If you want to visit Europe, getting a Schengen visa rejection can feel like a huge setback. You may have spent a lot of time and effort on your application but still get denied for various reasons. Some of the common causes of Schengen visa rejection are missing or incorrect documents, not enough money to cover your trip or a lack of travel purpose.
In this article, we'll help you understand why your Schengen visa application may have been rejected and what steps you can take to improve your chances next time.
Schengen visa rejection rates
According to the Schengen Visa Statistics for 2021, below are the rejection rates for visa applications in each of the Schengen countries:
Schengen countries with high rejection rates:
- Sweden rejected 30.6 per cent of visa applications
- Norway rejected 26.2 per cent of visa applications
- France rejected 21.1 per cent of visa applications
- Denmark rejected 21.1 per cent of visa applications
- Belgium rejected 20.4 per cent of visa applications
- France rejected 16.2 per cent of visa applications
Schengen countries with low rejection rates:
- Latvia rejected 3.5 per cent of visa applications
- The Czech Republic rejected 3.3 per cent of visa applications
- Lithuania rejected 2.8 per cent of visa applications
- Slovakia rejected 2.7 per cent of visa applications
- Luxembourg rejected 1.2 per cent of visa applications
Schengen visa rejection reasons
When your Schengen visa application is rejected, it means that the embassy or consulate of the Schengen country you applied to has reviewed your application and accompanying documentation, and has determined that you do not meet the requirements for obtaining a Schengen visa. There are various reasons why a Schengen visa application may be rejected as listed below.
Failing to provide the correct paperwork
To avoid the risk of Schengen visa rejection, it is crucial to have all the necessary documents in order before filling out your application. Even a minor mistake, such as providing visa photos that do not meet the minimum requirements, can lead to your application being refused.
It is worth noting that different Schengen countries may request different documents, so it is essential to collect the correct ones for the country you wish to visit. To ensure that you have all the required documents, many Schengen countries provide a document checklist that you can follow.
Data in your visa application does not match the travel documents that you provided
While it may seem like common sense, it's important to ensure that the information you provide on your Schengen visa application form matches the information on your travel document. Failure to do so can result in your application being rejected.
Before submitting your application, be sure to carefully check that your name, surname, passport number, and other information aligns with your travel document. Taking the time to double-check your application can save you the hassle of having to restart the process.
Delaying the start of your visa application
Late applications often result in visa refusals, as processing times vary depending on the country and peak travel seasons. Processing times can range from 15 to 30 days, and other factors can contribute to delays.
It's generally advised to begin the application process at least 30-45 days before your trip, as many countries allow for applications to begin up to 90 days in advance. Starting early provides a buffer for unforeseen delays and increases the likelihood of a successful application.
You don’t have sufficient funds
Proving your financial capability to support yourself during your trip is a requirement for the Schengen visa application. This can be demonstrated through the submission of financial documents such as bank statements, payslips, credit card statements, and financial statements spanning three months or more.
Failure to provide these documents or meet financial requirements may result in a visa rejection by the Consulate official. Financial requirements vary between Schengen Area countries, and it's important to be aware of the minimum financial requirements of the specific country you intend to visit.
Your passport is invalid or damaged
As part of the visa requirements for a Schengen visa, your passport must be valid for at least three months. Failing to meet this requirement will result in a visa denial. Before applying for the visa, make sure your passport is not nearing expiration, as this will require applying for a new valid passport.
Additionally, presenting a damaged passport can also lead to application rejection by the Consulate official. Examples of a damaged passport include missing or detached pages, a damaged cover, and insufficient blank pages. It's crucial to always have a valid and undamaged passport, which is the most essential travel document for all visa applications.
You have a false document on your visa application
If you attempt to submit fraudulent documents, your visa application will likely be rejected, and you may face additional negative repercussions. To avoid these issues, it is essential to collect all necessary documents and verify that they are authentic and meet the required criteria before submitting them. This will not only save you time but also increase your chances of a successful visa application.
