By continuing to read this article, you agree to double check with the authorities or other concerned entities for the latest updates.

We have made four European tours so far, two of them lasted 2 months. Hence, we receive tons of questions about getting a Schengen Visa. It’s quite expected. Europe is a dream destination for many, and the Schengen Visa is probably the most complicated visa there is. In this article, we’ll try to answer the questions we have been asked the most as adequately as we can.

However, bear in mind that we are writing based only on our own experiences and some contributions from our readers. The goal is to help other applicants have a better picture of the process. But we strongly encourage you to still contact the embassies for more updated info.

Anyway, it’s gonna be a lengthy post, so let’s begin.


What is a Schengen Visa?

The Schengen Visa is a travel document that allows the holder to enter any of the 26 states that are part of the Schengen agreement. Think of it as an almost all-access pass to many countries in Europe, eliminating the immigration borders within the Schengen zone and the hassle of having to apply for a visa for each individual country.

What are the Schengen countries?

Here they are, all 26 of ’em.

Czech Republic

Which embassy should I lodge my visa application?

It will depend on the purpose of your trip or your overall European itinerary. The rule is:

  • If you’re visiting just ONE country, apply at the embassy of that country.
  • If you’re visiting multiple countries, apply at the embassy where you will be staying the longest. For example, if you plan to spend 3 days in the Netherlands, 3 days in Italy, and 5 days in France, apply at the French Embassy.

However, some countries have additional rules. It is best to double check with the Embassy to be absolutely sure.

What if I’m spending equal number of days in different countries?

I’ll just copy-paste what the Dutch Embassy has to say about this:

“If you will be staying an equal length of time in more than one Schengen country and cannot designate one of these countries as the country of your main destination, you must apply for your visa at the mission of the first Schengen country you intend to enter.”

This means if you’re spending 3 days in Germany first, then 3 days in Italy and 3 days in France, you should apply at the German Embassy.

What are the requirements?

Schengen embassies usually ask for almost the same requirements. But there are some variations.

Here are the documents that are in common to all of them:

  1. Valid Passport
  2. Accomplished Application Form
  3. Recent Photo
  4. Proof of Available Accommodations (Hotel booking if no inviter, or invitation letter + citizenship/residency documents of contact abroad if invited)
  5. Photocopy of Passport stamps and visas
  6. Proof of Employment (ITR, Certificate of Employment for employees, and business registration documents and permits for self-employed)
  7. Proof of Financial Means (bank statements, bank certificates, land titles, etc.)
    Travel insurance covering the entire stay. Some require coverage for additional days.
  8. Identity Documents
  9. Complete Itinerary
  10. Flight Reservations
  11. Visa Fee

Some embassies add more to the list above, so make sure you check with the embassy that will process your application

For more details, here are the embassies that we have personally tried lodging our applications at.

What is the application process? What are the steps?

It varies from mission to mission. Some embassies, like the French and the Italian, employ a third party unit to handle most visa applications (VFS Global or VIA). Others take care of ’em in-house.

Here are the embassies I have personally tried:

I’ll be updating this part of the post to include a link to the processes per country. (Please check back later.)

Do we need to book flights before applying for a visa?

NO. Don’t book your flights yet. They only require flight reservations, not flight booking. Don’t pay for your flights yet. (Unless you grabbed promo fares at a seat sale.) Some travel agencies can reserve flights (often for a fee).


We recommend Gazelle Travel and Tours, a DTI-registered DOT-accredited travel agency. You can get flight reservations, hotel reservations, and travel insurance from them online!

For the rates and more info, read:FLIGHT RESERVATIONS FOR VISA

Is travel insurance really necessary?

The short answer is YES.

The long answer is still YEEEEEEESSSSS.

Some embassies, like the Italian Embassy, requires an additional 15-day coverage on top of the travel period. Make sure you know these little rules when purchasing travel insurance.

Where to get travel insurance?

You can simply purchase travel insurance online. I have tried Pacific Cross and Standard Insurance, and had no problems.

You can book Standard Insurance with Gazelle Travel and Tours too! You can use the same form we made for Flight Reservations. Just tick TRAVEL INSURANCE in the checklist on the form.


Can I book hotels on my own?

Yep. You can book via third-party websites, but book hotels with FREE Cancellation policy so you won’t be wasting money in case your visa gets denied.

What does a detailed itinerary look like?

Like this


Can I visit countries that are not in the itinerary I submitted?

Yes, you can, as long as it is within the Schengen Zone.

However, we encourage you to at least visit the country that granted you the visa.

Can I visit the UK using a Schengen Visa?

NO. The United Kingdom is not part of the Schengen Zone and does not honor the Schengen visa. They have their own visa policy.

If you want to visit the UK (England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and other British territories), you will need to secure a UK visa. You can find more info here: UK Visa.

Can I visit other countries in Europe that are outside the Schengen Zone using the Schengen visa?

Yes, there are some non-Schengen countries in Europe that accept a DOUBLE or MULTIPLE ENTRY Schengen visa. Not all countries, but some.

Countries like Albania, Andorra, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Montenegro, Cyprus, Bulgaria, Romania, North Macedonia, Serbia and Kosovo allow entry to holders of a valid passport with a valid MULTIPLE ENTRY Schengen visa (provided that the visa has been used to enter a Schengen country before).

Note that each country has certain conditions including the length of stay.

