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I am an Indian citizen, currently working in U.S. on OPT, F-1 visa expired. I have applied for an O-1B (Artist Visa) which I expect to be granted soon.

Am I eligible to apply for a Schengen Visa from the U.S. though my F-1 visa is expired (just on OPT)?

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    Yes, as long as you possess an I-20 and an EAD, you are eligible to apply for an EU visa. Your form I-20 is what defines your status in the USA (as being on post completion OPT or some such). The F1 visa is only an entry document. Did you check with the consulate/embassy of the EU country you plan on visiting? Each consulate/Embassy may have slightly differing views that you should be able to reconcile. – dearN Feb 3 '15 at 11:19
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    As drN says, you can be legally present in the US without a visa. However, as long as you don't have a valid visa, you wouldn't be allowed to return from Europe to the US, and a consular officer is likely to take a dim view of that. You would need to demonstrate an intent to exit Schengen towards a place where you would be allowed in -- that is, India -- which will be difficult when you're not currently living there. – Henning Makholm Feb 3 '15 at 13:04
  • @HenningMakholm: Although true, it is kind of an unreasonable requirement, because it is impossible to get a U.S. visa when you are in the U.S. (for the simple reason that if you are already in the U.S., you don't need to enter). – user102008 Feb 3 '15 at 20:29
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Besides all the documents that show your intended EU consulate that your a financially sound traveler/ tourist, show them intent to exit.

How? - Dummy ticket/ unticketed reservation to India or elsewhere. Or buy a full fare fully refundable ticket to elsewhere and then cancel it once you have the visa.

I had to something similar once as a latin american consulate wanted a ticket, and we were struggling because:

  • To set a schedule to fly from a certain location in US
  • Find a day / date when fare was suitably inexpensive
  • Reach that city on time
  • Sync up with my friends schedule in Latin Am
  • And get consular date/ time appointment for the visa in another US city

Try to get all this done in a short window of time. Crazy.

So, I had to try & lock a visa appointment in one US City A (and documents/ invitation letter etc), cancel the booked ticket, sync up with friend to book a ticket few days down the line (weekend), travel to US city B to catch flight to US City C where my luggage was sitting, pack my bags and then fly to latin america.

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