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I'd applied for a Schengen visa from the Dutch embassy. The travel itinerary that I submitted was as follows:

  • Amsterdam - 3 days
  • Antwerp - 1 day
  • Bulgaria - 3 days
  • Amsterdam - 1 day

I have been asked to come in for a personal interview. I think the issue might be that I am planning to visit Bulgaria, which is not in the Schengen area (but until their full accession to the Schengen Area, they will unilaterally apply visa-free regulations for holders of valid Schengen visas). My take on this was I should apply for the Schengen visa first in which case I wouldn't need to separately apply for a Bulgarian visa. Is this an issue and could this be grounds for rejection? My interview is scheduled for the 15th of Nov.

What is the best way for me to present my case?

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1 Answer

A list of reasons that may lead to rejecting a visa application can be found in the relevant EU regulation. I see nothing there that suggests that going to Bulgaria should be a problem but you might want to double check that you provided everything (purpose, accommodation, proof of means, travel insurance).

The Dutch authorities might be more careful than others out of habit or because you are apparently requesting a multiple entry visa on your first application. Your nationality might also play a role. The Dutch Ministry of Foreign affairs offers some extra information but I see nothing there on interviews.

It's not mentioned explicitly anywhere but I think that being prepared to establish you have ties to your country of residence or country of origin (say family, a job, etc.) could be useful in some cases. However, I would only mention this if I was asked about it or if they suggested they think you might want to immigrate but I would not volunteer this information from the get go.

PS: As I have an EU passport, I never needed to go through the process myself and I have no direct personal experience with this so you might want to get opinions from other people as well.

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Thanks for all the info! I have an active UK visa, so I hope that helps in some way about the multiple entry issue. The reason I'm worried about the Bulgaria thing is that I haven't separately applied for a bulgarian visa. I plan to go there on the schengen visa which Bulgaria allows. Thanks for the tips though. I don't think I fall into any other rejection criteria. –  tapan Nov 11 '13 at 17:03
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