Go Back   Team-BHP > Buckle Up > Travelogues > Route / Travel Queries


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 22nd February 2011, 15:51   #46
Senior - BHPian
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Mumbai
Posts: 1,432
Thanked: 268 Times
Default Re: Travelling to Europe. Need Feedback.

If I were do my own planned trip to England, France & Italy, do I require 3 different Visas or is there some common Euro Visa? Is there any agent who would help me with these Visas?
carboy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22nd February 2011, 15:59   #47
Distinguished - BHPian
 
Sam Kapasi's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Mumbai (but wat
Posts: 6,985
Thanked: 1,355 Times
Default Re: Travelling to Europe. Need Feedback.

Quote:
Originally Posted by carboy View Post
If I were do my own planned trip to England, France & Italy, do I require 3 different Visas or is there some common Euro Visa? Is there any agent who would help me with these Visas?
France and Italy have the same visa. The Euro-Schengen visa.

You will need to apply for this at the country where you plan to enter into Europe.

The UK has its own visa. Any travel agent can help you organise this visa, but you will need to be present there yourself for both visas.

While the agent may make things easier for you as a newbie, you can actually get all the info from the websites and apply yourself with ease. Assuming you follow every instruction with precision, no agent is needed.
Sam Kapasi is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22nd February 2011, 16:03   #48
Senior - BHPian
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Mumbai
Posts: 1,432
Thanked: 268 Times
Default Re: Travelling to Europe. Need Feedback.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sam Kapasi View Post
France and Italy have the same visa. The Euro-Schengen visa.

You will need to apply for this at the country where you plan to enter into Europe.
So If go India-England-France-Italy, where would I get the Schengen Visa - would it be England or France?
carboy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22nd February 2011, 16:15   #49
Senior - BHPian
 
selfdrive's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Pune
Posts: 2,550
Thanked: 1,724 Times
Default Re: Travelling to Europe. Need Feedback.

It is a bit simpler than that.

For example, if you intend to visit France and Italy, you can apply at either embassy for the Schengen visa. I do not think the port of entry applies. For example, one may fly into Europe by Lufthansa and then take an internal flight. In this case, the port of entry would be Frankfurt but immigration is done for passengers with French/ Italian visas (at least till last month)

You do need to show your itinerary and accomodation bookings + travel insurance + enough funds in the bank to cover for your trip. Your travel agent should give you a more comprehensive list if you cannot obtain it from the embassy's online resources.

For the UK, you have to apply at the British embassy as they are not part of the Schengen visa zone countries

Last edited by selfdrive : 22nd February 2011 at 16:18. Reason: added comment for port of entry
selfdrive is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22nd February 2011, 17:10   #50
Distinguished - BHPian
 
Sam Kapasi's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Mumbai (but wat
Posts: 6,985
Thanked: 1,355 Times
Default Re: Travelling to Europe. Need Feedback.

Quote:
Originally Posted by carboy View Post
So If go India-England-France-Italy, where would I get the Schengen Visa - would it be England or France?
Quote:
Originally Posted by selfdrive View Post
It is a bit simpler than that.

For example, if you intend to visit France and Italy, you can apply at either embassy for the Schengen visa. I do not think the port of entry applies. For example, one may fly into Europe by Lufthansa and then take an internal flight. In this case, the port of entry would be Frankfurt but immigration is done for passengers with French/ Italian visas (at least till last month)

For the UK, you have to apply at the British embassy as they are not part of the Schengen visa zone countries
I can confirm to you that the point of entry is of great significance.

Let me explain:

You buy a single ticket to Milan on Air France. Your flight is therefore BOM-CDG-MXP. Even though your actual physical point of entry is Paris-CDG, you must apply for a visa from Italy.

Later what you do and where you go within the EU is of no significance.

Similarly if your first proper destination (non transit) is Paris, you must apply to the French Embassy and not the Italian. I do not know about the rest of the world, but I know this rule is clear when applying for your schengen visa in India.

I can also confirm to you that if you attempt to enter (for example) Holland with an UNUSED Schengen visa issued by Germany, you will be pulled over and questioned, EVEN though you posses an all-europe visa.
However once your visa has been used once, you are welcome to use it at any port of destination in Europe, so long as it is valid.

You must therefore get 2 visas.
  1. A UK visa from the UK embassy UK Visa Information - Home Page
  2. A Schengen visa either from the Italian embassy or the French Embassy, depending on where you will be travelling first. (ITALY VISA or France Visa - The Rules, The Procedure, The Documents)
From your description it appears to me that you will go to the UK first and then tour France and then move on to Italy. So you will need a French Application for the Schengen visa.
VFS is the agency that has been appointed to help the entire visa procedure for all 3 countries and they will make things very easy for you.