What non-Schengen countries can I visit in Europe with a DOUBLE ENTRY Schengen visa?

A DOUBLE ENTRY Schengen Visa (two-entry) is also accepted by Croatia, Montenegro, Bulgaria, Romania, and Cyprus provided that the visa is valid and that it has been used once.

I have tried entering Croatia and Montenegro with a two-entry Schengen visa. Double entry is also specifically mentioned on their official websites.

The Foreign Affairs website of Serbia does not specifically mention DOUBLE ENTRY but I emailed them and they confirmed that Serbia allows double-entry Schengen visa.

Again, note that each country has certain conditions including the length of stay.

If my application is approved, do I have to stick to the itinerary I submitted?

Ideally, yes, but not really.

There are no checkpoints between countries within the Schengen Zone, there’s no way for them to check. You can deviate from your original itinerary if you want. We made a number of changes to our itineraries on the two occasions we visited Europe.

But my only guidance is this: At your point of entry, know that you might be asked questions about your itinerary. At the very least, stay the longest in the country where you got your visa so you won’t run into trouble. They have the right to refuse entry even if you already have a visa.

Is a cover letter required?

No. But I highly encourage you to provide one especially if there will be no interview. You can explain the purpose of your trip further. Here’s a sample.


Are embassies really strict?

Yes, but some are more strict than others.

For example, in my travel circles, the Italian and Spanish Embassies are notorious for being extremely meticulous, while the Dutch and Austrian Embassies are known for being more forgiving and considerate.

Is there an interview?

Some embassies conduct a short interview, some don’t. Usually, when a third party company (like VFS or VIA) is involved, there will no longer be an interview.

Here’s what I know so far: Do the following embassies usually conduct an interview?

  • Austrian Embassy – NO
  • Czech Embassy – LIKELY
  • Danish Embassy – NO
  • French Embassy – NO
  • German Embassy – NOT ANYMORE
  • Greek Embassy (for Greece and Portugal) – LIKELY
  • Italian Embassy – NO
  • Norwegian Embassy – NO
  • Spanish Embassy – LIKELY

Again, that’s usually. Some applicants will be called for an interview at the embassy when they need further clarifications. It really depends on many factors but mostly how strong your case is.

In many cases, even when there is no interview involved, personal appearance is sometimes required. It’s best to check with the embassy to be sure.

If your embassy requires an interview or you are called for one, just answer their questions truthfully and confidently. Don’t lie. Most of the time, they will know.

What are the usual questions they ask at the interview?

I asked my friends what were the questions thrown at them during the interview and here are the most common. True enough, when I applied for a Schengen Visa on two separate occasions, these were asked too.

  • What is the purpose of your trip?
  • How long is your trip?
  • How long will you stay in (country)?
  • What is your first stop?
  • What countries are you going to visit?
  • When will you leave?
  • When will you be back?
  • Will this be your first time in Europe?
  • What countries did you visit on your first trip to Europe and for what purpose?
  • Do you know anyone in (country)?
  • Do you know anyone in any other Schengen country?
  • Do you know anyone in the UK (United Kingdom)?
  • How are you related to them?
  • How did you meet?
  • With whom are you traveling?
  • How are you related to your companion?
  • What do you do for a living? (Expect a lot of follow up questions about your job.)
  • How long have you been with your company?
  • Does your company know you’re taking this trip?
  • Do you own properties in the Philippines (home country)?

Based on experience, most of the questions were about three things:

  • the details of the trip, which means you must know your itinerary by heart
  • my connections to anyone in Europe. In my case, I had none. I have no relatives or close friends there.
  • my job and my rootedness in my home country. In both cases, they gravitated towards finding reasons for me to return to the Philippines.

Again, answer truthfully and confidently.

Note that these are just the common questions. They might still ask a lot of other questions relevant to your background and application.

How early should I apply for a Schengen visa?

You can apply up to 90 days (3 months) in advance. While most embassies process applications relatively fast, it is wise to give some time allowance just in case something doesn’t go as planned (e.g. they ask for additional documents). I consider “a month before” too tight. Two months should give you enough time to secure a copy of all required documents and fix a problem should it arise.

How soon do they release the visa after receiving my application?

Depends on the embassy. If things go smoothly, the French Embassy releases visas after 5-7 days, the Greek Embassy 14 days. Most of the time, the wait is shorter. Sometimes, when they have doubts, it can take much longer.

For example, when I applied for a visa for my second Euro trip, the German Embassy took only 6 days. My partner Vins, who was applying for the first time and didn’t submit an ITR, was asked to send more documents to prove his rootedness in the Philippines. He did submit the requested additional papers and finally got his visa after 3 weeks.

I have friends who waited for over A MONTH!

On the other hand, I have a friend who applied via the Austrian Embassy and got her visa after only 3 days.

So it really depends on the embassy AND your case.

How much money should I have in the bank to be approved?

No one really knows for sure what the minimum amount is. But remember this: You will be asked to submit flight and hotel reservations and a detailed day-to-day itinerary. So here’s the rule of thumb. Add the cost of the flights you reserved and the cost of the accommodations and EUR 60 per day of your stay.

What’s the EUR 60 per stay? Think of it as your pocket money. Embassies need to be assured that you can afford the trip. The French Embassy requires at least EUR120 per day if accommodations are not yet settled. But if accommodations are booked, some embassies require EUR 45 per day, some EUR50, some E55. To be on the safe side, use EUR60 per day.

