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Employment certificate, financial documents, and income tax return (ITR) are the staples of most visa applications. But there is one document that is usually overlooked — the cover letter.

A cover letter isn’t always a requirement when applying for a visa. However, it’s something that we often recommend to add to your pile of documents, especially if there is no interview and you have some explaining to do.

You see, sometimes, things don’t always fit the mold perfectly. There are cases wherein you can’t provide the exact document needed, but you have a very good alternative. Or maybe you just can’t provide something at all, but you have a perfectly valid reason. Or perhaps you’re traveling with a group or for a special purpose. These instances could probably benefit from a well-crafted explanation to give the visa officer a clearer picture of your situation.

When I apply for a visa, I usually submit a cover letter regardless of whether or not it’s one of the requirements. I always want to give a summary of my application and clarify some aspects that may be prone to misinterpretation.

What should be in a cover letter?

For me, a good cover letter must be able to provide the following:

  • A short introduction about yourself.
  • Your travel dates and the purpose of your trip
  • If traveling with a group: your companions and your relationship with them
  • If sponsored: your sponsor’s name, your relationship with them, and the reason why they are willing to sponsor you
  • If you’re missing some requirements: the reason why you won’t be able to provide them and the alternatives you are submitting instead
  • If applying for a double entry or multiple entry visa: the reason why you need to be allowed more than one entry
  • A quick rundown of the destinations you will be visiting
  • A quick summary of your travel history (if any), highlighting that you have NEVER violated visa rules in the past
  • A promise to return to your home country in time

Looks like a lot, huh? But here’s the thing: According to a couple of friends who used to work as visa officers at strict embassies, they usually had very little time to assess each application. Hence, if you’re going to make a cover letter, go straight to the point. One page should be enough. The key is being concise — finding the balance between giving enough information and keeping it short and sweet.

Here are some samples. I intentionally used complicated situations to give you an idea how I usually explain them. If they don’t apply to you, feel free to modify these to match your case. Please use this only as a model for your own cover letter. Please do not copy-paste the whole thing without adjustments.

Sample Cover Letter for Australian Visa (Online Application)

Australian Visa Cover Letter


Sample Cover Letter for Schengen Visa

Schengen Visa Cover Letter


Sample Cover Letter for Korean Visa

Korean Visa Cover Letter



2020 • 1 • 7

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where to attach cover letter for Australia Visa application?


Hello, I will be applying for a Japan visa and will submit a cover letter din. I have a few questions:

  1. If I am traveling with friends pero we will be submitting individual applications, do I need to include that in the cover letter na I am with them on this trip?
  2. Do you need to submit all your savings account o kahit isa nalang?
  3. Plan ko rin sana (dahil nabasa ko sa ibang posts nyo hehe) na payroll and savings account ipasa, pero kung nililipat ko rin naman yung laman ng payroll sa savings, need ko pa ba isubmit yung payroll account?
  4. Sa ibang Japan visa application na napanuod ko, nagsusubmit sila ng bank certificate at bank statement. Do I need to do that?
  5. If yes, need ko ba explain sa cover letter ko na tinatransfer ko sa digital bank muna yung pera saka ko tinatransfer sa savings account? (kasi baka makita, if may bank statement, na nanggaling sa ganitong account yung pumasok na pera)

sorry habang nagtatype ako nadadagdagan questions ko haha. sana masagot parin. Thank you sa travel guides. Super helpful. :)

MJ Fam

I plan to visit Canada and have started my visa application. I selected visit friend for purpose instead of tourism as I would like to be fully honest with my application. My very purpose is to be with my boyfriend and meet his family and friends. Touring comes as a bonus. Would it be fine to add captions or narrations on the pdf document together with our pictures as proof? I also have our hotel and tour bookings and his boarding passes on the two times that he has visited me here in PH. This is the Proof of Relationship section on the application visa.


Hello. Any recommendations for Schengen visa assistance agencies?