1. It doesn’t matter much. I have known readers who have applied for the UK visa first and Schengen later. They had similar itineraries comprising a trip to UK and Europe. In my opinion, going for the UK visa first is better since your passport will be away at the UK consulate for almost 30 days. You can neither track your visa status nor talk to someone at the consulate. It can be annoying if you already had your Schengen visa and the travel dates are approaching.
Review the ETA visa criteria to make sure it meets your needs. An ETA allows you to travel to Australia as a tourist, to visit family or friends, or to conduct certain business activities. As a business visitor, you can do things like negotiate contracts, make business inquiries, or take part in a conference or seminar (although you can't get paid for your contribution to any conference or seminar).[2]

The F-1 Visa (Academic Student) allows you to enter the United States as a full-time student at an accredited college, university, seminary, conservatory, academic high school, elementary school, or other academic institution or in a language training program. You must be enrolled in a program or course of study that culminates in a degree, diploma, or certificate and your school must be authorized by the U.S. government to accept international students.


Pick any two countries. Say Hungary and Netherlands. Show a flight itinerary to fly into Budapest and out from Amsterdam, but also another itinerary for Budapest to Amsterdam. You will basically provide two flight itineraries. Plus provide hotel reservations in 2 or 3 cities in Hungary and Netherlands. After your visa approval, you can purchase your actual tickets to fly into Budapest and fly out from Amsterdam. 

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2) Perhaps a frequent traveler like you can shed some light on this. I have a 5-year multiple entry Schengen visa issued by France. Do I need to have either an entry or exit stamp from France each time I travel to the Schengen countries? I mean can I avoid visiting France altogether on a particular visit; say enter through Italy and exit through Spain?

With that said, the user interface is superb, and the site is chock full of visa information. I love it how you just click on the visa button, enter your zip code, and you go right to the appropriate visa information for the consulate of your jurisdiction. I know this must have taken a TON of work to implement, so I give a strong Bravo to these guys for putting this functionality on their website.
As an international student coming to the United States, there are three different student visas that you could be issued: F1 Visa, J1 Visa or M1 Visa. The F1 and J1 visas allow for the possibility of employment in the US during your stay, while the M1 Visa does not. You need to be familiar with the types of visas, how they impact your financing while in the USA and how to go through the application and arrival processes.
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4. Finally, I know it takes approx. 15-20 days to get Schengen visa and another 15-20 days for UK visa. If I start with Schengen in last week of April, with travel dates July 1 to 15, and then apply for the UK, do you think I’ll have enough margin between getting the passport back and travel as planned? I can move my travel dates to July 15 to 30 if I don’t get the UK visa in time. But then my Schengen visa will show the validity of July 1 to 15!! Again confused with validity.

U.S. citizens traveling to India are required to have a valid visa for entry into the country. You must have at least six months of validity beyond the expiration date on your passport along with the visa, as well as two blank pages in the passport. The U.S. Department of State recommends being up-to-date with several vaccinations, including hepatitis A and B, typhoid, cholera, malaria, Japanese encephalitis and rabies. If a visitor is arriving from a country infected with Yellow Fever, which does not include the U.S., a vaccination is required. Travelers to India should also be able to provide a copy of a return flight itinerary and prove they have sufficient funds to afford their stay in the country.


An M1 visa is issued to a student who is going to attend a non-academic or vocational school. M-1 visa holders for technical and vocational programs are not permitted to work during the course of their studies. The M-1 student visa applicants must have evidence that sufficient funds are immediately available to pay all tuition and living costs for the entire period of intended stay.
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I have a query and hope you can give me the right advice on how to move forward. I have previous history (past 5 years) of travelling to Ireland, Georgia, Armenia, Serbia, Qatar, UAE & Oman. In my old passports, there are stickers of Irish visa, French Schengen visa, Canada vis,a Ukraine visa and Belarussian visa. Last year March, I was granted a 19-day multiple entry Schengen visa from the German embassy (not VFS), but I couldn’t travel/use due to HR deficit in my company and so company asked to work. Recently, I got a fresh B1/B2 10-year US visa stamped. Intending to travel via Germany to US, I made an itinerary with few days stay right before & soon after my journey to US in Frankfurt, Germany, I applied for a Schengen visa at the German consulate (via VFS) last week. After 7 days, I got a call from the VFS and the staff told me that the rules of German embassy require me to have 1-month more validity to my residence visa in GCC country (where I’m staying) , i.e, after I exit Germany, my GCC resident visa should be valid for another full month, but I was short of 3 days. The staff told I can collect my passport from VFS to extend my resident visa, and then submit my passport again. I didn’t know the above-said 1-month rule earlier and neither did I read anything about it on their website or VFS website. But never mind, now I know.
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Large sums of money in bank accounts may not be sufficient proof of financial support. When providing information about your bank accounts, ask someone at your bank for a letter that states how long the account has existed, and what the average balance in the account has been. That should convince the visa officer that you and your family have a long and stable history of business at the bank.
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1. My trip will be total 20-22 days, split between UK-4, France-7, Swiss-4, Italy-7. I am going as a tourist but will be also attending an university reunion one full day in France, which is the main motivation for the trip. I want to apply for the Schengen visa first (at the French Consulate), then for the UK visa. Is this a good strategy, considering France is my main reason for the trip. or do you advise to apply the UK one first, then France? My reasoning being, the Schengen visa would increase my chance for the UK one.
While in US and since I’m travelling solo, I have a special interest to visit these places for 3-4 days each – Anchorage in Alaska, El Salvador & Trinadad (as you know, for the last two, Indians don’t need visa). But, I’m thinking how to plan my trips wisely and from which part of US to fly out and back in in order to save on air fares. Any pointers?
If you’re in the US, you may want to start with the U.S. State Department website and search for your destination country. The next step would be to look at your destination country’s embassy or consulate website to determine your travel visa options. Most embassies will require you to fill out your application online and send in your passport via postal mail. Once your visa application is approved and processed, the consulate or embassy will send you a visa. The visa will be attached to your passport. The process can take anywhere from a week to two months to complete. The cost ranges from $50 to $200, with some embassies offering expedited services for an additional fee.