What to do after my Schengen visa got rejected?
There are two options that you can do after you got your application rejected, you can either re-apply for your Schengen visa, or propose an appeal to the Embassy or Consulate of the country that you are applying for.
If you decide to re-apply for your Schengen visa application:
Correct the mistakes you've made in your first application or improve your situation
It's crucial to learn from your mistakes and not let a rejection lower your chances of approval in the future. While visa officers may take note of your previous denial, Embassies and Consulates are reasonable and understand that mistakes happen.
By addressing any issues with your initial application and improving your situation, you can confidently re-apply and have a good chance of success. So, don't be discouraged by a rejection and use it as an opportunity to improve your application.
Wait for 30 days until you re-apply for your Schengen visa
In case your Schengen visa application is rejected, you may wonder what to do next. The good news is that you can re-apply for a visa. However, it is not possible to have two visa applications in process simultaneously. Therefore, it is recommended that you wait for at least one to two months before submitting a new Schengen visa application.
Don't use the same documents (excluding birth certificate, passport, etc.)
Let's say you submitted your visa application in June and received a rejection in July. It may take you until August to figure out why you were denied and what documents were lacking in order to make the necessary revisions.
Consequently, it would not be appropriate to resubmit the same set of documents, particularly since some may have already been flagged as unacceptable. Instead, when submitting a new application, you should include up-to-date photos, utility bills, bank statements, and other required documents.
If you decide to apply for an appeal
While it is usually possible to re-apply for a Schengen visa right after being denied, it is generally advisable to wait for about a month.
However, instead of reapplying, you can opt to go through an appeal process: the visa officers can review your previous application, identify any incorrect or missing documents, and give you an opportunity to update your application.
How to write an appeal letter
An applicant may write an appeal letter citing valid reasons why the rejection was unjustified. The letter should include facts or a legal basis supporting the argument, and sometimes additional evidence can be submitted to prove the rejection was incorrect. Below is the structure of your appeal letter for your visa:
You also must attach the supporting documents along with your appeal letter, and it depends on the reason why your application was rejected. To submit the appeal, you can present your appeal letter for a Schengen country's visa at either their embassy or the embassy/consulate designated for visa processing.
However, the organisation responsible for deciding on your visa appeal will vary depending on the country that denied your visa. For example, in Germany, the Administrative Court in Berlin will be in charge of reviewing your visa refusal appeal.
In Italy, the Administrative Regional Tribunal is responsible; in Norway, the Directorate of Immigration; and in France, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and so on.
After submitting your appeal letter and accompanying documents, the appropriate appeal processing organisation for that country will review your letter. A higher-level officer, who is responsible for handling Schengen visa appeals, will make a decision on whether or not to overturn the decision to reject your visa application.
The waiting time for an appeal letter varies depending on the embassy of the country you applied to. In some cases, if your appeal is also rejected, they may not inform you of the decision made on your application.
ALSO READ:Planning your next holiday? How to check your Singapore visa application status online
This article was first published in Wego.
You can appeal the refusal. The appeal must be submitted within 15 days of the receipt of visa refusal to the Consulate that decided to refuse the visa. The appeal must be an original with the original signature of the appellant, i.e. in person or by mail (not email).Can you apply for Schengen visa after rejection? ›
A common question we often get from them is, “Can I apply for a Schengen Visa again after being refused?” The simple answer is yes; you can apply for a Schengen Visa again after rejection.Should I appeal my Schengen visa rejection? ›
The right of appeal is fundamental and provided for by law. Any person refused a Schengen visa has the right to appeal the decision. But your right to appeal is based on how the member state that denied your visa does things. This would be the case if the member state only represented the country you wished to visit.Does visa refusal affect future visa application? ›
In short, a visa refusal will likely affect a future visa application. Having a good immigration history without a visa refusal and/or cancellation, alongside general visa condition compliance, are important factors that the Department of Home Affairs (Department) take into consideration when deciding to grant a visa.What is the rejection rate for Schengen visa application? ›
Only three Schengen Area Member States are responsible for rejecting 66.5 per cent of the total number of short-term visas rejected in 2021.Is it better to appeal or reapply for Schengen visa? ›
Even though appealing the initial visa decision is the correct option, it may take some time. If your trip is imminent, the best option is to reapply for your visa.Which Schengen countries have the lowest visa rejection? ›
- Luxembourg – with a rejection rate as low as 1.2 percent out of total 2,383 Schengen visa applications received.
