What is the fastest way to get a Schengen visa quickly? Is it possible to submit your application now And get it after a few days in time for an emergency trip to any of the Schengen countries?
For starters, you need to know the average processing time for Schengen visa applications before anything else. Schengen visas take roughly 15 calendar days before they are issued to travelers, but it is not a secret that some applicants are forced to wait much longer to get theirs.
You should note that the authority to issue or not to issue visas is not in your power as an applicant, so there really isn’t much you can do about that. However, there are some ways to hasten the process on your end so you don’t wait too long. Here are some clever ways to get your visa quickly.
Use A Visa Application Service
One method is to use a proven visa application service if this is possible from your country. Such services will require you to scan your passport and some other documents and forward them to them by mail, and they will handle the rest for you. However, this option only works for travelers from selected countries, so the option may not be available to you. Very good application agencies will scan the various countries in the region and recommend one that will issue the visa on time.
Mail-In Your Documents
If you don’t want to use an application service for one reason or another, you can apply for a visa to Germany. Why Germany? This is because Germany is one of the few countries in the Schengen region that allows mail applications. So, you may opt for Germany rather than spend time with in-person applications. Even if Germany is not on your radar, you can get the visa, visit Germany first then travel to the Schengen country of your choice. All this can be done without going for an interview.
Choose A Smaller Country
One effect trick many travelers use to get their visas quickly is to apply to a small Schengen country. There are some countries in the Schengen region that receive only a fraction of the applications that other larger or more popular countries receive. This can be the best option for last-minute travelers. Smaller countries don’t have many embassies in other countries, so they will request your passport and the date you hope to travel and do all they can to determine your application so they can get your passport back to you.
Good examples of countries to visit include Lithuania, Luxembourg, Slovakia, Greece, the Czech Republic, Poland, Latvia, and Estonia. These countries receive fewer applications, so they are known for faster processing.
Attach A Support Letter
Another way to get the visa on time is to attach a support letter to your application. The letter should explain to the embassy your reasons for wanting to visit the country and also state your Income source. Attaching a support letter to your application will make you appear trustworthy. It will also prove that you have strong ties with your home country and that you will likely return on or before the 90 days allowed.
There is no substitute for applying early. The earlier you apply for the visa, the better. Early application is the best policy if you want your visa to come on time. As a general rule, try to submit your application at least 3-4 weeks in advance, which will give the embassy enough time to process your application. If you submit your application two weeks or less before your planned travel date, the likelihood of rejection is higher.
Book Morning Appointment
Late but not least is to book a morning appointment at the embassy. Early appointments are always best.
You want to face the visa officer when they are fresh and not exhausted, as is often the case during late afternoons. You also want them to spend as much time interviewing you rather than reject your application after a question or two. Early appointments do not guarantee that you will even be issued the visa, but it helps immensely.
Schengen visa applicants who cannot submit their documents via mailing service will have to do so in person at the embassy or consulate of the country they wish to visit. If there isn’t an embassy or consulate, they should look for a licensed visa application center to submit their documents. Many Schengen countries have licensed centers like VFS that handle visa applications and document collection.
So what is the fastest way to get a Schengen visa? The fastest way is to apply to a smaller Schengen country, even if it is not on your trip bucket list. With a Schengen visa, you can always travel to multiple countries in the region.