When planning a trip to a Schengen country, you must submit a set of documents, such as your passport and a completed application form. One other document that is important is an invitation letter Schengen visa. This letter is not requested by embassy officials from all applicants, but it boosts their chances significantly. In this article, we review the Schengen visa process and what a Schengen visa invitation letter should contain.
The Schengen Visa For Europe
Europe is popularly called a borderless continent because of the free entry and free exit policy of most European nations. There are 27 Schengen countries in Europe, and all of them are eligible to issue Schengen visas. While their citizens are free to enter and exit any member State at will, citizens from other countries need more than their passports or ID cards to enter the Schengen Area.
Visa-Free Countries: There are more than 60 countries on the Schengen visa-free list whose citizens do not need a visa to enter these countries. All they need is an ETIAS approval and a valid passport.
Others: The other nationalities who are not on the visa-free list are the ones who require a visa to enter the Schengen Area
A Schengen visa is valid for 180 days and becomes active from the day it is issued, whether you use it or not. The visa allows the holder to visit one or more Schengen countries, but you are not allowed to stay for more than 90 days. This visa is issued to citizens from non-visa-exempt countries who wish to visit for tourism, visit family attend business meetings or events, attend sports or cultural events, or even as a transit visa on their way to another country.
Schengen visas are mainly short visit visas that allow the holder to visit any of the 27 Schengen countries, including non-Schengen countries like Cyprus, Romania, and Bulgaria.
The visa allows entry into micro States like San Marino, Andorra, Monaco, and The Vatican.
Now that you know what the Schengen visa is for, let us review the letter of invitation.
Invitation Letter Schengen Visa
An Invitation letter is a written document by a person living in a Schengen country to another person living outside the Schengen area. This letter simply states that the Schengen resident or citizen is inviting the other party to stay with them for a short while. Also, the sender guarantees that the recipient will not stay in the country beyond the time allowed.
Although invitation letters are not a must for all visa applicants, they are known to boost the chances of getting their application approved since someone else can vouch for them. The letter describes the relationship both parties share, and the sender can even go as far as stating that they will provide them with financial support.
Invitation let’s are attached to other documents submitted at the embassy, and it also shows that you are going to the country in question with all the support you will need.
What An Invitation Letter Must Contain?
An Invitation letter must contain the following
Name Of Sender and Recipient: The sender is a Schengen citizen or resident, while the recipient is the visa applicant. The letter must contain the names of both parties.
Establish Relationship: It must indicate the relationship between both parties, e.g., brother, sister, spouse, child, or parent.
Purpose: The letter must indicate the purpose of the trip. Why does the applicant want to visit the sender in the Schengen country? The reason or reasons must be clearly stated.
Employment: The sender must provide their employment status and their business address or office if they have one.
Guarantee: They must provide guarantees that they will be financially responsible for the applicant’s expenses once they arrive in the country. Furthermore, they must clearly state that the applicant will not stay beyond the approved duration.
When writing a Schengen invitation letter, make sure you provide verifiable information. Furthermore, you must make sure that the recipient is someone you can vouch for and for good reasons too. Since your contact information will be included in the letter, the authorities will come for you if the visitor breaks the rules by overstaying in the country or committing a crime.
Lastly, always use formal language when writing letters of invitation so the embassy officials will take the applicant’s case seriously. Avoid using slang and metaphors that may be confusing.
How To Use A Letter Of Invitation?
The invitation letter Schengen visa must be attached to the visa application form and other documents and submitted to the embassy. Officials will review all documents and make a determination whether the applicant is qualified for the visa or not.