Getting a visa to visit Bulgaria is easy if you follow these steps.
Check which type of Bulgaria visa you need.
It’s essential to check the website of the Bulgarian consulate in your country for information about visas.
Most consulates have a list of visa requirements, including whether you need an invitation letter from a company or tourist agency and how much time you have to apply for your visa.
They will also let you know if any policy changes may affect your application process.
All EU countries need entry visas to be obtained before travelling if you are an American citizen.
The U.S. does not need Americans who want to stay in Bulgaria less than 90 days within 180 days of their arrival date (i.e., tourists) to get a visa before entering Bulgaria—but they do recommend it as part of their own travel instructions page on their official site here:
Gather required documents.
- Gather your required documents. You’ll need these items to apply for a Bulgarian visa:
- Visa application form
- Two passport-sized photos (digital or paper) of you taken within the last six months, showing your entire face without a head covering or glasses. Photos must be in colour and printed on photo-quality paper with a white background. They cannot be selfies or coloured photos, but they can have an affixed sticker or stamp (as long as it’s not blurry).
Fill in the application form online.
As soon as you’re ready, fill in the application form online. You’ll need to print a copy and take it with you when you visit the embassy.
It’s best to fill in all the fields and ensure everything is correct before printing—and remember, if anything has changed since your last trip (like an address or new passport), update your information immediately.
Also, be sure that you have all the documents required for your visa type, including:
- Passport photo (make sure it’s recent)
- Credit card to pay the fee
Schedule an interview at the consulate.
Once you’ve received your invitation letter, you can schedule an interview at the consulate. The process is simple:
- Call the consulate and ask what their current wait times are. If they’re long, start planning to return later in the week or month.
- Bring a photo of yourself (and any other photos that need to be attached to your passport) and your passport and original invitation letter (copies are not accepted).
- Bring proof of medical insurance covering Bulgaria while you’re there (this can include a document from your employer or health insurance provider).
Collect your passport with the visa.
Collect your passport in person at the embassy, consulate or post office. You cannot collect it by mail.
The consulates in Chicago and New York are open from 9:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Still, if you arrive any later than 11:30 a.m., there is no guarantee that your application will be processed that day, and you may have to return another day to collect your passport (and visa).
If you apply online and schedule an interview, getting your Bulgarian visa will be a piece of cake.
There are two ways to apply for a Bulgarian visa: online or in person.
If you choose to apply online, the process will be much easier. You can schedule an interview with the Bulgarian consulate and get your visa within a few days.
But, suppose you prefer to submit your application at the consulate.
In that case, you won’t be able to schedule an appointment for an interview, which could lead to delays when getting your visa processed.
The Last Word
If you follow these steps, you should be able to get a Bulgarian visa and visit the country. Remember to consult your local consulate if you have any questions about the process, and good luck!
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