The Visa application process is the very first step to moving out of your country except your desired destination is visa-free for your country’s international passport. Visa processing times could be delayed if the documentations are done wrongly. This post highlights 5 ways to speed up your visa processing time.
Visa processing time
Visa applications usually involve documentation and are hardly ever a straight-to-the-point process. This is because it involves several laws, policies, processes, dos, and don’ts. Visa Applications can usually be done online via the desired country’s immigration portal.
For the purpose of this post, your visa processing time begins from the time you submit a visa application to the time your visa application is approved. Within this period of time, you could be required to provide supplementary documents or information if things were not done right from the onset.
Such subsequent requests could really delay the time for a decision to be made on your visa application. If you follow the tips in this post, you can expedite your visa processing time (be it online or offline).
5 ways to speed up your visa processing time:
1. Don’t apply for visa with an international passport that is only valid for 6 months or less
If your passport will expire in less than six months, this might not only slow down the process but cause issues for you upon landing in your desired country. It would cause a controversy when your renewed passport is carrying a different number and expiration date from the one used in the application process. This is important since the processes usually take months to finish. Avoid the mental stress and Immigration hassles; have your passport valid for at least 1 year.
2. Have all documents for your visa application scanned and submitted in colored print (not greyscale)
Virtually all your government-related records and documents are originally in full color for good reasons; some being authenticity, validity, and legitimacy. Don’t give the officials a reason to toss your documents aside due to doubts. If you do not have the original copies of some documents for any reason, swear affidavits or certify those documents with a Notary Public.
3. Label your visa application documents Properly before submitting them for processing
This majorly applies to those applying offline. With tons of people submitting their documents every day, you could have a piece of document as tiny as your passport photograph fly out. It will be wise to have such a document labeled with the name of persons they belong to. Ensure to do the same for all documents. The more time they spend trying to figure out who owns what, the longer the process will take.
4. Have all your visa application documents prepared to speed up the processing time
Make sure that each of your paperwork is in sync. Case in point: you cannot state that you have been offered admission by a university abroad without providing the admission letter as well as your acceptance letter.
Any missing records or missing pieces of information to connect all your dots could slow down the whole process. The immigration wants to have the full picture of who you are; don’t leave out a piece of the puzzle so they don’t tag you as dishonest or your intentions as deceptive.
Also, ensure you have all your documents translated where necessary. This is required if any document is in a foreign language asides from the official language requested. Translation can be done by any certified translator.
5. Avoid uploading heavy visa application files for processing
Specific to online applications, it is advisable to have your Portable Document Formats (PDF) in the most portable forms. This is to ensure they are well uploaded and not rejected by the portal. I’ll advise they are less than 5MB in size but if they are larger, don’t worry; you can use some free online pdf compressors like pdfcompressor.com or online2pdf.com.
Note that I did not add the option of getting a legal practitioner or paying a “premium processing fee” for fast-tracking (as in the case of US Immigration). This is because those options can end up very expensive and are not even guarantors for positive feedback. Follow the tips above and you can be sure to ease the tension earlier. All the very best with your visa application process as you prepare for your interview.