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. 

Hello sir, please, i wish to make a reservation for iceland and new zealand visa application for purpose of summer studies, please which airline do you recommend to book reserve for visa application? i think this is just reservation right? so no payment is needed upfront? but please, since some can only reserve for few days, what do you suggest about some application that takes month to get granted? wont the short days reservation be a problem?
A valid U.S. visa in an expired passport is still valid. Unless canceled or revoked, a visa is valid until its expiration date. If you have a valid visa in your expired passport, do not remove it from your expired passport. You may use your valid visa in your expired passport along with a new valid passport for travel and admission to the United States.
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The EVUS website is now open to the public for enrollments at www.EVUS.gov.  CBP will not collect a fee for EVUS enrollment at this time. CBP anticipates the eventual implementation of an EVUS enrollment fee, but does not have a time frame. Until the implementation of a fee, travelers can enroll in EVUS without charge.  The Department of Homeland Security, Customs and Border Protection (CBP) will keep visa holders informed of new information throughout the year. For further information, please visit www.cbp.gov/EVUS.‎
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.
A valid U.S. visa in an expired passport is still valid. Unless canceled or revoked, a visa is valid until its expiration date. If you have a valid visa in your expired passport, do not remove it from your expired passport. You may use your valid visa in your expired passport along with a new valid passport for travel and admission to the United States. 
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!

Nilesh, 3-day hold is perfectly fine for Schengen visa application. Consulates very well know that you cannot hold tickets for 2 weeks. So, my recommendation – go for Emirates. Regarding visareservation.com and other services, I recommend using the airlines’ services first if available. If none of those are available or don’t work for you, then go for visareservation.com, etc.

I provide all options and links to all services available out there including major airlines. If you just say “websites”, it’s confusing to me and to my readers. If you want to warn the readers about a specific company, please be specific. That way, you can prevent the readers from getting scammed from such companies. If you just say “websites”, it’s not going to help anyone.


Note: Visa applicants must qualify on the basis of the applicant's residence and ties abroad, rather than assurances from U.S. family and friends. A letter of invitation or Affidavit of Support is not needed to apply for a visitor visa. If you choose to bring a letter of invitation or Affidavit of Support to your interview, please remember it is not one of the factors used in determining whether to issue or deny the visa.
I submitted my wife’s salary certificate and leave approval latter, children’s school NOC letter, four savings account (16 lac balance), two current account with proper transactions, my wife’s rented income proof (rent agreement), I am doing property dealing business with proprietorship, submitted firm registration, shop establishment license (office), which is only one year old, submitted various 8 property paper with translation, not submitted internal travel tickets (is it mandatory?)
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?

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.


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?


Determine whether you're eligible for an ETA visa. Citizens of most European, Asian, and North American countries can travel to Australia with an ETA visa. You must also have a clean criminal record and be in relatively good health. You can confirm you have an eligible passport at https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/visas/getting-a-visa/visa-listing/electronic-travel-authority-601#Eligibility.[3]
I am from India and for the past 5 years, I am working/living in the San Francisco area. I am planning to visit Spain in Sep’19 for tourism. The trip will be for 12 days. I have the Schengen Visa appt coming up in 10 days at the Spanish embassy in San Francisco. I landed on your blog while searching for tips to get required documents for visa appt such as Flight reservations, Hotel bookings, etc. I looked at many of the responses you provided and they looked very precise and very helpful. I want to thank you for the service you are providing to travelers from all over the world especially the ones with “powerless” Indian passport. Kudos to you.
Launched in 1958, Visa is rivaled only by Mastercard as the leading card payment network. Unlike networks Discover and American Express, which also issue cards, Visa and Mastercard serve primarily as networks that connect cardholders and issuers with merchants. Issuers such as Chase and Barclaycard partner with Visa and Mastercard, with the network connecting to merchants and the issuer granting the card.
There may be special passport requirements when entering a country. It’s common for countries to require one to two pages free in your passport. Also, many will countries require that your passport isn’t expiring within three to six months of your trip. We also recommend carrying spare passport photos with you when traveling. For more information, see our post on doing on your own passport photos.

