Schengen Visa Rejections: Indian Travellers Lose Over ₹109 Crores

Discover the challenges Indian travelers faced with Schengen visa rejections in 2023, leading to a financial loss of ₹109 crore. Learn about common reasons for rejection and tips to improve your chances of visa approval.

Schengen Visa Rejections: Indian Travellers Lose Over ₹109 Crores
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Schengen Visa Rejections: Indian Travellers Lose Over ₹109 Crores

In 2023, Indian travelers faced significant hurdles in securing Schengen visas, with a notable 151,752 applications rejected out of 966,687 filed. This high rejection rate resulted in a substantial financial loss of €12.1 million (₹109 crore), reflecting broader challenges faced by travelers from several countries. This article delves into the specifics of these rejections, and the financial impact on Indian travelers, and provides practical advice on improving your chances of visa approval.

The Challenges Indian Travelers Face

Indian travellers hoping to explore the wonders of Europe faced a common hurdle in 2023: visa rejection. A new report by Schengen News reveals that India ranked among the top five nationalities with the highest number of rejected Schengen visa applications.

Out of a total of 966,687 visa requests submitted by Indians, over 15% were denied. This significant rejection rate not only represents a logistical barrier but also translates into a substantial financial burden due to non-refundable application fees.

Who Faced the Most Rejections?

Across all Schengen member states, a staggering 1.6 million visa applications were rejected in 2023. This translates to €130 million (₹1,172 crores) collected in application fees from rejected applications. The nationalities most affected by these rejections included:

  • Turks: €13.5 million spent (₹117.8 crores) on rejected applications.
  • Algerians: €13.3 million spent (₹116.1 crores) on rejected applications.
  • Indians: €12.1 million spent (₹109 crores) on rejected applications.
  • Moroccans: €10.9 million spent (₹95.1 crores) on rejected applications.
  • Chinese: €4.8 million spent (₹41.9 crores) on rejected applications (despite having a relatively high approval rate).

Financial Impact on Indian Travellers

The cost of a Schengen visa application for an Indian citizen above 12 years old was €80 (approximately ₹7,200) before June 11th, 2023. This fee can vary depending on factors like age, purpose of travel, and nationality.

Considering the rejection rate, a rough estimate suggests that Indian applicants collectively spent nearly ₹696 crore on visa applications in 2023. With over 1.5 lakh rejections, this translates to a loss of ₹109 crore on trips that never materialized. The financial burden is particularly heavy for applicants who saved diligently for their dream European vacation, only to face rejection and lose the application fee.

Rising Costs and Calls for Reimbursement

The situation is further compounded by the increasing cost of visa applications. The Schengen visa fee rose from €80 to €90 (₹8,100) in June 2023. This represents a significant expense for many applicants, particularly those from countries like Morocco where the fee is equivalent to a quarter of the national average wage.

The high rejection rate and rising application fees have sparked discussions in several affected countries. In Morocco, for example, there have been calls from lawyers urging the government to push for a refund system for rejected Schengen visa applications. This movement highlights the growing dissatisfaction among applicants and the need for more transparent and fair visa policies.

Common Reasons for Schengen Visa Rejections

Understanding the common reasons for visa rejections can help applicants better prepare their applications. Here are some typical grounds for rejection:

  1. Incomplete Application: Missing documents or incomplete forms can lead to immediate rejection.
  2. Unclear Travel Purpose: Failing to clearly outline the purpose of your visit or providing vague travel itineraries can raise red flags.
  3. Insufficient Financial Means: Inadequate proof of financial resources to support your stay in the Schengen area.
  4. Invalid Travel Insurance: Not providing valid travel insurance that covers the duration of your stay.
  5. Previous Visa Violations: Any history of overstaying or violating visa conditions can affect your current application.
  6. Inconsistent Information: Any discrepancies in your application or supporting documents can lead to doubts about your credibility.
  7. Criminal Record: A criminal history can result in visa denial.
  8. Lack of Accommodation Proof: Failing to provide confirmed accommodation details for your stay.
  9. Employment Status: Unstable employment or lack of proof of employment can be a concern.
  10. Sponsorship Issues: Issues with the credibility of your sponsor or incomplete sponsorship documents.

Planning Your Schengen Visa Application

While the high rejection rate for Indian applicants is a concern, it shouldn’t deter you from pursuing your European travel dreams. Here are some tips to increase your chances of visa approval:

  1. Meet with a Travel Agent or Visa Consultant:

    • Expert Guidance: Professional consultants can provide valuable advice and ensure you meet all requirements. Contact FastTreck Visa Consultant on +91 93742 42299 Now...
    • Document Preparation: They help in organizing your documents and filling out application forms correctly.
  2. Ensure Your Application is Complete and Error-Free:

    • Double-Check Information: Verify all personal details and ensure consistency across all documents.
    • Clear Documentation: Provide clear and concise supporting documents, including your itinerary, accommodation bookings, and travel insurance.
  3. Apply Well in Advance:

    • Avoid Last-Minute Rush: Start the application process early to avoid delays.
    • Allow Time for Corrections: If any issues arise, you’ll have time to address them without missing your travel dates.
  4. Provide Strong Financial Evidence:

    • Bank Statements: Show sufficient funds in your bank account to cover your trip expenses.
    • Income Proof: Include salary slips, income tax returns, and other relevant financial documents.
  5. Show Proof of Ties to Home Country:

    • Employment Letters: Submit letters from your employer confirming your position and leave approval.
    • Property Documents: Include documents that prove you own property or have long-term financial commitments in India.
  6. Maintain a Clean Travel Record:

    • Previous Visas: Include copies of previously granted visas to show a history of compliant travel.
    • No Overstays: Ensure you have not overstayed any previous visas.


The statistics from 2023 underscore a challenging landscape for international travelers, particularly from India and other affected countries. As rejection rates remain high and costs escalate, advocacy for fairer visa policies and financial transparency continues to grow, aiming to alleviate the financial burdens faced by travelers seeking to explore Europe.

Traveling to Europe remains a dream for many, and understanding the visa process thoroughly can significantly improve your chances of success. By preparing diligently, seeking expert advice, and ensuring all documentation is in order, you can enhance your likelihood of obtaining a Schengen visa and enjoying your European adventure.

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This detailed guide aims to provide Indian travelers with comprehensive insights into the Schengen visa rejection scenario in 2023, helping them better prepare for their future travel plans.

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