Swiss Consulate San Francisco – 4 Easy Steps to Apply for Switzerland Schengen Visa
Switzerland – a land of majestic mountains, glimmering streams and lakes, and picture-postcard villages. Hundreds of holidaymakers and would-be residents flock there to take advantage of one of Europe’s most beautiful Schengen countries. With snowy peaks and lush hills, captivating cities and charming towns everywhere you go here has a multitude of fascinating and exciting things to do and see. In this article learn more about how to apply for Switzerland Visa at the Swiss consulate in San Francisco, California, Switzerland visa appointment booking, Processing time at the Swiss visa application center and Swiss Visa Application Process at the San Francisco consulate.
There were 1,029,564 Swiss Schengen visa applications received across the globe. 39,969 were refused. The Swiss consulate in San Francisco rejected 0.3% of the 2,675 applications received.
Applying for Schengen Visa from the United States
If you are US citizen there is no need to apply for a Schengen visa. However, if you are not a citizen of the US by birth, but you live in the US permanently, you have to apply for a Swiss Schengen visa. Check the consulate’s website for a list of nationalities that are exempt from applying.
First of all, you have to make sure you apply at the right Swiss embassy and consulate. The Consulate General of Switzerland deals only with applications from people who reside in the following areas:
– New Mexico
Types of Schengen Visas Offered at the Swiss Consulate in San Francisco
The Consulate General of Switzerland in San Francisco has a variety of visas available and the one you apply for will depend on how long you’re going to Switzerland for and why.
- Schengen visa – up to 90 days for tourism, visiting family or friends, language studies, events and/or conferences
- National visa – over 90 days for study, family reunion, marriage etc.
- Airport transit visa – for those not leaving the international zone of the airport
- Labor/work permit visa – for employment at a Swiss company
- Authorized visa – for citizens whose residence permit request was submitted in Switzerland
If you apply for the wrong visa, your application will not be processed and you will have to start again, so make sure you take the time to check the consulate’s website for details in the one you wish to apply for.
All of these types of visa are offered as:
- Single entry – 1 entry during 90 days
- Double entry – 2 entries during the 90 days
- Multiple entry – No limit to entries during the 90 days
Schengen Visa Application Process at the Consulate General of Switzerland in San Francisco
The first thing you need to do to apply for your Swiss Schengen visa is to have a look at the consulate’s website. It will give you all the information you need to know, such as:
- Personal Appearance
- Visa application form
- Documentation to submit with a Schengen visa application
- Processing times
- Information for hosts in Switzerland
- Photograph quality
In addition, you must apply for your visa well in advance of your trip to ensure that it is processed in time for your departure. You can apply anything from 15 days to 90 days beforehand. The consulate aims to process visas in 10-15 days, but these times vary depending on the nature of your application. It could take anything up to 60 days, so bear that in mind when you’re thinking about when to apply.
Once you have familiarized yourself with the website, just follow these 4 simple steps.
Step 1: Complete your application and make an appointment online
The consulate waiting times for appointments can be up to 5 weeks so, as stated above, apply in plenty of time. If this is your first time applying for a Schengen visa, you must make an appointment by using the consulate’s online system. The online system is only for applicants who are planning on visiting Switzerland for up to 90 days. If you are planning on going for over 90 days, you must submit the application in person, but you must still make the appointment online.
Scroll down and key in where you come from:
On the next page, click on “Online Application”:
Next, key in your registration details and click on “Next”:
You can now complete your application online. At the end, you will be able to book your appointment, and pay the relevant fee by credit card if you wish.
If you are not eligible to complete your application online or you prefer to complete your application manually, you can download it from the consulate’s website.
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 2: Getting your paperwork ready
If you fail to present all the required documents at your appointment, your application will not be processed. So take extra time to ensure you have everything together. Check the consulate’s website for everything you need to present. Please be aware that you must provide originals AND photocopies.
