If you are looking for a European getaway where you can find a wide variety of beers or visit the birthplace of famous authors, then you might want to visit Czechia (also known as the Czech Republic). This small country is located near Austria and Germany.
For tourists who hold a Philippine passport, you need to apply for a Schengen visa before you can visit. This type of visa allows you to stay for up to 90 days. It also enables you to explore other countries that are part of the Schengen agreement.
Visa Application for Filipinos
Filipino passport holders who plan to visit Czechia will first need to apply for a visa through a visa processing agency. As part of the application process, you will need to prepare necessary documents such as your passport, photos, bank statements, among others..
There are different types of visas provided by the embassy, including long-term visa, employee card, study visa, short-term visa, long-term residence permit, permanent residence, and visas for family members of EU citizens. Since you are applying as a tourist and staying in Czechia for a short stay only, you will need to apply for a Schengen visa.
Staying in Czechia for a few days? Then the Schengen visa is the one you need. Here are the requirements to facilitate the application:
- Application form: Fill out all the details of the form. All information should be in English.
- Original passport: It should be valid for at least three months before the trip and have two blank pages left. Additionally, the passport must be recognized by the EU Commission.
- Valid Qatar ID and photocopy
- Passport photo: The photo should follow standard regulations and have a white background. The applicant should not wear any headgear unless it is a religious requirement. The photo should also be glued to the document.
- Travel insurance: The coverage amount should be EUR 30,000 minimum, plus repatriation. The insurance should also cover the Schengen area throughout the entire stay.
- Flight and hotel reservations
- Proof of financial means to support the trip
- Original letter from the employer indicating the applicant’s position in the company, length of contract, salary, and duration of the travel.
Other documents that may be requested, depending on the circumstances:
- Sponsor letter
- Marriage certificate
- Authorization letter for minors traveling with only one parent
Steps in Applying for a Tourist Visa
Before you begin the application process for a Schengen visa while you are in Qatar, ensure that you have a valid residence permit. Once you fulfill that requirement, you can proceed with the application process using the following steps
Step 1. Ensure that all the required documents are complete.
Step 2. Book an appointment with VFS Global Center in Doha.
Step 3. Submit the documents on your appointed date.
Step 4. Wait for the result of your application. The processing time may vary, and you will be notified of the decision once it is made
Visa Registration Fees
Here is the list of fees for a short-term visa to Czechia
- Adult: QR 320
- Children aged 6 -12 years: QR 160
- Children below 6 years: FREE
Please take note that the fees may change. When you apply for your visa, we would appreciate it if you could confirm with the embassy the updated rates.
Address and Contact Details of the Czech Republic Czechia Embassy
- Address: 953 Ibn Roshd Street, Onaiza, 65, Qatar
- Telephone: +974 44 24 23 30
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Twitter: Embassy of the Czech Republic in Doha
- Office Hours: Sunday to Thursday: 9 AM to 5 PM
Map of the Czech Republic Czechia Embassy
Video on Tourist Visa Application
Several videos are available, discussing the ways to prepare for the Schengen visa application. In this YouTube video from Dotek Filipin, you can pick up some tips on how to prepare the requirements. While the vlogger addresses Filipinos based in the Philippines, there is also some information that is useful even if you are in Qatar.
The vlogger offers tried and tested tips on how to prepare for the proof of financial means. In particular, she suggests having at least CZK1,245 each day if you plan to stay in Czechia for 30 days or less.
You can watch the full video here:
Disclaimer: The information posted here is based on personal experiences that the vlogger shared in the video. Please let this post serve as a guide only. If you have specific questions, you may ask the vlogger by commenting on their video or on their social media accounts.
How to Get to Czechia From Qatar
If you are still trying to book a flight from Doha to Prague, you might want to know what options are available to you. For direct flights, you can use Qatar Airways, with an expected flight time of about 6 and a half hours.
Other airlines flying to Czechia include Pegasus Airlines, EgyptAir, OmanAir, and British Airways. The most affordable ticket price you can find is about US$147. When booking your flight or making a reservation, you could also inquire if the airline offers a refund.
Best Places to Visit in Czechia
To help you plan your trip to this Central European country, here are some suggestions of the places you can visit. As you embark on your journey, always remember that you are a guest and that you should observe proper manners at all times.
The country’s capital remains to be the most visited. It has also been voted as one of the most beautiful cities in the world And why not? Prague boasts magnificent architecture such as the Charles Bridge or the Astronomical Clock. Another recent discovery is the Speculum Alchemiae, an ancient but functional alchemical laboratory.
The city is also the birthplace of Franz Kafka, considered the most famous Czech writer.
Located in the southern part of the country. Cesky Krumlov is a historic town with a UNESCO Heritage site to boot. You can explore ancient castles or go hiking and biking in the Sumava National Park. Many guests opt for a day trip, returning to the capital in the evening. However, to fully enjoy Cesky Krumlov, consider spending the night to have more time to explore the place.
If a day at the spa is on your agenda, you should visit Karlovy Vary as it is known for being a spa town. Here, you’ll find hot springs and enjoy a peaceful atmosphere. Additionally, you can drink from the healing springs for free or try Becherovka, a traditional herbal liquor.
Aside from the spa experience, you can also attend the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival held from June to July, which is a much-awaited event in Central and Eastern Europe.
Getting Around Prague
To help you save money, you can take public transportation. You can easily get to your destination because it is reliable and the rates are quite affordable.
The metro or subway is the cheapest way to get around Prague. It’s fast and connects to the bus station and the point to reach the Prague Airport. Inside the metro terminal, you’ll find appealing art installations and free metro newspapers. Be warned, the layout can be confusing for first-time travelers.
Similarly, there is a tram route that circles around Prague. This option is more suited for weekday travel as there are fewer routes during the weekends.
On the other hand, the bus is another reliable means of transportation. You can take the bus to get in and out of the city. The bus follows a specific route and timetable, which you can find at the station. Additionally, there are day and night buses that you can take. When the time comes that you need to go back to the airport, take note of Bus Numbers 100, 119, and 191.
Taxis are also available to take you to your destination. But there have been reports of them charging higher rates, especially for tourists. If you choose this option, be ready to haggle or research the accurate fare.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
- Can I go to the Czechia embassy for visa processing?
No, the embassy requires applicants to process the visa application through VFS Global. Only select populations, such as diplomatic passport holders, service passport holders on official trips, and family members of European Union citizens, can apply at the embassy.
- Can I have a sponsor for my trip to Czechia?
Yes, you can have a sponsor fund your tourist visit to Czechia. However, you must show proof of your relationship with the sponsor, and the sponsor should be a citizen or permanent resident. Additionally, the sponsor will need to provide documents to demonstrate their ability to fund your stay.
- How long is the visa processing?
According to the Czech Republic website, you can send applications as early as 6 months before your intended flight, and the latest would be at least 15 days before your departure. However, the visa processing may take around 45 days or more, so it’s better to allocate more time for your application.
For Philippine passport holders planning to visit Czechia for up to 90 days, the first step is to apply for a Schengen visa. Prepare necessary documents, such as the application form, passport, Qatar ID, airline and hotel bookings, proof of employment, proof of sufficient funds, and travel insurance. Then, book an appointment with VFS Global in Doha to submit the requirements and pay the visa fee. The next steps involve waiting for the application result.