In 2018, French tourism achieved new heights with 438.2 million nights spent by visitors in the country, according to an article in The Local. This number is 9 million more than that recorded in 2017. The European country offers a unique travel experience. Not only is it the fashion and food capital of the world (who can say no to French cuisine?), it is also known for its exotic Mediterranean beaches, architecture, art, culture and general joie de vivre. The best time to visit the country is from April to June and from September to November.
Related: How to apply for French visa
The most important part of traveling to this country is applying for a French visa. For this, you need to first fill up the French Schengen Visa Application Form. Along with this, you will need to submit a few mandatory documents, without which your application would be deemed incomplete.
What Documents are Required for French Visa Application
- Completed Application Form:
Make sure you fill the correct application form, since the forms for long stay and short stay are different. Also, be careful to fill accurate and complete information, to avoid any unnecessary delays in processing or an outright rejection of visa.
Two passport photos, in the prescribed format, are required along with all the documents. The photos should be of high quality and not older than six months.
- A Valid Passport:
Your passport should be issued within the last 10 years and remain valid for at least 3 months beyond your intended period of stay in France. Other than this, the passport must have at least two blank pages for the visa sticker/stamp.
- Travel Itinerary:
This should include all that you are planning to do in France, along with details of how you will reach the country and travel within France. Supporting documents, such as round-trip tickets or documents of a booked organized tour, etc., are required.
- Travel Insurance:
You need insurance cover of at least €30,000 for the entire Schengen Area, including France. A confirmation of the coverage letter needs to be submitted with the application form.
- A Cover Letter:
A cover letter, mentioning the details of your visit, including purpose, duration of stay, etc., is needed.
- Proof of Financial Means:
The French authorities would want you to have sufficient funds of least €120 per day while you are in France. To prove your financial status, you will need to submit bank statements for the past 6 months or so, documents showing income from rental property, retirement benefit plans and any other relevant documents to show that you can support yourself financially throughout your stay.
- Proof of Accommodation:
You will be required to submit proofs of where you will be staying in the country. This includes hotel reservations or documents of a rented space or certificate of title if you own a house in France. If you are staying with family or friends, you will need to provide an invitation letter from them, asking you to stay at their home.
- Certificate of Criminal Record:
You need to prove that you have no past criminal record and no open criminal cases against you.
- Proof of Civil Status:
Your marriage certificate, birth certificate, or any other identification document that includes your civil status is mandatory.
All original documents are to be submitted along with photocopies of each. Documents that are not in French need to be translated before submission. However, citizens of some nations are allowed to enter France without a visa.