While preparing for your international travels, there are so many things to be done! The documentation process involved in getting the visa is the most cumbersome. There are many steps involved in the procurement of a visa. Embassies of many countries ask for documents that can seem very confusing, especially if it is the first time that you are applying for a visa. One of the documents that most commonly come across as confusing is the invitation letter for visa. However, it is pretty simple and easy to obtain once your travel plans are clearly set out.
- What is an invitation letter for visa?
- Types of invitation letters (tourism, business, sponsor, university, hospital)
- How to write an invitation letter for visa?
- Supporting documents needed
- Sample invitation letter
What is an invitation letter for visa?
An invitation letter for visa is a letter that an applicant will be required to submit to the Embassy or Consulate of the visiting country. It is written by a person who resides in that country and mentions that you are invited to stay with him/her. The invitation letter for visa application guarantees, by default, that you will not be staying in the country illegally. Therefore, it increases your credibility and increases your chances of procuring a visa. It is important to ensure that the invitation letter encompasses all the necessary information in a formal manner of writing.
The invitation letter for visa application must be attached to the rest of the documents that you will be submitting to the Embassy for the visa process. Ensure that the invitation letter is not forgotten because it clarifies to the officials in-charge that you are not travelling without a purpose. The letter will clearly state the reason behind your travel to the country and the people who you will be staying with. In case of any violations to the rules and conditions of the visa, the officials will contact the person who wrote the invitation letter if they are unable to reach you. As a very important document, the invitation letter for visa is very credible in the eyes of the officials.
Types of invitation letters for visa
You could be travelling to other countries for several purposes – tourism, study, work, business, or others, and each of these will have different invitation letters. Every invitation letter for visa will have to be submitted along with supporting documents to prove the authenticity of the letter. Embassies and Consulates will not consider those letters submitted without the support of documents. Here are the different types of invitation letters.
1. Invitation letter from family or friends for tourism purposes
A very common reason for people to travel to various countries is to visit family and friends. To accomplish this, you will require a visitor visa to that country which is also often treated as a tourist visa. For the invitation letter for visitor visa, friends or family that you will be staying with will have to write it for you. The letter must clarify that you are the letter writer’s friend or relative and will be staying with him/her for a particular duration. To support this invitation letter for visitor visa, friends or family must attach proof of the relationship between you both. There must be a clear description of your stay duration, purpose of travel, and financial status.
2. Business invitation letter
You could also travel to other countries for business purposes. You might have to meet a potential investor or your foreign partners. To be able to do this, you will need to obtain a business visa to that country. You will need the support of a business invitation letter to prove your credibility. The letter will have to mention the relationship shared by you and the person you will be meeting with for business purposes. The letter must also specify what exactly you will be doing during your stay in the country. It is highly recommended that you attach an itinerary of all your planned business activities in the country. This can significantly elevate the chances of procuring the business visa. You must also have a letter from your employer that confirms your position in a specific company and your work description. This would have to include – job position, dates of employment, salary, and the reason why it is necessary for you to travel to another country for business purposes.
Related: A Guide to Business Visa
3. Sponsor invitation letter
You could be invited to another country for a conference to give a speech or to attend a trade show. For this purpose, the invitation letter for your visa must be written by the person or company that will be sponsoring your travel and stay for the same. With clear mention of your name and the reason why you are chosen for the event, the organizers of the trade or conference must write the letter in a professional manner. Other important details such as the dates of the conference, itinerary, and accommodation details must be specified. Additionally, there has to be a mention of whether or not the sponsors will be paying you for attending the event. The sponsor invitation letter for visa must include the contact information and certificate of registration of the company sponsoring you for the event.
Also read: What is a Sponsorship Letter for Visa?
4. University or college invitation letter
If you will be visiting another country for the purpose of studying in a university or college there, you will need to apply for the student visa. To support this, you will require an invitation letter from the institution that you will be studying in. The invitation letter here takes the form of an acceptance letter given by the institution when you are chosen to join them. The letter must include the details of your accommodation, your course, duration of study, and financial support.
Suggested read: Self Introduction letter for Visa: All you need to know
5. Hospital invitation letter
In case of any health issues, you might want to travel to another country for better health care services. Indians most often travel to the Schengen area due to the high levels of development in the medical field there. For this you will require a Schengen visa. An invitation letter for Schengen visa will have to be provided by the doctor. This doctor will have to be associated with a hospital in a Schengen country. The invitation letter for Schengen visa for medical purposes must clarify your health condition, the reason why you need to seek treatment in that specific hospital, and the dates prescribed for treatment. The invitation letter cannot give an indefinite timeframe for your treatment. It must also mention the person responsible for paying for the treatment and the mode of payment as well. Therefore, you must ensure to attach relevant medical documents to your invitation letter.
Also read: Visa Interview – Questions, Answers, Tips
How to write an invitation letter for visa?
