Do you plan to apply for a visa soon and you’d like to know if a Schengen visa requires an invitation letter? This letter holds significant weight in a visa application. But how much importance does an invitation letter for a Schengen visa have? Find out in this post.
It is easy to find applicants asking around the internet if they can apply for a visa without an invitation letter. Even offline too. We receive calls on whether an invitation letter is a Schengen visa requirement in 2021. Today, we want to provide as many details as possible on this topic.
As you may know, an invitation letter is a document from a host (individual, company, or organization) abroad. It states the visit date and purpose. Also, it mentions the particulars of the bearer; including full names and passport number, among other things.
But does Schengen visa require an invitation letter though? This is a tricky question. A quick, short answer to this question is that it depends. There are various purposes of travel and some of them need invitation letters.
Types of invitation letter for Schengen visa
Traveling for certain purposes may warrant an invitation letter when applying for a visa. The embassy needs to see this letter as proof of the purpose of the trip.
And each purpose affects the format of the invitation letter. See the following types of invitation letters and their purpose of visits:
#1 – Business invitation letter
This invitation letter includes visiting Schengen for business, training, workshop, and conferences. When visiting for any of these, you need an invitation letter.
This type of invitation letter for a Schengen visa is always on the official letterhead of the host. It shows the date and time of the event; the venue; and travel arrangements.
Travel arrangements concern if the host has sorted your accommodation and flight or you will be responsible for them. Also, it states if you have paid for attendance or you would do so in the future.
If you have to meet up with a new firm in Schengen, to finalize an engagement, this is the invite you get.
In the case where you have paid, then you may also get a payment invoice with the invitation letter.
#2 – Medical appointment / invitation letter
This is the type for those traveling for medical purposes. Medical doctors usually give appointments before a patient can visit for check-up and treatment.
The letter will contain the doctor’s name, date of visit, and time. It is even better if you can attach previous email conversations with this letter, to establish point of contact.
If you have paid to book the appointment, attach payment invoice as well.
#3 – School admission letter
While it may not clearly appear like one, university admission letter is also an invite. It mentions the programme that the school has given an offer for. And the date you should resume.
More importantly, it contact information of the school and the embassy can easily verify its authenticity.
#4 – Visit invitation letter
When visiting a friend or family in Schengen, this is the type of letter you need. Your friend can quickly write one, stating why you plan to visit and when you will visit.
They must include your full name, passport number, and date of birth (optional). And they should address the letter to the relevant Schengen embassy.
To take it a step further, your relative or friend may notarize this letter at the relevant local office. Doing so can make the letter carry more weight.
#5 – Tourism invitation letter
Tourism invitation letter comes from tour companies. A regular type may include tour vouchers as well, showing tourist centres you plan to visit.
What is the importance of Invitation letter for Schengen visa?
Lack of an invitation letter may cause visa refusal. Imagine applying for a Student visa and the embassy does not see an admission letter in the application.
Also, it could be costly to apply for a business visa without adding an invite for the conference you plan to attend.
These are the important issues of invitation letter for Schengen visa. Other important ones are:
#1 – Establishes ties to the Schengen region
The letter serves to prove that you have ties to the Schengen country you are visiting. Sometimes, it makes no sense to intend to spend so much money and time on a trip without having connections abroad.
You need tour vouchers or letter from a friend to make sense out of it.
#2 – Serves as evidence of purpose of trip
Visa Officers usually doubt visa application. Your invitation letter is proof of your sincere plans to visit for what you have stated in your application.
Also, it gives the embassy the medium to verify your claims. They can easily call or email the tour company or the friend that sent the letter for confirmation.
So, does Schengen visa require an invitation?
It is important that we answer this part of our discussion clearly. This is why we want to emphasize it again.
Not all Schengen visa application requires an invitation letter. It depends on what you plan to visit for.
We have included all reasons for a visit that require Schengen invitation letters below:
- Visiting family and friends
- Visiting for studies
- Visiting for medical purpose
- Visiting for conference
- Visiting to attend workshop or training
Other important things besides invitation letter
While we have spoken about invitation letter, note that other supporting documents matter as well.
These include your bank statement, proof of employment, and Schengen travel insurance. It also concerns hotel and flight reservations and certificate of social ties. Adding these documents help the embassy decide to grant you a visa.
The right minimum bank balance for Schengen visa should cover costs of trip and upkeep while on the trip. You can arrive at this figure when you calculate hotel costs, flight costs, daily feeding, and additional funds for transportation and more.
Proof of employment is also critical. Embassies believe it is easier to return home and continue to work at your good-paying job. Instead of job hunting and starting afresh abroad.
With your spouse and children in Nigeria, you would choose to return home before or when visa expires. Therefore, a marriage certificate and children’s birth certificate are evidence of social ties that you need for visa application.
So, what happens if you are single? What if you are a student and you don’t have an income-earning job yet? These are critical aspects that require the attention of a visa expert as every applicant has a unique case.
Travukwik helps visa applicants in Nigeria recognise their strengths and weaknesses when applying for visa. So that they can leverage on these strengths and reduce the impact of the weaknesses. Our aim is to help you get a visa regardless of your profile.
Now that you know if a Schengen visa requires an invitation letter. It should not surprise you to witness how far applicants go to get them.
As an applicant, you can gather extra points for submitting an invitation letter. But pay attention to other supporting documents too.
If you need support with your visa application, speak to us at Travukwik.