Let’s use this as example. Let’s assume that your roundtrip flight costs EUR1000 and your total hotel stay costs EUR1200 and you’re staying in Europe for 10 days. That’s EUR60 X 10 days = EUR 600.

1000 (flights)
1200 (hotel)
600 (allowance)
EUR 2800 – TOTAL

Of course, that can’t be the only amount in your account. You should have WAY MORE than that. You have to convince the embassy that you will still have a comfortable life to return to in the Philippines after the trip.

But my point is, don’t apply for a 10-day visit with only EUR 1000 in your bank account.

My personal policy is P10,000 per day + cost of flights & accommodations.

How long is the validity of the visa?

Depends on the itinerary you will submit and the embassy.

When I applied at and submitted a 5-day itinerary to the French Embassy, I was issued a visa that was valid for 15 days.

When I applied the second time and submitted a 53-day itinerary to the German Embassy, I was given a visa valid for 60 days.

When I applied at the Greek Embassy with an 11-day itinerary, I was given exactly that, 11 days.

When I applied at the Italian Embassy with a 46-day itinerary, I was given 90 days.

It’s pretty hard to tell, so make sure you take your itinerary seriously because you’ll never know how long you’re gonna get.

What are the usual reasons why applicants are denied a Schengen visa?

We created a video about that here:

I’m traveling to multiple cities. Do I need to submit train transfer and flight reservation within the Schengen area?

Some embassies require those, some don’t. You’ll know when you read their checklist.

In my experience, however, I have never submitted proof of train or bus booking. But I always submit flight reservations even for those journeys within the Schengen zone.

I’m traveling to multiple cities. Do I need to provide hotel reservation for all the countries I’m visiting or for the embassy’s country only?

If you’re staying at hotels, you must provide hotel reservation covering the entire duration of your stay within the zone.

If you’re staying in multiple countries, you must submit hotel reservation for all the countries where you will be staying, not just that one country.

Last updated: 2️⃣0️⃣2️⃣0️⃣ • 1️⃣ • 1️⃣6️⃣
First up: 2️⃣0️⃣1️⃣7️⃣ • 1️⃣ • 1️⃣5️⃣

Help us improve this post! If you have experienced applying for a Schengen Visa and you have more to add to this list, feel free to contribute information via the Comments Section below!

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[…] NOTE: If you’re planning to visit multiple Schengen countries, I suggest that you visit The Poor Traveler’s Schengen visa application FAQ page! […]

Milet Miranda

Very useful post Yoshke! So glad to know that there are no interviews for Norwegian Embassy :) Hopefully, I get to travel to Norway and Iceland early next year!


Have you heard of anyone being asked to report to the French embassy after the trip?


Me too haha but it was at the Italian embassy


I am supposed to go to France with my family (husband and daughter) on the 1st of December for a 10-day tour. When is the best time to set an appointment for visa application?

Thank you!

Minerva Acraman

Hello good day could I ask if once they have finished processing my visa application for France and my sponsor is my boyfriend is it possible that they will approved my visa ? My reason to come back in the Philippines is I will start my studies this January and also my sick mom. Thank you!


The Italian Embassy requires a travel insurance coverage of 15 additional days over and above your desired length of stay. FYI.

Maverick Villalon

Hi Yoshke,

What are the different documents your partner submitted in lieu of his ITR? Thanks for your reply in advance.

Maverick Villalon

I’m sorry. I’m clogging up this thread. Does he work online? If so, is it okay to declare that I am working virtually from home with paying taxes? :)

Maverick Villalon

Thank you, Yoshke. I’m a Marketing Manager. By the way, is it easier to get a visa if you have a proof of accommodation from a citizen? This is greatly appreciated.

Maverick Villalon

If this is not too much to ask. May I ask for the template of the certificate and invoice from his clients? :)

Maverick Villalon

Thank you so much for your help. It’s really my first time and I can’t help but be nervous.

Maverick Villalon

By the way, I am a student so I just get a certification from my school regarding my status.

Maverick Villalon

Thank you so much. Sa French Embassy, Yoshke. They have declared full accommodation.


Regarding the visa validity in this post, will you know immediately upon visa approval how long you are allowed to stay in the schengen territories?

What if upon application i submitted a 10days itinerary, if ever approved, will they indicate there in my visa or passport- just 10days or a bit more days only? There will be no way for me to change it to 30days anymore if ever there will be changes in my trip?

Maverick Villalon

Hi Yoshke,

I checked the link in step number 1 to fill out the application form and I believe we need to check the link because the link to the website is no longer there. Thanks. :)


Hi guys! Im applying for a Schengen Visa over at the French Embassy. Is Agoda’s free cancellation policy really FREE (provided that I cancel on their specified “cancel for free before ____”)? Or would there be a surprise cancellation fee or other unprecedented fees? Dont know who better else to ask but you two. Thanks!!


They required me to go back to their embassy in 2001 after I returned from my tour of France. When I got to their office, they got my passport, took it to their back office, then handed it back to me after stamping ‘Expired Visa’ on my visa.


Hi! I am an OFW. my concern is about the ITR. I don’t have one. What should I do? But I had a TIN when I was still working in the Philippines.


