5 Easy Steps to Apply for Italy Schengen Visa at Italian Consulate in Chicago, Illinois
One of the most traveled countries in the world, Italy sees thousands of tourists descend on its sunny shores every year. If it’s romance and history you’re looking for, you’ll definitely find it in cities like Venice or Rome with gondola rides along the canals or grandiose architecture and ancient ruins. Anywhere you go here, you’ll find colorful villages and a spectacular coastline, and with the world-famous cuisine, a vibrant nightlife, and friendly locals, Italy could be your dream destination. In this article learn more about how to apply for Italy Visa at the Chicago consulate, Italian Consulate visa appointment booking, Processing time at the Italy visa center and Italy Visa Application Process at the Chicago consulate.
Italy was the third highest among the Schengen countries in the number of Schengen visa applications received in 2017 with a rejection rate of 7.7%. The Italian consulate in Chicago contributed to this figure with 909 applications of which only 1 was not issued.
Applying for Schengen Visa from the United States
If you are a non-US citizen, then you have to apply for a Schengen visa to enter Italy, but you can only do this if you hold any of the following documents:
- S passport
- Foreign passport + U.S permanent residence card – if you are a green card holder
- Valid student visa + valid re-entry signature on I-20
- Valid exchange visitor visa + DS-2019
- Long-term U.S visas (For example, L1, L2, H1, H2, R1 etc.)
- S re-entry permit
- S refugee travel document (Document de Voyage de Refugees)
If you hold a B1/B2 visa, you are only eligible for an Airport Transit visa which must be applied for in your home country.
To apply for your Schengen visa in Chicago, you must first find out which Italian consulate or Italian embassy deals with your region. The Consulate General of Italy in Chicago processes applications for residents of the following states;
Types of Schengen Visas Offered at the Consulate General of Italy in Chicago
Schengen visas are valid for a maximum of 90 days. If you plan to go to Italy for longer than 90 days, you’ll need to apply for a long-term or national visa.
There is a variety of visas available from the Consulate General of Italy in Chicago. Before you even begin to apply, you should know which one you need depending on your circumstances.
a) Tourism – Vacation only
b) Business – Business related to your profession
c) Elective Residency – Living in Italy
d) Family – Spouse/family member of a non-EU/EEA citizen
e) Lavoro Subordinato/Work – Temporary and/or seasonal work/Maritime services/Journalists
f) Lavoro Autonomo – Self-employed
g) Italia Start-up visa – Establish a business in Italy
h) Mission for family of US military personnel – Family accompanying military personnel
i) Mission for civil contractors – Contract with a US military bases
j) Religious (Catholic and non-Catholic) – Involved with religious events
k) Sport – Participation in a sporting event
l) Study (Under and over the age of 18) – Studying in Italy
m) Airport Transit Visa (ATV) – Change planes on Italian territory
For each of these visas you can apply for either:
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 Consulate General of Italy in Chicago
When you know which visa you require, you can start the application process at the Consulate General of Italy in Chicago. The first thing to do is to check out the visa page of the consulate’s website. All the information you need has been laid out in an easy to understand way. The steps you need to follow are straightforward, but if you want the best chance of a successful application, you need to follow them exactly.
There are some issues that you need to be aware of when applying for your visa:
- Visas cannot be issued on the same day
- Incomplete applications will not be accepted
- Rush processing is not an option
- Documents sent by fax/email prior to your appointment will not be accepted
Step 1: Making an appointment
You have to apply for your Italian Schengen visa by making an appointment on the consulate’s website. It is advisable to apply well before your trip because at certain times of the year, such as during the summer months, Thanksgiving and Christmas, the waiting time for appointments can be as much as 2 months. However, please bear in mind that applications should not be more than 90 days before your trip.
In order to make an appointment, you will be required to register if you haven’t used this service before or we can book the appointment for you for a small service fee!
Step 2: Printing the Schengen visa application form
All you need to do to get a free Schengen visa application form is to go to the Consulate General of Italy in Chicago’s website and print one off. There are other forms if you require them.
Step 3: Preparing your documents
After you have the day and time set for your appointment and have your application and other forms ready, you must now turn your attention to preparing your documents. This is such an important part of the process because if you fail to provide what is required, your application will be rejected.
It is also important that you have original documents as well as photocopies of everything. If you are in possession of foreign documents which need to be submitted, you must arrange for these to be translated into English and, in some cases, Italian, and legalized.
The list of required documentation isn’t exhaustive, but can include:
1) Fully completed and signed Schengen Visa application form
– Data must match the passport
– To be dated and signed in front of the visa official
2) 1 x recent photo
– Passport-size, 3 x 4 cm
– White background
– Full face, front view
– Stapled or glued to the application
– Not scanned or photocopied
– Valid for 3 months after the trip
– Issued within the last 10 years.
