What are the Schengen Visa requirements?

Before entering Europe, you need to apply for a Schengen Visa. When you submit your form, you must carefully choose your supporting documentation. This highlights the purpose of your trip and provides further information that proves your eligibility for this travel permit.

In case of any mistake, or if one of your documents is missing, your visa application will be rejected. For this reason, it is essential to understand what the required documents for a Schengen Visa are. Nevertheless, your conditions of eligibility may vary, depending on your travelling purpose.

In this guide, you can find a Schengen Visa checklist of the required documents when submitting your application. Our experts will also guide you through the assessment of your eligibility, clarifying the requirements you need to meet to get your visa.

List of countries exempt from the Schengen Visa

Before you can apply for a Schengen Visa, you should check if your home country enjoys visa-free travel through Europe.

Generally, if you are an EU or EEA national, you do not need a Europe Visa. Besides, nationals from the following countries are exempt from the Schengen Visa requirements:

  • Austria
  • Belgium
  • Czech Republic
  • Denmark
  • Estonia
  • Finland
  • France
  • Germany
  • Greece
  • Hungary
  • Iceland
  • Italy
  • Latvia
  • Liechtenstein
  • Lithuania
  • Luxembourg
  • Malta
  • Netherlands
  • Norway
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Slovakia
  • Slovenia
  • Spain
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland

Based on your circumstances, your visa-free status may be transmitted to your spouse and dependants.

Schengen Visa documents checklist

Along with your application form, there are several documents required for Schengen Visa. This includes:

  • Your Europe Visa application form completed and signed;
  • Your passport. It must be not older than 10 years and valid for at least three months beyond your departure date from Europe. If you hold any older passport, you must include it as well;
  • Your itinerary, including dates, flight, and accommodation reservations;
  • Travel insurance policy, with a minimum coverage of €30,000, in case of emergencies;
  • Evidence of adequate financial means to support yourself throughout your stay in the Schengen area;
  • Proof of paid visa fees.

You may wish to attach further Schengen Visa supporting documents to try to speed up your processing time. If you are unsure if your evidence could be valid, you can ask one of our experts.

Schengen Visa travel insurance requirements

Travel insurance covers you in the events of medical emergencies and unanticipated expenses.

If you are travelling to the EU and you need a Europe Visa, you must prove that you have an adequate policy. To be eligible, it must meet the specific Schengen Visa travel insurance requirements, such as:

  • A minimum coverage of €30,000;
  • Be valid for all member states of the Schengen Area, or at the least the countries you are going to visit;
  • It must cover medical and emergencies expenses. This includes repatriation for medical reasons, hospital treatment, urgent health attention, or death.
schengen visa documents checklist

Schengen Visa requirements: proof of financial means

To be eligible for a Schengen Visa, you must meet definite requirements. This includes evidence that you have access to funds to sustain yourself financially while in the Schengen Zone.

To prove your financial situation, you can submit one of the following:

  • Bank account statements. They should be no older than 3 months and show the money already available in your account for the trip;
  • A sponsorship letter from another person who confirms that he or she is going to support your trip financially. This letter needs to be accompanied by a recent bank statement from your sponsor.

Europe Visa requirements according to travel purpose

In some instances, border officers may require specific documents, depending on the purpose of your trip.

Document required to apply for a Schengen Tourist Visa

  • Original bank statements;
  • Travel itinerary. This must be a detailed description of your trip, including the time frame you are going to spend in each Schengen country. Do not forget to include your accommodation reservations.

Documents required if you travel to visit friends or relative

  • Letter of invitation from your friend or relative residing in the Schengen Area. This must include relevant information, such as the address in Europe of this person;
  • A copy of your friend or relative passport or permanent residence status;
  • Affidavit of Support (if necessary). If you cannot access to adequate funds to support yourself while in the EU, your sponsor must sign an official Affidavit of Support. By doing this, he or she declares the willingness to take care of your travel expenses;
  • Proof of your family member or friend’s financial status. This is mandatory, especially if this person declares that he or she is going to cover your travel expenses.

Schengen Visa checklist for employees

  • Employment contract;
  • Your Income Tax Return (ITR) form;
  • Leave permission signed by your employer;
  • No Objection Letter from your employer (if applicable);
  • A current bank statement of the latest six months prior to your application.

Documents required for the self-employed

  • A copy of your business license (if applicable);
  • Your ITR;
  • Company bank statement for the latest six months.

Europe Visa requirements for international students

  • Proof of enrolment at an educational institution;
  • No Objection Letter from your school or university.

What is a No Objection Letter?

A No Objection Letter, or No Objection Certificate (NOC) is one of the Schengen Visa documents that should be attached to your application.

A NOC is usually released to employees and students who wish to apply for a Schengen Visa. It demonstrates that you have strong ties with your home country. In other words, it can be used to prove your nonimmigrant intent, that is one of the primary Europe Visa requirements.

Although it may be mandatory for entering some countries, this document is usually considered optional. However, you may wish to submit your NOC anyway to support your request and speed up your application process.

Schengen visa Application Requirements for Minors

If you are under the age of 18, you can still get a Schengen Visa. However, you must submit additional documents to support your application. This includes:

  • Your birth certificate;
  • Certified copies of the passports or national IDs of your parents or legal guardians;
  • A notarized parental authorization signed by your parents or guardians (if you are travelling alone);
  • Family court order (if only one of your parents has full custody over you).

Do not forget that, to be valid, you Europe Visa application must be signed by your parents or guardians.

Need help with your Schengen Visa documents?

Before you can get your Schengen Visa, you must ensure to be eligible. This means meeting all the requirements set by the European Commission and Parliament. In addition, along with your application form, you must submit your Schengen Visa supporting documents.

If you wish to plan your travel without worrying about your visa application, one of the IAS experts is ready to follow your case.

We will assess your eligibility and identify the documents required for your Schengen Visa, based on your travel purpose. With our bespoke service, you can submit comprehensive supporting documentation. This will maximise your chances to get your Europe Visa.

Get in touch with our immigration lawyers or use our online contact form. One of our advisers will be happy to support your Schengen Visa application so that you can enjoy your trip to Europe.

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