Thank you for your blog. I read all of it including the comments. I was planning to apply for a Spain visa together with my mom and encountered this “Shengen visa”. But after reading this blog, I realized that I don’t need to apply Schengen (maybe someday). I got relevant information I need. Your blog really helps (thou different destinations to take). I just worry that that my mom is a senior citizen and she do not have proof of ITR or COE.Please give good advice on what relevant documents should I present in support for her application. Hoping for your advice. Thank you!


Hi! I’m planning to visit my boyfriend in Belgium this year, may I ask if do I need to make my itinerary trip there for my visa application? Since I don’t have any plans once I get there. Also I will stay at his house so no need for hotel bookings. I just wanted to know thanks.


What if we are four person is the interview for schengen visa is individually or a group?
We are applying to go in Switzerland


We are from Philippines


Hi. If you’re traveling alone, will it be stricter? Considering I have all the requirements, which part should I be careful at? Is it better if I will be sponsored by someone from the country I will be visiting or just don’t mention anything at all? Thank you in advance.


Hi. Thank you for responding to my queries. Is it better if I join a certain tour package or I can do my DIY itinerary? Thanks again in advance.


Hi yoshke. Plan ko magapply ng visa next year since my mom wants to go to Turkey, baka magGreece and France na rin kami. Diba sa pagkuha ng visa may means of subsistence per Schengen country? Sa Greece nasa 60 euros and then sa France is 130 euros. Okay lang ba na pag kukuha ng visa ang sundin namin is yung sa Greece na 60 euros? Since dun din naman yung first point of entry namin and mas magstay longer. Or pag nilagay namin sa itinerary na pupunta kami France, kelangan din namin ipakita sa bank statement na may 130 euros per day kami for France? Thanks!


Hi Jane. Were you able to email the Greek Embassy for interview? My email is not getting through. I wonder kung may ganoong experience din and iba.


Donna Lyn

Hi! i just want to ask, we’ll be going to Paris (4days)-Rome (3Days) – BArcelona (3 Days). we’ll be coming from london then going to Paris. Our flight is Manila-London-Manila. Do I have to submit the flight details (London to Paris), (Paris to Rome) (Rome to Spain) and (Spain to London)? I’m hesistant pa kasi to buy the tickets. maybe flight reservations muna for europe?


Hello Yoshke – Sana matulungan mo ako. I can’t decide if I’ll stick to my plan A or plan B. Ganito kasi iyong Mom ko ay nakapasa na ng visa for Schengen. Aside from naipresent niya lahat, ininvite din siya ng Tita ko. Ngayon, my father wants me to join her as this will be her first time leaving the country alone. Nag-ayos na ako ng requirements kaso nahihirapan ako pagdating sa itinerary. My Plan A is – Sundin iyong itinerary na napresent mo sa taas w/o mentioning na I applied because of my Mom. Itinerary will be Belgium-Amsterdam-Paris-Belgium. My plan B is – I’ll mention that I’m applying to accompany my Mom. My itinerary will be a month in Belgium (which might sound crazy?)

Ano sa tingin mo mas okay?


Hi! Regarding “details of the trip” did the embassy asked you where exactly are you going in each country and when? did they asked you randomly or in order?


When I tried to bring my Filipina girlfriend to Greece, back in 2011 I think, I asked the Greek embassy about the requirements for the visa. They were vague, not specific, they just said that the girl needs to have a high-salary stable job like a doctor or lawyer, and much money in bank, and a credit card, etc,,, even if I officially invite her and host her and pay her food etc. I guess that the embassy is afraid of illegal immigration and makes the visa impossible for most Filipinos.
Eventually, I married the girl, and then she applied for spouse visa and now we live happily in Greece.


Hi Vassili,

Happy to hear about your happy marriage with your Filipina wife. I myself will be married to a Portuguese in May and eventually we plan to get a spouse visa for me to live together in Portugal. I would like to ask if your Filipina wife, when she applied for spouse visa was it much easier and what were the requirements? Thank you & God bless!



Hello! Thanks for posting these very useful and detailed info.
May I ask what if we are booked via Airbnb? Do we declare it sa itinerary?
I saw in the checklist there’s an attestation or something needed pa? Thanks in advance!


Hi, Yoshke! Just a question. For the bank statement, diba its 60 Euros per day + budget for flight + budget for accommodation. Yung sa accommodation ba, is it ok if yung budget is half na of the total expenses for the accommodation given that hati kami ng partner ko with the accommodation expenses? :)


Hello, everyone! I just want to ask if there will be an issue if I didn’t fly to Schengen country; though, I got my Schengen visa? Then, I want to re-apply new visa and fly this time? Please, any advice. Thank you.


Hi good evening.. i find this very useful. And please Allow me to ask if i need an ITR since my visit is funded by my friend?
Shall i need this for proof of rootedness here in Philippines?


hi, im travelling to Mexico and may lay over sya sa Paris. didnt know na need ko ng Transit Visa and in 5days aalis na ako. i scheduled an appointment sa French embassy on bukas for that. Madali lang ba marelease ang transit visa and hindi sila strict?, huhuhu pls advise


do you have any idea if what to do or what does it mean kung over 15days na yong processing? i mean i applied last month June 11 (considered holiday nung June 12 and June 15) they said it will start ng June 13 na counted as 1st day. i don’t think kulang mga docs ko since we checked it sa na completed naman. im worried kasi my flight is on July 16:-/ 1 almost a month na processing grabe.
thank you so much.



hi i just got my Visa today and this is what they said,

1)The information submitted regarding the justification for the purpose and the conditions of the intended stay was not reliable.

