Early on in one of my post I wrote about visa for Indonesian traveler, and how difficult it is to get a visa, if an Indonesian wants to travel to other countries. Only certain countries giving us a no visa requirement if we want to visit their country, but most of the countries requires us visa.
Now, for those who’s not familiar in traveling or for those who has easy access for most of the countries in the world, visa means nothing. However, visa is still required for certain destination. What is visa anyway? It is that thing from the country of your destination that stuck on your passport and says that you are permitted to enter that country for a certain period.
From those who come from TCN, a certain paper works are required prior to get that stamp. Around 20 years ago, for Indonesian who wants to visit European countries, the requirements are: fill in a form from that you could obtain from the embassy, passport photo, booking ticket that shows the returned date, pay a certain amount of fee, and off course your passport. You will get your visa stamp in your passport after a few days.
Now, things are getting more complicated, more paper works to be done prior getting your visa stamp. This is an example of the paper work to get a visa for a TCN who wants to visit Europe:
- Fill in a form that you will get it from the embassy or some embassy might provide it online, so that you can just download it, print it out and fill it in manually. In the form usually stated what kind a paper works you need to attached with the form:
- Passport photo, usually there is a list of the photo specification they want you to attached, i.e, the size of the photo, the background, how to pose for the photograph etc.
- Recommendation letter from the company you work with, saying that you had been working with that company for a certain period, your salary and that this visit is for business/holiday and that you will come back to the company after your visit.
- Your pay slip from the company… some embassy requires you to show them the original pay slip.
- Bank statement – showing your bank account, at least for the last 2 months; some embassy might asked your statement for the last 6 months. Don’t forget, sometimes they asked for the original.
- Return flight ticket – so that they know, you are not going to stay there forever.
- Hotel booking – this is important bit, so they will know where you are staying, instead of on the street….
- And last but not least, your original passport
However, if you don’t to stay in a hotel, then a more complicated paper work needs to be done, that is if you want to stay with relative or friends and the case that you could not produce a hotel booking, then you need to:
- Get an invitation letter from your friends/relatives who are a residence in the country of your destination. This letter needs to be stamp to the local county hall or government office. Once it’s done, have it posted to you. This has to be the original, not a copy or fax.
- Along with that invitation, which shows his/her address in Europe, he/she needs to attach his/her bank statement, that he/she has sufficient fund to have you with him/her during your period of stay.
Once you miss one type of document, that will jeopardizes your visa application. Such a hassle, but yet once it’s a routine and you understand the system, that it’s easy, and what you need to do is just to allow yourself some time to gather all the documentation.
What about visiting UK and US and maybe Australia? There are similarities of the kind of paperwork you need to gather, the difference is maybe ‘specification’ for passport photograph. And maybe they required an interview after you submit your paperwork, but prior of issuing the visa.
Now what about other countries that is not part of European/Australian/UK or US? This is my experience of trying to get a visa from a friend from Kenya and wants to visit me in Qatar.
The new rule in Qatar is that they only issue Business visa or “hotel” visa, they do not issue any tourist visa anymore – which is strange for me, as many countries in the world wants to attract tourism as one of the country’s income, and Qatar doesn’t want that???