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I won a contest to visit Belgium and the Netherlands for a week from India. The accommodation and travel is paid by the company.

They have asked for my income tax returns and bank statements along with my passport for the visa application. I have a bank account I regularly use, but I collect my pay in cash, as I work in a non-profit firm. I do use the account regularly, but only when I need to buy something online, for example.

Right now I have a balance of about €2000 in my bank account. Is that sufficient for visa approval? Do they need my paychecks to be reflected in my bank statement?

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thanks for your answers. well, as i am working, i have given a copy of our board of members minutes saying that i am okay to travel for this trip by my firm, i have also submitted proof that my accommodation and travel expenses will be paid for by the company which is taking me. with this all, do you think i will get a +ve on my visa. i am so concerned, because i won this contest & just don't want to miss this opportunity. – zac Jul 31 '14 at 6:04

As far as the financial means requirement is concerned, each country submitted guidelines to the EU commission. For Belgium you need either EUR 38 or EUR 50 per day and for the Netherlands, it's EUR 34. For 7 days, at most EUR 350 are formally required and your balance is more than enough to satisfy this requirement.

If you are invited by a company paying for your accommodation, these amounts might be reduced but you might need to submit something to document this invitation (what you need to submit depends on the country, some countries have standard forms and procedures for that).

Your paychecks might however still be useful for two reasons. They establish you have a job in India to come back to and they explain how you could have gotten EUR 2000. Both of these are important to show that you are really coming for a visit and are not likely to try to immigrate illegally in the EU.

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Your answer is ideal but not practical. Remember that guidelines are exactly what they are called, guidelines. They simply state bare minimum requirements. Anyone who has ever applied for any kind of visa with an Indian passport at a consulate in India knows that they operate well above such guidelines. – Prometheus Jul 30 '14 at 23:50
@Prometheus I explained why in the last paragraph. I think you are confusing two things. What's at stake is not your ability to support yourself (you can do that will less money than the guidelines) but whether the stated purpose of the trip is genuine/whether you could overstay/immigrate illegally. (Incidentally, I have friends and family members who have even more trouble than Indian citizens to get visas, e.g. people who need airport transit visas everywhere in the EU and know a few people working in this area so I do have quite some experience with the reality of visa procedures). – Relaxed Jul 31 '14 at 0:03
PS: I tried to clarify all that in my answer. – Relaxed Jul 31 '14 at 0:10
Whatever is at stake, having the bare minimum in your bank account is not enough to convince the consular. That's why I did not mention any guidelines in my answer. – Prometheus Jul 31 '14 at 8:30
@Prometheus The only thing you wrote about the amount is “With that, I think what you have in your bank should be sufficient to support you easily for a week, that is if you do not do something too extravagant” which is not relevant at all. Given the level of confusion in your comments, I am pretty sure you did not mention the reference amounts because you knew nothing about them… – Relaxed Jul 31 '14 at 9:52

Deposit the money you have in cash into your bank account and print out a bank statement to submit to the consulate when you apply for the visa. Also, submit proof that your accommodation and travel expenses will be paid for by the company. With that, I think what you have in your bank should be sufficient to convince the consulate that you can support yourself easily for a week.

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(-1) What you actually need is irrelevant, there are clear guidelines about what you should have. Beyond that, it's also important to establish you have a situation in India and are not an overstay risk but that's also unrelated to how much you need to support yourself for a week. – Relaxed Jul 31 '14 at 0:06
I also agree with Relaxed. What you need is very different from guidelines. I suggest you to review your answer and make it more factual. – Aditya Somani Jul 31 '14 at 1:12
@AdityaSomani I never mentioned guidelines in my answer. My answer is entirely based on my experience and what I have generally seen with most consulates in India. – Prometheus Jul 31 '14 at 8:25
@Prometheus Yes, but one might argue that I need $10 dollars a day to survive in Finland whereas another might say that I have no clue what I'm talking about. – Aditya Somani Jul 31 '14 at 9:06
(-1) Don't do this - large deposits of cash raise suspicions and may lead to a rejection of your application. Instead, the correct form would be a letter from your employer stating the pay, pay stub/slips/checks showing regular pay - and a letter from the company that your travel and accommodation are pre-paid. – Burhan Khalid Nov 17 '15 at 11:01

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