Schengen Visa Guide for Indian Passport Holder

Schengen Visa Services

Being frequent travelers to Europe, we have received tons of questions about getting a Schengen Visa. It’s quite expected.

Europe is a dream destination for several, and the Schengen Visa is probably the most complicated or if well known the most easiest visa.

In this blog, we’ll try to answer the questions we have been asked the most as promptly as we can.However, on a NOTE that we are writing based only on our own experiences. The goal is to help other applicants/travelers to have a better picture of the process. But we encourage you to still contact us for more effortless process as we hold both Business as well as Tourist Long term visa and as our clients say we provide best services in Schengen Visa. 🙂 . For further info you can connect with us on https://www.dreamsvoyager.com

WHAT’S COVERED IN THIS GUIDE?

  • What is a Schengen Visa?
  • What are the Schengen countries?
  • Embassy to which I lodge my visa application?
  • What are the requirements?
  • What is the application process? What are the steps?
  • Do we ought to book flights before applying for a visa?
  • Is travel insurance really necessary?
  • Where to get travel insurance?
  • Can I book hotels on my own?
  • What does a detailed itinerary look like?
  • Am I able to visit countries that don’t seem to be within the itinerary I submitted?
  • If my application is approved, do I even have to stay to the itinerary I submitted?
  •  Is a cover letter required?
  • Are embassies really strict?
  • Is there an interview?
  • What are the questions raise at the interview?
  • How early to  apply for a Schengen visa?
  • How soon the visa is obtained after application?
  • what proportion cash to have within the bank for  visa?
  • Validity of the visa?
  • Euro Video!

What is a Schengen Visa?

The Schengen Visa is a travel document that permits the holder to enter any of the twenty six states that includes Schengen territory.

Its like a virtually all-access pass to several countries in Europe,  within the Schengen zone and it eliminates the hassle  to apply for a visa for each individual country.

Schengen Visa Document

What are the Schengen countries?

  • Austria
  • Belgium
  • Czech Republic
  • Denmark
  • Estonia
  • Finland
  • France
  • Germany
  • Greecea
  • Hungary
  • Iceland
Schengen-countries

  • Italy
  • Latvia
  • Liechtenstein
  • Lithuania
  • Luxembourg
  • Malta
  • Netherlands
  • Norway
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Slovakia
  • Slovenia
  • Spain
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland

Which embassy should I lodge my visa application?

It will depend upon the aim of your trip or your overall European itinerary.

The rule is:

  • If you’re visiting only one country, apply at the embassy of that country.
  • If you’re visiting multiple countries, apply at the embassy of the main destination or the country where you will be staying the longest.

However, some countries have additional rules. It is best to counter-check with the Embassy to be completely positive.

What are the requirements?

List of requirements is right here: https://www.dreamsvoyager.com/schengen-visa/

There are little variations, though, so make sure you check with the embassy that will process your application.

What is the application process? What are the steps?

It varies from Embassy to Embassy.

Some embassies, like the French and the Italian, employ a third party unit to handle most visa applications (VFS Global).

Others, just like the German Embassy, take care of ’em in-house.

Here are the embassies I have personally tried:

  • German Embassy
  • Greek Embassy
  • French Embassy
  • Hungarian Embassy
  • Spain Embassy

Do we have to be compelled to book flights before applying for a visa?

NO. Don’t book your flights yet. They only require flight reservations, not flight booking. Don’t pay for your flights yet.(Unless you get a very lightening deal or cheaper Airfare at a great sale.)

Some travel agencies provide dummy tickets  (often for a fee) which is a big NO as they don’t have valid PNR.

DreamsVoyager is a registered accredited travel agency. You can get flight reservations, hotel reservations, and travel insurance for visa application only. click here for Bookings.

Is travel insurance really necessary?

The short answer is YES.

Some embassies, just like the Italian Embassy, needs an extra 15-day coverage on the travel dates you are traveling.

Make sure you recognize these very little rules once buying travel insurance.

Where to get travel insurance?

You can simply purchase travel insurance online. We recommend Religare Travel and Medical Insurance.

You can book travel insurance with DreamsVoyager too! 🙂

You can use same page we created for Visa Reservations.Just fill the form and we will revert back with the best quotes. https://www.dreamsvoyager.com/travel-medical-insurance-form/

Can I book hotels on my own?

Yep. You can book via third-party websites, but book hotels with FREE Cancellation policy so you won’t be wasting money in case your visa gets rejected.

What does a detailed itinerary look like?

Like this : https://www.dreamsvoyager.com/itinerary/prague-frankfurt-belgium-to-paris-in-8-days-land-only/

we have many custom tailor made itineraries in hand.Connect with us to get a curated itinerary based on your requirements and budget.

Detailed Itinerary
Detailed Itinerary (sample Only)

Can I visit countries that are not in the itinerary I submitted?

Yes, as long as it is within the Schengen Zone.

