I have seen many interesting travel plans getting trashed because of many reasons and Visa Rejection is one of them. Therefore it is necessary that you plan any of your holiday considering all legal travel requirements in advance, because I know how it feels, when you are about to pack your bags and get such unexpected surprise which may even spoil your vacation mood.
I am sharing my personal experience of obtaining Single Entry Schengen Visa (Short term visa/Europe Visa) here, which was approved at single attempt without any hurdles.
You can visit up to 26 countries on your 1 Schengen Visa (Europe Visa) without any passport control or border check based on the type of visa approved.
In UAE Schengen visa (European visa) processing is being taken care by VFS Global and they provide most of the required information on their Website. They do have a call center too, which has different contact number based on different country’s visa section.
Your Schengen Visa (Europe Visa) requirements may differ based on the European country you are applying for and type of visa you are applying for, however most of the Schengen Countries (European countries) have similar requirements, which includes
- Properly filled Visa Application Form (Available on VFS website)
- Recent color photographs (Based on specification given by VFS/Visa applying European country)-Generally all photo studio people knows about the size. You may just ask them you need photographs for Schengen Visa/Europe visa.
- UAE bank account statement (3 or 6 months-Differs from country to country)-Original bank statement taken from branch with bank’s seal on it. There is no specific minimum amount requirement stated but you need to show sufficient fund to take care of your expenditure during your stay in Schengen Country.
- Valid passport with valid UAE residence visa (In some cases they may ask for validity of residence up to 6 months)
- Photo copy of passport and UAE residence visa along with Emirates ID.
- NOC letter from your employer (In case of employed). Business owners please check requirement from VFS global/Schengen country of visa application.
- Travel itinerary to Schengen countries.
- Flight and hotel/accommodation bookings in Schengen country
- International travel insurance (Valid in Schengen Countries) for period of stay covering up to € 30000 of healthcare
- Tip-You may look for refundable flight and hotel tickets and travel insurance to avoid any loss in case of visa rejection
- Scheduled appointment letter for visa application center
For more case specific requirements, please check on VFS Global website or website of Schengen country you are applying for. You may also call VFS Global call center to get some more case specific information.
Austria tourist visa (Short term) application requirement can be accessed from
Schengen Visa (Europe visa) Application Process/Steps
- Schengen visa rule says, you should apply for the Schengen country where your stay will be maximum during your visit. In case you are planning to have equal stay in any of the Schengen countries than you should apply from your country of initial entry to Schengen zone.
- For most of the Schengen counties, you have to take prior appointment by paying appointment fee, however when we applied (August-2016), for Czech Republic they were accepting walk-in application also. Please check on VFS Global website for latest updates
- You can check latest appointment availability from VFS Global website (Tip-Like our case latest available appointment in Dubai was 3 weeks later but when we checked for Abu Dhabi, it was available for next week also, so we applied from Abu Dhabi. Also they have an option of something called as privilege section, where they charge some extra amount and provide certain additional facilities too). It does not mater your UAE residence visa is issued from Dubai, Abu Dhabi or any other Emirates, you can apply from any of visa application center located in Wafi Mall Dubai or Abu Dhabi Mall, Abu Dhabi.
- For each individual there has to be separate Schengen visa application form (In our case for Austria Visa)
- At the time of scheduling appointment VFS Global charge some fee which I think is non refundable and visa fee has to be paid at the counter during your Schengen visa application in cash (As far as I remember, they don’t accept card payments)
- In case you are traveling in group of friends with different surnames than visa application center may also ask letter from the person on whose name hotel bookings are done in Schengen countries, stating that other will be staying with him/her only (In case other applicant names are not in bookings)
- Visit, visa application center on your appointment date and time. Ensure to be on time, as they give specific slot of time based on appointment and do not accept any late entry. In general an application processing takes about 15 minutes depending upon documents and visa type. Keep at least 15 minutes of buffer as waiting time. (Tip-Take 1 extra photocopy of all your documents to save time in application processing)
- You will need to submit your original passport along with Schengen visa application and supporting documents for processing.
- You will be given 2 options of getting back your passport. 1-Pick-up by yourself from visa application center (Same from where you are applying). 2-Receive at your postal address by courier (Additional charges apply)
- Status of Schengen visa application can be tracked using tracking ID given on your Schengen visa application receipt provided by VFS Global post submission (Don’t through it as it looks like supermarket bill and you may think it’s payment receipt). You may also opt for SMS update option (I think additional charges apply)
- Processing time differ from country to country but in general it takes 7-10 working days (In our case it was processed within 3 days)
Please note all above information is based on my personal experience and may differ person to person. So I strongly recommend visiting VFS Global website/Schengen country of applying visa’s website/Calling VFS global for more clarity before applying.
I encourage fellows to ask for any question you come across, and I will try to answer them all based on my experience and knowledge.
All the best…!!!