The Traveller

• SOUTH Africans travelling from South Africa to the Schengen countries will find that gathering documents for the visa is not rocket science.
• However, it does require patience, and planning.
• Getting your Schengen visa sorted for a flight from South Africa is a precise process.
• The http://www.vfsglobal.com website outlines the protocol, as do other websites, ones that offer a visa service: they collect the documents, drop them off for processing and deliver the visa, once it is ready.
• If you haven’t previously applied for a Schengen visa, and done your biometric tests (they are valid for five years), you have to go in to the various VFS centres in the major cities to do it.
• It can be a schlepp, collecting the documents, and authenticating them. Just make sure everything is in order.
• I plan a two-day mission, and execute. There are no short cuts!

• This is what you need:
• Application form (download from http://www.vfsglobal.com and complete)
• Colour photographs
• Confirmed ticket
• Passport (valid: see requirements on website)
• Proof of accommodation abroad
• Three months original bank statements or any supporting documents from the bank
• Travel insurance min E30 000 (can be provided by credit card you used to purchase ticket)
• You get that altogether and ring a visa service, even if you need the biometrics done.

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