December 3, 2022

thecinematravelers

Inspired By Travel

How to Apply for a Iceland Schengen Visa for Tourists (PH)

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Ever dreamt of visiting Iceland, a Nordic nirvana? Speckled with majestic waterfalls, geysers, and fjords among many others, I’m sure this is a European destination that you would love to set foot into for a road trip or two! Thankfully, it’s fairly easy to apply for an Iceland Schengen visa as a Philippine citizen.

To date, the Royal Norwegian Embassy in Manila handles all visa applications for Filipinos in the Philippines and with my past Schengen visa processing experiences, I will help you get a successful application result too with this Iceland Schengen visa guide!

What to Do in Iceland…?

Come and check out this list of the top things to do in Iceland which features the best activities and tours to do in places like Reykjavik and more!

RELATED READ: Iceland Itinerary

But before we go on, first some disclaimers:

  • NO ONE can give you the guarantee of your Iceland Schengen visa’s approval — not even a lawyer, a consultant, a travel agent, or an embassy employee. Anyone who says otherwise is most likely going to be a scammer. So what I’m rather offering you here is a comprehensive guide with helpful tips to increase your chances of getting that visa. Nothing more, nothing less.
  • There are different types of Schengen Visas (for fiancé, work, study, etc.) but my main focus for this article will be a Schengen Visa for tourism purposes only. To see a list of requirements for other types of visas by the embassy, go here.
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Schengen Area

A Schengen Visa is a document that allows the holder to travel freely within the Schengen Area or Zone for a maximum stay of up to 90 days in any 6-month period. This Schengen Area is a group of 26 European countries (22 European Union member states and 4 EFTA member states) that have abolished passport and immigration controls at their common borders and they are namely:

These 26 countries are namely:

[1] Excluding Greenland and the Faroe Islands
[2] Excluding overseas departments and territories
[3] Excluding Aruba, Curaçao, Sint Maarten, and the Caribbean Netherlands
[4] Excluding Svalbard
[5] With special provisions for Ceuta and Melilla

There are certain nationalities worldwide that are exempted from applying for a Schengen Visa, but as Philippine passport holders, in order to visit one or more of these Schengen states, we are required to apply for the visa. (Remember, Schengen Tourist Visa holders are NOT allowed to live permanently nor work in Europe, they only have the right to travel as a temporary visitor within the allotted timeframe indicated on their visa.)

» READ: How to Stay Longer in Europe

NOTE: It helps to mention that there are non-Schengen members in Europe that allow entry to their country if you have a Schengen Visa, namely: Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Macedonia, Monaco, Montenegro, Romania, San Marino, Serbia, Turkey, and Vatican City.

HOWEVER, you must check these details beforehand since their rules might have changed. Plus, customarily, only multiple-entry Schengen visas are allowed. For starters, you can check this list for a list of countries you can visit with a Schengen visa.

» When should I apply for a Schengen Visa?

Apply as early as three (3) months or 90 days before your planned trip date departure.

You can apply several days before your trip, sure — but it’s always best that you give enough time for the embassy to look into your application. After all, you wouldn’t want to make plans only to have the embassy provide you with a visa that has a validity period that’s NOT within your intended travel dates.

» Where should I apply for a Schengen Visa?

For Schengen visas that have the main purpose of visiting a friend/family/national or reuniting with a fiancé/husband/etc. in a Schengen state, naturally, you should apply in the corresponding Embassy of the country where that person comes from.

Meanwhile, if you are planning to visit several Schengen countries for your trip, your application must be made at the embassy of the main destination country — meaning, the country where you will be staying the longest. If the length of stay is almost the same, it’s best to apply for the country that you will first fly or enter in.

So as an example, you must apply at the Royal Norwegian Embassy in Manila only if according to your Europe itinerary, you will be staying the longest and/or have any of Norway or Iceland in your itinerary.

» Which Schengen embassy will I have a better chance of getting a Visa?

There’s no such thing as an embassy that would easily give away Schengen visas. But, if it is a question of timelike which Embassy can you get application results the quickest — then that would be an easier query for me to answer, which then leads us to the question…

» How long does it take for Schengen Visa results to be released?

To the best of my knowledge, the following Embassies usually release visas earliest in an average of:

It can surely take longer if they need more documents or details from you.

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Application Process for Iceland Schengen Visa

Step 1: Determine the type of Iceland Schengen visa you need to apply for

There are various types of Iceland Schengen visas out there that you can apply for: a visa for residence, a visa for family visits, a visa for studying, a visa for work, a visa for transit, a visa for being a spouse, etc.

