Hi,

    My Husband is traveling to ZRH for an official purpose. He will be applying for a schengen visa through the Swiss Embassy. Currently he does not have any plans for visiting any other schengen countries. Will there be any problem if he decides to visit any of these after he goes to Zurich?

    • No. Within the validity period of his Schengen visa he can visit any other Schengen country on that same visa so long as he does not leave the Schengen area and tries to come back to Switzerland.

  51. I have a valid UK visa. We will be biking from Russia to London. In my application for Schengen visa I have mentioned entry from Poland. However, now if for some reason, we do not get a Ukraine visa before leaving, it would force us to enter from Finland. Will the same Schengen visa be good or do we have to get another one for entry through Finland?

    • The same one will do. If on arrival at the Finland airport, you’re questioned (which most probably you won’t be) you can tell of your change of plans since you didn’t have time to apply for a Ukraine visa.

  52. I have been appointed as a research fellow at an Austrian research institute for which I will be getting A fellowship from Austria. The duration of stay will be nine months. Do I have to apply for a Schengen visa for stay of nine months in Austria?

  53. For what duration of stay can a Schengen visa be issued if I have got it 5 times in the past and do have valid reasons for travelling again and again?

    • If you have got a Schengen visa several times from the same country in the past, you could mention this in your covering letter this time and request a longer duration multiple-entry visa for 2 years. After this period you could request a visa for a still longer duration.

  54. I am on one year work visa in Germany. My wife, also an Indian national, will be joining me on spouse visa, but due to school restrictions we want to take our 8 year old son with us on a Schengen visa. I will send THE invitation letter for my son. As I am in Germany, my wife alone has to apply for my son´s visa at New Delhi. Question is: Do both parents need to sign my son´s visa application form even if I am the one who is sponsoring him?

    • Your letter of invitation and sponsorship will make it clear that you’re already in Germany. Plus, your wife will have to explain the situation, the need for spouse visa for her and Schengen visa for your son, in her cover letter, and sign your son’s visa application. Germany has a downloadable no objection letter for the parent who is not traveling with the family which you can sign and send along with your invitation letter.

  55. We are a family of 4 from Kanpur and are applying for a Schengen visa through the German embassy. Our problem is our son is studying in Karnataka and we need to know
    1)Jurisdiction for submission of visa – in our case Delhi and in his case Bangalore, or can it be Delhi itself considering it to be family travel?
    2)If he can be exempted from the interview due to his studies while the rest of us can go for the interview.

    • All four of you can apply from Delhi giving the same residential address for all of you.
      Your son too will have to be present for the interview.

  56. I have a Schengen multiple entry C Type Visa valid for 3 months from April 2013; stay: 45 days, issued from VFS London (Indian passport). I have used it to enter Netherlands in April 2013 already. Can I travel to Spain next month on the same Visa?

  57. Nice job Veena with the article and more importantly the prompt replies to the comments. I’m planning to go backpacking through Europe and hence am not considering making reservations in hotels. Is it mandatory for me to have the hotel booking confirmations to get a visa? Could I not just swing it with sufficient balance in my account?

    • No Kiran. Proof of hotel bookings is a must because sometimes depending on the application being reviewed, consulates could actually call up hotels to confirm if bookings have been made. So orally saying you have booked accommodation in a few hotels won’t do. You most probably have a rough idea of at least some of the countries you plan to visit. So I suggest you make reservations at some of the cheapest hotels in these countries. Some online sites don’t even require advance payment for reservations but will send you a confirmatory email all the same, which you could provide as proof. Alternatively, pick hotels that have no cancellation or very nominal cancellation charges. Besides the few countries you mention in your itinerary, you can always visit some others within the Schengen area even if you have not mentioned these in the itinerary. Just have a convincing answer ready if you are questioned at any point (which is a rare possibility).

  58. I am travelling to Milan (Italy) for a business trip extending from the end of April to the full month of May. I have applied for a multiple entry Business Visa. However I am planing to take 3 days off in the last week of April (first week of travel) and roam around the other Schenghen countries (France, Spain, etc). I have not mentioned this in THE day-wise itinerary submitted to the Consulate.
    1. Can I do so on the multiple entry visa (if I get it)?
    2. Will there be a problem while travelling from one country to other in the Schengen area on the multiple entry Business Visa?
    3. Is there immigration check between Schengen countries?

    • With a multiple entry visa you can even leave the Schengen area and go to another non-Schengen country for which you have a visa and then re-enter the Schengen zone during the vailidity period of the Schengen visa. For travelling to different countries within the Schengen area during a single trip you don’t need a multiple entry visa. Business travellers often need multiple entry visas because they have to make multiple trips between their home country and the Schengen country.
      Also, you can go to any of the other Schengen countries for sightseeing at anytime during your trip to Italy during the validity period of your visa. There are no internal immigration checks within the Schengen zone, but there could be routine ID checks. So you need to have your travel docs with you at all times while travelling through the Schengen area. If questioned anywhere see that you have a genuine, convincing answer.

  59. I am a software business person and I have got the Schengen visa through the Belgium consulate, New Delhi, as previously my meeting was scheduled to take place in Brussels. But now my travel plan has changed and I have to travel to Lisbon. I just want to know is it compulsory that my first entry in the Schengen region should be through Belgium or can I take a direct flight to Lisbon?

    • With a Schengen visa you can travel to any Schengen country. But there are chances, though very slight, of being questioned at the immigration counter about landing in Lisbon when it was not mentioned in your itinerary. So see that you can convince the officer about the venue of your business meeting having changed, and have some correspondence or any other documents handy as proof, just in case.

  60. I had applied for my Schengen visa from Dubai to travel in July 2013 and I was supposed to travel from Dubai to Sweden. But I have to leave Dubai for good and my Dubai employment visa will now be cancelLed. I just want to know, is it possible to travel from India with the same Schengen visa which was stamped in Dubai? Please advise.

    • Yes you can travel from India if you have a valid Schengen visa. But as you know, only having a visa doesn’t guarantee entry into a country. The final decision rests with the immigration officer. If you’re questioned about the place from where you applied for the visa see that you have proof to back your explanation.
      Before travelling, you could even verify this point with the Swedish consulate directly to avoid any last minute hassles.

  61. My brother and I (retired, senior citizens) are planning to tour a number of countries in the Schengen area and also UK and Ireland. We have travelled extensively so far – Far East, Scandinavia, Russia with popular group tours, and also whole of USA and Canada on our own with a flexible itinerary – almost ‘foot-loose’. We want to have a similar trip with Eurail passes. We have planned a rough itinerary but it not be the exact one. Bank balance, assets and ITR are not an issue for us.
    1. Hotel bookings will be done on the go with the progress of the tour. Hence confirmed bookings cannot be provided.
    2. Minor variations might arise in the actual number of days in some countries.
    3. Is it advisable to book airline tickets and Eurail pass without visas in hand?

    • Proof of hotel bookings is a must because consulates just might call up hotels to confirm if bookings have been made. Some online sites have some cheap hotels that don’t even require advance payment for reservations but will send you a confirmatory email all the same, which you could provide as proof. Alternatively, pick hotels in 3 or 4 countries that you are sure of visiting and have no cancellation or very nominal cancellation charges. Besides the few countries you mention in your itinerary, you can always visit some others within the Schengen area even if you have not mentioned these while applying for your visa. Mention the few countries you are sure of visiting in your itinerary and an almost equal number of days for each (even if this varies somewhat while actually travelling, eg. you may not like the hotel, or may want to spend one more day in a particular country). Just tell the truth about having a somewhat flexible itinerary just in case you are questioned at any point while in Europe (a rare possibility). Also, you have to book your air tickets in advance before applying for a Schengen visa. The Eurail Pass you can book later.

  62. My son is planning to visit Germany for 3 days on a business visa. From there he wants to visit Spain for 5 days as a tourist. Please guide us how to apply for the visas.

    • Your question has been answered in the post itself. Anyway, your son’s main purpose of travel is for business, and his supporting docs too will be for his business visa. So he has to apply to the German Consulate and mention in his itinerary that he will be visiting Spain for 5 days. He will have to show proof of hotel bookings in Spain when he goes for his visa.

  63. Hi veena.!
    I have been accepted by the Sapienza University of Italy for my Master’s studies in September, 2013. I have the following queries.
    1. Is there a possibility for me to get a student visa under Schengen visa regulations?
    2. My course involves 2 years study + 1 year stay-back; with this Schengen visa can I visit Germany for looking for a job, if I can’t find any in Italy?
    3. How much of financial savings should I provide evidence of while applying for the visa? My fees for the total study are under 5000 Euro.

  64. Hi Veena, very impressive responses. We intend to travel on a cruise towards the end of June from UK to Denmark, Stockholm, Norway, St Petersburg (Russia), Estonia and then Gothenburg in Sweden and finally back to UK.

    We shall be entering Sweden twice and the first port of call is Denmark and we have Russia in between all the Schengen countries. I guess we need to apply to Denmark for visa as that is the first port of call. All stays are for one day only with the cruise liner.

    You sound like multiple entry Schengen visas seem tough. Will parents get multiple entry Schengen visas easily with bank balances and confirmed travel itinerary with the cruise liner. Father has not travelled overseas for 40 years though he has spent many years in UK from 1965-70. He is 72 now.

    If the visa is refused then the cruise cost will be a huge loss.

    Any tips?

    • I assume you have a UK visa and in case you’re stopping at any Russian port have a visa for that country as well. You can apply to the Denmark Embassy for the Schengen visa for all of you. Multiple entry visas are given after considering the merits and authenticity of every application. In your case the itinerary from the cruise company will make it clear that the need for a multiple entry visa for all of you, including your parents, is genuine. Just make sure all the documents from the cruise company are in order and so also the proof of bank balances/finance for yourself and your parents.

  65. I am an Indian national, employed in Qatar. My company is planning to send me to Belgium for a two-day training. To obtain the visa what documents should I submit?
    My family is here in Qatar with me, and wont be accompanying me. Do I need to show them any bank balance or just my bank statement?
    What documents should I get from my company?

    • You will have to apply for a business visa. If your company is funding the trip, they need to provide a certificate mentioning the same and what exactly they will be paying for, i.e. ticket, accommodation, all living expenses and the training cost, or whatever it is they are paying for. If you have to pay for all your expenses it would be better to provide both a statement from the bank endorsing your savings, and recent bank statements. You also have to show proof of a return ticket, proof of employment/salary slips, ITR returns if applicable, accommodation bookings and a letter from the institute where you will be undergoing training.

  66. Hello, I will be travelling to Italy for a leisure trip from my school on May 15th and will be returning on 22nd May. After returning to India, I will again leave for Germany on 2nd June and return on 17th June, for a student exchange program. Can you please tell me how to move forward with the visa process? Do I need to apply for a visa to both the countries?

    • You will need to apply for a multiple-entry visa from the Italian Consulate, mention your subsequent trip to Germany in your covering letter and provide proof of the same in addition to docs for your leisure trip. In case they don’t agree to give you a multiple entry visa, you will have to apply separately for your Germany visa.

  67. Hi,
    I am an Indian passport holder and visiting my relatives in the USA. I had also planned to visit my brother working in Frankfurt on the return journey with an official invite from him. However due to heavy summer rush, I am unable to schedule an interview appointment in the German Embassy before I depart for the USA. Can I apply for a Schengen visa in the US?

    • Even if you offer the explanation of inability to schedule an appointment with the German Embassy due to the summer rush, the chances of your application from the US being entertained are slim. Now there’s nothing you can do, maybe except try your luck!

  68. My flight to Geneva is via Munich with a pretty long layover. With a valid Schengen visa on an Indian passport, can I leave the airport or does my first point of entry have to be Geneva?

    • You can leave the airport at Munich. Just make sure you return in time for your connecting flight!

  69. I recently got a Schengan Visa through Spain embassy in Delhi. Purpose of visiting Spain is business meeting. While applying for Visa, I only provided details of the Spain itinerary, like flight, hotel booking.

    Now I am also planning to visit Paris, so can you tell me if I need to apply for a visa again or can I visit Paris with my Schengan visa?

    I am asking this because, while applying for the Schengan visa, I did not mention visiting Paris in the itinerary.

    • You can visit Paris provided it is within the number of days you are permitted as per your Schengen visa. Also, in case you are questioned at any point (very rare), you could tell the truth that visiting Paris was an afterthought after you had got your Schengen visa.

  70. Me and my husband have planned a 40-day Europe tour. Our maximum stay will be in Germany for 9 nights, and we have confirmed Hotel booking for 7 nights, full payment already made.