- Slovakia – 2.7 percent out of 3,886 applications.
- Lithuania – 2.8 percent out of 24,764 applications.
France, that had the highest number of applications in 2021, also contributed most to the rejected pile, after denying a visa to 128,672 applicants (21%) out of the 652,331 applications it received. Spain came in second, with 69,863 rejected visas (15.5%) out of the 483,469 applications received in total.What is the difference between visa refusal and rejection? ›
Visa refusal refers to the act of denying your entry into to a particular country by rejecting your visa application. Visa rejection may happen when you fail to prove your eligibility to visit a particular country.Can a visa refusal be overturned? ›
Appeals are an integral part of U.S. immigration law that can give people a second chance at coming to America. An appeal of a visa application denial can only be filed by the person who filed the original application or petition. If it was in an individual, then that person must make the appeal.
The decision to refuse the visa includes the reasons on which the refusal was based. You can appeal the refusal. The appeal must be submitted within 15 days of the receipt of visa refusal to the Consulate that decided to refuse the visa.What is the most common visa rejection? ›
- Incomplete Application. Your visa application will be rejected if all the mandatory fields of the form are not filled. ...
- Violation of Rules. ...
- Insufficient Travel Insurance. ...
- Unclear Purpose of Travel. ...
- Passport Issues. ...
- Application Timings. ...
- Insufficient Funds. ...
- Crime History.
If you have been refused a visa to any country for any reason, include it in your application with as much details as possible to avoid the 10-year ban.Which country gives fastest Schengen visa? ›
The country with the fastest Schengen visa processing time is Lithuania. Places like Germany and France get many visa applications because they're very popular with tourists and business travelers.Which is the fastest application of Schengen visa? ›
iVisa.com has three available Germany Schengen Visa: Processing Time: the standard one takes 10 business days, the rush one lasts about 6 business days, and the super rush, the fastest one, takes only 4 business days to process your application. Prices vary according to their speed.How many visas get rejected? ›
The overall refusal rate, including countries with 10 or fewer visas issued, was 32.4%.How do I write an appeal letter for Schengen visa? ›
Having in mind above stated I would like to kindly ask you to reconsider my application and to void your visa denial. As I should leave on [Date DD/MONTH/YYYY] I would also like to kindly ask you to reconsider your decision on the earlies possible convenience because I have to organize my plans.Can I appeal a rejected visa application? ›
If the Department of Home Affairs refuses an application for a visa, other than a protection visa, you can ask the tribunal to review the decision. This includes decisions about visitor, student, partner, family, business or skilled visas. This is called 'making an appeal'.How long does VFS appeal take? ›
If no appointment is available, the applicant must walk-in to VFS and insist their appeal is taken. A reference number is given to the submission and can be tracked online. An appeal outcome can take as little a two months and up to two years to receive.Which country visa is most difficult to get? ›
- Saudi Arabia.
- Western Sahara.
- North Korea.
In general, Lithuania is the easiest country to obtain a Schengen Visa from, with officials granting 98.7% of applications. The nation also receives fewer applications than countries such as Germany or France, as they are extremely popular with tourists and business travellers.What is the least visited Schengen country? ›
The Principality of Liechtenstein is the leader in the list of the least visited countries in Europe. This small but insanely beautiful state is located in the Alps, between Austria and Switzerland.What not to say in a visa interview? ›
Don'ts During the Visa Interview Process
'Like, Umm, I guess' – Try to avoid using conversation fillers such as 'Like', 'Ummmm', or 'I guess' in a sentence when you are responding to a question. Pay close attention to the questions asked and respond with just the answer. Keep in short and simple.
