German Consulate Houston, Texas – Apply for Germany Schengen Visa in 5 Easy Steps
Germany, among all the Schengen countries, is a country that attracts many visitors year after year. There are lots to see and do everywhere you go and whether you want to dive into its culture, its shops or its restaurants and bars there is something for everyone. There are historical cities and towns, palaces and parks, and fairy-tale castles to discover. Markets galore all year round and traditional food and drink to savour – Germany really does have it all. In this article learn more about how to apply for Germany Visa at the Houston consulate, German visa appointment booking, Processing time at the German visa application center and Visa Application Process at the German consulate in Houston.
2017 statistics show that there were 2,049,055 German Schengen visa applications. Of these, 156,393 were not issued. The German consulate in Houston processed 1,594 applications with 38 rejections.
Applying for Schengen Visa from the United States
You should apply for a German Schengen visa if you are a non-US citizen and/or a permanent resident of the US. You must not hold a B1/B2 visa. If you do, you are only eligible to apply for an Airport Transit visa which must be applied for in your home country.
If you wish to apply for a German Schengen visa from the German Consulate General in Houston, you must complete your application on their VIDEX software.
You have to make sure you apply at the right German embassy and consulates. Applicants who reside in the following areas are free to submit their application to the German consulate in Houston.
Types of Schengen Visas Offered at the German Consulate General in Houston
German Schengen visas are valid for a maximum of 90 days and there are different types of visa available depending on your reason for travel.
a) Tourism – Vacation only
b) Business – Business related to your profession
c) Study – Study and/or training
d) Family purpose – Visit family
e) Official visit – Official business/large groups with same reason/dates for the trip
f) Medical – Receive medical treatment
g) Airport Transit Visa (ATV) – Change planes on German territory
Please note, if you are planning to go to Germany for longer than 90 days, you’ll need to apply for a national visa.
Each of these visas can be:
1) Single entry – Maximum of 1 entry during 90 day period
2) Double entry – Maximum of 2 entries during the 90 day period
3) Multiple entry – Unlimited entries during the 90 day period
Schengen Visa Application Process at the German Consulate General in Houston
Applying for a German Schengen visa at the German Consulate General in Houston is a simple process, but you should follow the steps laid out here if you want the best chance of having your application accepted. You must ensure that you are applying for the correct visa, otherwise, this could mean your application is rejected. If you are unsure, you can check the consulate’s website or you can email them at email@example.com.
Step 1: Complete your online application form
To begin the German Schengen visa application process, you must first go to the consulate’s website and click on visa information.
Scroll down, and click on Schengen Visa:
Scroll down again and click on business/tourism/visitor visas:
On this page, you’ll have a list of documents that are required for your appointment and here you’ll be able to access the VIDEX system to begin inputting your information. Click on Schengen Visa Application Form (with instructions).
It’s best if you can set aside enough time to complete your application because until you fill out your name and date of birth, you won’t be able to save it. If you don’t input any details for 10 minutes, your data will be deleted. Have the following documents to hand before you start your application:
- Travel/flight schedule
- Address in Germany
- Hotel reservation
- Letter of invitation
As you proceed through, there is help function on the software if you are uncertain what information they require.
In the end, you must save your application and print off these documents which you will need to sign:
- Application form
- Instruction according to Section 55 (2) (1) of the Residence Act
- Barcodes with your VIDEX-encrypted data
Step 2: Making an Appointment
It isn’t possible to submit your application online, so you’ll need to schedule an appointment at the German Consulate General in Houston.
If you have previously applied for a Schengen visa within the last 2 years, you can send your application and documents by mail. If you do this, you must send the following:
- Pre-filled FedEx/USPS slip with your address plus $25 for the FedEx/USPS fee (if required)
- Self-addressed, pre-paid envelope (if required)
- Document checklist
Please note, all signatures must be notarized.
The processing times for mailed applications can take up to 5 weeks from when the consulate receives your application.
Making appointments with the embassy or visa application center is generally free and can be done yourself. However, If you are running short of time or not sure which consulate to apply to or have no idea on how to get this done yourself then not to worry, we will make the appointment for you for a small service fee!
Step 3: Preparing your documents
You must not wait until the last minute to apply for your German Schengen visa. Processing times are between 24-48 hours, but it can take longer, so don’t rely on these timescales. The best thing to do is submit your application at least 2 weeks, but not more than 90 days, prior to your travel dates. Applications that are received more than 90 days will be rejected.
Once you have booked your appointment, you should prepare your documents.
1) Fully completed and signed Schengen visa application form
2) Declaration of the accuracy of information
3) 1 x photo
– Passport-size, 3.5 x 4.5 cm
– Not older than 6 months
– Close up of head and top of shoulders
– Good quality
– Valid for 3 months after the trip
– Issued within the last 10 years.
