So you’ve finally made up your mind to travel to one of the most beautiful places on earth — Europe.

Firstly you’ll need to apply for a visa well in time so that you don’t face any problems when you’re all set and ready to go. This article will tell you how to apply for Europe visa.

Visa Requirements for Europe

The passport must have at least 2 blank pages. This is intended for space for stamp for initial and, if necessary, extension of visa.

You will be required to submit the passport and copies of your previous visas valid for 3 months prior to your departure.

Have a travel medical insurance policy up to €30,000 secured to cover medical expenses if required. As tourist, medical costs can be excessive in Europe as you are not covered by state health benefits and will, therefore, rely on insurance as required by Schengen visa.

For tourist visa you need

  • Current bank statement – this is typically a 3-6 month statement with funds enough to cover your stay in Europe. This statement should bear your name and funds should be at least €2,500.
  • Description of trip – this includes list of countries you intend to visit in Schengen area and may appear on the visa application form.
  • Plane ticket – confirmed return air tickets indicating the date of travel entry to and return from Europe. This is usually the basis of the date of validity of visa.
  • Hotel booking – booking of a hotel or any valid accommodation helps reassure visa officers your travel is legitimate. If you are staying with friends or family members, a letter from them will also be helpful.
  • Reference letter from employer – reference letter will include your job description, length of employment and dates of permitted vacation.
  • Fees – adults €60, children aged 6-12 €35 each, children below 6 are free. In some cases fees for children 12 and below are waived or reduced.

When visiting friends/relatives you need to show a formal invitation from them.

For tourist travel you need

  • Bank statement
  • Detailed itinerary of travel, hotel reservations

For business travel purpose you need

  • Cover letter explaining purpose of visit
  • Profile of working place
  • Bank Statement
  • Hotel and plane ticket reservation
  • Invitation letter from Partner Company

For study visa you need

  • Letter of acceptance from university/college/school
  • Financial proof
  • Filling of two application forms

For permanent residents you need

  • Filling of two application forms
  • Marital certificate copy
  • Copy of Spouse’s passport and residency permit

Procedure to apply for visa application

  1. Download the latest application form (see below for list of forms).
  2. Fill the form in your own handwriting in black ink if printed or type into it if it’s a softcopy.
  3. Fill all the columns carefully and sign the application wherever required.
  4. In case the applicant is a minor the parents are required to submit a written consent and sign in corresponding column of application form. You will also need the minor’s birth certificate.
  5. Attach a passport format recently taken photo with a light background.

Where to apply for visa to Schengen countries

If you are travelling to more than one Schengen countries apply in the Embassy/ Consulate of the country in which you will be staying for the longest period. Once you obtain the visa you can travel to any number of Schengen countries for the permitted time.

If you are planning to visit several countries randomly with no main destination then apply for the visa in the embassy/consulate on the first Schengen country you will enter according to your plan.

If you’re travelling to only one Schengen-area country then you need to apply at the appropriate embassy/consulate of the certain country.

When to Apply for visa to Europe

Apply for a visa around six weeks prior to your departure. For a short term travel the appointment must be made no more than six weeks in advance.

Extension of Visa:

You can apply for extension of visa if you want in the corresponding institution in the Schengen country of residence. It allows you to visit the same country as the original visa. A visa extension should not have a stay exceeding 90 days.