US Visa application from Spain

Awesome-American-Flag-Wallpapers

This was the most fluid process ever!

1. Check what type of VISA you require on this website (if you’re travelling for the OPTION E programme, then it’s tourism i.e. B2) http://travel.state.gov/content/visas/english.html
2. Fill the DS 160 form here https://ceac.state.gov/CEAC
3. Go to this website and create a user account – https://ais.usvisa-info.com/en-es/niv

  • Enter your DS-160 confirmation number
  • Choose your passport pick-up point
  • Pay the Nonimmigrant Visa application fee
  • Schedule the appointment\
  • Attend the interview – it’s super short and quick. They’ll let you know towards the end if you’re approved and keep your passport (otherwise they give it back right away) There’s almost zero chance for it to get rejected when you’re travelling with your class 🙂
  • In about 1 week you can pick up your passport from the chosen point

Documents required for the interview as stated in my (September 2015) interview confirmation page:

Common documents for any US Visa

1. Current Passport valid for travel to the United States. The passport must be valid for at least six months beyond the period of stay in the United States (unless exempt by country-specific agreements.)

2. Passport containing the most recently issued U.S. Visa (if applicable)

3. Nonimmigrant Visa Application, Form DS-160 confirmation page

4.Confirmation and Instructions page printed from this website (interview confirmation)

5.One 5 x 5 cm (or 2″ x 2″) color photo taken within the last 6 months. Further details regarding Department of State photo guidelines can be found at: http://travel.state.gov/content/passports/english/passports/photos/photos.html.
Optional documents:
1. Intention to depart the United States upon completion of your travel

2. Sufficient funds to cover all expenses while in the United States

3. Evidence that you have significant ties to the country to which you intend to return at the end of your stay in the United States (This is generally established by evidence of family, professional, property, employment or other ties and commitments to a country other than the United States.)

What I took with me for the optional documents to make sure that I don’t miss out anything:

1. Old Titre de Sejour (copy + original; to prove the 1 year no visa gap in my passport)
2. Proof to show my significant ties to Spain:

  • Empadronamiento
  • Rental agreement
  • ESCP Europe acceptance letter for 2015-2016

3. Proof that I’ll come back on the mentioned dates:

  • A letter from ESCP Madrid that states the purpose of my travel and the exact dates
  • Take the tickets if you have them already

4. Funds: Bank Statements (printed from the online website) of my European accounts
Et Voila!
It’s super fast! Some students didn’t take the rental agreement and the bank statement but still got through. So, the Embassy is pretty chill, but it’s better to take the documents I mentioned above to be on the safer side.

Cheers

Ayush GUPTA

Spanish Visa (application from India)

209

If you’re applying from France, then the school might be able to help you. From what I have heard, the process in Paris is pretty slick.
But, the people sitting behind the glass windows at Spanish Embassy in Delhi, India have no clue about.. well anything.

Challenges at the Embassy

1. I saw some students being harassed for bringing their admission letters in English; they were sent back several times.
2. Some got harassed for not bringing enough documents to support their finances, even though they had a lot of documents!
3. The issue of the PCC – the police clearing certificates for every country you’ve resided in in the last 5 years! The people at the embassy don’t know that you don’t need it if you go for less than 6 months!!! I was sent back. I went to the French Embassy for help. They gave me a link to apply for it (because they were awesome! Always remember that you should speak with the natives (French people at the French Embassy and so on…) at the embassies in India; the Indians working their are clueless and well… mostly useless! I applied for the PCC and received mine in about 2-3 weeks. But luckily I found this document online that lists all the documents you need for the Spanish Visa and took it as proof with me to the embassy that I don’t need the PCC and things were sorted 🙂
4. The embassy is fairly unorganised so be on time and also notice their schedule. Somedays they’re open for collection, some for legalisation and some for applications
5. The security guy is a poor man and has to take all the blame because of the clueless people inside. Don’t get mad at him 🙂

*Just another issue that I face (or thought I faced) because of some confusion:
I read a document somewhere that stated that you can’t enter the Schengen Countries for at least 3 months after your residence permit in any of the Schengen Countries has expired. My French Residence Permit was expiring before my Spanish Visa’s commencement and this was annoying. DON’T WORRY :D. It only applies for travel and not for student visas. So, ignore this document if you find it somewhere. Haha

Amazing support from ESCP

1. Elena Potie helped me like crazy for all my Visa woes by fetching information about the Spanish, French and German Visas so that I can just somehow come back to Europe and resume my studies!
2. Laura Garcia and Alberto Martinez at the Madrid Campus helped me by answering my 87 calls and 63 emails! 😛 They even called the embassy in India to get their s**t together and urgent-couriered me documents several times to India!

Application Procedure:

1. Now, don’t apply for a 1 year visa unless you’re going to Spain for 1 year or you can manage to get all the extra documents

2. Here’s the list of documents you’ll need (check the 90-180 days section for your less-than-6month Visa)
http://www.vfsglobal.com/spain/india/pdf/Student_visa_16.03.12.pdf

3. No appointment needed. Just go their with everything mentioned in the list + any extra documents that might make your case stronger

4. Don’t forget to carry a copy of the list as proof. Again, they don’t know anything and need to be reminded. Use the list! Be polite!