Failure to declare visa refusals/entry denied to any country could result in a Canada visa refusal + a 5-year ban for misrepresentation. Consequently, this would affect your chances of getting visas to several countries.Which countries have the highest US visa rejection rate? ›
In 2021, around 79.09 percent of persons from China who applied for a B-visa to the United States had their request denied. B-visa applicants from North Korea had the highest refusal rate in that same year, at 100 percent.Does visa rejection affect? ›
Does Visa Rejection Affect Future Travel? Yes, even a single visa rejection for any reason may obstruct your future visa applications.Can visa status change from refused to issued? ›
This “refused” status may change if: The applicant can demonstrate to a consular ofﬁcer he or she is eligible for a visa; or. Information comes to the attention of the consular ofﬁcer from other sources that resolve any outstanding issues relating to the applicant's eligibility for the visa.What are strong ties to your home country? ›
In order to obtain a B-1/B-2 travel visa, you must be able to show that you have “strong ties” to your country of origin. This is simply because U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) wants to be as certain as possible that you will indeed return home once your tourist visa expires.How do I win a visa appeal? ›
- Prepare a robust appellant's bundle.
- The documentation you provide should prove that you adhered to all the necessary personal immigration rules or that your circumstances are compassionate and compelling to warrant a visa.
- Get a robust legal representative.
From the time of the express or implicit visa refusal, you may contest this France visa refusal within two months. There are two types of administrative appeal: an appeal to the French consular authorities and. an appeal to the Commission de recours contre les décisions de refus de visa d'entrée en France.
Reasons why your visa may be cancelled
you were non-compliant with visa conditions. you did not meet our character requirements. you provided false information on your visa application.
The Italy Visa Application Centre cannot influence this decision in any way. Can I submit a new application, if it was already once rejected? New visa application can be submitted at any time, even though your previous application was rejected.How do you know if your visa application is denied? ›
The consular officer who interviews you will tell you at the end of your interview if your case is being refused under 221(g). The consular officer will either tell you that the case has to undergo administrative processing, or will ask you to submit additional information.What happens if you are denied entry at an airport? ›
If you have been denied entry with a visa, you have the right to: An exclusion hearing before a judge to determine your admissibility; An administrative appeal to the Board of Immigration Appeals; A judicial review or appeal of any, or all, of the above decisions.How many times can you apply for a visa? ›
There is no limit to the number of times you can apply for a U.S. visa after rejection.What percentage of visas are approved? ›
Percentages vary by visa category
In FY 2020, 74.9 percent of these visa applications, of all categories, were approved by foreign service officers; in FY 2019, it was 74.5 percent. In FY 2021, the approvals jumped to 86.7 percent.
More than 4 million visa applications are denied each year by the U.S. government for a wide variety of reasons. For instance, a person's visa application may have been denied based on the fact that they did not meet the specific qualifications of the type of visa for which they applied.What are the requirements for Schengen visa? ›
- Valid passport. ...
- Schengen Visa application form. ...
- Photography that meets Schengen guidelines. ...
- Proof of paid Schengen visa fees. ...
- Travel Medical Insurance for your entire stay in Europe. ...
- Biometric Data. ...
- Copies of previous visas. ...
- Flight Itinerary.
Do Schengen Countries Share Visa Information With the UK? Because of Brexit, the UK is now considered a third-country national by the EU, which means the UK no longer has access to the information stored in VIS, SIS, and Eurodac.How much bank balance is required for US tourist visa? ›
How much money do I need to show for US Tourist Visa? Officially, there is no limit for the money to be shown for the US Tourist Visa. Any amount that can validate the overall expenses for your US trip must be adequate. This includes to and fro air tickets, medical insurance, boarding, lodging, shopping, etc.