    My husband has sufficient bank balance to show we can fund our vacation, we have booked Air tickets from Mumbai to Munich on 27 July, and we’ll be returning from Rome to Mumbai on 4 Sept (total: about 39 days tour).

    We’re applying for a Schengen Visa from the German Embassy,
    Now my passport has the address of our old house, while my bank passbook has a different address. In my husband’s case, the passport and bank statement address are the same, but his IT returns are not fully updated.

    So will this be a reason for the visa getting rejected? Also, do I need to show confirmed hotel bookings for every country/ place where we will be staying?

    • Having a different address in the passport is not a problem. If asked you have to tell them you have now moved to a new residence.
      It would be better if your husband updates his IT returns.
      Hotel booking proof is a must. There are many hotels that don’t charge anything for making a reservation.

  71. Hi Veena! I’m planning to travel to Germany on a 5 day trip to meet my fiance. I have already booked accommodation for my stay there. I will be applying for a tourist visa in the next few days. I have two questions here:
    1) My travel dates would be May 18 – May 22. I will be applying for a visa before april 30th. How long would it take for my visa to get approved?
    2) What would be the amount of funds that I need to have in my bank account and for how long should I be having the required funds?

    • They usually need 3 working days, sometimes maybe 1 or 2 days more. The funds/savings are assessed by taking around 50 Euros required for expenses per day. You have to show bank statements of the last three months and your current total savings in the bank. Yours is such a short trip, anything above Rs 20,000 should do.

  72. Hi. I am a Director of a Pvt Ltd company and have business meetings in Amsterdam on May 31 and another one in Helsinki on June 3. The client from Amsterdam won’t be able to furnish an invitation letter, however the one from Helsinki can. So can I apply to Finland embassy for a Schenghen visa and enter Netherlands first and then fly to Helsinki? Thanks!

    • Yes you can. Just make sure you’re going to spend more time in Finland than Holland. Provide the documents for Finland, show that this business visit is the main purpose of your trip, mention in your covering letter/itinerary that you will be visiting Amsterdam for leisure and provide proof of hotel booking in Holland during the days you’ll be staying there.

  73. That’s the problem Veena. I’ll be in Amsterdam from May 31 to June 2 (business meeting on Friday and weekend for leisure) and will be in Helsinki only on June 3. Any solution for this?

    • Stay for 1 more day in Helsinki and show the stay there as the main purpose of your trip to make it OK to apply through the Finland embassy. All the best!

  74. I am planning to travel to France on June 5th for more than a month on business. I am employed by a French company but I work out of India.
    I will be able to get all the supporting documents from the company for the duration of my travel.

    Would the company need to request for clearance from DIRECCTE in France for the same?
    Perhaps I can reschedule my travel for say June 5th-July 3rd. (less than 30 days) Will this be a viable solution?

    • For a business visa you don’t need clearance from DIRECCTE. You need this for living and working in France. A Schengen business visa can be given for any short stay that is less than 90 days.

  75. My husband is already in Germany on a work permit for 6 months. I’m working in India and plan to visit him and stay for 2 months on a tourist visa. My employer has agreed to let me work remotely from Germany for my company here in India (so I’ll just be drawing my Indian salary and not make any money in Germany). But I saw that a leave letter is required as one of the documents in the checklist. Would I require to produce this leave letter on my company letter head or would a letter authorizing my leave from my manager suffice?

  76. I’m going on a trip to Warsaw [Poland] for a leadership program. I will be spending about 6 days in Warsaw and I have a couple of more days to spare. I thought about taking a train from Warsaw to reach Berlin. Since I have a Schengen visa, can I exit from Berlin to take a flight to India? or do I have to return back to Warsaw and board for India from there?

    Secondly since I’m a tourist, and travelling by train to Berlin, where will I get my passport stamped? Or since both are Schengen countries, can I enter Germany?

  77. After getting the Schengen Visa, can I enter from any of the Schengen countries or is it a must that I enter and exit from the same country that issued me a visa.

  78. We are going on a short Europe tour where we will be visiting France (2 days), Switzerland(2 days) and Italy(2 days). Can we apply to any of these countries for schengen visa or is it necessary to apply to that country which we will be visiting first? Another important question is: Is the marriage certificate necessary document for schengen visa? My name is present on my wife’s passport and her name (after marriage) is present on my passport. Still if it is required, what should we do because our marriage certificate is in Marathi language? Should we translate it in English and notarize the same with stamp and signature of a local lawyer? Please advise us.

  79. I’ll be breaking my journey in the UK on my way to the US. My grandson who is an infant [20 months old] will be travelling with me and I have mentioned the same in the appropriate column. He doesn’t require a UK visa.
    When submitting the visa application, do I have to take him to the VFS centre?

    • I assume your grandson is accompanying you to the US and you’re referring to his US visa. So no, you don’t have to take him to the VFS centre.

  80. I am a Indian passport holder and recently I got a Schengen visa for going to Switzerland. I a m in Switzerland now but I have some urgent work in India and as mentioned in my passport number of entries is MULT and type of visa is C and it expires in the first week of July. So can I make a quick visit to India and again come back to Switzerland with the same visa? Or do I have to apply for a new visa? Can I go to France from India with the same visa?

    • You can come to India and return to Switzerland via France within the validity period of your Schengen visa. Only, if questioned on landing in France, have a convincing answer ready.

  81. I along with my wife will be travelling to the UK for about six weeks in the first week of June. We will stay with our daughter who is working there. We wish to visit nearby countries in Europe on weekends. Can we get a blanket one month Schengen visa so that we can visit whenever it is feasible. If so which country should we apply to?

    • You will have to apply for a multiple entry Schengen visa, mentioning your travel plans in your covering letter ( mention a few Schengen countries you intend to visit). If the visa authorities are convinced of the genuine need for a multiple visa you will be granted one. Apply to the country you most definitely want to visit in case you are granted only a single entry visa.

  82. Dear Veena, Firstly I want to thank you a lot for providing such useful info at a glance.

    I am based in Mumbai, and have work experience of 5 years. I have resigned from my job and I plan to travel to EU / UK / Ireland for 2-2.5 months alone backpacking. I will be couchsurfing, i.e. staying with members from travel websites.

    1. I have sufficient funds in account (approx INR 3L). My last working day is on 10th June. I have booked tickets of 12th June.
    2. I have IT returns of 2 years only ie 2011-12 and 2012-13. I do not have IT returns before that.
    3. I plan to spend atleast a week each in France, Germany, Spain and Italy. With some time as well in UK Ireland.

    In this scenario please advise me the best process to follow. As I have resigned, the company will not provide letter of employment. Also I have never traveled to these countries before and my passport is valid till September 2018.

    • You could try by providing your appointment letter and salary slip or proof of payment for the last 3-4 months. This is because it is essential to show your ties to your home country. If you show you don’t have a job to come back to, it could make getting a visa a little difficult. IT returns for the last two years will do but provide a convincing reason in your covering letter for not providing three IT returns. Even though you’ll be couch surfing, see if you can show hotel bookings in all the Schengen countries you intend to visit. Pick hotels with low cancellation charges or those that don’t charge for making reservations.

  83. Hello! My husband and I stay in South Africa and we intend to travel to Europe for a holiday in Dec 2013. So where should we apply for the visa? should we apply for the tourist visa at the French embassy in South Africa?

  84. I am travelling to Prague via Frankfurt for business and am applying for the German Schengen visa.
    My query is related to my spouse and child who will be travelling along with me.
    I have confirmed hotel booking in my name and for the tourist visa requirements for my spouse and child we need to show the hotel accommodation for the entire trip.
    a) Is it OK if I show my itinerary and proof of the hotel accommodation details for the entire trip, and show a marriage and birth certificate stating that they are coming along and will be staying with me?
    b) Or do I need to get the hotel to include their names in the reservation and submit that copy?
    Please help

    • Proof of hotel accommodation has to be provided for all three of you. Even if the booking is in your name, the hotel should mention that the reservation is for 3 persons, or 2 persons and one minor child.

  85. We are going on a short Europe tour during which we will be visiting France (2 days), Switzerland(2 days) and Italy(2 days). Can we apply to any of these countries for the Schengen visa or is it necessary to apply to that country which we will be visiting first? Another important question is: Is the marriage certificate a necessary document for the Schengen visa? My name is present on my wife’s passport and her name (after marriage) is present on my passport. Still if it is required, what should we do because our marriage certificate is in Marathi? Should we translate it into English and notarize the same with stamp and signature of a local lawyer? Please advise us.

    • You have to apply to the country you will be visiting first. If your wife’s married name appears on her passport, you don’t need to provide a marriage certificate with your application.

  86. I want to travel to Greece on 17th May 2013. Can I still apply and get the visa for Greece? Please reply ASAP.

  87. Hi, I and my wife want to go to France, Switzerland, Germany on A tourist visa through SOTC for 8 days. I don’t have enough amount to pay. But my mom and dad are going to sponsor us as they have ITR for 3 yrs and bank statement of their firm’s current a/c and saving a/c around 4 L( around 1.5 for mom and 2.5 for dad). So plz tell me if I should apply for the visa or not. Is the amount enough for the visa?

    • It depends f you two are going alone or if you will be accompanied by your parents. Please take the advice of SOTC regarding the right amount of finances for applying for the visa.

  88. Hi Veena, I wanted to know if one going to Switzerland as a dependent can actually travel to Paris or other countries without applying for the schengen visa from India.

    • Even as a dependent you will be given a Schengen visa to go to Switzerland and then you can travel to any of the Schengen countries.

  89. I had applied for my tourist visa at the Netherlands Embassy.
    I’ve submitted my return flight ticket, travel insurance, a letter from my friend who works in the Netherlands, my bank account statement, the statement of account of the company that I run, last year’s ITR { was working with a company earlier, paid the taxes this year but ITRs will be generated in July }

    I’ve travelled to Indonesia and UAE and have a visa for Singapore and will be travelling there towards the end of May.

    I’m flying to Netherlands from Singapore.

    Today, I received a letter asking for a personal interview at the NL embassy.

    Can you please throw some light over this interview thing.

    • When additional information is required (and not because they want to deny you a visa), people are often called for an interview; there’s nothing to be afraid of. Each applicants background is different. Some just fly from their home country to the Schengen country and back. Others have slightly more intricate travel plans. You know your travel plans and the reason you’re going to fly from Singapore, etc. But they don’t. So just answer all the questions honestly. Be brief, be direct. Give the correct explanations. Answer questions to the point. Don’t ramble and give extra information besides what you are asked about. Also, check the website carefully for all essential documents required. Check you have them all and also carry some additional ones that could provide proof of any further information you may provide at the interview.
      All the best!

  90. I am an Indian army officer presently posted in one of the UN missions abroad. I am holding a white Indian passport.
    Can you tell me what advantages I get as the holder of a white passport while applying for a schengen visa?

    • The only advantage I am aware of is that you could be exempted from paying the visa fee. Also rules, requirements, etc. are not uniform for official passport holders across the different Schengen countries. So you’ll have to contact the country you’ll be applying to for more details.

  91. I am planning a backpackers trip in Europe with my wife. So I have planned to book only the return air tickets and not do the hotel bookings in advance. but I read that if while applying for a Schengen visa i have to provide my itinerary about which places I’ll be visiting and provide proof of hotel bookings.
    what can I do now about this thing?

  92. Dear Veena, I have a Schengen visa which is valid till the 1st week of July and I got the visa from Switzerland Embassy. I had showed them the return ticket to India but now my plan has been changed. I want to make a quick visit to India. So can I prepone the same tickets? And after that I’m planning to visit France with the same visa. Do I have to show both way ticket to France? And as I don’t know when I’ll be returning from France it depends on my work. So can I get the return ticket from France once the date has been fixed?

    • Two things. First of all, you need a multiple-entry visa to go back to France. Secondly, you’ll be taking a risk by booking a one way ticket. Book a return ticket within the validity period date and then change the date in France if your work duration changes.

  93. Hi Veena,

    I am applying for the first time for a Visa and would be applying through the Greece embassy.
    A few questions:

    1) The passport has my father’s name incorrect (small typo), which is rectified on the first page of my passport by the passport authority. Is it of any concern?

    2) I do not have ITR documents because I have just started earning, till now I was studying. What to do to compensate here?

    3) How much time does the Greece Embassy take to process a business visa?

    4) Are they skeptical about first timers?

    5) Would I be called for an interview?

    Thanks in advance 🙂

    • The rectified error in your passport won’t cause any problems, and there’s no bias against first timers. If all your documents are in order and the visa officials don’t need to know anything more, you won’t be called for an interview. Provide proof of having just completed your education for not having ITR returns as yet. Also, see that you show substantial savings in your bank account (to be on the safe side at least 100 Euros per day or more.)

