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  1. #1
    Member chieldave's Avatar
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    Schengen visa for Netherlands

    Hi all spring is coming so I just want to share my experience on applying for Netherlands Schengen visa as it might be helpful for others

    Me and my husband(british) are planning to go in Netherlands on April 4-8,2016 so we applied for my visa under EEA/EU spouse visa last Feb 17,2016 at VFSglobal in Manchester.I received back my passport 12 days after should be 15-17 days

    I booked an appointment for personal appearance for biometrics as required.

    Requirements I provided:

    My passport
    Visa application form
    One photograph
    UK residence permit (original + photocopy)
    Marriage certificate
    Husband's passport (original + photocopy)
    Confirmed travel ticket in both names
    Hotel confirmation


    I only paid for service charge of 21.26 and special delivery 14.95.Special delivery is optional as you can collect it back in Manchester if you want to...

    P.S. It says in the website about Visa fees can be paid by cash or credit/debit card.So I went there with only the cash available.As I was about to pay by cash the lady handed me the card machine.She said they only accept cards here in Manchester so here's me panicking that time on what should I do.So guys better have credit card ready if you will apply in VFS Manchester or you'll end up the option to bring a postal order from the nearby post office or hoping for a good samaritan applicant/customer if its ok for them to accept cash in return for using their card as in my case I had asked 2 person as the first one declined.....
    Anyways,that's the only downside as the website didn't put it clearly about credit card payment only in Manchester.As for the rest were all good
    be positive,everything is gonna be ok



  2. #2
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    There shouldn't be any charge for the visa.
    Only a small service charge for VFS when using that route.

    Just my 2 centavos


  3. #3
    Respected Member chino's Avatar
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    Just applied for the same visa last week in Manchester and I just wanted to let you know that the fee has now increased to 40.75...

    No idea what the breakdown is, but they kept on repeating - no fee for the visa, only service charge and delivery (no option of collecting the passport from them).

    Submitted on Monday or Tuesday last week and they said it will be ready within 17 calendar days.... currently waiting as we fly in about 20 days time.


  4. #4
    Respected Member chino's Avatar
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    Took 23 days; I had to chase to get it as we fly on Monday and it only got dispatched from the Netherlands on Tuesday.


  5. #5
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    Typical.

    Thanks for the update.


  6. #6
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    All the rules are the same as years ago:
    - all applicants can apply directly at the embassy, bypassing VFS (or whichever external service provider an embassy uses) and thus saving you a service fee. Also note that the service fee cannot be higher than half a full visa fee (60/2 =): 30 euros or the equivelant in local currency. So 26,93 GBP. And yes many embassies try to push you to the external party (to cut costs and time for them) but that's entirely optional. The external party forwards the papers to the back office of the embassy or ministry anyway so it's basically an expensive drop off box or post service.. I wouldn't use them unless it would benefit me. An email to the embassy should be sufficient to bypass VFS. Mention this if you have to:

    Article 17.5 of the EU Schengen Visa Code reads "5. The Member State(s) concerned shall maintain the possibility for all applicants to lodge their applications directly at its/their consulates."


    The 'Handbook for the organisation of visa sections and local Schengen cooperation' on EU Home Affairs comments on this:

    4.4. Direct access
    Maintaining the possibility for visa applicants to lodge their applications directly at the
    consulate instead of via an external service provider implies that there should be a genuine
    choice between these two possibilities.
    Even if direct access does not have to be organised under identical or similar conditions to
    those for access to the service provider, the conditions should not make direct access
    impossible in practice. Even if it is acceptable to have a different waiting time for obtaining
    an appointment in the case of direct access, the waiting time should not be so long that it
    would render direct access impossible in practice.
    The different options available for lodging a visa application should be presented plainly to
    the public, including clear information both on the choice and the cost of the additional
    services of the external service provider.


    Sources:
    - http://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-conte...lex:32009R0810
    - https://ec.europa.eu/home-affairs/wh...visa-policy_en

    -----------------
    As for the visa itself: for the spouse of an EU/EEA national (see directive 2004/38 freedom of movement): it should be issued ASAP, for free and with minimum hassle. Basically:
    1. show that the non EU/EEA national is related to you (spouse etc.) and is an eligible family member as per directive 2004/38. Basically show the marriage certificate and possible an official translation and legalisation stamps so the embassy can understand the contents and see it's all legit.
    2. ID of the EU national and foreigner.
    3. Make evident that you travel together. A written statement should be enough but a free and cancellable travel reservation or hotel booking makes most embassies very happy even though strictly that's not needed.

    But as we all know sadly some embassies wrongfully want to see things such as evidence of UK residency (though the spouse of an EU national can apply at any Schengen embassy in the world that issues visas, regardless of residence or visa status), demand to see hotel bookings , flight reservation etc. That's wrong (!!) but usually cooperating with these silly requests is the fastest way. If it's gonna cost you too much money or time there is the EU ombudsman Solvit or EU Home Affairs:

    - http://europa.eu/youreurope/citizens...y/index_en.htm
    - JUST-CITIZENSHIP {at} ec.europa.eu


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