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What exactly is needed for pakistan visa approval

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What exactly is needed for pakistan visa approval

hi,

I am planning to visit a friend in pakistan and I wish to surprise him. I am a british citizen n this will be th first time I apply for a visa to any country so have got litrally no idea about what paperwork I need. I will sound really dumb but do I buy tickets first and then apply for visa or do I get visa approved first and then buy tickets. I visited a website that listed what I needed for the visa application. It said I needed some approval letter from the person I am visiting is it meant to be some kinda legal letter or jst an informal one. I mean considering that I will need to ask him for a letter it will no more be a surprise for him. Basically the whole thing is too complicated fr me can anyone jst explain in simple language what exactly do I do. Because I am not sure if I will be staying at his home because I dnt know if his parents will agree to it or not so I currently plan staying at a hotel, So I dnt knw if this will cause any problem in my application you know what I mean like even though I will.b visiting him I will not be staying with him.... O_o help please.....

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1. Re: What exactly is needed for pakistan visa approval

Hello Lazygipsy

I’m probably not the best person to advise you because I just gave up on my own planned trip to Pakistan due to visa problems – see tripadvisor.com/ShowTopic-g293959-i9151-k628…

Hopefully someone from the UK who has successfully applied for a visa will reply, but my advice would be don’t book anything until you’ve definitely got your visa because if your visa is refused you’ll lose a lot of money both on non-refundable visa fee (£140 if done through Visadropbox.com) + admin fees for cancelling your unwanted flights - could be as much as £90 for that, depends on the airline’s policy on cancellations.

From the UK you have to apply by post to the Pakistan High Commission in London (no personal applications accepted and it’s supposed to take a lot longer, costs £104 – see their website) or in person to a branch of Gerry’s Visadropbox.com – costs £140 if done through Gerry’s. Visadropbox.com website is easier to understand. They publish a check-list which you must print out and take with you to one of their branches throughout the UK, along with your visa application (print that out as a pdf file from their website) + photos + passport + numerous documents both in original form and copies which you leave with them along with your £140 visa application fee which is non-refundable if you are refused. Apparently it helps if you provide originals + copies of things like utility bills, 3 months worth of bank statements, council tax bill, work reference letter, driving licence, etc.

But as you already realised the most important thing is a ‘Letter of Invitation’ from a sponsor in Pakistan. Usually this is a Pakistan-based tour agency who will provide you with the LOI/itinerary after you’ve booked a trip with them. If it’s a private individual who is sponsoring you, I think you might have problems unless you can prove they are a relative or you have dual UK/Pakistan citizenship. If you look on the Pakistan High Commission’s website you’ll see more detailed information about who can sponsor you, if it’s not a tour company. I think a ‘surprise’ visit is out of the question, sorry!

Also it depends where you want to go in Pakistan. Some areas are thought to be more dangerous than others and travel to those areas is apparently discouraged by the Pakistan government and they are unlikely to grant a visa if you mention any of those areas (i.e. Gilgit Baltistan). Lahore and Islamabad seem to be considered ‘safe’. Not sure about Karachi.

Also you should Google current travel advice from the UK Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) because if you go to any areas they advise against travelling to, your travel insurance will almost certainly be invalid and if you need medical treatment you’ll have to pay the whole cost yourself. You could still ask the UK Embassy to help but they wouldn't pay for anything or lend you money. Read the small print of your travel insurance documents and I do mean the small, almost unreadable print – probably somewhere around page 164! Or ring them to clarify whether they will cover you if you travel against FCO advice. As I said, it depends where you’re going in Pakistan but FCO advice can change quickly and probably will do as the 11 May Pakistan elections get closer. In the last week or so they added Karakoram Highway as a ‘no-go’ area.

I’m sure it can be done – I just don’t know how! Maybe someone else with a UK passport can give better advice. Good luck.

islamabad
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2. Re: What exactly is needed for pakistan visa approval

You need a letter of invitation (LOI) from Pakistan based tour operator (not from any individual) in order to obtain Pakistani tourist visa.