2)your intention to leave the territory of the Member Stated before the expiry of the visa could not be ascertained

what is this means? im thinking sa french embassy nlng magapply, :(


Good Evening!
Tanong ko lang kung family ba mag apply ng schengen visa (italian embassy) d pa rin guarantee na ma approve? Family kc sabay na aalis ksama fiancee ko at fiancee ng kapatid ko. They can present ITR, bank statements, coe, etc. Pero problem ko lang sa parents ko kc senior citizen na cla, at wala sila itr or coe. Ako nalang nag sponsor sa kanila kase OFW ako. May 100k naman sa bank accounts nila para ma present namin sa embassy. May alam ka na ba ngayon kung ano pa kelangan documents na i.submit ng mga senior citizens? Gagawa pa kasi ako ng letter of support, lagay ko don na ako ang nagbayad ng lahat ng tickets namin at ako magbabayad ng hotel accommodations namin. Lahat kami may experience na travelling around asia. ako at mama ko may experience na din sa europe. Sa italian embassy kami mag apply kc don ung entry namin, at sa itinerary namin for 15 days nasa loob lang kami ng italy at lilibutin namin lahat ng tourist spot cities. Pero baka d namin i.follow ung itinerary.


hello po sau…ako po ay ofw sa hk..i met a guy from ..he ask me to visit him…sb nya he will sponsor me…10 days tour….hanapan papo kaya ako ng bank statement..


Hi Yoshke,

Great infos. :)
By the way I have a question, I have a stable job naman here in Ph. And I have visited 10 countries already mostly Asia and I still have a valid visa sa Australia. My recent trip was Japan. I am planning to apply Schengen Visa Pero this time medyo “urgent” kasi. Now my problem is in my bank nasagad yung amount meaning around 10k nalang ang natitira. Pero May makukuha akong enough money para sa mga pautang ko na Pwede ko na magamit for my Europe trip. Pwede kayang bank certificate nalang ang I present instead of bank statement? Baka kasi magdoubt yung embassy if May biglaang malaking amount na idedeposit.

Mhai Guinto

Hi, Yoshke!

I’m planning a trip to Portugal in January 2019. If possible na mas maaga ko makuha yung visa ko if nag-start ako mag-apply by October (since hinihintay ko pa yung release ng passport ko). Possible kayang pwede kong mas agahan ang alis ko? Thank you! :)


Hi Yoshke!
Im planning to appy for a schengen visa via french embassy, but will travel to multiple cities, ask ko lng re: don sa “number of days of travel”, kailangan ba yong buong travel sa Europe ang ilalagay don or ung no. of days lang namin sa France? we’ll be staying for a total number of 21 days (multiple cities) pero we’ll be staying for 4 days lang sa France.. Thank you for your answer. Your blog really helps me a lot.


Hi Yoshke,
My boyfriend invited me for a vacation in his place. NORWAY. So we are planning to process the application for visa. He will shouldered all my expenses for that vacation thus will send invitation, sponsorship and guarantee letter. My question is do i need to submit any proof of my financial status. Coz at present im unemployed, no bank cert or record and No credit card. Your reply would be much appreciated. Thanks


Hello Yoshke,

I just want to reply on this nessage cause I just went through the same thing recently.
My Norwegian boyfriend will sponsor my trip to Norway and he sent the invitation letter, Guarantee form and other needed documents.
We just followed all the instructions and documents na need isubmit sa checklist. Since sponsored nya no need na for me to submit bank statements or proof of financial status (basta ma meet ng mag sponsor sayo yung minimum income pre tax per year) and when I submitted our application after 2 days I was granted a tourist visa for 3 months.
Ang nakikita ko importante is nag meet na kayo before in person (they want to see na totoo yung relationship nyo) and n ma meet ng sponsor yung min. income pre tax to prove na kaya ka niya isponsor and ma prove mo na babalik ka sa Pinas yung rootedness malamang ma aapprove ka. Hope this helps



Hi there!

My name is Fatima. I just want to ask a few questions to clarify.

I am very eager in applying for Schengen Visa via Germany Embassy. I applied earlier this year, unfortunately, I got denied Now, I wanted to reapply and make sure that I provide the details in the most proper way. However, I heard some dark rumors about it. T_T I wanted to clarify if this is truth or not.

My German boyfriend is the one sponsoring this travel. We’ve planned this travel for quite a long time already. However, we were advised by friends that we should not say that our relationship is a “boyfriend-girlfriend” one since it will automatically makes the embassy refuse my application. This makes me very confused since I already submitted files before stating that he is my boyfriend. Would it be easier if I say this time that he is my friend? Does it make a change or should I stick to the truth that he is my boyfriend?

I understand that this is beyond your control but I would be very happy to hear an opinion from you.
Thank you very much in advance.