The websites I have mentioned make it 100% clear as to what you will need. For example:

This is from The VFS FRANCE website

Quote:
For Non-Professional Travel (family visit, private visit, tourists) Is applicable in case you are traveling to visit your friends/relatives. This visa is given for travel of less than 90 days.
Mandatory Documents:
  1. Original passport valid for a minimum period of three months after the expire date of the visa
  2. One application form with all columns filled in and 2 recent photographs in the size of 3.5 cms x 4.5 cms with white / light background.
  3. Original covering letter
  4. Copy of confirmed hotel reservation OR *attestation d'accueil (Proof of Accomodation) with invitation letter in original
  5. Copy of itinerary prepared by the travel agency (only for those going on tour)
  6. Copy of income tax papers of last three years / last 3 months bank statement / last 3 months salary slips
  7. Copy of overseas medical insurance policy + repatriation, evacuation cover (equivalent to 30000 euros)
  8. Copy of air ticket or PNR (booking printout)
The documents must be arranged in the order given above.
Getting the right photo is important and it must be recent. The best thing to do is to go to a reputable photo studio and tell them exactly what you need the photo for. (UK Visa, French-Schengen etc)

I can also add that you do not need an agent for any of this and you can purchase your overseas medical insurance in about 2 minutes (using your credit card) from here
http://www.tataaiginsurance.in/taig/...ta_aig/travel/

Last edited by Sam Kapasi : 22nd February 2011 at 17:18.
Sam Kapasi is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22nd February 2011, 18:00   #51
Distinguished - BHPian
 
Thad E Ginathom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Chennai
Posts: 6,999
Thanked: 5,058 Times
Default Re: Travelling to Europe. Need Feedback.

Quote:
Originally Posted by carboy View Post
... where would I get the Schengen Visa - would it be England or France?
Just to stress that the answer is India.

You really must have all your visas (err, both your visas) sorted out before you even begin your trip.

In fact, I would advise sorting them out before you even invest any money in your plans. Visa refusal may be unlikely, but it could, otherwise, be expensive.

You should also check up the current processing time, and make sure you apply in good time. Leaving time to do both, of course!
Thad E Ginathom is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22nd February 2011, 21:24   #52
Senior - BHPian
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Mumbai
Posts: 1,432
Thanked: 268 Times
Default Re: Travelling to Europe. Need Feedback.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thad E Ginathom View Post
Just to stress that the answer is India.

You really must have all your visas (err, both your visas) sorted out before you even begin your trip.
:-)


I meant - would I need to get it at the English Embassy or the French Embassy?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Thad E Ginathom View Post
In fact, I would advise sorting them out before you even invest any money in your plans. Visa refusal may be unlikely, but it could, otherwise, be expensive.
I doubt my Visa would be refused. My passports are chock full of expired/used visas. I think I already have a UK one from long back. I don't think I have a French one, but I have other European ones. I have 2 Benelux Visas, I think.

Very rarely do they refuse Visas to people who have traveled a lot before.

Plus Sam Kapasi's post says I need proof my travel itinerary & hotel bookings before I book the tickets. So it looks like I have to do the bookings before the Visa.

Last edited by carboy : 22nd February 2011 at 21:30.
carboy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22nd February 2011, 21:40   #53
Distinguished - BHPian
 
Thad E Ginathom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Chennai
Posts: 6,999
Thanked: 5,058 Times
Default Re: Travelling to Europe. Need Feedback.

Quote:
Maybe they should have made the carvings more eroptic?
Where's that big, embarrassed BLUSH smiley I've been requesting for my own special use?

Sorry, Carboy! Put it down to seeing years of silly questions about visas on Indiamike.com. Although, I am sure you can see how I could read your post that way!
Thad E Ginathom is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 22nd February 2011, 21:47   #54
Senior - BHPian
 
selfdrive's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Pune
Posts: 2,550
Thanked: 1,724 Times
Default Re: Travelling to Europe. Need Feedback.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sam Kapasi View Post
I can confirm to you that the point of entry is of great significance.
Sam, to be honest I can speak for my own experiences. I only have a Schengen visa (from France) and always fly in via Frankfurt. I have never had a problem with immigration in Frankfurt in the last few years. It is not a one off case as I have had to travel back and forth more than I would have liked to.
However, I agree it is best to verify in case there are any doubts.
selfdrive is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 23rd February 2011, 13:42   #55
Distinguished - BHPian
 
Sam Kapasi's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Mumbai (but wat
Posts: 6,985
Thanked: 1,355 Times
Default Re: Travelling to Europe. Need Feedback.