LOST HORIZON has been helping out foreign tourists in terms of providing LOI which costs 50$ & you don't need to book any tour with them.

Do not mention Karachi,Peshawar or any part of KPK province,Baluchistan province,trekking in the northern part of Pakistan,just mention Lahore,Islamabad & Rawalpindi in you visa application/itinerary.

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3. Re: What exactly is needed for pakistan visa approval

hey thanks for replyin hunza. :) if I dont mention areas such as you listed, and mention places like lahore, will I still be able to go to karachi once I am in pakistan? And yea thanks a lot again for providing info about who can give me LOI.

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4. Re: What exactly is needed for pakistan visa approval

It's good to hear that Hunza_green has recommended a company who can provide an LOI for $50 - but you should still bear in mind that visa application fees for UK nationals are £104 if done by post via Pakistan High Commission or £140 if done via Gerry's, and they are non-refundable. So I beg you not to book flights, etc, until you're sure you've got your visa - and be prepared to lose your visa application money if you're unlucky. A tour company providing you with LOI is not able to guarantee that you will be successful with your application.

I understand that you really want to go to Pakistan and I wish you luck. But please be a little cautious before you spend too much money, in case you lose it.

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5. Re: What exactly is needed for pakistan visa approval

I just thought I should say - it's a pity that no UK national has replied to this thread, saying that they successfully got a Pakistan visa or didn't get one, as the case may be. It would be good to know how it was done, or why they believe they were refused a tourist visa. For instance, what did they say in their application? Who supplied their LOI? Did they submit false itinerary?

Only someone with a UK passport can really answer this, I guess.

islamabad
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6. Re: What exactly is needed for pakistan visa approval

@ lazygypsy,

Of course you could go anywhere you want including Karachi,Peshawar & Hunza once you re in Pakistan but just don't mention above listed places when your application when applying for visa.

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7. Re: What exactly is needed for pakistan visa approval

I can't understand why the Pak Govt is making it so hard for UK travellers to visit. Some say its a tit-for-tat retaliation for the way Pakistani applicants for UK visas have to face. People are complaining about the 140 quid Gerrys are charging. The same Gerrys are charging 3 or 4 times that for Pakistanis trying to get UK visas. And most if them get rejected.

No, the only winners in this horror story appear to be Gerrys and the UK and Pak high commissions.

Hats off to UKintrepidtraveller for your perserverence in trying to get there. Persistence always pays off . You will make it mate, don't give up.

islamabad
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8. Re: What exactly is needed for pakistan visa approval

@ musafir Jee,

Unfortunately Pakistani government things that almost all the UK & American citizens re India Spy that's why Pakistani visa official make complications for in coming to tourists to Pakistan.

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9. Re: What exactly is needed for pakistan visa approval

#7 - the_Musafir: Funny you should say that (“don’t give up”) – just about the time you were posting your message I was watching a YouTube video - www.youtube.com/watch…

Hope I got that link right. It’s Saira Khan, “Don’t tell my mother that I’m in Pakistan” – Hunza Valley. Anyone wondering whether to go to GB should watch it. I’ve decided to give it another go. I just have to go to that amazing place.

Re: Gerry’s – yes I agree their prices are extortionate, but it’s the same with other companies which have a contract with embassies. I vaguely thought about going to India instead of Pakistan, couldn’t believe the price VFS is charging, then I checked the price I paid to the same company two years ago and it’s trebled since then. I think you’re right – mostly it’s the tit-for-tat retaliation between countries which causes this escalation in visa fees. Eventually they’ll all virtually kill their tourist trades which would be very sad.

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10. Re: What exactly is needed for pakistan visa approval

@hunza_green

Oh my god! That is just stupid! my parents are indian... So that makes me indian too...i am what you call a naturalised citizen or "NRI"..... Will this background of me being indian be a problem? This sucks man! I mean stuff countries I jst wanna b wid da guy I love and out of all the world crazy enuf da guy is pakistani!.

Edited: 5:19 pm, April 07, 2013
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