– 2 free pages
4) Non-US resident visa/Residence card/I-94/I-20/I-797/Advance Parole/IAP66
– Valid for 3 months after the end of the trip
5) Proof of Residence
6) Copies of most recent Schengen visas with entry/exit stamps (if applicable)
7) Copies of visa needed for the current trip
8) Employment verification
– Employed: Letter from Employer stating job role, length of employment, salary, approved vacation time/Last 3 payslips
– Self-employed or company owners: Business license/Income tax return
– Students: Enrolment letter
– Retired: Proof of pension income
– Last 3 months bank statements
|Up to 5 days: €269.60 per person/€212.81 for 2+ people|
|6-10 days: €44.93 daily per person/€26.33 for 2+ people|
|11-20 days: €51.64 per person/€25.82 for 2+ people. Plus an additional €36.67 per person daily/€22.21 daily for 2+ people|
|20+ days: €206.58/per person/€118.79 for 2+ people. Plus an additional €27.89 per person daily/€17.04 daily for 2+ people|
– $50,000 to cover hospitalization, emergency, evacuation, and repatriation
– Hotel booking
– Offer of hospitality/Letter of invitation/Host’s ID
13) Proof of participation in any type of event
14) Birth and/or marriage certificate
15) Overseas health insurance
16) US certificate of naturalization (ex-Italian citizens)
17) Entry clearance documents (Nulla Osta)
– Not older than 6 months
18) Employment contract
19) Enrolment/enlistment contract
20) Military orders/letter requesting visa
21) Confirmation of religious status/non-employment declaration
22) Permission to engage in events
23) Details of internship/Affidavit of financial support
24) Letter of acceptance
25) Consent to travel (minors)
Step 4: The Schengen Visa Interview
Hopefully, by this time, you’ll have got all the necessary documents because once you arrive at the Italian consulate in Chicago you’ll have limited time to go through everything. It’s advisable to get there on time, even with a few minutes spare. You’ll probably be feeling a little nervous, so take a few deep breathes and collect your thoughts prior to the start of the interview.
Some things to remember are:
- Dress formally
- Treat the interview seriously
- Try to make a good impression
Once the interview begins, don’t be surprised if you are asked questions about your application. Even though the visa official can find the answers from your paperwork, they want to ensure that you are trustworthy and can confirm what you have stated.
Some typical questions are:
- Are you travelling with someone else?
- Is this your first trip to a Schengen country?
- Do you know the annual incomes of your son/daughter?
- Do you pay income tax?
- Have you booked or bought the flight ticket?
If you respond efficiently, truthfully, and with confidence, you should have no issues.
You’ll also need to pay the necessary fee for your visa. Money orders or cashier’s check payable to the Consulate General of Italy in Chicago are accepted. No cash or personal checks.
|Type of Visa||Fee|
|Italian Schengen visa||$70.00/€60.00|
|Italian Schengen visa (minor ages 6-12)||$41.00/€35.00|
|Long Stay National visa||$135.00/€116.00|
After the interview, you may have to provide biometric data which will be scanned into the system for use by authorities.
Step 5: Receiving your visa
At the end of your interview, you’ll be given a date after which you can collect your passport or you can provide a pre-paid envelope for it to be returned by mail. No appointment is required for collection. The Italian consulate in Chicago aims to process Schengen visa applications within 1-2 weeks, but it could take longer depending on your nationality and type of visa applied for.
The Italian consulate in Chicago has many resources on their website and if you follow these 5 easy steps, you should be in receipt of your passport and accepted Schengen visa. But, there is every chance that it could go the other way. There are some applications that get rejected for a number of reasons:
- Damaged passport
- Cannot establish the purpose of the trip
- Intent to leave Italy cannot be confirmed
- Insufficient funds
- No travel itineraries
- No proof of accommodation
The simplest way to walk away with your visa in your passport is to make sure you have all the required paperwork and answer any questions to the satisfaction of the visa officer.
Contact detail for the Consulate General of Italy in Chicago:
Address: 500 N Michigan Avenue, Suite 1850, Chicago, Illinois, IL 60611
Website: Italian Consulate Chicago
Tel: +1 (312) 467-1550
Fax: +1 (312) 467-1335
Hours: Monday – Friday: 9.00 a.m. to 12.30 p.m.
The application process from start to finish does seem a little intense, but all you need to do is follow these steps perfectly. It’s incredibly important that you have all your paperwork in order and you ensure the visa official knows you have genuine reasons for travelling. If you do all of this, then you can get ready for your exciting and unforgettable trip to Italy.
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.