  94. Veena why is my comment not being accepted? I am a student in France with a one year Schengen visa. I have not appeared for the OFFI medical checkup yet. So can I travel outside France in the meantime. And also can I travel to other European countries?

    • Sorry about that Yasar. But you have no idea how many queries I’m flooded with daily and how hard it is to make time for all of them in addition to attending to other duties. Also, half of the queries pertain to problems that have already been dealt with on this site. (So obviously they go unanswered.) Your earlier comments could have been overlooked in the long list of emails.
      Anyway, with a Schengen visa it’s obvious you can only travel to those European countries that are Schengen countries. Regarding leaving France before your medical check-up, you have to ask the immigration department in your university about this. They’re there to provide foreign students with accurate advice.

  95. Dear Veena, I had applied for a uk tourist visa which got refused(due to a couple of missing documents). I have a trip planned to the Schengen countries also. I have acquired all the required documents , changed my flight tickets, and I will be travelling with a group of 8 people. All my documents are in order and i will be applying for a Schengen visa via the swiss consulate.My question is, does having your uk visa refused, also dim your chances of getting a Schengen visa? I have made all my bookings, and a refusal would just amount to further losses.

    • No, the refusal of the UK visa will have no bearing on getting a Schengen visa. If asked about this, tell them the truth about not submitting some important documents out of ignorance.

  96. Hello, I’m a law student and I during my summer vacation I have planned to go to Austria for a holiday and live with my relatives there who will also be sponsoring me. But the problem is my college is in Pune and I don’t have an NOC from my college. What other document can I give instead of an NOC? Will the Austrian consulate not issue a visa to me if I don’t have an NOC? I have travelled to Austria 9 years ago and have a UK and USA visa on my passport too. So will there be a problem?

    • You need an NOC from a school or college only if you want to travel while classes are on, not when you officially have college or school holidays.

  97. Hello Veena.,

    First of all thanks to you for giving valuable information earlier regarding pursuing my higher studies in Italy in a previous post. I have received my Official Invitation Letter to commence my Master’s studies from Sapienza Univ., Italy. My course starts on September 25th, 2013.
    When should I apply for my (Type D) visa in order to avoid any mishap?
    I intend to apply for a loan. Do I need only an official statement from the Bank stating that my loan has been sanctioned to me OR do I need to show the money in my Bank Account before applying for the visa?

    • Apply right away, for the D type visa needs more time for processing. It would be better to provide an official letter from the bank and also show the money in your account.

  98. Further to my earlier mail, my daughter’s visa is valid and it is a multiple entry D type visa. Can she travel to other EU countries and re-enter France even before receiving the PR from the French Embassy?

    • On a valid visa, she can. She should provide proof of having already applied for the PR.

  99. While my earlier visa a short while ago for studying in Spain was rejected, now when I want to go to Amsterdam and Ibiza for the purpose of tourism, will it create any doubt in the embassy of Amsterdam officials that I am trying hard to get into any schengen country and will this point lead to rejection?

    • You should always be honest and not try to bluff your way through at the time of a visa interview. Tell the truth about why your study visa was rejected earlier (non-submission of a particular document, etc.) and see that you follow all the requirements for applying for a tourist visa this time, mainly proof of reasons for you to come back to India after the holiday (a job here, property owned by your family,elderly parents, etc.)and enough finances.

  100. I have an invitation for an interview by a company in Denmark. They had already organized two rounds of the interview through Skype and now have invited me for a visit. I would like to know if there is any visa that allows me to travel to Denmark from India just for attending the interview. Thanks in advance.

    • Ask the company to send you an official letter about the interview which you can produce at the time of the interview. Apply for a business visa and mention the facts of your case in the covering letter.

  101. I have a US PR expiring in 2021 as well as a 10 year B1/B2 visa against my business background issued from India expiring in 2018. My wife’s B1/B2 Visa for US just expired. I have two kids studying in India and my wife too lives in India, while I live in the US and have business here. I wanted to travel to Schengen countries specially Switzerland for a vacation with my wife and kids. How do we proceed to apply for Schengen visas. I file my tax returns both in USA as well as in India.

    • If you hold an Indian passport you too can apply for the Schengen visa along with your wife and children from India. Otherwise you will have to apply from your country of residence, that is, the US, while your family can apply from India.

  102. My wife and I are Indian senior citizens. My daughter is lives in Germany (nurmberg) with residential status since the last one year; my son-in-law works at Adidas since the last two years.
    Now we are planning to a Europe trip (nine schengen counties) of 15 nights and 16 days (including Germany) starting on 9th July 2013 conducted by Kesri tours. The last leg of THE tour terminates in Rome on 24th July 2013. We are planning to go over to Nuremberg from Rome and stay with our daughter till 9th august 2013.
    We have applied for the UK visa. My question is should we take permission to re-enter Germany from Rome with our schengen visa. If yes, what is the procedure to be followed? Will it include an invitation from our son-in-law (as our daughter is not working) and is there a specific format for this.

    Now Kesri tours are handling our visa application though we have applied in person to VFS for the UK visa.

    • You have to ask Kesari tours to include your covering letter mentioning your further travel plans to visit Germany after the completion of the tour and ask them to include 9th August as your last day of stay in the Schengen region. You don’t need special permission to revisit Germany after the tour if your visa is valid till 9th August. But you will have to provide proof of your ticket for flying out from Germany (to the UK or India, according to what your itinerary is) and also a letter of invitation from your son-in-law asking you to stay with him and your daughter during your stay in Germany, mentioning his employment and salary details. If Kesari tours say they cannot add the extended date as your last date, you could apply separately to the German consulate for a Schengen visa from 24 July to 9 August providing all the necessary documents for this stay and a covering letter mentioning you’ll be visiting Germany from Rome after completion of your guided tour. But this will mean added expense for another Schengen short stay visa.

  103. I have applied for Schengen Visa to travel to Finland, however my Invitation letter has date mentioned from 18.5.2013 to 16.6.2013. I will receive Visa vebfore 24.5.2013. Can I travel on 25.5.2013 by carrying same invite letter?My return date is 16.6.2013. or Shall I need to ask my host company to issue another invitation letter with revised date (25.5.2013 – 16.6.2013)?

    • You can travel with the same invite letter and visa. If at all you’re questioned (very rare) about a later travel date you can mention that for business reasons you could not travel earlier. The important thing is to have a return ticket that does not show a date after 16 June as your return date.

  104. i have an Indian passport my husband works in Paris since last 6 yrs i got married to him 4 months ago. My husband has all the required documents. they say for long term visa it takes minimum 5months of processing time in paris whereas he was me to be there at the earliest as i stay alone in india.
    Kindly suggest if he can apply for tourist visa or long term visa and can change my visa once i reach there he has not yet applied for the same . your reply would be very helpfull.

  105. Hi Veena,
    I am a retired Naval officer. I along with my wife plan to visit Europe. We will be landing in Vienna via Istanbul. My Travel agent has suggested to get Swiss Visa as it is easier even though we are landing in Vienna and departing from there after one month. Incidentally my sister in law stays in Vienna so we plan to use it as our Base while visiting Europe. Please advice if we are doing the right thing or u have alternative suggestion. We both are Senior Citizens.

  106. I have a valid Schengen visa – Visa type C, Multiple entries, issued in 2010 by the Netherlands Embassy. But due to unavoidable reasons, my trip was cancelled.
    Now next month (Jun 2013), I need to visit Portugal for 15 days, so should I re-apply for the Schengen visa from the Portugal Embassy? Or can the same visa be applicable for this visit?

    • If the visa issued in 2010 is still valid, you can travel with that visa. Otherwise you have to apply for a new one.

  107. Hi Veena, I am planning for a short visit to Amstelveen, Netherlands, August 2013. Me and my hubby will be staying with our son and daughter-in-law who are staying there since March 2013. My son will be sending all the required documents. Under documents you need there is “guarantee declaration”. Please let me know what is this? Is this a letter which my son has to send to the Indian Consulate stating that he is inviting us and would be taking care of our stay and all other expenses?? Also would like to know if my son needs to address a separate letter to us stating that he is inviting us for this short stay?Thanks in advance.

    • In addition to the other regular documents you have to include a personal letter of invitation from your son mentioning he’ll be bearing all the expenses for your stay including lodging, food, etc.

  108. Dear Sir / Madam

    I am attending a conference in Germany from 31July-4 August. I also have a US Visa. Can I visit the USA for two days immediately after the conference at Germany is over ? I plan to come back to India through Germany.

    Please let me know

    • Yes you can as long as your US visa is valid for the period during which you’ll be there.

  109. My query is still waiting for moderation. May be you are busy with other commitments. Presently we are staying in Pune and my friend lives in Mumbai. Can I get a Schengen Visa in Pune or do I have to go to Mumbai for the same?

    • Busy is an understatement. As mentioned several times, we receive too many queries per day and many unfortunately, specially the ones that have more than 4-5 questions or have more or less similar questions that have been answered earlier, could go unanswered.
      You will have to apply through an application centre in Mumbai either in person or through a travel agent to whom you have given an authority letter. Depending on which country you are applying to, you may or may not be called for a personal interview. Why don’t you just contact our expert visa services by calling 022- 66355555? The service charges FOR CONSULTATION AND SUBMITTING AND COLLECTING YOUR VISA ARE VERY NOMINAL, but it will make the application process much easier for you.

  110. My husband has got an attestation d’accueil from the Mairie in Paris. Can he apply for a visitor’s visa for me in Paris or do I need to apply at the local embassy office?

    • You need to apply at the appropriate VFS centre for a France Visa in India and submit the original document your husband has obtained and his paasport copy along with your other documents.

  111. I’m an Indian passport holder and a student – age 22 years. My parents, elder sister and I want to apply for a Portugal visa and we have not yet decided the length of stay. If I apply for a Schengen visa what would be the maximum period that could be alotted to me? We have relatives in Portugal, so what purpose should I mention while applying for the visa?
    We have already aaplied for the UK visa as we are frequent flyers to the UK.

    • Regarding the Schenegn visas (Portugal), the period of stay is decided by the consulate dependng on your return ticket dates and hotel stay proof. Frequent travellers to Schengen countries can request a longer stay, but the decision lies with the officer.
      Your relative in Portugal could send you an invitation letter guaranteeing taking care of all your expeneses for a definite period of stay along with their passport & visa copies. Your purpose of travel could be visiting relatives and sight-seeing.

  112. Hi,
    I applied for a Schengen visa from the Swiss consulate for 4 days of stay in Switzerland, 2 days in Paris and 3 days in Rome.
    The visa has been granted. Now I wish to wish to reduce one day in Switzerland and spend an additional day in Italy at Venice.
    Will this be accepted at the Swiss immigration at Zurich?

    • Yes, you can make minor changes in your travel plans. If questioned, tell them there was a slight change in your itinerary but you’ll be leaving within your visa period and not overstaying.

  113. I’m an Indian student who just finished my post graduate degrees. I would like to apply for a visa to go to Germany to visit my girlfriend there. How do I go about this as I can’t physically be in India.

    • I assume you are studying abroad and are still legally on a student visa. You can apply to the German consulate from wherever you are.

  114. My wife, kids and I are planning a trip to Germany/Austria /Hungary at the end of June. My wife has a 20-year validity passport. Will she need to get a new passport as an agent informs me that only a passport of 10-year validity is accepted.

    • As per current Schengen visa rules, you need to have a passport with 10-year validity. So your wife will have to apply for a fresh passport.

  115. I have applied for my Schengen student visa for Switzerland. My interview was on the 14th. On an average how many days will it take for my visa to come through?

    • A visa for less than 90 days takes less than a week. A visa for more than 90 days could take 2 – 3 months.

  116. I have sufficient funds – more than 3 lakhs, I am travelling on my own, and I wish to ravel to Cyprus (15 days), Albania (15 days) and any 2 other Schengen countries. To which embassy do I have to apply to get a Schengen visa? Please help me.

    • First of all, both the countries you have mentioned are not yet Schengen countries. However, if you have a multiple entry Schengen visa (C or D type (which requires more supporting documents to justify getting one), you can travel or transit through Albania within the validity period of your Schengen visa without applying for a separate Albanian visa. So you will have to apply for a multiple entry Schengen visa to the Schengen country where you will be staying for more days. For Cyprus you have to apply to the Cyprus embassy separately. For necessary guidance and help, you could avail of our visa consultancy and application services by calling our office in Mumbai- 022- 66355555.