Best Regards,



Hi Yoshke,

I find your blog helpful, thank you! I will be applying a Schengen Visa at Italian Embassy this month and I stumbled about Flight Reservations. Does Gazelle Tours offer 2 week reservation of flight because apparently, Italian visa has approximately 2 weeks processing time. What happens if the flight reservation expires while the application is being reviewed? My another concern is that I will be spending Christmas and New Year with my Mother and brother ( they are legal residents there ) but I am thinking it will be a more complicated process ( since Italian Embassy has thorough and strict process as you have mentioned ) that’s why I will be applying as a tourist instead. I had used schengen visa issued by Singapore last 2016 (back when I was an OFW ) so this is the first time I am applying in the Phils. What’s your take on this? As you have applied with several embassies, I would appreciate your opinion on this ;)

Thank you Yoshke, it means a lot! Btw, I am following you on IG and your travel adventures are really great! :)


I’m planning to get a Schengen visa and your post is very helpful for me. Thanks a lot.


Hi Yoshke!

Is it a good idea if I will tell on the cover letter the main reason I will visit Europe is to visit my boyfriend’s family? 4 years na kami together and he went here already and I never met his family. I wanted to be more personal with getting the visa. Negative ba yun for embassies?

Thank you!


Hi, Yoshke!

I have a terminal illness and I am planning to visit Lourdes , France .My nephew will accompany me kasi nga sick ako. Should we apply our visa together? Paano kung magkaiba ticket nmin pabalik ,sya uuwi ng Pinas , ako babalik
ng Saudi(I’m still working) Medyo hindi ok ang rootedness ng nephew ko sa pinas.

I. K.

If you’re both applying here in Manila, the French embassy through VFS Global will treat your application separately, but you could state in your cover letter that you will be traveling with your nephew. This happened to us (husband and wife) when we applied last year, I had to write an impromptu cover letter for my wife, and photocopied several documents because I assumed wrong i.e., since we’re a couple, shared documents will do (experience with UK embassy).

You will also need to tweak your itinerary and make it appear that you will both leave the Schengen area together i.e., same outbound tickets.


Hi yoshke!
Ngwwork ako currently sa family business nmin. So wla akong employment certificate. Small business lng kc sya kaya wla ng certification na ganyan..Pwd ba explain sa cover letter na family business sya? Tpos present ko na kapatid ko mayari? Tpos support letter nlng from him?


Meron nman pong mga permits and dti…so pwd ko sya ideclare na mgsupport sakin dba? Ung support letter ba dpat notarized?


Hi… Mas madali ba mag k shengen visa if sasama sa group tour? Kaso nga lang mas mahal.


Hello :) Regarding with the sponsorship case, do the requirements for sponsor need to be all original copy? like the invitation letter as well as his bank statements? Can it be just sent thru online by my sponsor or it has to be shipped? Also, what if I reserve for a flight ticket for p300 for a certain agency, the actual price is 68k compared to the online actual price which is only 45k, should I go for the agency price when my visa approves? this is for the Italy trip. thanks so much :)


Hi Yoshke,

Thanks for replying. I asked the same question to Youtube vlogger, Lyka Krystle the same day I asked you and she confirmed that FYI, its not me who will submit the invitation letter, my sponsor will email it instead along with his bank statements and passport/ID photocopy to the Italian embassy. That means a physical copy is never a thing in this situation at all, so theres no need to waste a paper here. As an applicant, I dont need to do anything else aside from helping my sponsor to fulfill the 3 main requirements. Long story short, all sponsor’s requirements go directly to the embassy, done by the sponsor.


I will be applying at the Italian Embassy. The itinerary I will be submitting is MNL-FCO-MNL only. But after I get my visa, am I allowed to change my itinerary to MNL-FCO ( 8 days)-CDG ( 3 days)-GVA ( 3 days)-MNL? Will I get into trouble at the airport/immigration for changing the itinerary?


Hi, I am planning to apply for Schengen visa to visit a friend in Belgium, un balak mamasyal lang sa France and Spain after a week s Belgium with her family. I have my own house, travelled few times s US and asian countries, pro wala ako work now, I got 2 kids (filipino-american) and married sa american. My friend will be sending me invitation and sponsorship letter din already signed by the mayor s Belgium. Plus his bank statements and stuff. Nakapag travel na dn kami together twice s SG. My US visa will be expired next month but I am planning to renew it next week. I am just super nervous sa EU visa ksi wala ako work. Ano kaya ippsa ko mga requirements other than the papers na ippadala. I hope somebody can help me please.


Hi Yoshke!

Really insightful article. Just wanted to ask if you know anything about fresh grads applying for a Schengen visa? My sister and I are graduating this June and plan to go to Europe with our mother around October as a graduation gift. Is it true that it is much harder for our applications to be approved since we won’t be employed yet or enrolled anymore? We will be taking a gap break before applying for jobs (which will most likely be after the trip).

Our parents will be sponsoring our entire trip, and we have a good travel history (at least 1-2 international trips every year). I already have a Schengen visa from my school trip to Italy last summer, but my sister only has a 5 year visa from Japan. Thank you and hope to hear from you!


We plan to apply at the Dutch or Italian embassy. Anyway thanks for the reply, that eased my thoughts!


Hi there. What option on the airline website should I select or go to if I’ll have multiple trips. For example, my itinerary is MNL-ROME-PARIS-BERLIN-MNL. Please help me. thanks.


Hello, would u know if czech embassy is strict?


hello, what if na deny ako sa French embassy and after 6months I will apply in Austrian embassy,can I still visit france for tourism?