On Aug. 9, 2018 USCIS issued a policy memorandum (Accrual of Unlawful Presence and F, J, and M Nonimmigrants (PDF, 129 KB) changing how the agency calculates unlawful presence for students and exchange visitors in F, J, and M nonimmigrant status, including F-2, J-2, and M-2 dependents, who fail to maintain status in the United States. Additional information is available on the Unlawful Presence and Bars to Admissibility page. 
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.
They sometimes do. That’s why you cannot submit photoshopped/fake flight tickets. They want you to hold the tickets for now and purchase them when your visa is approved. This works if the visa processing takes just a few days (say 2-5 days). Consulates that take longer know that you will eventually get different tickets altogether since your hold/reservation will not be valid for that long.
On Aug. 9, 2018 USCIS issued a policy memorandum (Accrual of Unlawful Presence and F, J, and M Nonimmigrants (PDF, 129 KB) changing how the agency calculates unlawful presence for students and exchange visitors in F, J, and M nonimmigrant status, including F-2, J-2, and M-2 dependents, who fail to maintain status in the United States. Additional information is available on the Unlawful Presence and Bars to Admissibility page. 
Foreign governments issue visas to travelers to show that the traveler has permission to enter that country under certain circumstances. Tourist visas generally restrict visitors from doing business or earning an income while in the country, and generally prescribe a maximum number of days for the stay. Fees and even imprisonment are consequences of overstaying a visa.
I have a few questions on my imminent trip to UK and Europe (traveling on Indian passport). I would be traveling with my parents, both retired and live in India. They are not dependents and have their own source of income. My plan is to first visit UK for 4 days, then travel to France, Switzerland and return to India from Italy. I am currently working as a freelance business consultant, so no ’employer’ as such. In the past I have lived in France for 3 years and have traveled to UK from France on a visitor visa.
If you will return home to complete university studies after studying English in the United States, bring proof of your student status in your country. A letter from a university professor supporting your study plan can be helpful. Young people around the world are often unsure of their plans. However, in the visa interview it is best to give definite answers. If you seem to be unsure about what you will be doing, the visa officer may believe that you are really going to the United States for reasons other than education.
I am from India and for the past 5 years, I am working/living in the San Francisco area. I am planning to visit Spain in Sep’19 for tourism. The trip will be for 12 days. I have the Schengen Visa appt coming up in 10 days at the Spanish embassy in San Francisco. I landed on your blog while searching for tips to get required documents for visa appt such as Flight reservations, Hotel bookings, etc. I looked at many of the responses you provided and they looked very precise and very helpful. I want to thank you for the service you are providing to travelers from all over the world especially the ones with “powerless” Indian passport. Kudos to you.
A visa allows a foreign citizen to travel to a U.S. port-of-entry (generally an airport) and request permission to enter the United States. A visa does not guarantee entry into 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. If you are allowed to enter the United States, the CBP official will provide an admission stamp or a paper Form I-94, Arrival/Departure Record. Learn more about admissions and entry requirements, restrictions about bringing food, agricultural products, and other restricted/prohibited goods, and more by reviewing the CBP website.
Travel Visa Pro also offers a concierge service where customers can have an employee fill out their application. There are many benefits to using the company’s concierge service, including but not limited to being entered into their VIP Program, free insurance coverage on one’s passport and free printing of electronic photos at Travel Visa Pro’s office. Many of my readers who have used the services of this company report that their service was fast, friendly and efficient.
They sometimes do. That’s why you cannot submit photoshopped/fake flight tickets. They want you to hold the tickets for now and purchase them when your visa is approved. This works if the visa processing takes just a few days (say 2-5 days). Consulates that take longer know that you will eventually get different tickets altogether since your hold/reservation will not be valid for that long.
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 –

A fax or email from your U.S. school to the embassy or consulate in your city containing details about your qualifications, and requesting reconsideration, can be helpful in pursuing a successful appeal. Faxes should be addressed to the Chief of Nonimmigrant Visas at the Consular post in question. Fax and telephone numbers are available on the page of the Embassy or Consulate where you will apply for the visa on the Department of State web site at usembassy.state.gov. Look under “Contact Us.”