  117. I am going to Germany, Switzerland and France from 15th June. All our required documents and Visa forms have been filled but my Mom hasn’t got her leave sanctioned yet. So we haven’t yet submitted our visa applications. How long does it take to process the Schengen visa? Their websites says it takes 3-5 days. But I’m very tensed. Will we get our visa by at least 10th June if we submit our applications in 3-4 days?

    • If you have all your necessary supporting documents in order, and there is no other major problem, you will get your visas in time.

  118. I am applying for a dual city summer course in London, where 11 days will be in London and 11 in Italy.

    I just have 25 days to apply for both Visas.

    I can get my UK visa in 4 days by giving some extra amount on express basis.
    How long will the Schengen Visa take and what are the chances of getting one.
    Is there any express/ tatkal service for this Visa as well? Moreover should I book my tickets now or after my visa?

    • General information, as in the case of your query Rudhima, is available on the relevant VFS or embassy site. and we request visitors to our site to first check these out. On these reference sites, for a visa for Italy, it is recommended that you apply at least 15 working days in advance, for, under normal circumstances, a visa for short stay is issued within this period. (If all the documents are in order, they usually don’t take more than 5 – 6 days to issue a visa.) A return air ticket is a must. Please refer to this link for more details about supporting documents: http://www.vfs-italy.co.in/mumbai/pdf/study_short_term_checklist_17_04_2013.pdf

  119. Dear Veena,
    Thanks for all your answers on this website which is so informative. I have a few questions regarding my travel to Hungary.

    I have submitted my application form for “Visiting Friends / Family” which is the “C” Type Schengen Visa for 89 days. I am married to a Hungarian National under “Special Marriage Act” and this Marriage Certificate has an “Apostille” by MEA. (But I have submitted only colour photocopies of my apostille marriage certificate and not the original). I have been invited by my Father-in-law who is financially very stable and he has furnished his property papers, and bank accounts details to me which have been forwarded to the embassy.

    I have submitted all my Tax sheets, Bank statement (with Rs. 3,50,000/-), Credit Cards (Having Limit Rs.6,00,000) and Shareholding Certificates. I have also submitted a leave letter from my employer where I work as a Branch Manager.

    I have travelled 5 times to Schengen countries in the past one and half years.

    Based on all these things how do you see my chances of getting a Visa and also, will I be called for a Personal Interview at the Embassy which is in New Delhi?

    • You seem to have all the necessary documents Prasad. See that you have the original documents ready for submission if asked to do so. The rest, regarding a guarantee of being issued a visa, or being called for a personal interview, it all depends on the official who’s processing your application. All the best!

  120. I am planning to go to my cousin’s place in Munich for 16 days. Hence I’ll be applying for a Schengen tourist visa. I have my flight tickets booked to Munich and back.

    I am a salaried employee, but my father intends to sponsor my trip to Germany. In this case, will his bank statements and IT returns be enough? Will his appointment letter be required ? And will my appointment / leave letter / bank statements be required ? even though my father is sponsoring the trip?

    Also, I may plan to go to Switzerland for 3-4 days. But my Switzerland plan is NOT certain. Is it okay, if I don’t mention this during the visa application or in the covering letter? I don’t have a Swiss itinerary to show as of now.

    • Your father will have to provide a letter mentioning he will be sponsoring your trip and paying for all expenses involved for the entire stay. You will need his bank statements and IT returns documents, whereas you will have to provide your proof of employment (last 2 or 3 salary slips), your own bank statements, and an official leave letter on your company letterhead. Since you’re not yet sure about visiting Switzerland you could leave that out in your covering letter/itinerary, and in case you do go there, and just in case you’re questioned anytime, just tell the truth that this short visit was planned after you arrived in Germany.

  121. I am a US citizen retired and living in India. My wife has an Indian passport. Now I am planning to visit France and Switzerland for 8 days. I have a joint NRI account with my wife and she has a separate checking account. We both live in Mumbai with our son.Can different country passports be a problem for getting a Schengen visa?

  122. I am currently in the US on a B1 visa, and I have a flight back to India via Frankfrut (Germany). I would like to break journey in Frankfurt and visit Germany and nearby Schengen countries.

    Can I get a Schengen visa while I am in US?
    How do I go about it and which Embassy should I approach?
    What are the documents that I require to submit?

    • Usually those visiting the US on a short stay visa are not issued Schengen visas by the Schengen country Consulates there. But you could try approaching the nearest German Consulate in the US for guidance regarding the application, documents, etc.

  123. My parents have a been issued a Schengen visa for 45 days to visit Denmark according to the dates stamped in the passport. They will be travelling in July. Is it alright if they stay in Denmark for 35 days before returning to India? (They had applied for a visa for 30 days stay.)

    Please let me know, if it will be fine to stay for 35 days without any issues with the immigration, or if they will be able to stay only for 30 days. I have booked the flight tickets already and thought about this only now.

    • Validity (From… and To…. dates, that is, the period during which the visa will be valid) and Duration of Stay (XX Days) are two different things mentioned on a Schengen visa. Please check this properly. Only if the ‘duration of stay’ says 45 days, your parents can stay for any duration not exceeding 45 days. That is, they can stay for 35 days even if they had actually applied for only 30 days. However, if the duration of stay is mentioned as 30 days, your parents could still request the immigration officer on arrival in Denmark to extend their duration of stay. But an extension will then depend entirely on the officer.

  124. I want to get a Schengen visa for my grandmother who just came from India a month ago on a tourist visa. We are British passport holders and planning to visit European countries during the holidays. Germany will be the first country we will be visiting. How can we get a Schengen visa for my grandma?

    • Approach the nearest German Consulate in the UK for clarifications regarding her visa being issued in the UK itself.

  125. My wife is already in the US on a B1/B2 visa. She will be reaching London around end of July 2013. My Son and I will be joining her in London and we propose to visit Germany and France together thereafter.

    Can my wife apply for a Schengen VISA from the respective consulates/embassies in the US or UK, and we simultaneously apply for the same from the respective consulates in India? If not what are the options for us to be able to join my wife at UK and travel together to France and Germany thereafter before returning to India towards the end of August 2013?

    • Prabhakar, a similar question has been answered before on this site. Anyway, since your wife has a short stay B1/B2 type of visa, she will not be able to apply for a Schengen visa from the US. Schengen visas are also generally not issued to those on short stay visas in the UK. All three of you needed to apply from India for Schengen visas.

  126. I am being sent by my company on an onsite work assignment for 6 months to Switzerland. As per my company policy my family can’t accompany me as my stay is for less than 1 year. But I would like to take my wife and kid to Europe on a Schenghen visa for 3 months at my own expense. How should I apply for the visa for them?

  127. Hi Veena,
    Impressive replies.
    I am a businessman, with IT returns of 3 lakhs per annum and a bank balance of 3 lakhs. Earlier, I had visas for Australia, New Zealand and the UK. I have just applied for a tourist visa for Serbia and after I get this, I plan to apply for a Schengen visa. I have booked return air tickets. I will be flying to Belgrade (Serbia), will then travel to Budapest (Hungary) and then Prague (Poland) and depart for India from there. Also I have booked hotel rooms in all 3 countries through booking.com which confirmed it by asking my credit card number but not charging for anything as I’ll have to pay them when I reach each destination.
    What’s your feedback about my chances of obtaining the Serbian and Schengen visa? Would my earlier other visas help at all?

    • Your having travelled before could be a point in your favour, as also your IT returns and good bank balance, but everything finally depends on how the visa officials view and process your applications. Just make sure all your supporting documents are in order and you apply well in advance.

  128. I have a schengen visa issued by the German embassy valid till 14-06-2014. I visited Germany last month. I now have to visit (business trip) Spain next month.

    I tried to ask the Spanish embassy about visiting Spain. I was given a toll-free number to get my query answered through ‘Chat’. I was informed that I need a fresh visa to visit Spain.

    But a similar question was asked by one Mr. Thomas. Your answer was in the negative regarding applying for a fresh visa. I find this confusing. Can you please advise me what to do?

    • If your passport shows you have a valid multiple-entry Schengen visa (and not just a visa for Germany) you don’t have to apply for a fresh Schengen visa. You say the visa is valid till 14-06-2014, but you haven’t mentioned for how many days of stay your visa was issued. If you did not stay for the entire period of stay during your Germany trip and still have some days left you can travel to Spain on the same visa. To avoid complications fly to an airport in Germany if you wish, or else, if you’re flying directly to Spain, show your Spain business purpose documents/proof to the airport officials there and explain that this trip is related to the business done during the Germany trip, if questioned about this visit.

  129. I am an architect and I have to travel to Italy for buying furniture for a project in July. I have to travel again to Italy and switzerland in August for a study tour with the students of the Institute I teach at. Can I get a multiple entry visa, or do I have to apply separately between each travel trip the time between which is less than forty five days?

    • You can mention your second trip too in your first covering letter and request either a single-entry or multiple entry visa in the same letter. But most probably, since the purpose of each trip is different, you will be asked to apply separately for the second trip, meaning each time you will have to apply for a single entry visa. A 45 days gap is good enough for the second application, but apply soon after you return from the first trip.

  130. Hi,

    I am a resident of India and i am currently on a business visit to London for a month. During this time, i got to know that i would need to travel to Paris for work for about 2-3 weeks. So, it is possible that i can apply for Schengen visa from London itself without going back to India?

  131. My husband got his work permit in France and we wish to apply for a visa for me so I can live with him. Which visa should I apply for, dependent visa or is there any type of long stay visitors visa which will allow me to live in France for a year at least? I’ve heard dependent visa takes a lot of time and short term visas cannot be extended beyond 3 months? So what can I do?

  132. My friend has invited me to Belgium, and I have an invitation letter with me. For how long will it be valid? Should I book the flight tickets before applying for the visa? My friend is going to be my sponsor and I am going to stay with her. She has sent me her salary slip, residence proof, ID proof, rental slip, and 3 months bank statement. I am unemployed now. Should I submit any document of previous employment or my bank statement?

    • The invitation leter should obviously not be too old. A few weeks old would be OK. If you’ve read the post and answers to other queries here you will be aware that a confirmed, return air ticket is a must before applying for the visa. A good bank balance would make things easier for you. Ideally you should have a job to return to, but do provide proof of previous employment with your application. All the best!

  133. Is it permitted to enter Italy on a Schengen visa and leave from Spain or Italy? A major part of my stay will be in Italy, while the last three days will be either in Italy or France.

    • You don’t have to leave the Schengen region through the same country as the one through which you had entered. Just make sure you mention all the countries you’ll be visiting including the one through which you will exit in your itinerary.

  134. While on a recent trip to Paris my husband’s passport and mine containing valid visas were stolen. My husband had a valid work permit for Germany and I had come on a tourist visa to Dusseldorf to visit my husband. After losing our passports we approached the Indian Embassy at Paris with the loss report filed with the Paris Police. We were issued passports by the Indian Embassy and we returned to Dusseldorf with these passports. We also approached the Dusseldorf Alien Office who have issued me a letter confirming that I am allowed to stay in Germany till the end of my visit. My query is that without a visa in my new passport and no stamping done by German immigration on it will I have any problem leaving Germany? My next query is when re-entering India, will the Indian Immigration allow me into India on a different passport(without the earlier visa or exit stamping in the one I had used when leaving the country)?

    • Going by the information you have provided, it looks like the letter from the German Alien Office will suffice. You should submit it for checking at the time of returning to India and also keep it safe and submit it again in case you have to reapply for another visa.

  135. Hi Veena,
    First of all thanks for all the useful information shared.
    I want to travel to Greece for my honeymoon trip in September. I have already purchased the Return Air Tickets from Delhi. I’m working with an Organization where in presently I’m paid 40k as my gross monthly incom. I have IT returns for the last two years, salary slips and all other required documents like Employment Agreement and everything but my wife is a student of a university here in India; she does not have any IT returns nor salary slips, etc.
    My queries are:
    1. How much bank balance should I have in my saving bank account before I apply for the visa to Greece.
    2. What should I include in the Covering Letter to the Embassy.
    3. What should be include in the letter from my employer?

    • You haven’t mentioned how long you intend to stay in Greece. But here’s what you should do:
      Have the maximum amount maybe around 3-4 lakhs in your bank account.
      Provide all details about you and your wife and your purpose of travel.
      Include a leave letter from your employer as proof of your having official permission to stay away from work during the duration of your holiday.

  136. I have a case in hand. I m currently in london for 3 mnths on an intra-company transfer UK visa. I also have a single entry Schengen visa which I had spplied for a Swiss tip I have planned with my family at the end of my work. Now my employers tells me that I might have to go to Germany for business reason for 1 day. How do I get my Schengen visa changed to a double entry visa, if not multiple entry visa? Can I apply at the Swiss embassy in LOndon?

