I apologize for a vague title but here's the scenario:

I'm applying for Schengen visa. According to the preliminary itinerary, I'm going to fly from India and then fly back to India. I've USA visitor visa as well. I'm considering flying to USA directly from the Schengen area without going back to India. I'm not in a position to make that decision before my Schengen visa appointment. My travel agent said something about 'always return to home country' but that didn't quite make sense to me as he didn't provide any references. Just wanted to get your opinion on it.


My travel agent talked to his boss and got back to me confirming that there's no such requirement as 'return to home country' for every foreign visit. Thanks very much for your responses.

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    I keep going on multi country tours often and have never had to return home before moving on – Hanky Panky Jun 27 '16 at 7:46
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    Based on the answers below, you may want to ask your agent directly what the reasoning behind the advice is. If they stumble at all, find a new agent, if they don't, update your answer so the experts here can address it! :-) – corsiKa Jun 27 '16 at 15:32
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    Always return to home country at the end of your tour :) – Hanky Panky Jun 27 '16 at 16:25
  • Yes sir, no counter argument whatsoever. – phanin Jun 27 '16 at 21:06
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    Just wanted to thank you for updating us with your own findings. Too many times have I seen an interesting question posed, but OP disappears. Have a blast in Europe and the US!! – BruceWayne Jun 27 '16 at 21:53

You do NOT have to return back to your home country. It's perfectly fine to travel to the US from anywhere as long as you have the right visa.

Many people leave their home countries once, travel to many places as long as they have the right visas, then finally go back home. They don't have to go back home after every country they visit along the way. That's not how visas work, and not how common sense works as well. Also, that's why websites have multi-city bookings, that's one of the reasons why real travel agencies (eg. not online) are still there, to be able to make such complicated itineraries.

Your travel agent gave you a bad advice, he/ she is either new to this, or has a plan to make more money out of this.

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    I keep going on multi country tours often and have never had to return home before moving on to the next destination, have never heard of any such requirement either. I agree that this might be an attempt by the travel agent to extract as much commission as possible from the added tickets – Hanky Panky Jun 27 '16 at 7:48
  • If the travel agent books two extra flights (one back to India and one from India to USA) for you, then yeah - more money. – GalacticCowboy Jun 27 '16 at 14:50
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    +1 for "That's not how visas work, and not how common sense works as well." :D – Ragunath Jawahar Jun 28 '16 at 5:51

You do not need to return to India before going to the United States.

In order to obtain a Schengen visa, you need to show that you are capable (have "sufficient means of subsistence", e.g. money) and intend to leave the Schengen area to a country where you are "certain to be admitted".

As a practical matter, having a valid visa for such a third country, along with onward tickets to that country, is sufficient, and many people obtain Schengen visas for similar itineraries all the time.

  • @HeidelBerGensis When deciding whether to issue a visa, the Schengen member state is concerned with whether the person is likely to be refused entry to the country to which he travels after leaving Schengen and thus be returned to the state where he exited the Schengen area. They do not want this to happen; among other things, such a person might end up living in the airport transit area for 30 years... – Michael Hampton Jun 27 '16 at 7:45
  • @HeidelBerGensis It turns out that it's extremely rare to be refused entry to the US, if you manage to get to a border. It may be an unpleasant two minutes or six hours, though... – Michael Hampton Jun 27 '16 at 7:49
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    I have had the 6 hours wait countless times, it was after sep 11, if it wasn't for my job I would never go there.. that's worse than being refused.. – Nean Der Thal Jun 27 '16 at 7:51
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    @HeidelBerGensis It is worse if you happen to be a student; and traveling immediately post 9/11 - and from the middle east - talk about a trifecta. – Burhan Khalid Jun 27 '16 at 8:26

It is possible that your travel agent is making this comment not regarding visas, but regarding cost of travel. Visa-wise, I agree with the other answers, this is no concern. Pricewise though, the advice might be solid, here is why.

If you fly from Delhi to Berlin, then from Berlin to NY and then back from NY to Delhi direct, this is three one-way tickets which WILL be very expensive. There are two solutions to this: 1- Do what your agent said. Fly Delhi to Berlin and back, then Delhi to NY and back. 2- Make sure you connect in the same city on the way back. I.e. Fly from Delhi to Berlin, stay there, go to NY and when flying back make sure you connect in Berlin.

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    this is three one-way tickets which WILL be very expensive, Nope that's not going to be the case. Every international airline will allow you to book a multi-destination ticket (provided your destinations are served by it) and that allows you to book your whole itinerary in one ticket. In fact if you play with different combinations on their websites you can get a better deal as opposed to going back and forth – Hanky Panky Jun 27 '16 at 16:15
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    As an example, I recently flew from New York to Dakar, then Dakar to Kigali, then Kigali to Paris, then Paris to NY. The best deal I found was to book it as two tickets. One was open jaw NYC to Dakar, Paris to New York; the other was Dakar-Kigali-Paris. Booking on a single ticket would have raised the price by about $1000, and booking as separate one-way tickets even more. – phoog Jun 27 '16 at 16:24
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    I personally had a number of cases where Istanbul-{A city in Europe}-JFK-Istanbul was much cheaper as long as I stopped in the {A city in Europe} on the way back as well. – Burak Ulgut Jun 27 '16 at 16:39

After obtained students schengen visa you have to go back after for example 30 days course finished. There is no way to stay

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    This does not answer the question, – Willeke Feb 3 '17 at 20:32

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