I am from India and for the past 5 years, I am working/living in the San Francisco area. I am planning to visit Spain in Sep’19 for tourism. The trip will be for 12 days. I have the Schengen Visa appt coming up in 10 days at the Spanish embassy in San Francisco. I landed on your blog while searching for tips to get required documents for visa appt such as Flight reservations, Hotel bookings, etc. I looked at many of the responses you provided and they looked very precise and very helpful. I want to thank you for the service you are providing to travelers from all over the world especially the ones with “powerless” Indian passport. Kudos to you.
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.

U.S. citizens of Pakistani origin or descent may have their visa applications subject to delays, according to the U.S. Department of State. Be sure to allow enough time to apply before heading to India. Travelers who plan to study, do research or act as missionaries should not use the e-Visa application. Contact the local Indian consulate or embassy to determine the best visa for your purpose. Anyone staying in India for more than 180 days must have the correct visa and also register their arrival with the Foreigners Regional Registration Office nearest to their residence. If a visitor overstays a visa or violates a visa regulation, the Ministry of Home Affairs in New Delhi will have to provide clearance to exit the country.
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.
Determine whether you're eligible for an ETA visa. Citizens of most European, Asian, and North American countries can travel to Australia with an ETA visa. You must also have a clean criminal record and be in relatively good health. You can confirm you have an eligible passport at https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/visas/getting-a-visa/visa-listing/electronic-travel-authority-601#Eligibility.[3]
A fax or email from your U.S. school to the embassy or consulate in your city containing details about your qualifications, and requesting reconsideration, can be helpful in pursuing a successful appeal. Faxes should be addressed to the Chief of Nonimmigrant Visas at the Consular post in question. Fax and telephone numbers are available on the page of the Embassy or Consulate where you will apply for the visa on the Department of State web site at usembassy.state.gov. Look under “Contact Us.”
With offices in San Francisco, Washington DC, New York, Los Angeles, Houston, and Seattle, Travel Visa Pro is superb. I’m a big fan of these guys. I did business with them in the past when I had to get a document legalized at a consulate in Washington D.C. They were super responsive and got back to me on any query I had in well under 24 hours (normally within the hour). If you are trying to get a document (such as a transcript or proof of employment) legalized, these guys are the ones to go with.
If I create a flight reservation on Turkish Airlines hours before my Visa Appt, do you think that will be enough time for embassy people to check the status of the bookings? Or you think embassy people may take longer than 2-3 days to verify the reservations. What could happen if they verify the reservation after 3 days and by that time the bookings have expired? Thanks so much.

My question is of all the travel agents I have inquired for Singapore tourist visa said they need a CONFIRMED return flight ticket and they will only send the application for visa ONE month prior to the departure date. But if I wait for that long the flight prices already start soaring high. And if I book a flight early then I am in dilemma if my visa is rejected I will lose all my flight booking amount.
At the time of enrollment, the U.S. school will enroll the applicant in SEVIS and provide the applicant with a Form I-20 to present to the consular officer at the visa interview. The SEVIS I-901 application fee is $200. If the applicant's spouse or children intend to reside in the U.S. with the applicant, they must obtain individual Form I-20s, but they do not pay the SEVIS fee.
A valid U.S. visa in an expired passport is still valid. Unless canceled or revoked, a visa is valid until its expiration date. If you have a valid visa in your expired passport, do not remove it from your expired passport. You may use your valid visa in your expired passport along with a new valid passport for travel and admission to the United States.
Hi Rakhi! UK visa application doesn’t ask specifically for a leave approval letter. But I have seen quite a few cases approved/denied based on that particular document. I’m assuming that leave approval letter works as a reaffirmation of strong ties to one’s home country. If you want to have higher chances of approval, I suggest including a leave approval letter from your employer.
If you are going to the USA to learn English and then earn a degree, be able to explain your complete program of study. Remember, it is not enough to just say, “It is better to study in the United States.” Give valid reasons why it is better for you. Visa officers like to hear honest, direct responses to questions. They generally react poorly to applicants who give vague answers, memorize a speech, or make overly solicitous comments about how great and wonderful the United States is.
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