    • If you have a single entry Schengen visa (and not just a visa for Switzerland), and you need to visit Germany while you are in Switzerland, you don’t need a multiple entry visa to do so as long as you don’t go to Germany after leaving the Schengen zone and the day of your Germany visit is within the period of stay granted to you. You and your family could visit Germany with your single entry visa for a day as if you were ordinary tourists and you could take care of your business work while you’re there.

  137. I’m an Indian student and I’m going to Germany for an internship. As I have an exam going on I couldn’t go for a visa interview earlier, but booked the tickets for departing for Germany on the 28th. My exams wil be over on the 24th and I’ve booked my visa appointment for the 25th. To get the visa issued early and in time, my college principal has sent a letter to the German consulate . Will they give me my visa within two days?

    • You’re asking a question regarding something over which only consulate officials have the authority. We cannot predict things like this. Whether you will be issued a visa in time or not solely depends on the visa personnel. Go for the interview and hope for the best!

  138. I am travelling to the UK for 2 to 3 weeks in the first week of Aug-2013 and have a valid UK visa till 31-Aug-13.
    I am planning to travel to Paris (Fr) for 2 days on any one weekend by tours in London e.g. Golden Tours. I don’t have the Eurostar rail tickets and hotel bookings yet.
    Can I apply for the Schengen Visa, and if so what can I show as a proof for travel tickets and hotel bookings?

    • Book the tour tickets as this will cover proof of stay, travel, etc. Also, have enough balance in your bank account. At the time of the interview provide your UK return tickets, proof of UK visa, proof of payment for the tour of France and any IT returns and employment proof.

  139. I am planning a trip to France in mid-July for 13 days. I am earning a steady salary of over 70000 per month at my present job for the last 10 months. However, the balance in my account is barely over 40,000. I have made all hotel bookigns at all places I will be staying at, and travel bookings. Will this suffice and be acceptable to the visa officer? I can show my mother’s account as well, but that will not have more than Rs 20000 balance as well. But I can provide fixed deposits amounting to even 10 lakh rupees in her name and a sponsorship letter. Is this fine?

    Further, my sister is presently in france on a business visit. Her hotel allows her visitors to stay in her room. My friend and will be staying with her for a few days. Will this be a problem? What sort of hotel confirmation should we show from the hotel? Will an email suffice stating that we have been confirmed to stay there? Or do we need a no-objection from my sister’s company as well that it is OK for her sister and friend to stay with her in the hotel (since the hotel was booked for her by her company)?

    • It would have been better if you had a little more money in your account. Perhaps you could transfer your mother’s savings to your account temporarily? For hotel bookings, an email proof of having booked rooms for two persons for the relevant dates is fine. There are many like hotel.com that don’t charge for advance booking. Your salary proof, your Mum’s fixed deposit proof (or a ltter from her bank endorsing the toal amount in the savings account and fixed deposits), a letter of sponsorship from her mentioning she will be helping you financially to supplement your own financial backing, and proof of booking of return air tickets would be the main documents you would need.

  140. I have been living in Australia for the last 6 years but I am still an Indian citizen. I am planning to quit my job, come back to India for a while later this year, and then travel through Europe before I start working again. My question is:
    1. I have been working in Australia for the last 6 years – will this be OK as proof of employment?
    2. My bank accounts have also been held in Australia – can I use this to show my bank balance or do I need an Indian bank account?

    • Since you have been a resident of Australia for the last 6 years, your chances of getting a Schenegn visa if you apply from Australia itself will be very good. Here, your case will be very weak for you will not have the proper documents to show related to India.

  141. I am going to the US soon. I have a multiple entry US visa. During my stay there I may have to go for 3 /4 days to the Netherlands. Can I apply for a Schengen visa in the US at the Netherlands embassy for visiting Netherlands if required?

    • We have emphasized before that it is always expected that travellers should apply for visas from their home country or country of residence. They usually don’t make any exceptions unless it can be proved to the consulate that some emergency came up later or there is a very valid reason for applying for a visa after travelling abroad to another country. That too you can only request the authorities to oblige you, but it will be entirely their prerogative to grant a visa or not. It’s best to avoid taking any chances.

  142. I will be travelling to Madrid . My flight has a long stopover in Brussels. Can I leave the Brussels airport even if the visa was issued by Spanish embassy?

    • Yes you can if you hold a valid Schengen visa even if it has been issued by the Spanish Consulate.

  143. We (I and my wife) have planned to visit Greece (3 days), France (1day), Italy (1day) and Greece (3 days again). As my flight is via Jordan, post visiting these countries, we have planned to visit Jordan and Egypt as well. We are actually doing a WONDERS of the WORLD trip. We have planned this trip for Oct’ 13. All the flights and the hotels have been booked. Regarding bank balance, ITR etc., we have all the necessary documents. We have visited Singapore (twice), Malaysia, Thailand, Dubai (twice), Switzerland, Hong Kong, Macau and we have 10 years multiple entry US visa (B1/B2).

    We have never visited UK nor have we ever applied for a Schengen visa before. Do you think declaring the visits to Jordan and Egypt (post the European visit) on our itinerary can raise an eyebrow at the Greece consulate? Can this become a reason for our Schengen visa rejection?

    • Any other countries you plan to visit have nothing to do with a Schengen visa and hence will not be a criterion for rejection. In fact, you are not required to declare travels to other countries, but only your itinerary while in the Schengen region in addition to your dates of arriving and departing from there.

  144. My son is studying in the UK. He wants to travel to Barcelona and Madrid for 6 days. How should he apply for the Schengen visa?

  145. My son is planning to do two year MS. It is a two year collaborative programme. The first year in Czech Republic and the second year in Holland. How should he apply for Visas? i.e. Can he obtain Schengen visa for travelling to both the countries? Or should he get two separate visas one from Czech Republic and another from Holland? If so, should he return to India after the first year to apply for the visa to Holland?

  146. My husband and I are planning to visit UK (6 days) and Switzerland (4 days). We have a UK visa valid for 6 months. We are now in the process of applying for a Swiss visa. Can we stop over for a day at Paris before going to Zurich from London with only a Switzerland visa?

  147. I am a resident in the UK on a Tier 1 general visa. My parents are here since end May on a UK tourist visa for 6 months. I want to take them for a short tourist visit to Europe (France or Switzerland) while they are in the UK. They did not have enough time to get a Schengen visa in India as their UK visa processing took longer than expected. Is there any solution to this problem? Is there any chance my parents can apply to the French / any other European Consulate here in London for a Schengen Visa while they are here on the UK tourist visa?

    • Anupam, you can approach the Consulate of the concerned Schengen country in the UK explaining the situation/facts to them. Those with valid/genuine reasons for applying from the UK are given due consideration, but ultimately your parents can only place a request for consideration. The granting of the Schengen visa is the prerogative of the officer processing their application. All the best.

  148. I am currently in the Netherlans and my visa expires in 1 week. I had been sent here by my company for training. They’ve now asked me to come back again in 1 month. Can I apply for a Schengen visa within one month of my return? Or do I need to wait for some months to apply a second time?

    • There is no specified waiting period for applying again. You can apply for a fresh Schengen visa any time after your return.

  149. I have applied to the Barcelona graduate school of economics for their masters in economics program. Previously I have been to Malaysia for studies in Islamic banking and finance. I am awaiting the reply from the Barcelona graduate school regarding admission. Once I get the notification from the school, I will apply for the Visa.
    I need the following information:
    1. My studying in Barcelona will be sponsored by my brother who works in Dubai. So which documents will be needed for providing proof of finances?

    2. Should I apply to the Spanish consulate for a long stay visa? T
    3. They said that insurance must be valid throughout the Schengen territory and cover the entire period of the person´s stay. The minimum coverage will be 30,000 Euros or 50.000 US dollars.So what should I do about this?
    4. Also, for accommodation, they say hotel reservations won’t be acceptable. So what proof should I show them?
    5. Do I have to book a return ticket while applying for this visa?

    • After you get admission to the Spanish institute, it would be better for you to go in for visa consultation. For a very nominal amount you’ll be advised about the supporting documents, etc. and will also get help while filling out your application form. Please call 022-66355555.

  150. I’m an Indian Seafarer and will be joining a vessel shortly which is trading in the US and Europe. My wife will be joining me after a month and will sail as a supernumerary. Does my wife require a valid visa if she visits any European port while on board considering she will not join the vessel from a European port?

    • Your wife will need a visa and depending on which European port she’ll be visiting first, the requirements may vary slightly. Your company and the consulate of that country will be able to help you out with correct information.

  151. My husband works in Paris and he is applying for a dependant 1 year visa in Paris for me. He was told that the procedure would take 5-6 months. In the mean time can he invite me for A short term visit for 3 months?

    • Once your husband applies for a dependent visa, it would be risky to apply for a short term visa.

  152. I am going on a work permit to Sweden for 8 months from India. Since Sweden is one of the Schengen countries, can we go to other Schengen countries with the residence permit card given by the Sweden consulate? Or do we need to apply in Sweden for a Schengen visa?

    • You will have to confirm if the Embassy is giving you a residence permit card because on a work permit they will only give you a Sweden visa not a schengen visa. In that case, contact your employer regarding getting a Schengen visa later on.

  153. A friend and I are planning to visit the U.K in October mainly for a football match in Liverpool. Both of us are first time travellers,he a businessman and I’m currently unemployed(age 24). I m planning to attach the bank documents and a cover letter from my father. Will this work? Also, after U.K we want to visit Paris and then Spain. We’re going to stay in Spain for a longer time but we’ve heard it’s difficult to get visas issued by the Spain embassy. So should we apply to the France consulate? Do they need all hotel bookings or can we just show an itinerary with more days for France and not show all the hotel reservations and after getting the visa finally stay for more days in Spain as per our actual plans? Also, for the U.K. visa we will show the return ticket from Madrid and not from London, will this affect our chances?

    • On this site, we provide advice as per existing rules, and not suggestions about how the authorities can be mislead. We get several queries like this, and this is a clarification we’re offering not just for you but for all those seeking solutions to problems by such means. In your case Ash, for the UK visa it would have been better if you were employed. Anyway, please attach a covering letter from your Dad mentioning clearly that he will be bearing all expenses incurred for your trip, and also his bank details and IT returns. The return ticket from Madrid to India won’t be a problem if you mention your travel plans in your covering letter. For the Schengen visa, please provide the correct itinerary and proof of all hotel bookings as we have mentioned in this post on the Schengen visa. I asssume you have read the post first. Either apply to the Spain consulate or else stay more days in France and apply to the France one.

  154. I have a German Student Visa valid from 16/08/2013.
    My travel itinerary is as follows:
    Departure from Calcutta 15/08/2013: 20:40
    Arrival in Dusseldorf(Germany) 16/08/2013 13:35
    Will there be any issues for immigration and departure at the Calcutta airport because my Visa starts from the 16th and not the 15th?

    • Normally, you would be allowed to travel on the 15th. But if questioned by the immigration officers, point out that you will be landing in Germany on the day your visa validity period starts.

  155. I have got a Schengen Visa for the Czech Republic. On my visa it is mentioned as ‘C’ category, and at the top left corner it mentions ‘cze’. Actually, now my meeting is cancelled in Czech. and will take place in Poland. Can I travel to Poland or any other Schengen country on the same visa after I finish my work in Poland?

    • You can travel to any Schengen country during the vaidity period of the visa provided that your visa mentions “Schengen Staten”/has the word Schengen mentioned. And carry proof of the change in the venue of your business meeting from the Czech Republic to Poland if questioned at any point.

  156. I am a student in the UK and was granted a multiple entry tourist visa by the French embassy. However, my plans have changed and I wish to go to Germany first and to France on a later date for a short period of time. Is that possible?
    My visa is valid for the time period and the number of days.

  157. hi Veena

    I am currently holding a 1 year Business Schengen Visa from the German Embassy. I am a frequent business traveller to Germany for my company’s sales. I work for a huge export house in India. Now, I will be getting married in few days and will have to leave for Germany for aaround 20 days. I would want to take my wife with me. How can I apply for a visa for her? Which documents would be required?

    • She will have to apply for a tourist visa and in her covering letter she will have to mention that she’s accompanying you and provide all your financial documents and a copy of your business visa. For the documents required please refer to: http://www.vfs-germany.co.in/‎

  158. I’m an Indian citizen and have been working as an engineer since the last one year in India. I want to visit Poland for a week.
    1. I have around 60000 Rs in my bank account, a return ticket, insurance, and hotel booking for 7 days. Are my savings enough for getting a visa?
    2. I have booked accommodation in a hotel in one city only, as actually, I’ll be living with my friend. Will that cause me any problem.
    3.Is being employed for one year only cause any problem?