5. They’re supposed to call or text you to inform you about the collection, but they might forget. This happened with me and the 10 other people I met their. They didn’t just inform us. Haha. Just visit the embassy in 21 days if you don’t get a call/ text within that period. They made us wait their for about 5 hours and finally handed us the passports with the VISA 😀

Some extra notes:

1. Make a cover letter in English and Spanish. If you don’t, then they’ll make you prepare on right there. It’s better to take a printed one which mentions all the documents you’re attaching and their purpose
2. Also mention the exact dates of your study
3. Put your Spanish Address (ESCP will help you with the address :D)
4. If you have a French Social Security and/ or a mutuelle, then you may not need a separate insurance. This was my case, so I attached a copy of an attestation by LMDE that mentions that it covers me indefinitely in Spain. Don’t sweat if you don’t have it; just take an Indian insurance; they not so expensive anyway (note: you can only choose the insurance companies mentioned here – http://www.vfsglobal.com/spain/india/pdf/Indian_insurance_companies_020915.pdf)
5. You don’t have to get any legalisation and translations for your documents if you’re applying for the 6 month Visa. So, ignore the students (you’ll become really close friends with them btw. You’ll have to stand their in the scorching sun for hours) you’d meet outside the embassy who are applying for longer visas! 😛

Cheers!

Ayush GUPTA

Visa Process!

Bonjour à tous,

Applying for the visa is one of the most important steps after you’ve received an offer from a university. It is recommended to apply at least 20 – 25 days before your expected date of departure. You will initially receive a visa for the first 3 months only and then you’d have to get it extended for a year once you’ve reached France. You can check out the following checklist of required documents:

  • Long stay application form duly filled and signed
  • Two passport size photographs of the past 3 months meeting set standards – one must be attached to the application form (Size 3.5 cm x 4.5 cm, with clear background).
  • Passport: a full national private passport or official travel document with a minimum of three months validity beyond the validity of the requested visa, with two blank visa pages face to face with the mention “visa” to affix the visa sticker. The passport should be issued less than 10 years ago.
  • One copy of the passport mentioning personal identity and validity extension information, “note on remarks” page and all the pages which contain Schengen visas.
  • Old passports: if you own one or more former passports, you must bring them.
  • A print out of your Campus France ID number (No objection certificate)
  • A letter of registration from a French Academic Institution or a certificate testifying that you will follow an European Union Training Programme or proof of scholarship.
  • Cover letter explaining the study project, duration of your studies, scholarship details, your financial support, and your motivation to study in France.
  • A short curriculum vitae.
  • Proof of resources: tuition fees + a minimum of 615 Euros/month x by number of months of stay (living expenses). Only liquid assets will be considered. In the case of family member/friend funding your studies, an undertaking must be provided on plain paper duly signed along with supporting financial documents. Bank statements of the last 3 months (of the individual sponsoring the education and the student’s bank statements if he/she has an account in his/her name). If you are being hosted by a family in France, an “Attestation d’accueil” will have to be provided by the family (A sample of this document may be downloaded from http://vosdroits.service-public.fr/particuliers/R10751.xhtml). In such a case you will have to show resources for a minimum of 300 euros per month for your living expenses. Note: holders of a scholarship are not concerned. A certificate mentioning the amount and the duration of the scholarship is only required.
  • Proof of medical insurance with coverage valid for France for the first 3 months (you will have to get a full social security once you’ve reached France)
  • One copy of your round trip ticket if you are studying 6 months or less (+ 1 photocopy) or a one way ticket only if you are studying in France more than 6 months (+ 1 photocopy)
  • The “Office Français de l’Immigration et de l’Intégration” OFII form duly filled and signed. Download the OFII form from www.diplomatie.gouv.fr/fr/IMG/pdf/LS-01d_formulaire_ofii.pdf
  • Accommodation during the first three months of the stay. Proof of residency in France such as a lease, electricity bill, title of property etc. for a minimum of 3 months + 1 photocopy. Hotel: reservation and necessary resources to cover costs. Accommodation provided by an individual: “attestation d’accueil”, or attestation by solemn undertaking (in this case, the copies of identity card and electricity bill and receipt for rent payment or title of property must been provided). Accommodation in an establishment (or in an institution) or provided by an establishment (or an institution): attestation by the establishment or the institution.
  • Copies of the degree and diplomas, certificates

Note: I would recommend that you also take photocopies of all the above mentioned documents asking with you to the Visa authority.

IMPORTANT: this list is specific to Indian applicants and may differ a little for applicants from other countries. I would also try to contact students from a few other countries and make a cumulative list.

Merci
Ayush Gupta ( AG )

Campus Choice and Free Intensive French Course

logo_bigBon matin,

Howdie people? About 3 days back I received an email from ESCP which had two forms attached to it:
1. Campus Choice form
2. Free Intensive French course

Basically, the first form let’s you choose a campus of your choice from either Paris, London, Turin, Berlin, Madrid or some predefined combinations.

But if you know only English and/or French and have a degree from a non business bachelors, say engineering, you don’t have any choice. You have to select Paris.
If, however, you are multilingual in a few European languages, then you have loads of options and may even select upto 3 colleges for 3 degrees and a super international experience.

The other form resembles the 1 page form you filled earlier to accept your position at ESCP. This form is for you to accept or decline your place for a free, 4 day, basic French course, which would start on 20th August, 2013. Well, as I mentioned earlier, I’ve already taken 3.5 months of French lessons in India and you may have taken more or many more lessons than I have, but I’d still recommend you to accept your place for this course as it would only give you more time to acquaint yourself with the school, students and of course Paris!

So fill your forms and shout out for any help that you may require.

A bientôt

Ayush Gupta

PS: The free Intensive French course at ESCP that starts before the M1 session is 4 days long and not 1 month. Please pardon my misinterpretation.

PPS: The modified logo is just my perception. Not sure if it it really signifies that.

 

Ayush Gupta (AG)