A lot of people get denials after applying for visas due to lack of adequate information to properly guide them through the process. There are even countless numbers of stories of people who have been swindled by the so-called travel agents who stop at nothing to extort huge amounts from them for something they could have easily done themselves.
Whatever your reason for travelling to a Schengen member country, the best way to apply for your visa is to do it yourself- yea, you heard right, you don’t need anyone to do it for you. You just need the right information which I am about to provide you with.
First, what’s a Schengen Visa?
A Schengen Visa is a kind of Visa that permits you to enter any of its member countries. Some of its member countries include:
- Czech Republic
Therefore, if you have a Schengen Visa, you would be permitted to enter into any of the 25 countries listed above.
To apply for a Schengen Visa, you need to do so through the consulate or embassy of any of the countries listed. But before you decide on which embassy to apply from, you need to consider a few things.
Your main destination-: If for instance, you intend to visit Germany which of course is one of the Schengen member countries, you should apply for your Schengen Visa through the German embassy.
Length of Stay-: If you are visiting more than one country, say for instance you intend to visit Germany, France and Italy; you need to consider where you intend to stay the longest. If you intend to stay 2 weeks in Germany, 4 weeks in Italy and 6 weeks in France, you should apply for your visa at the embassy of the country where you intend to stay the longest.
Country of Entry-: If you plan soon staying for equal lengths of time in the Schengen countries you wish to visit or unsure of how long you plan to stay, then the best place to apply for your Schengen Visa is in the embassy of the first Schengencountry you plan to visit.
When to Apply For Your Schengen Visa from Nigeria
Visas are usually issued three months from the intended travel date so the best time to start your application process is at least four months to your intended travel date.
So for instance, if you plan to visit any Schengen country in September, the best time to start processing your visa is in June.
Visa Application Procedure
Step 1: Gather all relevant documents
You need all the necessary documents to proof that you are qualified for a visa, have the financial means to sustain yourself during the visit and have strong ties to your country which would ensure that you return to Nigeria after the visit. Some of the documents you would need include-:
- Bank Statement
- Evidence of strong ties to country. A letter from your employer or title deeds of your house or land would be sufficient.
- Letter of Invitation from the person you intend to visit.
- Hotel Reservation.
- Invitation from company/business contact in case of business travel.
- Medical Insurance Policy
- Valid International Passport.
Step 2: Obtain Application Form and Fill It
When you are sure that you have all the necessary documents, the next thing to do is to carefully fill out the application form. Questions you would be asked range from reasons for travel, financial strength and ties to home country.
Submit Application Form
When you are done filling the form, you can then submit to the embassy where you have decided to make your application and wait patiently for their verdict.
This may take time as each Schengen country has its own rules for entering its country and this might elongate the process of visa application but as long as you meet all the requirements and provide all the supporting documents listed above, you can be sure to get your visa approved.