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Josephine92 Nov 27th, 2015 08:23 PM

visa appointment experience

SO I have an appointment for a short stay visa in France next week at the consulate of France Chicago. I am so nervous and stressed!!! I am going to France to visit my family and friends for a month.

Did anyone in here ever went there for an appointment and willing to share their experiences. I would really appreciate it!


Robert2533 Nov 27th, 2015 09:40 PM

France? Visa? Americans typically do not need a visa for up to 90 days. Are you looking to stay longer?

Sarastro Nov 28th, 2015 12:24 AM

Short stay visas are automatically given to anyone from the USA when he arrives in the EU. If you plan on staying longer than 90 days, you will need a formal visa and the process is not simple.

If you are going to the French consulate and only planning on a 30 day visit, one can only assume that you are not a US citizen. My advice would be to make sure you have copies of anything that they may have asked you provide.

nytraveler Nov 28th, 2015 04:20 AM

Assuming that you are not a US citizen you need to look at the web site of your country to find out what documents and info you need in order to qualify for a visa to France and make sure you bring everything they ask for. You can also look at the web site for the French government and see what they ask you to present.

Not sure why this is posted on the europe board when the key point is really YOUR nationality.

hetismij2 Nov 28th, 2015 04:47 AM

Contrary to popular belief not everyone who posts on Fodor's is a US (or Canadian) citizen. It is perfectly reasonable for someone to post on the Europe forum asking for advice from others who had asked for a visa.

Make sure you have all the documents and evidence asked for. Relax, but don't be over friendly, don't make jokes. Answer questions truthfully, lies will generally be spotted.

Odin Nov 28th, 2015 07:17 AM

The key points are nationality of the OP and where they are travelling to. And looking at your own country's website is totally pointless as it does not give you the entry requirements for another country.

Read the requirements here:

I doubt the OP would be given an appointment if it was not already determined that a visa was required.

Josephine92 Nov 28th, 2015 08:28 AM

If I am staying with a family member, do I need their bank statements for proof? I already have the invitation "attestation d accueil" from them! anybody knows? i called them, not luck and it doesn't say anything on their website!

pariswat Nov 28th, 2015 08:55 AM


Les habitués du forum essaient de vous donner des infos utiles, mais il faudrait lire les réponses qu'ils font et leur donner plus d'infos. Votre demande est peu claire.

Cathinjoetown Nov 28th, 2015 08:59 AM

In dealing with the French government, based on my experience, take anything you think you might need and of course everything they have asked for. I have not been in your exact situation but am 99% sure you will be asked to show a return ticket to the U.S. and adequate funds to support yourself while you are there. I would expect them to want details about your relatives--full names, addresses, their status in France, etc.

kerouac Nov 28th, 2015 09:03 AM

The very first thing to reveal when asking a visa question is your nationality. There is nothing embarrassing about this, but you must understand that your nationality has enormous importance in your chance of getting a visa. North Koreans, Panamanians or Algerians are not treated the same way by the French consulate.

pariswat Nov 28th, 2015 09:13 AM

Joséphine sounds French or frenchspeaking...
But ... doesn't seem to help.

Josephine92 Nov 28th, 2015 10:36 AM

I do not have a problem revealing my nationality I just thought it wouldn't be any help.

But I am from Congo and I am a refugee in the U.S.

My relatives are in Paris and I haven't seen them in over 10 years. I am not sure how they will react to my nationality, but if they reject me I will be devastated! I really miss my family.

Josephine92 Nov 28th, 2015 10:40 AM

I have all the documents they need on the website, my round trip reservation, my passport, my bank statements (even tho my family is inviting me), my travel insurance, my employment letter,pay subs, I mean EVERYTHING! I am just so nervous!!

kerouac Nov 28th, 2015 10:53 AM

Do you have a Green Card?

Alec Nov 28th, 2015 11:05 AM

From a former French colony?

You also need evidence of strong ties in your country of nationality or usual residence, such as a job to go back to (letter from employer stating the expected date of return), educational course you are enrolled in (a letter from school/college/university) or business interest (letter from your accountant). You will also need evidence of private medical insurance.

sandralist Nov 28th, 2015 11:12 AM

It is quite understandable you are nervous. Most of us get nervous when we have to deal with authorities who have power to either say yay or nay. It's possible someone will come and post here who has personal experience relevant to yours, but unlikely. Do you have a community of advisers or counsellors or friends whom you could talk to who deal with these issues?

I wish you all good fortune, and if you are complying with all the requirements of the system, then the system should work for you. I would urge you not to pile on top of being nervous being nervous about being nervous. Your feelings are normal, and they are helping you to double check and triple check that you are bringing all the right documents. If you have friends who understand your situation who can give you some support about the butterflies in your stomach -- a little hand holding doesn't hurt! -- don't be shy about asking for that support from the people you know.

Here's wishing you a very successful and happy reunion!

Josephine92 Nov 28th, 2015 11:41 AM

No, i do not have a green card, but I am a lawful alien resident of U.S and have legal documents with me!

hetismij2 Nov 28th, 2015 11:50 AM

Alec, Congo is a former Belgian colony.

Good luck Josephine, I hope you get your visa to see your family.

pariswat Nov 28th, 2015 11:53 AM

No reason why you would have any problem in France or at the consulate. France is a country quite egalitarian and we quite like members from our former colonies (that's the least we can do...).

I wish you all the best and am pretty sure your family will welcome you with open arms. If there is one thing I am absolutely jealous of about Africa, it is the way people live in community.

Have a nice trip.

Odin Nov 28th, 2015 11:56 AM

Congo-Brazzaville used to be French and DRC used to be Belgian, you might remember it as Zaire.

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