“My partner Vins, who was applying for the first time and didn’t submit an ITR, was asked to send more documents to prove his rootedness in the Philippines. He did submit the requested additional papers and finally got his visa after 3 weeks.”

Hello, may I ask what additional documents s/he was asked to submit in lieu of the ITR? :) I am recently employed as an individual contractor / consultant so I haven’t sorted my BIR taxation yet. Thank you!


Hello, my father invited me to join his family to go on a month trip to EU. Will be there for a month if approved. He will be sponsoring our trip since he has a stable company. If ever, I will be travelling with my father, step mom and 2 baby step brothers. They already had several visas including Schengen before, while me I am unemployed. I used to have a Japan visa for a year. I have a daughter here in PH who will not be joining us due to school. I’m wondering if theres a high possibility that I will be approved?

Also, schedule will be this May 14 or 16. How long does the processing will take? (Italian Embassy) coz I have a booked flight to Bangkok on June 5 :(

Thanks Yoshke!



Me and my husband plan to travel to EU this coming septermber for our 12th anniv for 14days. I work as a web dev online (homebased) no ITR and my husband works with his current employer for more than 6 years na din which is previously homebased din pero now kumuha na sila ng office here. No ITR din si husband currently pero meron sya Form 2307 – Certificate of Creditable Tax Withheld at Source. Is that okay na kaya to submit + COE, payslips? Ang balak kasi namin sya na lang ang magsubmit ng lahat ng requirements. I’ll declare na lang na im a housewife / no income and sya magshoulder lahat ng expenses para i dont need to submit any other req’s(proof of income) na since i dont have ITR. We have few properties owned and car din and has 2 kids pero kami lang ni husband ang magtravel to EU. Prev travel was HK, SG, MY, South Korea(ME), Japan, Shanghai – all with family. Sa tingin mo malaki ang chance namin maapprove? My brother is also a resident in Norway pero magappply kami as tourist not sponsored tho magvivisit kami sa kanila since on our planned travel kasabay din namin ang parents ko since they want to visit my brother in norway.


Hi. On the application “Which Schengen country you will enter first?”

I have a layover on a Schengen country, yun ba ilalagay or yung destination mismo? Many thanks

Jonathan Michelena

I am a Philippine passport holder. I will be in the US in April next year and I’m planning to go to Spain from there in July also next year. Can I apply for a schengen visa from there in the US?


hello there,
Is it true that Austrian embassy is more lenient than other embassies in the Schengen area?
I also have concern regarding freelance job and my ITR, I just registered my part time job last june and im applying for visa this oct. and that would mean I cant provide an ITR this October for my part time job (fashion design), what should I do?

I have a fulltime job though and could provide complete papers for this, I just needed more reasons for the “rootedness” thingy.


Hi Yoshke! Thanks for the guide. We are planning to have a month long multi-country honeymoon trip in Europe next year at April. We plan to apply after our wedding in February. However, I can’t seem to find in the internet what is the best way for our case: we will enter first in Madrid, spend the longest in Germany, travel to other neighboring schengen countries, then from Paris to London and spend our last days there before heading back to Manila.

Therefore, we need to apply for 2 visas, one schengen through the German Embassy, and one UK Visa. Do you have any idea or suggestion which is better applied first? The schegen or the UK?

Thank you!


Is it valid to arrive to other country , where I do not have any booking .


Is a reservation for a return flight to the Philippines a specific requirement or just a flight reservation to a non-Schengen state? For example, last destination is Berlin. Is a Berlin to Manila flight required or can you book a flight from Berlin to, say, Tel Aviv?


hi. im planning to visit russia and schengen. which visa should i apply first? thanks.


Hi,if everything was sponsored do i still need my bank certificate and bank statement?

Jonathan Michelena

HI. Can I apply for a schengen visa from the US even if I’m not a US citizen?


Hi! what are the documents that needed to be authenticated by DFA in applying for a Schengen visa?



May i ask if paano mag schedule ng appointment for a family of 6? parang up to 2 applicants lang pwede ko ilagay per account sa vfsglobal :( or baka may mali lang akong ginawa?


Hello I wanted to ask because I’ve already sent an email to the Greek Embassy for my Portugal trip this December and I haven’t received an email back. I sent it October 7 and I only got an auto message from them. How long should I wait or should I call them? I really don’t know who else to ask regarding this. I’ve been reading your blogs its been very helpful to me. Thank you so much!


Hello. Will it help if i show credit card statements? Sa korea kasi wala ako pinakitang bank certificate, Platinum credit card lang na 1.5M ung limit.
So for example i only i have 100-150k sa bank at the time of application and then i present it together with the credit card… will it compensate ung low balance ko sa bank?


Hi there, im planning to apply schengen visa this coming December. I just want to ask first if ever i get denied (wag naman sana) can i apply immediately to other schengen visa embassies? or do i have to wait a certain time before reapplying


Thanks!! also if im planning to present an affidavit of support from my parents for this trip, i also need to present their bank statement & bank cert? Aside from my own bank statement and bank cert? tama ba


Also do I need to provide birth certificates to prove our relationship and does it have to be the original copy? Thanks in advance!

Kimberly Angel

Hi Yoshke and Vins,

Super love your blog! It’s so useful!