If my application is approved, do I even have to stay to the itinerary I submitted?
Ideally, but not really.
You can deviate from your original itinerary if you would like to.
We created variety of changes to our itineraries whenever we tend to visit Europe.
But my solely advice is this: At your purpose of entry, know that you might be asked questions about your itinerary.So stay confident.
At the terribly least, stay the longest in the country where you got your visa so you won’t run into trouble. They have the proper right to refuse your entry in spite of having visa.

Is a cover letter required?

 

I extremely encourage you to supply one particularly if there’ll be no interview.

You can justify the aim of your trip more.

Here’s a sample. We provide complete documentation also right from :

  1. Cover Letter
  2. NOC Certificate
  3. Day to Day Itinerary
  4. Taking VFS appointment
schengen cover letter

Are embassies really strict?
Yes, but some are more strict than others. For example, in my travel circles, the Italian and Spanish Embassies are notorious for being extremely meticulous, while the French, German, Dutch and Austrian Embassies are known for being more forgiving and considerate.
That’s just according to our own experiences. Might not be true in some cases.

Is there an interview?
Some embassies conduct a short interview, some don’t. Usually, when a third party agents (like VFS) is involved, there will no longer be an interview.But if there is a longer stay and Embassy is doubting on something ,they might call you for interview or further documents.
Some candidates are asked for interview at the embassy if they want more clarifications. It’s best to check with the embassy to be sure.
Just answer their questions truthfully and confidently.Don’t lie. Most of the time, they will know.

What are the Questions raise at the interview?
When one of my client applied, these were asked:
  • What is the purpose of your trip?
  • How long is your trip?
  • How long will you stay in (country)?
  • What is your first stop?
  • What countries are you going to visit?
  • When will you leave?
  • When will you be back?
  • Will this be your first time in Europe?
  • What countries did you visit on your initial trip to Europe and for what purpose?
  • Do you know anyone in (country)?
  • Do you know anyone in any other Schengen country?
  • How are you related to them?
  • How did you meet?
  • With whom are you traveling?
  • How are you related to your companion?
  • What do you do for a living? (Expect a lot of follow up questions about your job.)
  • However long have you ever been along with your company?
  • Does your company know you’re taking this trip?
  • Do you own properties in India (home country)?
Based on experience, most of the questions were about three things:
  • The details of the trip, which means you must know your itinerary by heart
  • Connections to anyone in Europe.
  • Job and your rootedness in home country.
Again, answer truthfully and confidently.
Note that these are just the common questions.They might still raise loads of alternative queries relevant to your background and application.
Visa Interview

How early to apply for a Schengen visa?
You can apply up to 90 days (3 months) before.
While most embassies are comparatively quick, it is wise to give some time allowance just in case something doesn’t go as planned (e.g.they ask for additional documents). I consider “a month before” too tight.
Two months provide you with enough time to secure all needed documents and fix a haul if arise.

How soon Visa is obtained after submitting Application?
Depends on the embassy.
The French Embassy releases visas when 5-7 days(In most if my cleint cases they have received within 3-4 days), the German Embassy 7-14 days. Most of the time, the wait is shorter. Sometimes, when they have doubts, it can take longer.
So it really depends on the embassy AND your case.

How much cash to have within the bank for visa approval ?
No one really knows for sure what the minimum amount is.
But bear in mind this: you’ll be asked to submit flight and reservations and a close every day itinerary.
So here’s the Thumb Rule:
Add the price of the flights you reserved and therefore the cost of the accommodations and Euro 60 per day.
Some embassies need 45 Euro per day, some 50, some 55.To be on the safe side, use 60 Euro per day per person.
Of course, that can’t be the sole quantity in your account.
Funds for schengen visa

How long is the validity of the visa?
Depends on the itinerary you will submit and the embassy and how strong and curated your documents are!! 😛
A Tourist Schengen Visa permits third-country nationals enter into the Schengen Area for a maximum of 90 days within a 6-month period, under the purpose of traveling or visiting Europe for pleasure
 

The Schengen visa might seem vast and complicated, but all you need to do is keep a simple checklist of up-to-date documents ready. Follow the  process mentioned above, and it will automatically seem less confusing. (Do remember to start collecting your documents well in advance of your trip. This will save you a lot of time, effort and panic).

Take a deep breath. We’re here to simplify the entire process. When you apply for a visa with DreamsVoyager, we guide you through the entire process, step by step. Furthermore, we also provide you with a few tips to keep in mind when you start the Schengen visa application process.

This visa is your gateway to all your childhood dreams, to the land of stunning natural beauty, snowy mountains, shimmering blue coastlines, charming cities and more. So, let’s break down the Schengen visa and the process of obtaining one, so you can start booking your trip as soon as possible.

With DreamsVoyager you have a guide by your side. A little bit of research and planning ahead is all it takes. You can then sit back, relax and look forward to the trip of a lifetime like we have shared video below of one of our Euro Trip. 🙂 😛 😀

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