MY VISA STORY
Besides the obvious rejection fear, the visa application process could be pretty intimidating as it is. So, here's a rundown of my latest experience and a heads up for people about what to expect.
I outsourced to an agent since I was busy with work. And since, this being my first time applying myself, I was a bit apprehensive about making a mistake. So, I thought to approach a professional. I went to Gerry's Lahore around 8.45am with my completed file. At the entrance, there is a guard who asks you about the purpose of your visit to Gerry's. I told him about Turkey visa and he asked me to show him my passport. Upon entering the premise, you will see a small room ahead where you need to submit your mobile phone. Turn to your right, and you will find a waiting room kinda area where you need to get your bag checked by a lady in the corner before you get a ticket from the reception area. The reception lady would guide you on where to go.
That would lead you to an open area where you go straight ahead. Take a left and you will find a door near the stairs. This is the room where most of the visas are applied (I guess). Inside the room, there is a lady on the left who is guiding people for their visas. Normally, she will direct you to the token machine, much like in a bank. For Turkish visa, she was jotting down the names on the list and told me that I will be called by name so I didn't get the token. I sat down and after 5-10 mins, they called my name. All my documents were okay except for polio vaccination certificate which was not from a govt. hospital and current employment letter. Although I told my agent that I can get her a current employment letter, she was adamant that she needs my original employment letter (or a new one with the actual date of employment ). So, I went out, got the polio certificate from GangaRam Hospital which was right across from Gerry's. Then.. I took an Uber, went to my office, got the current employment letter, and went back to Gerry's. I was back in the visa room by 10.15am. This time, I had to wait for 20-25 mins for my name to be called.
While I was waiting, they gave me an interview form and consent letter. Interview form contained generic questions about your travel history, job profile, knowledge about Turkey, Places you are going to visit, etc. Consent letter is basically an authorization letter/verification letter that I give authorization to Gerry's to carry/submit my documents on my behalf and that the documents are true. After my name was called, they checked my documents, directed me to get photocopies of my passport's first 2 pages and used pages (Gerry's have photocopy facility within the premises), and told me to submit the fee on counter 8. I paid 12,450/- in total (9000 embassy fee, 2974 service charges, Routing charges 476). The cashier gave me two slips, one of which I gave to the person who was handling my documents and the other one I kept for my record. That ended the whole process for me and I got out of there around 11.45am.
I would say, some 25-30 people came to apply for Turkey visa that day and if you come early with complete documents, you can be done within 15 minutes. For an extra cost of Rs. 1600/- you can avoid the delay at all by going to the Turkish premium lounge upstairs which is kindathe executive service for Turkish visa. But I didn't see much benefit in that and went ahead with the normal procedure.
The documents required for Turkey Visa as of 04 Oct 2019 are:
- 2 recent photographs of 5x5 cm on white background
- Original Visa application form (https://www.konsolosluk.gov.tr/Visa/Index)
- Request Letter stating your purpose of visit and strong ties to Pakistan via employment etc.
- Copy of flight bookings
- Copy of hotel bookings
- Travel insurance
- Copy of polio vaccination certificate
- Original bank account maintenance certificate
- Original bank statement of last 3 months (Closing balance should be enough to cover your costs of the trip)
- Original salary slips of last 3 months
- Original current employment Letter
- Copy of passport's first two pages and all the used pages
Forms in Gerry's
- Interview form
- Consent Form
I hope this helps. Cheers :)