– 2 free pages
5) Purpose of Stay
– Employer letter stating the length of employment, the purpose of business, duration of the trip, and guarantee to cover travel expenses
– Cruise ship itinerary
– Residence permit of host
– EU national passport/proof of relationship
– Address in Germany
– Parent’s signatures/proof of sole custody
– Parent’s passports
– Birth certificate
6) Proof of residence in the US
7) Original of valid US alien registration card or valid US resident visa (type A, E, F plus endorsed I-20, G, H, I, J plus J1 document, L, O, R)
8) Socio-professional situation
– Employed: Employer letter and/or proof of business
– Self-employed: Business license
– Students: Certificate of attendance
– Retired: Pension certificate
For dependent spouse/family:
– Marriage certificate
– Proof of relationship
– Spouse/family member’s passport/bank statements/working certificate
– Letter of sponsorship
10) Proof of funds
– 3 months bank statements
– €30,000 to cover medical emergencies and repatriation
If you’re planning to obtain your flight reservation for visa without paying for the ticket, all you have to do is follow the 3 simple steps below:
- Visit the Visa Reservation website to choose the right package
- Submit the travel details and make the payment online
- Receive flight itinerary in email
Step 4: Submit your file
On the day of your appointment, arrive at the German Consulate General in Houston with plenty of time to spare. Make sure you have all your documents because if you don’t your appointment will be cancelled and your application rejected. Take a few minutes to relax and gather yourself before the interview begins. Make a good impression by dressing formally and treating this part of the process seriously.
All your documents must be originals and you must also make photocopies of everything. You must also take:
- Instruction according to Section 55 (2) (1) of the Residency Act (signed)
- Barcodes with VIDEX-encrypted data
- Information on Data Protection
You may also be required to provide biometric data which includes a photo and fingerprints.
Schengen visa fees:
|Visa Type||Fee||Free of Charge|
Schengen visa and
Airport transit visa
Children aged between 6-12
-Children under the age of 6
-Foreign spouse of the German national
-Foreign members of families of nationals of other Member States of the EU/EEA and Switzerland
-Visa for scholarship holders (from German scientific organization)
-Pupils, students and accompanying teachers during a school trip
|National visas (study, employment, family reunion, etc.)|| |
-Foreign spouse of the German national
There is an additional fee of $25 if you wish to have your passport mailed back to you.
As part of the German Schengen visa interview, the visa officer may ask you some extra questions to establish what you have stated in your application. They also want to know if you can be trusted and that you will return home after your trip. You shouldn’t worry about this, just do your best to answer the questions honestly and precisely.
Some of the most common questions are:
- Are you traveling with someone else?
- Do you enjoy any scholarship?
- Do you have covered health insurance for this journey?
- Do you have a girlfriend/boyfriend?
- Why do you want to travel to Germany?
Don’t jeopardize your Schengen visa interview at the last minute. Use this comprehensive and thorough visa interview guide to crack the visa interview!
Step 5: Receiving your visa
When your passport and visa is ready for collection, you can either collect it from the German Consulate General in Houston or you can arrange for it to be sent to your home.
These instructions to get your German Schengen visa may seem a little daunting, but if you follow them exactly, you shouldn’t have any issues. The consulate’s online system has been designed to make applying very simple. However, you should be aware that your application could still be rejected. Here are a few rejection reasons why this may happen:
- The justification for purpose of travel was not provided
- Insufficient means of subsistence
- You have already been in a Schengen country for more than 90 days in a 180 day period
- No travel insurance
- Intention to leave before the expiry of the visa could not be confirmed
- Visa application form not provided
In order for your application to be accepted, you should have all the required documents prior to your appointment and be honest with your answers.
Contact detail for the Consulate General of Germany in Houston
Address: 1330 Post Oak Boulevard, Suite 1850, Houston, Texas, TX 77056-3057
Phone: +1 713 627 7770
Visa and passport departments are available by phone on Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 1.30 pm – 3.00 pm and Tuesday from 9.00 am – 11.00 am. Outside of these hours, you can use their contact form.
Hours: Monday to Friday, 8.30 a.m. – 12.00 p.m.
The application process for your German Schengen visa at the German Consulate General in Houston is simple to complete. Just make sure you do your part and have all the paperwork completed in full and signed before your appointment. You only have to follow 5 straightforward steps before you’re flying off for your well-deserved holiday in Germany.
At Visa Reservation, we strive to simplify the visa process by providing free visa consultations, cover letter templates and no objection letter templates for our clients from US, UK, Canada, Philippines, India, China, UAE, Europe, Nigeria and globally. We also offer flight itinerary for visa, travel medical insurance, hotel reservations for visa and much more. To learn more about how we can help you with our visa services, please feel free to contact us today.