    • Those who have a steady job will be more likely to be considered as having ties to their home country. But you should include a leave letter from your employer and IT returns for at least one year if possible. Since this is just a one week trip, Rs 60,000 would normally be enough. In your case, it would be better if you have at least a lakh. Hotel bokings should match the itinerary you’re showing in your covering letter. Alternatively, your frined could provide a sponsorship letter mentioning your name, address, his own particulars and employment details, and that he’ll be providing you accommodation and will look after your lodging and boarcding espenses.

  159. I’m a housewife and I want to travel to Paris on a short term visa of 3 months to visit my relatives. I can provide my husband’s financial documents and also my bank details with sufficient balance. If I want to show hotel bookings do I have to book a hotel for the full duration of 90 days in advance or will booking for couple of days do?

  160. My problem is a bit complicated.
    I have 10 yr UK and US Visas. I travel regularly. Recently I applied for a Schengen visa via my travel agent. I was to go to Sweden and Denmark. My agent applied for a Schengen visa to the Swiss embassy which was rejected. I reapplied and was rejected a second time. On examining my passport I realised that my last 4 Schengen visas have all been through Switzerland though I travelled to Germany, and other countries and Zurich as well, so it is possible that my rejection was based on the travel agent abusing the system.
    How do I go about correcting this anomaly? I feel ashamed by the fact that my travel was misrepresented as all we do is sign the form and the travel agent does the rest.

  161. I have Income Tax returns for only 1 year. Will there be any problem while applying for a visa to the France Consulate?

    • Your entire package of documents and information is reviewed for taking a decision. Ultinately everything depends on the visa officer.

  162. I plan to travel to Spain with my husband and granddaughter on a short holiday in September 2013. Before going to Spain, we’ll be in the UK for a week.
    1. When we apply for the visa do we have to show tickets for the entire journey or is it enough for us to show the London-Madrid and the India return tickets?
    2.Is there an application form for the Schengen visa? Or do we just have to apply using a letter?
    3. What is the fee for this visa?

    • You have to mention your itinerary in a covering letter. In your case it will be Hyderabad (or any Indian city) to London, London to Madrid, and Madrid to Hyderabad. Accordingly, tickets for all three segments have to be shown. The visa application form can be downloaded from this website: http://www.vfsglobal.com/spain/india/ Information about visa fees and other guidelines are also available here. You could take the help of a good travel agent if you’re not sure about how to proceed.

  163. I am travelling to Amsterdam and Ibiza in Sept. I’m the process of applying for a Schengen visa. My travel agent has suggested that we apply to the Swiss embassy for the Schengen visa, whereas I am not going to be staying in Switzerland at all. Would that be a problem?

    • Have you read this post Swapna? You’ll find the answer there. In your case, you would be expected to apply to the nearest Spanish Embassy.

  164. We have travelled to Switzerland twice, earlier. We have also visited Schengen countries many times. Now my wife’s Schengen visa was refused by the Swiss Embassy, New Delhi.
    The reason was “the information submitted regarding the justification for the purpose and conditions of the intended stay was not reliable”.
    We have cancelled the trip. What should we do for planned trips in future?

    • I don’t know what reason your wife had offered and if the documents supporting her reason were submitted or not, and if they were submitted, whether they were convincing and valid proof or not. All I can tell you is that ultimately everything depends on whether the visa officer is convinced about your purpose of travel and about the supporting documents.

  165. HI,

    My husband and I both applied for Greece visa on the 30th of July, We are travelling on 15th August. My passport is yet in my maiden name and I have a visa for Singapore, Malaysia and most recently Turkey in May 2013. I am a housewife and my husband has provided all the proof for the funds for our travel. He has in the past 3 schengen visas. Now I have been asked to come for an interview at the vfs office. What could be the purpose of the interview? Why would I be called at the VFS office?

    • The fact that you’ve been called to the VFS office could have something to do with your application form or documents. Anyway, carry additional documentary evidence with you, specially those related to your purpose of travel and connections to India.

  166. I am working as a cashier at the Dubai Airport.I have a valid residence visa of Dubai I would like to apply for a short term Schengen visa for my honeymoon to Switzerland from Dubai. What’s the procedure to be followed? How much funds do I have to show in my bank account?

    • You have to apply to the Consulate General of Switzerland in Dubai. Please check this link for further details: http://www.vfsglobal.com/swiss/uae/ Here they also mention that you need to show around 100 Swiss Francs (400 dirhams) per day per person in your account. To be on the safe side try and show at least one and a half times or more of that amount.

  167. I am an Indian and I had applied for a student visa for Austria more than 35 days ago at embassy in New Delhi. But there is no response yet. What should I do now?

    • They usually don’t entertain enquiries before 15 days after submission of applications. Since you have waited long enough, you can contact them directly on the phone or personally regarding your visa application.

  168. I am planning to visit Austria this November with my wife for 11 days. We have an accumulated bank balance of Rs 2.5 lakhs in our savings account. What is the minimum balance to be kept in the savings account if the husband and wife are travelling together?
    Can I just block our air tickets and only submit the itinenary?

    • They usually expect a savings (either individually, or jointly if more than one person are travelling together) of at least 100 euros per day per person. So see that your savings are much more than than that. Rs 2.5 to 3 lakhs for 11 days seems OK.
      Secondly, we have clearly mentioned in the post and in several queries that booking of air tickets and hotel bookings is a must for applying for a Schengen visa.

  169. Hi Veena,
    My wife ( dependent on me ) and I have travelled several times to the US in the past. We now want to travel to the UK for about 2 months, soon after getting the visa for we want to return before the winter sets in. We will stay with our son (tier 2 ICT staff immigrant) who was transferred from the USA to the UK, just 2 months back, along with his wife, and has recently settled down there. Both of us are scheduled for an appointment for submission of documents for the visa application, UNDER FAST TRACK, on the same date and at the same time, which we inadvertently chose. As we are required to go with original documents, we have a problem before us now. We have only one set of the signed sponsorship letters: Invitation and sponsorship letter from our son; and confirmation of employment from his office in the UK. Our other documents can be produced in original separately.

    We have paid the visa fee online and now it won’t be possible for us to reschedule the appointment date as that could cause unnecessary delay in leaving for the UK. Will the visa processing officers permit one of us to submit the original documents from our son and the other one to produce the photocopies of the original? Also, though our son will be bearing the expenses for our trip, we have indicated the amount we have in FDs only in the application form. Should we also give another letter at the time of submission of documents indicating our Savings a/c balance of few lakhs? Thanks.

    • Yes, one of you can submit photocopies of the original documents from your son. But include a covering letter with each of your individual sets of documents in which you can mention that you have visited your son while he was in the US several times from India in the past, that you’re planning a two-month visit to the UK before it gets too cold for neither you nor your wife can tolerate winters abroad,that both of you are travelling together, and that the original sponsorship docs from your son are included in your set of your docs but photocopies are included in your wife’s (or vice versa). You could also mention the total amount of money you have in the bank along with a break up of your savings in FDs and in savings in this letter. And carry original letters from your bank/banks to substantiate this. All the best!

  170. A friend and I are planning to visit U.K and France next year.The problem is that my friend is not good in English, especially spoken English. We are good as far as our paper work is concerned. I want to know whether his poor English will limit the chances of a visa approval or not.

  171. I currently hold a Schengen visa, type C, multiple entry. Please tell me do I need to book my hotel before entering the Schengen countries or can I book this at the airport?

    • Prior hotel booking before flying though not necessary, would be advisable just in case you’re questioned about this on arrival. Immigration officials have the prerogative of questioning you about this.

  172. I am a research fellow working on a collaborative project between India and Germany. I have visited Germany already once in 2011. I have to visit again in October 2013. I have a valid Schengen visa. However, this time my husband also wants to join me for some days to visit the country as a tourist. My queries are:
    1. Can I invite my husband, even though I don’t hold a resident permit?
    2. My accommodation is pre-booked, will he have to book separate hotel accommodation to get a tourist visa?

    • Your husband has to apply separately for a tourist visa along with separate documents including proof of hotel bookings.

  173. I am a Professor at Osmania University and I have to go to Leiden, in the Netherlands, to attend an International Conference in Nov. 2013. I have been sent the Official Letters of Invitation and have been asked to accelerate the Visa for Netherlands/Schengen Visa.
    Please guide me.

    • You have to apply to the Netherlands Mumbai Consulate through the VFS centre in Mumbai or Bangalore. Call VFS at 022-67866007 between 0800 hrs to 1700 hrs, Monday-Friday. A local travel agent too could guide you about this.

  174. I am going to Quatar on an open work permit. Can I apply from Qatar for a Schengen visa?

    • If you are going to reside in Quatar for a long time for work purposes, applying from there could be justified. But it is preferable to apply from the country of residence to improve your chances of getting a Schengen visa.

  175. Hello Veena,

    My parents aged 62 & 59 had applied for a short stay schengen visa to visit family and it has been refused. Saying :

    1. Purpose of visit and conditions of stay is unreliable
    2. and whether they will come back within the visa expiry date is uncertain

    My mom’s sister stays in Germany and her husband had provided us a formal obligation letter and an invitation letter as well. They are EU Nationals having been there for the last 35 years.

    My parents’ English is poor and they had made mistakes while filling out the application form. So, when we apply for a visa again should we explain this?

  176. I have the following message from vfs.org.in regarding the status of my UK Visa application. “PROCESSED APPLICATION DELIVERED TO BLUE DART 0N 6/09/13 AWB NO.( No. not given).
    Does it mean the Visa is granted?

    • The decision about your visa and the Blue Dart despatch number are both confidential information, hence these are not mentioned. The message just means your application has been processed and your passport has been despatched to you.

  177. My parents want to visit me for 10 days in Germany and two days in Austria. They are planning to go to the Consulate of Germany. The only question is should they also provide details of travel from Austria to Germany as we plan to travel by car.

    • They only have to mention in the itinerary the names of the other countries and that they’ll be travelling with you by car.

  178. I am planning to visit Germany for 2 weeks. I have a friend who is a German national staying in Germany, and she is sending me a letter of invitation for my German Schengen visa but I am sponsoring my own trip. Does she need to send a notorized letter or is a scanned copy with her signature and her passport details enough?
    Also I have sufficient bank balance but I am not a salaried employee, I work as a freelance professional. What are the work related documents that I should submit apart from bank details for the past 6 months and IT returns?

    • Your friend will have to airmail or courier the original letter of invitation to you with details of relationship to you, the number of days for which she will provide accommodation to you, etc. along with other necessary documents for proof of her national status and employment background. These docs could be notarized as an added precaution. You’ll have to provide copies of all these documents along with the originals. The original ones will be stamped and returned to you for taking along with you during your trip. Provide whatever additional proof you can to show you’re an independent professional, e.g., business card, correspondence with clients, letters from clients endorsing that you’ve provided services to them, etc.

  179. I am a research scholar in IIT Bombay. I have to go to Berlin, Germany in October’13 through the student exchange program of our institute. I have received an invitation letter and accommodation letter from the German University. I am staying in Mumbai since the last 1.5 yr, but my passport is issued from Kolkata. Can I apply for a Schengen Visa (for Germany) to the Mumbai Consulate?

  180. I want to visit Lithuanian and my friend who is living there is ready to sponsor me. I work in Delhi. My trip is for 25 days and so I wish to see some other countries too. Please guide me about the visa application and documents required.

    • You have to apply personally to the Lithuanian Embassy in Delhi for a Schengen visa along with all your documents and itinerary regarding the other places you’re going to visit and also proof of hotel bookings in those places. Check this link for more details: http://in.mfa.lt/index.php?576873841

  181. I have a Schengen Visa C type issued by Slovak Republic and my first point of entry into the Schengen zone is Hungary Budapest Airport and I will be going by bus from Budapest to Slovakia because as such there are no direct flights to Slovakia.

    Do I need a visa for Hungary or should I arrange for a connecting flight from Budapest to Slovakia?

    • If you have a valid Schengen visa you don’t need a separate visa for Hungary even if your entry point is through Hungary. You can proceed to Slovakia by any mode of transport.

  182. I stay in Delhi and I am planning to go to Amsterdam next month. A close friend of mine has arranged for an official invitation for me and my family ( Wife and 2 Yr Old Daughter ) attested by the local town hall. Our tickets for Amsterdam are booked for 2 Oct. I have an appointment through VFS services for doc submission for 17 Sep.
    1. Do we have sufficient time in hand to get the visa approved from the embassy?
    2.Will a travel agent be able to help in speeding things up?
    3. How much surplus funds should I show in reserve?