Quote:
Originally Posted by carboy View Post
I doubt my Visa would be refused. My passports are chock full of expired/used visas. I think I already have a UK one from long back. I don't think I have a French one, but I have other European ones. I have 2 Benelux Visas, I think.

Very rarely do they refuse Visas to people who have traveled a lot before.

Plus Sam Kapasi's post says I need proof my travel itinerary & hotel bookings before I book the tickets. So it looks like I have to do the bookings before the Visa.
Your visa would only be refused if you do not supply the necessary documents.

And yes, you must book your flight, itinerary and hotel(s) and even complete your travel medical insurance and have a print out ready before you apply for your visa.

Quote:
Originally Posted by selfdrive View Post
Sam, to be honest I can speak for my own experiences. I only have a Schengen visa (from France) and always fly in via Frankfurt. I have never had a problem with immigration in Frankfurt in the last few years. It is not a one off case as I have had to travel back and forth more than I would have liked to.
However, I agree it is best to verify in case there are any doubts.
No, selfdrive I am not refuting what you are saying. Please listen to the detail.

I too possess a long-term schengen visa (issued by Germany of course) and fly and drive in and out of all European countries without a second thought.

Please note that I am repeatedly talking about the first stamp on your Schengen visa.

When you use a Schengen visa for the very first time, the stamp is placed half across the actual visa at the entry point. After that all entry and exit visas are placed on random pages within your passport.

After the first use (even if it is your 10th Schengen visa) - it does not matter where you go within Europe.

Personal experiences:
  1. Show up with an Air France Ticket to Milan (BOM-CDG-MXP) and the French Embassy requests you to go to the Italian Embassy instead, refusing flatly to issue a visa. Note your point of actual entry into Europe is CDG. This is precisely how visa duties are divided between all the European embassies in India.
  2. A friend wanted to go to Greece for a holiday. The Greek Embassy was inconvenient so the agent issued him a dummy ticket and got him a French visa. He was able to complete his journey. However the next year when he applied for a French visa, despite having all documents in order, he was rejected. Reason specified verbally was "misuse of visa issued last time"
  3. Personally - in 2009 I flew to Amsterdam for work (The office is there). I was in possession of my 10th Schengen visa issued by the German Embassy (I now have a long term one as my wife is German). This particular visa was unused and issued by the German Embassy 3 months prior to my travel and was valid for a year (or 2 I cannot remember).

    However at entry I was pulled over and taken to the immigration office where I was repeatedly questioned as to why I had applied at the German Embassy when I wanted to travel to the Netherlands?
    I explained myself, stating that my original plan was to go to Germany 3 months earlier but that plan was cancelled. Since I had a valid Schengen visa, I chose to travel to Amsterdam instead.

    After 15 minutes of questioning and confirming my hotel reservation on the telephone, the officers let me go with a warning "Please apply at the Dutch Embassy, when you want to come to Amsterdam"
    When I asked why, since this was hardly my first time into Amsterdam he said "First time you use THIS visa" and that's when I understood.
However I often travel to Frankfurt on an international ticket and buy a KLM cityhopper flight to Amsterdam from there. In this case, my point of international entry is Frankfurt, not Amsterdam. I usually do this to visit my wife's family in Germany on my way back.

I pass through immigration in Frankfurt, pick up my bags and then go to the other terminal to take a Euro-Domestic flight to Amsterdam. In this case there is no immigration at Amsterdam. In fact my passport will show no proof of having visited The Netherlands at all.

In your case, the visa is already used, since you're a regular traveller. But if it was a new visa and you were flying into Frankfurt to stay for a few days (and not transit) with a new visa issued by France, you would definitely see raised eyebrows and a few questions.

Once used for the first time (assuming it is a long-term multiple entry visa) then it does not matter what country you enter later and by what means.

Last edited by Sam Kapasi : 23rd February 2011 at 13:53.
Sam Kapasi is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 23rd February 2011, 14:28   #56
Senior - BHPian
 
selfdrive's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Pune
Posts: 2,550
Thanked: 1,724 Times
Default Re: Travelling to Europe. Need Feedback.

Thanks Sam, that detailed explanation was definitely useful. I need to return to our travel agents with this information, as this is not what we were told.
I hope I dont get started on how many things they have goofed up on in terms of the logistics.
I am beginning to think I cannot rely on these agents at all and need to get better info, as this may affect me on later trips.

