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When applying for a Visa for one of the European countries, it is likely that the Visa is a Schengen Visa (Visa type C). Poland became a Schengen member in 2007 since then applicants were able to apply for Polish Schengen Visa. It is important that during the application process, the applicant specifies the purpose of their trip, as Visa is chosen in accordance with the purpose. Second type of Visa people can apply for is Visa type D, known as National Visa (which will be discussed below).
For any other Schengen countries, the same rules, in regards to photos, apply.
Like for any other Schengen Visa, 70-80% of applicants face must be visible. Hence the size of the photo is cropped so only a face is visible. Here are a few photo rules for Polish Visa:
Photos submitted in a different format, than the one specified in Europe visa photo size, will result in refusal of Visa acceptance.
Illustration for a Visa must be centred, a person must not be too close or too distanced from the camera (minimum 40cm from the camera lens). Focus and contrast of the picture must be sharp and focused. Image must not be blurry, too light, or highly contrasted as these features could get the image distorted. Pictures brightness must be even, so no shadows or flash reflections are present on the final picture. If the image is too dark, the application will be denied. As mentioned above, the background must be white, pictures must avoid shadows behind the head and no contrast (no contrast can cause the face to blend in with the background). The overall quality of the photo must be excellent for a Visa application to be accepted. Photo colour must remain unedited, there must be no ink marks or creases, and pixelated.
In regards to the Visa Photo dress code, people should wear their casual, day-to-day clothing. People must avoid shiny clothing so no reflection is made by the camera flash or white tops/t-shirts so they won’t match the background photo requirements. Uniforms like the police or military are not allowed, as Visas are normally issued for leisure, not official governmental travel. Facial hair - such as a beard is permitted when a person has it on regular bases. This rule also applies to glasses, for those that wear them daily, they are allowed to keep them on, yet frames must not cover the eyes. Headwear is not forbidden unless a person has a medical condition (and doctors note to prove it) or a religious belief.
For a Poland Visa, the picture is only accepted when a person poses with a neutral facial expression. Face must be visible from ear to ear, and from forehead to chin. Eyes must remain open for the picture, and hair must be neatly tied. Hair cannot be in individuals eyes. A person taking a photo must be at least 40 cm away from the Visa applicant. A person must stand/sit still, and maintain a straight posture. The Head must not be tilt or twisted in any direction. Applicants must look straight into the lens of the camera. Portrait posture is not prohibited for a Visa. It is important to remember that smiling is not acceptable for a Visa photographs. Visa photographs cannot be older than six months - as a reflection of current appearance can be distorted.
Visa photos for children may seem harder, especially for newborns or infants. It is much harder for them to maintain a neutral facial expression, or stay in one place without moving. Small babies are allowed for their Visa picture to be taken whilst they are lying down. With one requirement being a white cloth placed behind the child’s head.
Items such as toys or blankets must not be visible in the picture. Eyes must remain open, whilst mouth closed. A child must look straight into the camera lens. A guardian may hold their baby for the picture, however, they must not be visible in the picture. Few copies may be required since the desired shot is chosen.
Common mistakes are made when individuals go and get their picture taken before they familiarize themselves with the rules. People need to make sure these common mistakes are avoided, so no delays are made in their Visa application. These mistakes include:
There are many different places that people use for a Visa photograph. Sometimes a document photograph service is available at drugstores and pharmacies. Local post offices also tend to offer the service and this is one of the most common places where people can take a visa/passport or any type of document pictures. The post office is also a very convenient place to take document photographs, as they can be sent off via mail straight away.
Some printing and shipping stores also have photo booths available for a fast and easy way of taking a document photographed with the ability to send. Now, it is also very common to have photo booths at a shopping centre. A more old-fashioned place where people go for a visa photo is a photography studio, which has a special setting for the picture to be taken in. Other online facilities provide services online, where individuals can take their photos at home using their mobile device.
Using a mobile device, for a document picture, has now become very popular. Over 90% of the global population now own and use a smartphone on daily bases. Hence, it isn’t such a surprise that such an app became a reality. App is downloadable via AppStore or GoogleStore, and it is easy to use, after downloading all you have to do is choose a document type that you want your picture to be taken for. App gives tips and guidance, and in case a picture is taken wrongly, a notification will come up alarming about what’s wrong. This can be corrected with a retake. Digital as well as printable versions are both available.
Visa Photo must not be older than six months before applying for a Visa. This is important because people need to look like themselves when they are crossing a border. And as we all know people change their appearance with age. Some people may grow facial hair, others change the length/colour of their hair, whilst others may decide to lose a lot of weight. All of these features affect people's current appearance. Therefore, the picture provided for the visa must be up-to-date so it truly reflects the image of an applicant.
💡 Is photo size for a Polish Visa the same as any other visa?
💡 Can I have my hair down for a Polish Visa Photo?
💡 Will my Visa be accepted if my photo's background is black?
💡 Can I wear a hat in a Visa photo?
💡 Is facial hair allowed for a Polish Visa?
💡 What to wear for a Polish Visa photo?
💡 Can I apply for a Polish Visa with black and white picture?
💡 What documents will I need for a Polish Visa?
💡 Is Polish Visa Photo different from Schengen Visa photo?
💡 Is Poland in Schengen area?
💡 What to do if my glasses (which I wear everyday) break before a Visa photo?
💡 I have an old passport photo, can I apply with that for my Visa?
💡 What size is the Polish Visa Photo?
💡 Why are uniforms not allowed for a Visa Photo?
A Visa is a document that allows people to travel internationally to different countries for a fixed amount of time. Visas are issued in accordance with the purpose of the travel that applicants provide an application form. Visas will not be issued if any of the requirements are not fulfilled, or completed wrongly.
For Poland, the Embassy of the Republic of Poland grants two types of Visas. As mentioned before one of them is Schengen Visa or type ‘C’ Visa that permits travellers to stay up to 90 days per 180 days in the Schengen zone. This is most commonly used for tourism, family visits, or medical visits. The second type of Visa to Poland is known as the ‘National D’ Visa which permits longer stay over 90 days, but up to 365 days, used mainly for study/work reasons.
Most common Visa types are: Student Visa, Tourist/Visitor Visa, Family/Friend Visa, Work Visa, Temporary residence Visa, Medical Visa
General requirements for a Polish Visa are 2 colour photos, capturing the applicant’s face, a valid passport with copies of previous visas (if applicable). Passport must have two blank pages for stamping purposes. Travel medical insurance for Poland and the entire Schengen Area. A Letter stating what’s the purpose of the travel and what you’re planning to do there. Flight tickets with present dates of entry and exit along with flight number. For those who stay in a hotel - a hotel reservation is needed. For those who stay at family/friends a letter of invitation or proof that the person is aware of your arrival. Lastly, proof of sufficient funds for a whole stay in Poland is a must.
To apply for a Visa, applicants must download the Polish Visa form and complete it via online. It is also possible to fill in the Poland Schengen Visa application electronically and then print it out and send it via mail. Both Visas grant you entry to Poland, the difference is they allow entry for a different period of time.
To get a Poland Schengen Visa it takes up to 15 days. Processing time may vary depending on the reason for the issue. Visa applications must be completed six months before the trip. For a National Visa, the process also takes up to 15 days. These visas are mainly granted for studying/working purposes.
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