For this particular guide though, I will only be discussing the requirements for a short stay (less than 90 days) tourist visa since it’s an experience that I’ve gone through myself.

So if you have a different situation or purpose of visit, it’s best that you head over to this page for more information.

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Step 2: Register and schedule your appointment online with VFS Global

As I said, the Royal Norwegian Embassy processes applications for Iceland in the Philippines and they do Iceland Schengen visa applications via their external service provider, VFS Global. Unfortunately, you cannot just walk into their office to lodge an application because you need to book an appointment first online.

Here’s how you can secure a time slot:

  1. Visit the Norway Application Portal website here and then click the section that says ‘Create new user account‘.
  2. You are now at a registration page where you need to create your own account.
    • Provide all the details that are asked of you, and make sure that you are registering an active email address. Once done, click the button that says ‘Create user account‘.
  3. Now that your account is created, you need to activate it before you can log in. So, check the email that you registered and look for a message from the Norway Application Portal ([email protected]). There should be a link inside the mail that you need to click in order to activate your account.
  4. Your account is now activated and you should be on the log-in page. Enter the email and password that you set up and click the Log-in‘ button.
  5. On the next page, click ‘Want to apply‘ and then ‘New application‘, followed by ‘Application forms for citizens of all countries’, and Visitor’s visa‘.
  6. Check the box that says ‘I accept the legal disclaimer and then click on ‘Go to application form‘.
  7. From here on, everything will be quite easy to follow since it will just simply ask for your personal information, travel plans, etc. Make sure that you filled in all these details correctly.
  8. Once you are done filling everything out, the next step is to pay the application fee which is EUR 60. Take note that you can only pay this on the portal with a credit card (Mastercard or Visa).
  9. Once done with the payment, submit your application form on the portal.
    • When you do so, you will receive an automated message on your mail that contains a Cover Letter. Save, print, and sign this document since you will need to submit it later on when you visit VFS.
  10. Finally, click here to book your appointment time and date.
    • Take note that Iceland Schengen visa applications with VFS can only be made from 11:00AM to 2:00PM, Monday to Friday.

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Step 3: Prepare the required documents for your application

Once again, I am only going to tackle the requirements for a tourist visa. If you have other reasons for tourism such as visiting other people etc., check the corresponding requirements on the VFS website.

IMPORTANT NOTES:

  • Bring all your original documents for checking.
  • Photocopies must be clear and readable. Remove staple wires and paper clips from your documents.
  • Feel free to add supporting documents to help strengthen the purpose of your application.

Requirements

  • Cover Letter. Print and sign this cover letter that was sent to your email after you did the steps I mentioned in Step #2 above for the Norway Application Portal. Besides, it also serves as proof that you have paid the visa fee online.
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  • Day-to-day Travel Itinerary. At this part, it’s good practice to include a personal cover letter (different from the one above) along with this itinerary document so that you can properly explain the purpose of your trip — this becomes essentially helpful especially when you want to apply for a multiple-entry Schengen visa. To see a sample cover letter and travel itinerary, you can view and download my file here.
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  • 1 Passport-sized Photo. This must have a white background, must not also be older than 6 months, and must be sized at 35 x 45 mm. Take note that edited photos are NOT accepted.
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  • Checklist. Download the checklist form here. Make sure that it is duly filled out, checked (as per the documents that you will be submitting that is applicable to you), and signed.
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  • Philippine passport, original, and photocopy. Make sure that your passport is valid for at least three (3) months after the end of the planned stay in a Schengen Member State, and that it has at least 2 blank pages to affix the visa sticker.
    • You must photocopy the first page containing your personal information, as well as ALL the additional pages which contain visas and stamps that are both valid and expired.
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  • Proof of Accommodation, copy(ies). These are confirmed hotel reservation(s) for the entire duration of your stay in the Schengen countries and they must contain the name and contact details of the hotel(s) you’ve chosen.
    • I usually reserve my hotel stays via Booking.com and/or Agoda.com. With them, you can reserve a hotel with NO pre-payment and you can even cancel the booking a day before your arrival with NO cancellation charges at all. So yes, you can make reservations without any payment, you can change the reservation anytime, AND you can cancel them at no cost as well if in case your Iceland Schengen visa is not approved.
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  • Proof of sufficient funds. If the applicant is under the age of 18, the following documents can be from their parents or legal guardian.
    • Original bank certificate/transcripts for the last 6 months
    • Credit card statements for the last 6 months
      .
  • Proof of real properties (if applicable). If you own any land, cars, properties, land titles, etc. bring the original documents as well as their photocopies.
    .
  • Roundtrip Flight Ticket Reservation. Do NOT buy flight tickets before your Iceland Schengen visa is issued because the Norway Embassy would NOT take any responsibility for the costs you’ll incur if your visa gets denied or if your departure times get changed. So — just simply supply a confirmed flight reservation only. You can easily get a flight reservation online with OneWayFly for a small fee of only Php 1,000~. I highly recommend them because they are fast, easy, and legitimate; plus, I have been using them for years for all of my visa applications! (Read here for more info).
    • Later on, in case you want to book your flight, my go-to platform is Skyscanner since they offer the best flight deals:

  • International Travel Insurance, photocopy or original. This can be purchased from local or international providers. You just have to ensure that it has a coverage of at least 30,000 EUR / 50,000 USD / PHP 2.5M to cover expenses for personal accidents, urgent medical treatment, urgent admission to a hospital, or urgent repatriation on medical grounds; with coverage including ALL Schengen member states. The validity period of the insurance coverage must be for the ENTIRE duration of the intended stay including entry and exit day of the Schengen area.
    • For international providers, HeyMondo is accepted by the embassy and if you click this link, you get a 5% discount. The benefit of booking an international provider is that it’s easier to purchase as it is all done online in just a few clicks.
    • If purchasing locally, the Embassy of Norway only accepts the insurance policies from any of the following Philippine Insurance companies. (Just visit their website by clicking the links below, and then email them to start your inquiry. Don’t take insurance that is on a reimbursement basis because the Embassy only accepts CASHLESS settlements; as such, only sign up with any of the insurance companies below if you want to purchase locally.)
  • If the applicant is a minor (under the age of 18): The following documents must be provided…
    • Photocopy of their PSA birth certificate
    • Affidavit of support and consent of parents or legal guardian
    • Photocopy of DSWD travel clearance
    • Photocopy of parents’ or legal guardian’s passport or government-issued ID
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  • If married: Marriage Certificate, photocopy. Only if applicable.
    .
  • If with children: Birth Certificates of children, photocopy. Only if applicable.
    .
  • If currently employed: you must provide the following…
    • Certificate of Employment or work contract stating position, length of service, salary, and duration of approved leave of absence.
    • Photocopy of company ID.
    • Pay slips for the last 3 months.
      .
  • If self-employed: you must provide the following…
    • A. Corporation – Photocopies of SEC registration with attached present Articles of Incorporation and latest Income Tax Statement
    • B. Single proprietorship – Photocopies of Business Name Registration Certificate from DTI and latest Income Tax Statement

Start filing your local taxes as early as NOW — after all, a lot of embassies require an ITR. So if you’re looking for a hassle-free experience on Philippines tax compliance, I suggest registering with Taxumo because they can take care of literally everything for you: tax forms, payments, and submissions. I’ve been using them for years now and it has been such a time-saver. Come sign up with my code AILEEN and you can get a 10% discount on all their subscription plans!

  • If currently a student: you must provide the following…
    • Certification of enrolment from the school.
    • School ID.
    • If you will be going on a holiday during summer break, submit a certification of reservation, or certification of enrolment to prove that you are enrolled for the next school year/semester.
    • If traveling during the school year, a certificate of leave of absence from school should also be submitted.

NOTE: If in case you are a Philippine national living or residing in a foreign country and you wish to avail an Iceland Schengen tourist visa, kindly inquire with the appropriate embassy in the country that you’re living/residing in about the requirements and procedures that you need to take (as the process and requirements will not be similar).

Also, the Norway Embassy may request more information or additional documents other than those listed above in order to verify the contents and truthfulness of the documents you’ve submitted; so, be prepared for that.

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Step 4: Submit your application at VFS on your appointment date

It helps to arrive early for your Iceland Schengen visa appointment and the VFS address for both Manila and Cebu are:

Norway Visa Application Centre – Manila
Ground Floor, Ecoplaza Bldg.,
Don Chino Roces Ave., Makati City
1231 Philippines
[email protected]

Norway Visa Application Centre – Cebu,
Unit 503, 5th Floor, Keppel Center, Samar Loop
cor. Cardinal Rosales Avenue
Cebu Business Park, Cebu City
6000 Philippines

The process usually goes like this when I visited the Manila branch:

  1. Arrival and waiting period. Once you arrive at VFS, the security guard will confirm that you have an appointment and then hand you a document slip which you need to submit to the right window. Find a seat in the waiting area and wait for your name to be called.
  2. Submission of documents. Simply hand out your documents to the VFS staff and he/she will check the documents that you prepared and then ensure that everything is complete.
    • If in case you have any missing documents, the staff will inform you about that.
  3. Biometrics. All Schengen embassies in the Philippines have to capture your biometric data (finger scans, digital signature, and portrait photo) and it will be kept in the Visa Information System (VIS) for 5 years.
    • If you have applied previously for the last 59 months you do not need to re-enroll your biometric data. However, there will be cases where you may need to re-submit your biometric data even if you have enrolled in it previously. In such cases, VFS shall get in touch with you.
    • Do NOT wear colored or magnifying contact lenses which could alter your appearance.
  4. Visa processing payment to VFS. This is separate from the fee that you paid online to the embassy. Take note that this must be paid in cash and it helps to prepare the exact amount in Philippine peso only. Once paid, they will give you a payment receipt (that has your application reference number and details) which you should keep. If you lose this receipt, VFS will not release your Iceland Schengen visa and passport; they will only release them after you give them a notarized affidavit of loss.
    • The fee is Php 1,502 by 2022.
    • There’s an additional fee of Php150 if you want to send the visa results to you by courier. However, sending passports via courier is at the applicant’s own risk. The Embassy assumes no responsibility for this. (Delivery will be done in 1-3 days within Metro Manila and 2-5 days if the address is in the province. Should the mailing address be outside a serviceable area, you may have to pick up your passport at the nearest courier branch.)
    • Be advised that payment of these fees is NOT a guarantee that the visa will be granted. It also helps to note that these are non-refundable and non-transferable if your application is denied or if you decide to terminate your application.

The Norwegian Embassy still reserves the right to ask you to appear for a personal interview after checking your visa application.

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Step 5: Wait for the results of your Iceland Schengen visa application

Once the Norway Embassy is done assessing your application, they will send back your passport and your other original documents to VFS. Consecutively, VFS will send you a text message or email that you can now pick it up. Make sure to bring your ID and the payment receipt when claiming your passport and results.

NOTE: You can check or track the status of your application online via VFS on this page. Please remember that the time for passport collection is from 2:00PM to 4:00PM from Monday to Friday, except on weekends and holidays.

Some other things to remember:

  • If you cannot come personally to pick up your documents, you may send a representative on your behalf with your authorization letter, photocopy of your ID, payment receipt, and a valid ID with a picture of your representative.
  • The Norwegian Embassy will NOT assume any responsibility if your visa application is rejected. And if it does get rejected, you will be given an information sheet that shows the procedures you can take in order to ask for an appeal.
  • If your Iceland Schengen visa application is accepted, make sure that your details are correct on the visa sticker. If there’s any mistake, you can contact the VFS office or the Embassy ASAP.

MY EXPERIENCE:
– When I applied for a single-entry tourist visa, I got my results in just 3 business days.
– When I applied for a multiple-entry tourist visa, I got my results in 15 business days.

• • •

Booking Essentials

TIP: It’s a good idea to crosscheck your World Nomads‘ total travel insurance price with that of SafetyWing because the latter is often priced cheaper (especially when it involves travel that spans for several weeks or months — and even years!).
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However, take note that SafetyWing’s affordability typically means lesser coverage than World Nomads. So please always ensure that you read the fine print in order to decipher which travel insurance company is the right fit for you and your trip! On that note, HeyMondo is also a good alternative (click this link to get 5% off).

• • •

FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

I do not have a credit card to pay for the visa fee online on the portal, can I just pay it VFS?

Unfortunately, you can’t. You can try asking for a friend or relative’s credit card in order to pay the fee online.

Do I need to provide a cover letter?

It’s not required, but it’s good practice to provide one.

Do you have an example cover letter?

Yes, I have. Check it out here.

How much money should I show in my bank account?

Most of the Schengen member countries need you to show that you have at least EUR 50 (Php 2,500+) per day of your stay. You can use this as a standard and this is the bare minimum, that’s why I suggest that you add way more money to it if you can.

How long does it take to process a tourist visa application with the Norway Embassy?

With the Norway Embassy, it can take 3 to 15 business days. As I mentioned previously, it only took 3 business days when I applied for a single-entry Schengen visa; however, it took full 15 days when I applied for a multiple-entry visa (most likely because they had to scrutinize everything since I was asking for more days, etc.)

What if my plans change and I won’t be visiting some of the countries I indicated in my travel itinerary? Can I still travel to those other countries with my Schengen Visa?

There is no border control within the Schengen Zone, so yes — you can deviate from your original plans BUT only for as long as they’re within the Schengen member countries (unless, of course, you have a multiple-entry Schengen visa) and within the allowable dates stated on your visa.

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» Top Iceland Tours «

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I hope this Iceland Schengen visa guide application will be of great help to you. Good luck!

Have you seen my latest vlog?

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