    • Travel agents cannot influence any consulate regarding quicker visa processing. The Netherlands embassy could need up to 12 to 15 days to issue a visa depending upon the particulars of the application and the rush for visas at different times. But you could mention the date of your flight very prominently in your covering letter and make a request for speedy processing. Consulates usually expect 100 euros per day per person regarding available funds for a trip, but you should show much more than that in savings. If your friend has attested he will bear all expenses related to your trip, you won’t need to show way beyond the expected limit.

  183. I hold an Indian passport and a Schengen visa issued in London (I was there for work assignment). My Schengen visa is valid till 21st of September 2013. Can I travel to Germany from India with this Schengen visa?

  184. I will be traveling to Sweden and the UK for the first time with my wife and 9 months old daughter.
    1/ Do I need to apply for both visas for my daughter as well?
    2/ We do not have a marriage certificate but the name of the spouse is mentioned on both our passports. Will that do or should we apply for the certificate?
    3/For how many months should my bank statement be?

    • Your daughter too will need a visa for Sweden as well as for the UK. Applying for a marriage certificate would be a good idea as it would come in useful for other purposes as well. For a visa, you can’t say for sure whether you’ll be asked for proof of marriage. It depends on the visa official. And in case you can’t produce a marriage certificate at the time of the interview see that you have other proof available. Your passports are one proof, but other proofs could be your baby’s birth certificate on which your name and your wife’s are mentioned as parents of the baby, your ration card, etc. Apply for the UK visa first because you don’t need to book your air tickets for applying for a UK visa and also it will make it easier to get your Schengen visa after that. Usually, a 3 months bank statement is required but if you have a 4 to 6 months one that would be better.

  185. I am applying for a business visa (I got an invitation letter from a company in Greece.I want to take my wife and son along with me.
    What shall I put in the application for my Wife and son regarding “Main Purpose of the journey”, tourism or business?
    Can we all apply for a visa together?

    • All three applications can be made together. The purpose has to be business for you and tourism for your wife and son. In the covering letter mention that they’ll be accompanying you.

  186. I had travelled to the Netherlands with a multiple entry visa last July. Can I travel to Paris without entering or exiting the Netherlands next time?

  187. I am travelling with my mother for 45 days. I have a US passport hence do not need a visa. My mother does. We plan to spend about a week in each of the major Schengen countries.
    1) How much finances does my mother need to show? She is retired now but is financially sound. (I will be funding the trip though.)
    2) Do we need to show hotel and plane/train bookings for each country? ( I shall be making train reservations). Airbnb is my preference. Are their bookings acceptable?

    • Your mother will have to provide all the documents required for a tourist visa including plane tickets and proof of hotel bookings, travel insurance, retirement, flat ownership documents if she has them, etc.. No need for internal travelling tickets, but if you decide to make these before hand she can show them. In her covering letter, she will have to mention the itinerary of the trip, that she will be travelling with you and that you are a US passport holder, an original letter from you mentioning you’ll be funding the entire trip for the two of you, your notarised proof of employment, bank savings, and relevant passport pages. Her finances though not necessary, could also be shown to strengthen the fact that she is financially sound. Usually around 100 Euros per day per person is what they look for.

  188. I plan to visit Hungary with my son and wife for availing of conductive education at the Peto institute in Budapest for rehabilitation of our son aged 8 for 2-3 weeks from November end till mid-December.

    Please let me know if this additional information will be OK:

    1. Purpose of visit – since my son is on a wheelchair due to his medical condition all three of us have to go together for his treatment.
    2.Letter from the institute. But what kind?
    3. Funds – I work in a business owned by my Mother. Do I need to add my mother’s details as well? I have recently taken financial support of my parents and in laws and have around 7:00 lac in my bank account.
    Would it be enough?
    4. Travel history – we have visited Japan for a therapy for our son in 2010 for 6 weeks.

    • Besides the other visit documents such as return air tickets, insurance, proof of arrangement for accommodation, IT returns, bank balance proof, etc. you could get a letter from the institute saying treatment for your son (mentioning his name) would be possible there and mentioning the cost and duration of the treatment too. In your covering letter mention the earlier treatment in Japan and provide proof of the same. Also mention you’re working in a family owned business and show your savings which seem to be enough for the stay. (approx 2100 euros per person for 3 weeks). But you will also have to show enough funds for the treatment as well. If your mother gives you a covering letter saying she will bear the costs of the entire trip then only you will need to show her savings, IT returns as well. You could also say she would be helping with the expenses and show the combined savings proof for yourself and your mother.

  189. I am working in Bangalore and planning a honeymoon tour of Europe with my fiance who’s staying in Delhi. I am asked by my consultant to apply for a visa to the Mumbai consulate. Is it necessary for me to apply from Mumbai since I have a passport which is issued from Delhi?

    • It doesn’t matter where your passport has been issued from. Many countries like France, Italy, Belgium and around 10 more countries have VFS application centres in Bangalore where you could submit your application provided one of these countries is your main destination.

  190. HI,
    I hold a Schengen Dependent Visa (Swedish UT Card) valid till Oct-2014. I visited Sweden in June to see my wife and came back to India within 10days. Now again I am planning to go to Sweden. Before that we are planning a trip to Spain and France. Is my Swedish UT Card sufficient enough for this travel too?

  191. Currently I’m residing in Switzerland with a Swiss WP. But I will have to travel to Germany for deputation in the month of Dec for 2 years. So I will be applying for German WP from Switzerland. My wife and kid are there in India. So while applying for WP, I would like to apply for dependent WP visa from Switzerland for them also so that they can join me in Germany once I’m there. Is this possible or do they need to apply in India separately?

  192. Sorry to trouble you again but since I’m a resident of Delhi working in Karnataka since the past 3 years, is it necessary for me to apply to the Mumbai consulate only, like my agent told me? Secondly, since I am applying for a honeymoon trip, should my fiancee and I not apply through the same consulate? She’s from Delhi as welL, so can both of us apply in Delhi?

    • You haven’t mentioned which Schengen countries you intend to visit. But almost all countries in the world have their consulates or embassies in Delhi. So, yes, both of you could apply through the relevant Delhi embassy/consulate. In each of your covering letters, mention that you are getting married shortly (include a copy of your wedding card too if possible) and that you will be travelling together as it’s going to be a honeymoon trip. All the best!

  193. I am trying to book an Indian Citizen on a UK student Visa on a European Bus Tour around Europe over Christmas as per his request. Could anyone tell me if it is possible for him to obtain a Shengen visa from the German consulate (Germany being his first port of call) in London, or is it simply finite that he MUST have already applied for this Visa in India? Any information will help me out.

  194. Hi,
    I am getting a Schengen visa from the Netherlands Embassy for 2 months, as I will spend most of my days there.
    Can I start my journey from any other country say France (Paris) or Spain (Madrid), Visit there for 2-3 days and then move to the Netherlands?
    I will be taking a flight from Bangalore to Paris/Madrid and WILL then take a train to the Netherlands.

    • Yes you can start your journey from any other Schengen country that you mentioned in your itinerary. If Spain or France wasn’t mentioned earlier, you can still fly to these countries first but have a good reason ready to explain the last minute change in itinerary, just in case you’re questioned about this, even though most probably you won’t.

  195. Hello, I am travelling to the UK on a tier 2 visa along with my wife (she is on dependent visa). My visa validity is for 1 year and I wish to apply for a Schengen visa. Should I apply from India or from the UK? I have travelled to the EU earlier on a tourist visa (Italy in Jan 2010). Will this be an advantage?

    • It would be better to apply from India, but then you will have to travel to the Schengen region within 3 months. If that is not possible, then you will have to apply for the Schengen visa from the UK. Having travelled to the EU before will work in your favour.

  196. I had applied to France -VFS and have got a 30 day Schengen visa – MUTLIPLE entry. My itenary mentioned only France. Can I travel to other Schengen countries also, like Germany, etc.?

  197. This is a great forum you are running here!

    I have a slightly urgent query –

    My husband is travelling on a business visa to Belgium for two weeks in December, and I wish to join him there for a week.
    The hotel booking for the duration of this stay has been booked by his company and as such my hotel booking will simply show that a guest is joining him for the said week.

    Will the hotel booking in his name + 1 be sufficient for me to apply for a tourist visa? OR do I need to show a separate hotel booking in my name. If so, can I book a hotel online and once I obtain the visa cancel the same and stay at the hotel where my husband will be staying?

    • Either will work, though the first option would be preferable, specially if you’ll be mentioning in your cover letter that you’re joining your husband who’ll be on a business trip. You will also have to produce a xerox copy of your husband’s visa and his original visa if possible as proof. Also, see if his company can get your name included in the hotel booking document. Finally, remember that ultimately everything depends on the visa official checking your application.

  198. My husband and I are both on tier one visa and are residing in the UK. He is working for a Swiss company in the UK and is required to travel to Switzerland for a week. I would like to accompany him. I know that he has to apply for a business visa and I for a tourist visa. But how do we apply together in a joint application?

    • You have to attach all the documents required for a tourist visa with your application and your husband needs to attach a separate set of those required for a business visa with his. Both of your covering letters should mention the fact that you are accompanying your husband as a tourist while he is on a business trip.

  199. I’m an Indian Citizen and have a valid Schengen C-type multiple-visit Business Visa from Germany. I’ve made multiple trips to Germany on business.
    Now, I’m planning to make another trip for tourist/vacation purpose to Germany. Can I enter Germany for vacationing purpose with an existing Business visa? Or do I need to apply separately for a tourist visa?

    • A C Type visa is valid for both business and tourism purposes. If your visa is still valid, you have not stayed in the Schengen area for more than 90 days in the last 180 days period, and you still have valid contacts with your business associates in Germany, you can still travel on this visa.

  200. I am travelling with my family to France, Italy, Switzerland, Germany and Austria. Will be entering the Schengen area through Paris and will exit from the same city. I will stay for 4 days in France 7 days in Italy 2 days in Germany, 3 days in Switzerland and 2 days in Austria.
    If I arrive at Paris airport with an Italy consulate issued Schengen visa, will there be any problem during immigration?

    • No you won’t. If you have read the Schengen visa article you must have seen that if you want to travel to multiple countries, you have to apply to the country where you will be staying for the maximum period, and if the duration of your stay will be more or less the same for all the countries, you have to apply to the country to which you will be travelling first. In your case, you HAVE to apply to the Italian Consulate.

  201. I am going to Italy for a conference, and I want to spend a few days after the conference as a tourist. So my trip will be a combined business and tourism trip. Is it enough to apply for a business visa only? Or do I have to apply for two visas, one for business and one for tourism?

    • You have to apply for just one visa – a business visa. But in your covering letter mention your plans for visiting other countries after the conference along with the dates. So your application will have to mention your duration of stay accordingly.

  202. Hi,
    I am planning to visit the Netherlands and Scandinavia this April. I have already been to the Netherlands, Austria, Italy, Czech Rep and Germany last year on vacation along with my family.

    My question is, I work in Abu Dhabi and my family lives in India. Now, since I am planning this vacation with my family (wife and son), is there any possibility by which we can apply together for the Schengen Visa? Or I should be applying for the Schengen Visa from the UAE and my family should be applying separately from India?

    In that case, will the period and validity of the Schengen Visas issued from UAE and India be the same?

    Please clarify.

    • If you all are applying separately, in your covering letters see that you mention the same dates and duration for your stay in the Schengen zone. Also, you will have to mention that your family in India will be travelling with you, while your wife and son have to mention that you will be travelling with them.

  203. Hi Veena,
    My boss’s daughter holds an F-1 student visa in the US and will be visiting Austria, Italy and Switzerland with her father in May. Can she apply for a Schengen visa in the US being an Indian Passport holder and F-1 student visa holder? Thanks.

    • Yes. But her student visa will have to be valid for a period of stay (usually around 6 months, but could be less depending on which country she is applying to) beyond her stay in the Schengen area. She has to show that she has to fly back to the US where she is still studying.

  204. I want to apply for Shengen visa (Hungary). I am currently a student in New Zealand. How do I go about it from here?

  205. I will be travelling to the Czech Republic for a 6 weeks unpaid internship with a not for profit organization. The organization will be sending me an invitation letter mentioning the purpose of my visit and that I will be hosted by them. Although post the internship I intend to travel for 15-17 days to other Schengen countries ie ; Germany, Austria, Hungary and Poland for 3-4 days each. The accommodation in Czech Republic is fixed but there are no hotel bookings done for the other countries as I (and my friend accompanying me) will be staying at our friends’ places or student hostels. So how exactly do I put this across in my application/covering letter or am I supposed to mention it at all?
    I will be providing my dad’s bank statements to show sufficient money as he will be funding this trip.