It usually takes around two weeks or 15 days to process a Schengen Visa from the U.S.A.. It may - however - take as long as 30 or even 60 days in exceptional circumstances.What are the chances of getting Schengen visa? ›
If we go by the reports, with 97.9% of the applications received, only 2.1% rejected, which also means that you have a bright chance to get a visa from this country.What is the longest time for Schengen visa? ›
The Schengen visa is a short stay visa and takes the form of a sticker affixed to the travel document. The definition of “short stay” is a stay of "90 days in any 180 days period". This means that the total duration of stay is of maximum 90 days, in any period of 180 days.Which Schengen Visa is hardest? ›
This means that Sweden, Norway, France, Denmark, and Belgium were the most likely countries to reject a Schengen visa in 2021.Which Schengen country has lowest rejection rate? ›
- Luxembourg – with a rejection rate as low as 1.2 percent out of total 2,383 Schengen visa applications received.
- Slovakia – 2.7 percent out of 3,886 applications.
- Lithuania – 2.8 percent out of 24,764 applications.
- Visa application form – completely filled with the required information. ...
- A valid passport or Travel document. ...
- US residence permit. ...
- Photo – taken within the last three months. ...
- A cover letter. ...
- Round-trip Flight Itinerary.
After being found ineligible for a visa, you may reapply in the future. If you reapply for a visa after being found ineligible, with the exception of 221(g) refusals, you must submit a new visa application and pay the visa application fee again.How soon can I apply for visa after rejection? ›
There's no set rule or specific timeline for when you can reapply for a U.S. tourist visa after being denied, but there are some things to keep in mind. If you were denied due to ineligibility, it's important to understand the waiver process mentioned above before trying to apply again.Can you apply for a visa after being rejected? ›
Can I reapply for a visa? After being found ineligible for a visa, you may reapply in the future. If you reapply for a visa after being found ineligible, with the exception of 221(g) refusals, you must submit a new visa application and pay the visa application fee again.Can I apply for France visa after refusal? ›
The applicant who has been refused a visa may contest the decision within 30 days by lodging an appeal : Before the Commission for Appeals against Visa Refusal Decisions in the case of a long-stay visa (CRRV – BP 83609 – 44036 NANTES CEDEX 1).
When applying for visa, you should answer truthfully all the questions asked of you. On the other hand, you are not obligated to answer questions that are not asked. The UK is not (and has never been) a Schengen member. Thus, if the question asks about prior Schengen refusal, then the answer is "No."What is the difference between visa refusal and denial? ›
Visa refusal means you did something wrong and that went on your permanent record, leading to visa refusal. While the visa rejection means something is missing from your application and you have to resubmit your paperwork. A denial letter and a refusal letter are interchangeable; however, a visa rejection is not.How long does it take to get a visa from VFS France? ›
The processing time for visa applications take approximately 15 working days for a short stay and up to 2 months for a long stay.What is the status of refused visa? ›
A visa “refusal” is not a denial of the visa application.
Instead, a “refusal” means that the case will remain on hold until the case goes through further processing. This means that the Consulate will place your case on hold until the documentation or information it has requested from you has been received.
Yes, you can apply if you have detected a mistake in your visa application. However, a country's immigration department may ask you for the copy of your refusal to enter the country before giving you the permission to reapply. If the reasons for the visa refusal are satisfactory, you will be allowed to reapply.What happens if visa change of status is denied? ›
“Case Denied” means that your case has been fully reviewed and USCIS has determined that you are not eligible for the change or extension in your status. “Case Rejected” means that you've made a filing error of some kind and USCIS has returned your paperwork and filing fee.Does Italy reject visa? ›
Overstaying the limit of visa or not following the designated itinerary or spending periods of time in Italy without authorization are few reasons for Italy visa rejection.How can I increase my chances of getting a visa? ›
You can increase your chances of travel visa approval by providing a comprehensive overview of your finances on your application. This could include bank statements, pay stubs showing a steady income, or proof of assets.What happens if denied entry? ›
When you get to the airline counter, three things could happen: They apply your return ticket to your flight back. They add a fee to change your return flight date. They require you to buy a full-fare ticket.