The Embassy of France has announced a slew of measures to ease visa procedure for Indian visitors.
For independent travellers, following the suspension of biometrics for all visa applications since 1 July 2013, applicants are not required to personally come to the French Consulate. Furthermore, the Ambassador is looking at opening more VFS centres through India.
Other measures initiated by the embassy include:
– Travel Agencies can now submit applications for individuals directly at the France Visa Application Center without prior appointment.
– For groups of more than 10 applicants, Travel Agencies are requested to contact VFS well in advance before the scheduled departure date so as the VFS may appropriately guide them regarding the required documentation and the submission of the files for the group.
– If the files are submitted several weeks before of the scheduled departure of the applicants, the French Consulate can permit a free of charge return of the passport (‘pass-back’), upon specific emergency request from an applicant, while the study of the file is still in process.
– For hotel bookings, the Consulate requires a document bearing the names, addresses and contacts of the hotels planned for the travel from tour operators/travel agencies/travel service providers.
– Scholar groups’ applications (from 6 to 18 years) will be exempted of visa fees