Can a visa rejection affect your future travel?

Biting fingernails, sweaty palms, intense heartbeats, sleepless nights?……. No, you are not alone! Waiting for your precious visa can make any person stressed.  That is how important a visa is for travel.

Most countries require foreigners to possess a permit to enter the country unless they are a part of the visa-exempt areas for that particular country. No matter what the purpose of the visit is, in most cases, there is a visa corresponding to that. However, the process of visa application is a delicate thing. Every country and every type of visa has specific documents, eligibility requirements, and procedures that can even perplex the smartest of people sometimes. When this happens, they may slip-up and ruin their visa application. And as a result, they get slapped with a Visa Rejection mail. 

schengen visa rejection

What is visa rejection?

Also known as a visa refusal, this is a status in which the visa issuing authority denies you the permit to visit the country. When this happens, you will receive a letter stating the outcome, and depending on the country, and the reason for the visa rejection, there may be a visa refusal stamp on the passport. In most cases, the authority is obligated to enlighten you with the visa rejection reasons. However, if the reasons are minor technical errors in the application, you will be asked to apply for it again. There are a number of reasons why a visa may not be granted. 

How can visa refusal affect your future travel plans?

Addressing the elephant in the room, the title of this article; YES! it can affect your future plans. The extent of it, however, is explained below. The importance of a rejected visa can vary from country to country, and also on the reason for it being tuned down. 

When you get your visa rejected, most countries place a stamp on your passport stating the same. It is therefore easily accessible to any consular officer who will issue your future permits. Although every application has to be treated as a new application, a history of visa rejection can cause the issuing officer to spend a few extra minutes on your file. A visa refusal, however, it is not enough reason for the automatic refusal of the application. This again depends on the gravity of the reason why the visa was rejected previously. If the visa refusal reasons were of low priority such as insufficient funds, incomplete application forms, unconvincing purpose, etc, as long as you rectify these and provide sufficient proof and a strong application, the visa rejection history is usually overlooked. In cases where their reasons were fraudulent documents, criminal charges, faking the itinerary, and so on, it can do serious damage to your credibility and as a result, lead to your future visa applications being rejected regardless of the country.

  • Re-applying visa for the same country -

    Usually, you can re-apply for the same visa after a certain waiting period. For example, to apply for the same visa again in Hong Kong and Peru, you have to wait 6 months. To re-apply in Turkey, you’d have to wait 1 year, and so on. However, in certain extreme cases, you might be ineligible to apply for other visas of the same country. There are certain countries such as the US, Australia that take visa rejections extremely seriously and being rejected for a visa over there due to major visa refusal reasons will almost certainly get your next application rejected as well. However, It may also be possible to get the visa approved if you had only a minor error in the application, as long as you provide a new stronger application with accurate details and documents. 

  • Applying for a visa in other countries -

    When you apply for most visas, in the application form, there is a column asking something along the lines of “Have you been rejected a visa for any countries”.  It is necessary to answer this honestly. If the authorities find out that you have lied on your application, it is a provision for automatic visa rejection. Even if there is no stamp on your passport to prove that you have been declined entry, there are multiple ways in which they can learn the truth in a matter of seconds. Even if you have been refused with a visa in the past, if you mention the truth, you will be able to explain the visa refusal reasons behind it, and might even be able to convince the officials with new correct information and documents. In most cases, visa related information is shared between countries. To explain this, let us take the example of a Schengen visa. When you apply for a Schengen, you have to provide your biometrics. This information is shared between all countries via the Visa Information System (VIS). And therefore, along with this, any data on your application is stored and shared through this. For instance, if you have had a Schengen visa refusal from Germany; when you apply for a Schengen visa from Belgium, they will be able to view your data including the visa refusal reasons. Similarly, most countries have ties that provide them with visa information regardless of which country you are applying for.  This is not just limited to your application form data and visa refusal. Even the interviews you give are computerized and maintained centrally. 

Why would a visa application be rejected?

There can be several reasons that can have your visa denied. Usually, this happens when the conditions mentioned by the specific visa issuing authority is not met. Some of the most common reasons can be mentioned as the following -

  • Criminal record of the applicant - Any past or pending criminal convictions can cause them to reject you on the basis of security reasons.
  • Fake documents - Being one of the more severe reasons, submitting altered or illegitimate documents can hurt your application deeply.
  • Insufficient explanation - If you fail to provide valid and thorough information to prove your purpose of visit, this can lead to visa rejection. This also applies to interviews. 
  • Invalid passport - This involves a damaged or passports that are not as per the regulations.
  • Lack of proof for the visit - These include incorrect or suspicious details in the travel itinerary and accommodation.
  • Insufficient means - If you do not have sufficient funds to show that you can support your stay, you will be subjected to have your visa rejected.
  • Travel history - Irregularities or failure to follow the immigration laws on your previous travels can also lead to this. Alternately, having an Israeli stamp on a passport is most likely to have it declined.

If you are curious about why your Schengen visa was rejected and want to find the reasons for it, you can click on Schengen Visa Rejection reason.

How to avoid a visa rejection?

Prevention is always better than cure; Especially in the case of visa rejection. Even though the procedures are complex, but there are a few steps you can follow to ensure that you provide a successful application.

  • Self-verify the information you write in the application form. Be honest while filling it. False information in the form can lead to automatic rejection. 
  • Do not forge the documents. Always submit genuine and original documents.
  • Ensure that you know the exact purpose of your visit, and are able to prove it to the consular officer. Also, check if the visa you are applying for corresponds to your motive for visit.
  • Apply well in advance to prevent mistakes that could be caused due to hasty moves.
  • Prepare a legit travel itinerary, along with flight tickets, and accommodation. Eg;- If you are visiting the UAE on a tourist visa, and if your itinerary says that you will be spending 5 days visiting the Abu Dhabi Ferrari World, it doesn’t seem plausible and is likely to be rejected. 
  • Do not forget to submit any of the documents as per the regulations.
  • It is recommended to use the services of a visa agency for your applications, as they have a thorough understanding of the process, and can help you get your permit successfully.

To wrap it up, it is imperative to ensure that you submit your visa application with utmost accuracy and authenticity. Any shortcomings in doing so may result in dire consequences that can cause you to not being able to visit your favorite destinations. After all, “To travel, is to live”.

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