I have a have applied for a Schengen visa twice thru a travel agent but got refused twice din :( I think it’s because my intention was to visit Norway and the travel agents suggested that I should go apply at the French Embassy and Swiss Embassy (ang sad kasi I have a history of refusals na tuloy) I would like to re-apply. Should I address the fact that I have applied previously and was refused? I want my application to be as honest as possible and I am doing it on my own na without the help of travel agents.

I will be sponsored din kasi. Any advise?


hi, ask ko lang po sa visa application form for italian embassy… ano ang ilagay sa SURNAME AT BIRTH (Formerly Family Name) if N/A po ba if lalaki yun mag-aapply?


ok, thank you po… another question po dun sa cost of travelling & living during the applicant’s stay is covered by whom? Kc yung husband ko po kc yung kasama ko sa trip tapos join account namin yun isa-submit na bank certificate. ano po ang ilalagay ko by the applicant or sponsor? tpos paano po ilalagay yung name ng husband ko if ever. pwede po ba dalawa ang ilagay… by the applicant and by a sponsor ang ilagay?

Weng jalosjos

Hi there. Just want to inquire
On what i must do with my Schengen application. I was denied of it last May 15, 2018 but biometrics were taken. Is it safe for
Me to declare on the form that my biometrics were indeed taken on said date even if i was denied? Im applying in January 2020 at the allegro center (italian visa).

Weng jalosjos

We are applying at the Italian embassy for our trip on March 27-apr8 (arrival march28 departure apr7) is it that we have to add 15 days additional when we buy travel insurance? Coz im confused if the coverage should cover the addl 15 days or we really have to indicate the addl 15 on the travel insurance?


Hi Yoshke,
Thank you for this article. I always go back to this post for information. Very helpful!
I do have a question though. My sister and I have plans to apply at the Austrian Embassy. For the cover letter, do we need to provide one for each of us? Or one cover letter lang for both of us? Thanks


Hi! I am applying for a schengen visa from the Czech Republic in Manila. My main purpose is to meet my boyfriend’s family. I met my boyfriend in the US, and he has been in the Philippines, so this time, I would like to do the same for him. My dilemma is, if I should apply for the visa with an invitation letter from him or just apply for the tourist visa all by myself. After a series of research, I found out that acquiring an invitation letter from him would take at least one month (due to some paperworks from the Foreign Police and document transit,) and I’m kinda running out of time cause my initial plan is to travel in March. Currently, I’ve had visas from Japan, Korea, and a 10-year multiple entry tourist visa from USA. I also have a job, and enough money for the trip. Do you think there is a chance that my application will be approved? Should I mention that I am there to visit someone, or just tell them that my purpose is to mainly travel?


Hey guys! Your website has been a great source of info for me, great job! Alas, here’s a little query I gotta ask. I will be traveling to Norway on March, and I applied for the visa here in our country. I plan to visit China for a few days first, then depart for Norway from there. But I worry that passport control in Norway will question why I departed from China, not from the country that issued my visa (PH). Does point of departure matter when entering the Schengen Area? Have you guys encountered or heard of similar situations? Thanks and hope to hear from you soon!


Hi! I already have an appointment with VFS Global this friday. My parents paid for the accomodation and my airfare tickets but pocket money and everything else will be shouldered by me. Does that count as sponsorship po? I will be travelling with my parents but they are coming from the US po kasi so ako lang magisa ang nag-apply for Schengen Visa. Would really appreciate your reply. Thank you!


France embassy po. If I declare na accoms/tickets sponsored by parents will they ask for documents ng parents ko even if other expenses will be mine? Wala po kasi local bank parents ko puro US banks if ever manghingi sila ng documents of my parents.


Hi, will they give the documents back together with the passport once approved? Thank you very much.


Hi Yoshke,
Ask ko lang nung nag apply kaba may old passport ka? If yes, need mo rin ba ibigay yung old original passport pag apply or photocopy nalang nung old passport then yung mga stamps and visa mo before? Thank you so much!

Meri Applepie

I have an online job and Im a tax evader, lol. I havent been paying TIN and what not since 2016. Haha. I travel around for 1-2 months straight usually (but I always come home because of family and friends). I feel like Im a sketchy case in the embassy’s eyes.

Do you think it would suffice that I provide them with 1 savings account with sufficient cash, 1 everyday-use account, a life insurance policy and my parents business permit to show I have financial capability and still coming back?


Hi. Could you also create an article for applying for Schengen Visa for freelancers. Especially on the requirements part. A lot of people now are switching to being freelancers so that will be super helpful


Thank you. This is such a useful information. Godspeed.

Junelyn suicon

Hi ask lang po what if there’s a reason na hindi talaga pwedi magtravel Yong bf ko kasi it’s about his health problem Kaya hindi sya makapagtravel sa phillipines because of his health problems we never met yet possible ba ma approve Yong visa if ipa kita ko Yong medical record nya???


hi, question lang po. What if I will present 5 days itinerary in France (entry point) and 3 days itinerary per country on Italy, Greece, Spain, Portugal during visa application But after getting my French Schengen visa, changed my itinerary to 3 days France, 5 days italy, 5 days greece. Will there be a problem if nangyari ito?

Ligaya pilario

Kindly give me referrals as to where can we get flight reservation for schengen visa application. I have big trust on your recommendations. I recently booked spectrum of the seas cruise, with your vlog i booked directly to the carribean. I have saved travel agents fees. I love your vlogs. Kindly reply. Thanks