Thursday, October 24, 2019

Schengen Visa process for Filipinos in the UK

A Schengen visa is a short-stay visa that allows a person to travel to any members of the Schengen Area. That includes Paris, Greece, Iceland, Switzerland and a lot more. Basically these are places that we were always dreaming of and couldn't even imagine of travelling to when all we could afford was just to look at photos online. However, if you're a Filipino nurse with a working visa in the UK, the Euro-trip dream is just within reach. All you have to do is to apply for this Schengen Visa. The best country to apply first is France because they usually give 6 months to 1 year of multi-entry visa which means that you can freely travel within Schengen countries until the visa expires.


WHAT ARE THE REQUIREMENTS 

  1. Application form dated and signed. You can get this from the France Visa site -- click here. Create an account and just follow the steps. Fill-up the form and print it.
  2. TLS Appointment. TLS is the French Visa Application Centre in the UK. You will need to go to their site and register (click here). Then you can choose the available date and time for your Visa appearance. Please note that the nearest available appointment date is usually a month after and the processing time is 15 days maximum from your appointment date. These are the things you have to consider when booking the plane tickets. It's best to start the application 2-3 months before your planned trip. You have to print the booking appointment confirmation.
  3. ID photograph. Usually a photobooth is available in every UK mall. You have to choose the passport option and the machine will just guide you there. 
  4. BRP ID. Prepare a photocopy.
  5. Passport. It should be valid for at least 3 months beyond the planned date of return, containing at least two blank ‘visa’ pages. Prepare a photocopy.
  6. Proof of travel. A confirmed return ticket to France. 
  7. Travel health insurance certificate. I've got mine from Coverwise. I applied for an annual multi-trip insurance for only £10. https://www.coverwise.co.uk/
  8. Hotel booking or rental agreement. It should be showing your full name as well as dates and address of stay.
  9. Planned itinerary. Reservation confirmation of an organised trip or any other document describing the planned trip. Mine was just a word doc with the dates and activities or places to visit. 
  10. Last 3 months worth of bank statements (UK current account) showing your full name and address, and proving that you have enough funds for the whole duration of the trip. I suggest you put all your money in your current account before printing your bank statements in your bank. The higher the amount, the longer validity they can give for your visa.
  11. Certificate Of Employment. I just sent an email to our HR for a copy and they sent me the COE via email. Should be less than 3 months old from the date of issue.
  12. 3 months Payslip.


HOW MUCH TO PAY

Application fee is 60 euros (or around £54) plus TLS service fee of 30 euros (£27). I paid a total of  £81.82. Fees can be paid in cash, credit or debit card at the centre.

HOW TO GET TO TLS CONTACT CENTRE

The address is Suite 18, Exhibition House, Ground Floor, Addison Bridge Place,London W14 8XP. Just follow Google Maps and make sure not to be late.


WHAT HAPPENS DURING THE VISA APPEARANCE

Upon arrival to the TLS contact Centre, they will check your booked appointment confirmation and ask you to turn off your phone before you enter. Present your Passport and BRP with the photocopies and your appointment booking receipt to the receptionist. Wait for your turn for an available agent to check on your documents. Pay for the fees in the counter and last step is the picture taking and fingerprinting.


IMPORTANT REMINDERS

  • Children under 12 years old are not allowed in the visa centre 
  • Bringing luggage is not permitted  
  • Please have all your documents organized according to the checklist (the requirements above are in order)
  • After the Embassy processes your visa (usually around 15 working days), your passport will be given back to you in a sealed envelope. You have an option to have this delivered or picked up. You will receive an email notification if it's already available for pick-up.


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Schengen Visa process for Filipinos in the UK

A Schengen visa is a short-stay visa that allows a person to travel to any members of the Schengen Area. That includes Paris, Greece, Icela...