    • Cara, accommodation proof is a must. Please plan your itinerary and then make the bookings accordingly. Some hotel booking websites let you make reservations on time limit basis or a nominal amount. Refer to the Czech embassy website for what proof of finances they require. And explain your complete travel plans in your covering letter.

  206. I’m a student at IIT Roorkee. I’ve been provided with an opportunity for a summer internship in Belgium, in May for 10-12 weeks. How much time will it take to process this Schengen visa?

    • The websites of all the Schengen countries provide all the essential information travellers need, like, for example, the time for processing of visas. Anyway, the Belgium website says approximately 10 working days excluding the submission date. But apply well in advance if you don’t want your travel plans to be upset. All the best!

  207. My passport has been issued from Pune but I have now settled in Bangalore. I intend to visit the UK and also France, Belgium and Holland. Can I apply for my visas from Bangalore?

  208. I am an Indian resident with a US-Green Card. I’ll be travelling to India on May 22nd. I am not able to get any appointment till end of May at the French Consulate here. Can I apply for a Schengen visa in Chennai? I want to visit Paris on my way back to the US.

    • Yes you can. In your covering letter mention the non-availability of dates for the French embassy in the US.

  209. I am doing my PhD in Germany and I am on a scholarship here. I would like to invite my parents (nearing 60 years) and my grandfather (85 years – fully fit) to Germany and then make a short trip to other Schengen countries. (My husband works in France.) The tour will be for 15 days. I have three questions:
    1. Is it possible to easily get a visa for my grandfather because of his age?
    2. Does he have to go in person for the visa interview? (It will be his first time abroad.)
    3. How much approximate bank balance would be needed for 3 people for a 15 days tour to Europe?

    Thank you 🙂

    • The age factor could make it easier for your grandfather but he will have to show ties back in India.
      He will have to go in person if biometrics are required. Otherwise any travel agent or family member can apply on his behalf with an authority letter from him.
      Regarding finances, many aspects are checked by the visa officer and not just the bank balance. There have to be regular bank transactions showing proof of regular depositing and withdrawing of money, regular and adequate income or pension, etc. Make a rough estimate of the expenses that will be involved and see that the bank savings, plus FDs etc. add up to much more than that.

  210. My mother is an Indian and she has got a visit visa for the UK for 6 months. I would like to know if she needs to apply for her Schengen visa from London or from India to visit the other countries in Europe and what the process would be.

    • She needs to apply for her Schengen visa in India. The procedure is explained in this post.

  211. Do we need to show paid flight reservations or are unpaid temporary flight bookings enough to show the itinerary and flight bookings in case of a short term Schengen visa?

  212. I got a Schengen visa issued by the Portugal Embassy, Delhi. However, the duration of stay is shown as only for 15 days. But I need 19 days to complete my tour, and this is evident from my air tickets which I had provided along with my visa application. I need to get the visa endorsement corrected. What do I do?

    • In your covering letter and while filling out the forms, did you give some indication that you intend to stay for 15 days? The consulates gather information from all the evidence you provide and don’t just go by the air tickets. If you had clearly mentioned that you would require a 19-day stay and provided all the related proof, then it could be seen as the Consulate’s fault. You could therefore approach them to get the duration of stay rectified. But if it’s your fault, then you have to re-apply by paying fresh fees.
      Another option would be to travel on the current visa and then request the emigration officer at the point of entry to extend the duration of stay as per your return ticket date. But you would be taking a chance here. It’s your choice.

  213. I am planning to travel from Delhi on a Schengen visa. Is it possible to get a Schengen visa if I have booked tickets Delhi-Barcelona and a return ticket from Lisbon? My main destination is Spain.

  214. I’m going to Lisbon, Portugal on a business visa and will be there from 23rd June to 28th of June. I had applied for a visa through the Portugal embassy. Can I travel to France anytime between these dates?

    • Yes you can, provided you don’t enter through France. Also, if questioned at any point you could explain that the need to visit France arose later, after applying for your visa.

  215. Currently I am in Germany. My business visa will expire in 5 days, after which I will return to India. When can I apply for a Schengen visa again? Do I have to wait until 6 months after the completion of this visa period?

    • No, you don’t have to wait. You can apply again soon after your return provided you’re not applying more than 90 days before your intended date of travel.

  216. In the past, I had applied for a Schengen Visa for my holiday tour to France and got this from the France Embassy in London. I used it for a 5 days tour. It’s a Multiple Entry, Type-C, 90 days visa valid till Dec 2014.
    Now my UK company wants to send me to Belgium for a Business Meeting of 3 weeks. Can I reuse my same existing Schengen Visa for my Business Meeting and travel to Belgium?
    If yes, what extra documents I need to carry to show the immigration officer?
    Do I need to apply for a separate Business Visa of Belgium?

    • If it’s a Schengen visa (and not a visa just for France) you can travel to Belgium on the same visa within the validity period. You should carry any documents and correspondence from your company related to the business trip in case you’re questioned by an immigration officer.

  217. We are British nationals with UK passports. My father-in-law ( who has an Indian passport) and multiple entry visa to UK is visiting us for 3 months. During this time, we would like to take him along for a trip to Portugal paid for by us. Does he need a Schengen visa or is he exempted as we are UK citizens?

    • He will need a Schengen visa. Contact the Portuguese Embassy in the UK to check if they will allow him to apply from there. Also, only if he has a multiple entry visa to the UK he will be able to return to the UK with you.

  218. I have been called for an interview by an IT company in Munich, Germany for a week. The company is paying for my onward and return flight tickets and also for the hotel booking for this trip. I will be travelling to Munich from Kathmandu.

    Is “Interview” a relevant reason for the purpose of my trip? Also, do I need to submit my bank balance to the embassy when I apply?

    • Since the purpose of your trip is for a work-related interview, and since you’re expected to provide authentic information and details while applying for a Schengen visa, that is exactly the reason you should mention in your application. Also, visa applicants need to carry proof of their bank balance, IT returns, etc. That’s perfectly normal, and you should provide this vital information.

  219. My husband and I are planning to visit Paris, Stockholm and Amsterdam from 29 May 2015 to 8 June 2015. We have done all flight bookings and hotel reservation, also we have 3 years IT returns and 3 lakhs in each of our bank accounts. But as my husband works with my father and we do not have any salary slip or partnership deed etc., is it possible to get a Schengen visa?

    • Nobody can assure you about getting a Schengen visa. The visa officer will have to be satisfied with the documents you produce and also convinced that you’re a bonafide traveller. So make sure that you have all the proper documents and that you can show strong ties to your home country India. Your husband could provide a covering letter (using the company’s letterhead) mentioning the reason for both of you travelling to Europe, the documents you’re providing, etc. and sign it as a person of authority in the company, which he is. If questioned further, explain the true scenario. For further assistance with your documents, get in touch with any experienced travel agent.

  220. My wife and I will be moving to France. My wife will be getting a scientist visa and I will be going as her dependent.

    We would like to invite my mother to stay with us. It seems like she can visit us either on a short stay visitor visa or a long stay (upto 12 months) / temporary stay (upto 6 months) visitor visa.

    We would like to get a visa that allows her to stay for as long as possible, but at the same time has a higher probability of getting approved.

    Can you suggest about the chances of getting a temporary stay / long stay visa and things we could do to improve her chances. She would be able to show sufficient finances to fund her stay in either case.

    • No matter which type of visa you apply for, everything would depend on the discretion of the visa officer. Specially for the long term visa, for which your application and documents need to be most convincing, you need to outline everything clearly in your covering letter including the family circumstances, why the long term visa would be more convenient/beneficial, your mother’s finances and your own, etc. All the best!

  221. I want to visit Hungary as I’m being invited by my friend who is a Hungarian citizen. I’m travelling for the first time. I’ve gone through the documentation requirement and I only want to travel in Hungary. So my 2 questions are:
    1) Do I need to apply for a Schengen visa or just follow the normal visa procedure for Hungary?

    2) I’m from Mumbai. Where do I have to submit all the documents? Do I have to take an appointment and visit New Delhi personally or can I do it through an agent?

    • You have to apply for a short term visa to visit Hungary and mention your travel plans clearly in your covering letter. But there will be a lot of documentation required which will take a couple of weeks for approval from the Embassy in Delhi. For more details, guidance, and help, including service charges, please contact – Mr Shakil – on this number: 9892407701.

  222. I and my husband want to go on a 15 days trip to France and Italy. The problem is that I am still using my previous passport with my previous surname. We have submitted all the required documents including the marriage certificate. Will that be sufficient?

    • No one can predict if a visa officer will still need to see more documents! But just in case some further clarifications are required be prepared with a valid and good enough reason for not getting your new (married) name on your passport yet, and be prepared to give an assurance that you’ll get this done soon after your return.

  223. I have a major doubt. Please try to help me soon. I am travelling to Chicago from India through Lufthansa Airlines and I have a halt at Munich( 1 hour) and Dusseldorf(40 minutes). Please confirm which visa I would require – Schengen visa or airport transit visa? I am very confused.

    • You can travel with only your US Visa. You don’t need any kind of visa (neither Schengen nor airport transit) for those two airports in Europe.

  224. Hi,
    I am planning to visit Lithuania in Oct for a personal visit on a Schengen tourist visa. Is it necessary to submit documents such as the Cover letter from the company I work for and the proof of employment like Salary Slip or Appointment Letter and NOC from Employer? My company is not sponsoring this trip.
    I feel these are for business visa not for tourist visa. Kindly advice.

    • All documents proving your ties to your home country and your financial background, means of earning income, proof of finances, income tax returns, NOC from employer, etc. are required even for a tourist visa.

  225. Hi, I am planning to apply for a Schengen visa for travel to Italy. However I recently changed my address and my passport, bank statement, etc. reflect my previous address. I don’t have time to get it changed as I am planning to go in the first week of October. Can I mention in my covering letter that I recently bought a new house and include the sale agreement in the list of documents?

    • No need to try and get your address changed in your passport and elsewhere to your current one. In the visa application form, fill in your present address. But carry the documents related to your new residence like sale agreement, etc. in case you’re asked to explain the reason for the different address in your passport and other documents, etc.

  226. Dear Veena, I tried to go through as many comments / responses as possible to get my Q answered to avoid asking a Q that had been answered before… but alas :).
    Query- I am an Indian citizen travelling to US for a stay of upto a year on work permit. On the way back I would like to have a few days stay in France or Germany as a visitor. Since my project may get extended, I would need to apply for Schengen visa from the US. Will Schengen embassies of either of these countries (or any other Schengen country) accept my tourist visa application applied from the US? Thanks in advance for your response.

    • Hari, since your date of return to India is uncertain and it’s too early to apply for the visa from here, you have no option but to apply for a Schengen visa from the US. You have a valid reason for applying to any Schengen country from the US, but getting a visa will depend on how strong the documentary proof and the other details you provide are. All the best!

  227. Dear Veena, I have to visit Greece to attend a scientific conference for 4 days from May 25-28, 2016, but before that, I want to spend one night/ two days in Belgium to meet an old friend. Do I need two separate visas for these two countries? Or just one visa i.e. from Greece embassy would be enough to visit both Greece as well Belgium?

    • Ravi, if you have read the post carefully, you must have seen that the very concept of the Schengen visa, that is, one visa for visiting all Schengen countries during one trip, has been very clearly explained. Since you will be staying for more days in Greece, you have to apply to the Greece embassy for your entire stay and in your covering letter mention your itinerary that includes visits to Greece and Belgium.

  228. I am travelling to France and Italy for about 12 days with my wife. Our flight tickets are done together. I have done hotel booking through makemytrip.com. However all the hotel bookings show only ‘my name plus one adult’. There was no option to fill my wife’s name while making the bookings. I want to know if the proof of stay will be valid for my wife’s visa as her name does not figure in the hotel confirmation.

    • In your cover letter, mention that the two of you are travelling together. Usually, hotel bookings are only made in one name. But the number of persons mentioned is important. Also, as long as you have booked a double room, there should not be any problem with the bookings for you or your wife.

  229. Hi Veena, I and my husband are travelling along with our 6-yr old son to Paris (3 days), Switzerland (3) and Italy (4) on 14th Jun. We applied for our visas at vfs Italy on 16th May. We haven’t received the visas yet. The status on the vfs site shows that our passports are with the Italian Embassy. Today is the 15th working day. We are a bit worried as the travel date is just 10 days away. Is it normal to have this much delay?

    • There are many factors affecting the time taken for issuing visas. All applicants don’t get their visas after a fixed period of time. Since your travel dates are mentioned in the application we can assume you will receive the decision in time. However, do call the vfs-italy helpline to get more information about your application status.