Last edited by selfdrive : 23rd February 2011 at 14:29.
selfdrive is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 23rd February 2011, 15:18   #57
Distinguished - BHPian
 
Thad E Ginathom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Chennai
Posts: 6,999
Thanked: 5,058 Times
Default Re: Travelling to Europe. Need Feedback.

Very useful information for all of us, Sam.

selfdrive, seems to me that there are a few agents that know what they are talking about and keep up to date with it, and many that don't. A lot of them sell themselves on having some influence on the outcome of the application, whereas, probably for most European countries, they simply cannot. Or else they try to tell that they need to tell people what to put on the form. The forms may be long (The British one, when I take my wife to UK, is ridiculous) but they are not really complex for a simple visitor's visa. Consequently, unless these people are actually able to go and sit in the queues on your behalf (is that possible for European visas? I don't know), I'm tempted to think that they don't really do a great deal for their money. They don't "add value" to use the modern jargon.

It would be nice if UK joined the Schengen group --- but it was tough enough even getting us into the EU (and then when we did want to join, France said "Non.") so I doubt it will happen. I wish we could go to London, and just get on the train for a day or two in Paris.
Thad E Ginathom is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 23rd February 2011, 15:29   #58
Senior - BHPian
 
ghodlur's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Thane
Posts: 4,808
Thanked: 1,804 Times
Question Re: Travelling to Europe. Need Feedback.

Sam,

Your above posts have been very detailed one but I do have some doubts, request you/BHPians to clarify.

I will be going to UK for a 6 month assignment. My wife and son will join me after 3 months and stay with me for one month. Since she will be travveling to UK, she will be getting her UK visa done first. Then I was planning whether she could get the Schengen visa also done but at this point of time I dont know where in Europe would she travel. So how do I know which embassy to visit in Mumbai to get the Schengen visa?

For me I would be getting the Schengen visa done once I reach UK.
ghodlur is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 23rd February 2011, 15:30   #59
Senior - BHPian
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Mumbai
Posts: 1,432
Thanked: 268 Times
Default Re: Travelling to Europe. Need Feedback.

Thank you, Sam and others for all the information.

I have a question about itinerary. I am planning to visit London, Paris & Italy (Pisa, Rome & Venice) all in one trip - I have maximum of 8-9 days. I am planning 2 days in London, 2 days in Paris, 3 days in Italy.

What's the best way to go about this - i.e. what's the best route for this
I am thinking -
Bombay-London flight.
London-Paris - Eurail
Paris to Italy - How should I do this - I think there is a 12 hour overnight train or I can fly - how much would the cost difference be between the 2 options?

How should I schedule my Italy trip - Pisa, Rome & Venice in what order & how can I travel between the places & how long would it take.

I know it's going to be a hectic trip, but this is how the wife wants to it! This is how all of our vacations have been. I give her hectic vacations & she gives me relaxed rest of the year.
carboy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 23rd February 2011, 16:09   #60
Senior - BHPian
 
vasoo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Memphis TN
Posts: 1,031
Thanked: 204 Times
Default Re: Travelling to Europe. Need Feedback.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ghodlur View Post
Sam,

Your above posts have been very detailed one but I do have some doubts, request you/BHPians to clarify.

I will be going to UK for a 6 month assignment. My wife and son will join me after 3 months and stay with me for one month. Since she will be travveling to UK, she will be getting her UK visa done first. Then I was planning whether she could get the Schengen visa also done but at this point of time I dont know where in Europe would she travel. So how do I know which embassy to visit in Mumbai to get the Schengen visa?

....
I dont think you have an option here. You need to first decide which country you and your wife plan to enter and apply for visa accordingly. Look at it from an angle of what would you do if each EU country required separate visa. Typically, when you start from UK on a EU tour, one goes to Paris by Eurostar. We did this a couple of years back.
vasoo is online now   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
The Sanskari Middle Europe Trip - From Berlin to Vienna via Eastern Europe mentalmaxout Travelogues 77 15th April 2016 22:16
Travelling from Hyderabad to Chennai, Need No Objection Certificate? Swordfish Shifting gears 17 17th February 2010 15:29
Travelling to Kodaikannal, Need suggestion on STAY !! jango Route / Travel Queries 10 16th November 2009 09:38


All times are GMT +5.5. The time now is 15:12.

Copyright 2000 - 2016, Team-BHP.com
Proudly powered by E2E Networks