Though writing an invitation letter can seem to be an overwhelming task, it is not really a very complicated document to obtain. If you ensure that the letter has all the required information that can convince the officials at the Embassy or Consulate, you are good to go!
The person writing the invitation letter for you must fulfil the following requirements –
- Must be a citizen or permanent lawful resident of the country you intend to visit
- Must be related to you
- Must have a registered place of stay
- Must have enough room for the applicant
Required information for invitation letters depending on the purpose of your visit can include –
- The date of writing the letter
- Name of the Embassy
- Contact information of the embassy (address and phone numbers)
- Opening salutations
- Inviting person’s name (including date of birth)
- Inviting person’s status in the foreign country (occupation and visa / citizenship status)
- Inviting person’s contact information (address, phone number, and email)
- Applicant’s name (including date of birth)
- Applicant’s contact information (address, phone number and email)
- Applicant’s passport number
- Purpose of travel
- Relationship with the inviting person
- Dates of travel
- Travel itinerary
- Closing salutations
- Inviting person’s signature
- Important supporting documents or enclosures
Know in-depth: Guide To Visa Photo Size Requirements
The supporting documents include
- A scanned copy of the host’s passport / ID
- Proof of the host’s financial status, if he/she will be funding the applicant’s stay
- Proof of home / flat ownership or rental agreement
- Travel itinerary
- If the host is taking off some days from work to be with you, a proof of the same will be helpful
The tone of the invitation letter
Invitation letters can be written addressed to the Embassy of the applicant. If it is addressed to the guest, ensure that the invitation letter for visa uses formal language, especially if it is for business, study, sponsorship, or hospital purposes. Usage of formal language would show to the Embassy or Consulate that you understand their importance and respect their authority. The use of colloquial language in an invitation letter can prove to be detrimental to the procurement of your visa. The letter must be clear and concise while including all the required information. The writing must be straightforward to show your serious intent to visit the country for your intended purpose and that you will return to India once the purpose of your visit is met. Invitation letters addressed to the applicant can be friendlier.
Place of submission of the invitation letter
The invitation letter for visa will have to be submitted at the Embassy or Consulate of the country you want to visit. It must be submitted along with your visa documentation. Even if the Embassy of that specific country does not ask for an invitation letter, it is recommended that you submit it. The host must scan the letter and send it to the applicant. Once you receive it, you will have to submit it along with the other supporting documents on the day of your appointment with the Embassy or Consulate.
Sample invitation letter for visa
There is no specific way of writing an invitation letter. It is up to the host to write it the way he/she wishes to. However, all the required information must be present in the letter.
Sample invitation letter for visa given for visiting purposes addressed to the Embassy –
The [Country] Embassy,
Letter of Invitation for [Applicant’s Name]: Passport No: [Applicant’s Passport Number]
Dear Sir / Madam
I, [Host’s Name}, born on [Date of Birth] am writing this letter in order to support the visitor visa application for [Applicant’s Name], born on [date of birth] travelling to [Country].
He/she is a permanent resident of India and is my [relationship]. She/he lives at [Visitor’s Address] and can be contacted at [Phone number and Email].
I am a permanent legal resident of [Country], and I live at [Host’s Address]. I can be contacted at [Phone number and Email]. I work as [Host’s Occupation] with a net income of [Income Amount] per year. I would like for [Applicant’s Name] to visit me from [Date of entry] to [Date of Exit] for the purpose of [reason such a wedding, graduation, baby shower, family event, party].
I request you to grant [Applicant’s Name] with the visitor visa for this period of stay in [Country]. During his / her stay here, I will bear complete responsibility of his / her financial requirements and cater to his/ her well-being. He/she will be residing in my home for the duration of his / her stay. Prior to the expiration of his / her visa, I will ensure that [Applicant’s Name] returns to India.
Kindly find attached all the documents that support this letter of invitation.
I anticipate your favourable response to the same.
Sample invitation letter for visa given for visiting purposes addressed to the applicant
Letter of invitation for [Applicant’s Name]: Passport Number: [Applicant’s Passport number], born on [Date of Birth], staying at [Address], and who can be contacted at [Phone Number and Email]
Dear [Applicant’s Name],
I invite you to visit me in [Country]. It has been a long time since I saw you [description of relationship as mother, father, daughter, son, friend] and I am so glad to finally have you meet all the people who have made my stay in [Country] so fulfilling.
While you are here, you will be staying in my home [Host’s Address], and I will bear the responsibility of your movement around [Country] from [Date of Entry] to [Date of Exit].
I have attached all the documents required to be submitted to the [Country] Embassy along with this letter.
I eagerly await your arrival.
[Host’s Date of Birth]
[Host’s Phone Number and Email]
Now, you are all set to obtain an invitation letter and set out to explore a different country!