Thanks for this article. It is very informative! I have an Indian passport (‘powerless passport- this made me chuckle) but I am currently residing in the United States(work visa). I am planning a trip to the Schengen area – fly in and out of Amsterdam and probably visit Belgium and Germany while there. The documents specify bank statements – do you think online print outs will do fine? I am glad that these online sites that book the flight/hotel/insurance for you are genuine and I plan to use ‘travelvisabookings’. The question I have for you is that Indian passports or maybe it’s just my passport has my whole name listed under ‘given name’ and ‘surname’ is blank. Do you have any suggestions regarding this when it comes to filling out visa applications where they ask for first and last name? Thanks a lot for your time!
Hi GQ! Thanks for the kind words! I understand that your cruise will start and end in Italy. But, are you flying into Italy to catch your cruise? If so, you would need to show the round trip tickets to and from Italy for Schengen visa application. For example, say you reside in India. In that case, you would need show roundtrip ticket from India-Italy and Italy-India.
The visa officer needs to know your specific objectives, both academic or professional, for studying in the United States. Be prepared to explain why it is better to study your specific field in the United States than to study at home. Be ready to say exactly what you will study and for what career your U.S. studies will prepare you. Calmly state your education plans concisely and clearly.
A visa does not guarantee entry into the United States.  A visa only allows a foreign citizen to travel to a U.S. port-of-entry (generally an airport) and request permission to enter the United States. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS), U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officials at the port-of-entry have authority to permit or deny admission to the United States.  
Some airlines will let you hold your reservation for up to 5 days if you are purchasing an award ticket or using your airline miles. The held reservation is a printable itinerary that you can use for your visa application. The reservation might say that it needs to be purchased within a given time. But, it is still an acceptable option for visa applications. Few examples –
Editorial disclosure: All reviews are prepared by CreditCards.com staff. Opinions expressed therein are solely those of the reviewer and have not been reviewed or approved by any advertiser. The information, including card rates and fees, presented in the review is accurate as of the date of the review. Check the data at the top of this page and the bank's website for the most current information.
Students who are authorized Optional Practical Training (OPT) must have a Form I-20 endorsed for OPT, and apply to USCIS for an Employment Authorization Document (EAD). When authorized, OPT is temporary employment that is directly related to the eligible F-1 student's area of study. To learn more about OPT, please visit the USCIS Website and the ICE International Students webpage.
If a travel visa is one of the foreign entry requirements for the places you plan to visit, you need to obtain it from the appropriate embassy or consulate office. Most foreign consular representatives are located in major cities in the United States such as New York, Houston and Los Angeles. There are a large number of embassies in Washington, DC. Some countries allow you to apply for a visa by mail while others require a personal appearance.
Thanks for this article. It is very informative! I have an Indian passport (‘powerless passport- this made me chuckle) but I am currently residing in the United States(work visa). I am planning a trip to the Schengen area – fly in and out of Amsterdam and probably visit Belgium and Germany while there. The documents specify bank statements – do you think online print outs will do fine? I am glad that these online sites that book the flight/hotel/insurance for you are genuine and I plan to use ‘travelvisabookings’. The question I have for you is that Indian passports or maybe it’s just my passport has my whole name listed under ‘given name’ and ‘surname’ is blank. Do you have any suggestions regarding this when it comes to filling out visa applications where they ask for first and last name? Thanks a lot for your time!
Some airlines will let you hold your reservation for up to 5 days if you are purchasing an award ticket or using your airline miles. The held reservation is a printable itinerary that you can use for your visa application. The reservation might say that it needs to be purchased within a given time. But, it is still an acceptable option for visa applications. Few examples –
With U.S.-based offices in Washington, DC and New York City, a U.K.-based office in London and a Canadian office in Ontario, VisaHQ is a heavyweight in the world of visa agencies. Even though they’ve been around in the online travel visa business since just 2003, they have grown rapidly and have the cleanest, most user-friendly website that you will find. If you go to the bottom of their home page to where it says “VisaHQ widgets”, you will find a cool tool that quickly shows you if you need a visa for pretty much any country in the world.
Review the ETA visa criteria to make sure it meets your needs. An ETA allows you to travel to Australia as a tourist, to visit family or friends, or to conduct certain business activities. As a business visitor, you can do things like negotiate contracts, make business inquiries, or take part in a conference or seminar (although you can't get paid for your contribution to any conference or seminar).[2] 

Passport Visas Express specializes in expediting passport applications in as little as 24 hours, but they have a pretty decent visa service as well. I do find their claim to issue “expedited” visas to more than 150 countries a bit misleading though (not that many countries offer expedited visas). In most situations, visa processing speeds will be at the whim of the consulate (which is beyond their control).
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