The list of documents includes but is not limited to:
1) Printed application for either a Schengen or National visa
2)Two recent passport photos
3) Valid passport or travel document (valid for 3 months after the trip, issued within the last 10 years, and have at least 2 free pages) + copies of the photo, data, and signatures pages
4) Valid permanent residence card/H1B visa + I-797/F-1 visa + I-20
5) Copies of previous Schengen visas issued within the last 5 years (if applicable)
8) 3 x bank statements for proof of financial means. A minimum of $100 per day ($30 for students)
9) Letter from employer stating position and salary or business license and tax return (if self-employed)
10) Enrollment letter
11) Health or travel insurance cover for minimum €30,000 for emergency medical expenses, hospitalization, and repatriation
12) Prepaid, self-addressed envelope with tracking number (for returning passports, if required)
13) Invitation letter from the host company/family
14) Details of school fee payment
15) Previous diplomas/school certificates
16) Notarized marriage/birth certificate
It is your responsibility to check what you need to submit for your application, so check the consulate’s website for more information as to what you need for your type of visa.
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 3: Attend your appointment
As mentioned above, if you have received a previous Schengen visa and had your fingerprints recorded since 2014, you do not need to attend the consulate in person. You can mail your application instead, including your previous visa sticker as well as all the required paperwork.
For applicants applying for the first time, you must attend your interview in person.
On the day of your appointment, arrive at the Swiss consulate in San Francisco early. You don’t want to miss your appointment and the few extra minutes will allow you to make sure you haven’t forgotten anything. The clothes you wear can also affect how the visa official views you, so dress smartly and take this part of the process seriously. After all, you are the one who is looking to get your application approved.
The visa official may ask you further questions to confirm the details that you have stated on your application. Just answer them precisely and honestly. Common visa interview questions could be:
- What is the purpose of your trip?
- Have you traveled before to the Schengen zone?
- What is your salary?
- Do you have children? If so, how old are they?
- Will you come back at the end of your trip?
Don’t jeopardize your Schengen visa interview at the last minute. Use this comprehensive and thorough visa interview guide to crack the visa interview!
On the appointment day, you also have to pay the relevant Schengen visa fee:
Schengen Visa Fee
Adults (over 12 years old )
Children (6-11 years old)
Children (younger than 6)
|Spouses and children of Swiss and EU/EFTA nationals; CERN and UN personnel (official trips only); students who study in Switzerland for only up to 90 days|
|Citizens of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Moldova, Russia, Georgia, Azerbaijan and Armenia|
If you are applying in person, you can pay by cash or credit card. You can also pay beforehand if you are submitting the application form online. If you are applying by mail you can send a money order payable to the Consulate General of Switzerland.
Step 4: Receive your visa
You have the choice of collecting your visa in person by returning to the consulate when your passport is ready or you can have it returned to you by post. You will hopefully see your new Swiss visa in your passport, but be aware that applications get rejected. If yours has been refused, you have the right to appeal it. Reasons why a Schengen visa may not be approved are:
- Invalid passport
- Missing documentation
- Reason for travel is not clear
- Dates are inconsistent with other details
- Missing signatures
- No hotel booking
The best way to avoid these rejection reasons is to make sure that all your documents are valid. Provide all the required paperwork, including signatures on everything, when you hand it over to the consulate, ensure that the information you have provided is the same, and confirm why you wish to travel.
Contact detail for the Swiss Consulate in San Francisco
Address: Pier 17, Suite 600, San Francisco, CA 94111
Phone: +1 415 788 2272
Fax: +1 415 788 1402
Appointment Hours: Monday to Friday, 09.00 am – 12.00 pm
In summary, you only have to follow these 4 easy steps to apply for your Swiss Schengen visa.
- Complete your application and make an appointment online
- Get your paperwork ready
- Attend your appointment
- Receive your visa
Really, it’s only 3 simple steps to follow because once you have attended your appointment, all you need to do is to wait for your passport and your new visa. Once you have that, you can get on and start to prepare for your dream trip!
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.