My 1st Time Visiting A Consulate

Atlanta Travel Blog

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Showing the needed documents to apply for a Pensioner Visa.
I do not know why, but I was intimidated about going to the Colombian Consulate.  I was only asking for a visa application and to see what documentation I would need to apply for a Pensioner Visa so I could live in Colombia.  The consulate was not at all what I was expecting.  It was a suite of offices in a typical office building.  Since my Spanish is still weak and the receptionist's English was as weak as my Spanish is, I ended up being ask to wait in an office.  As I looked at the name on the desk.... it was the Consul General's office.  I felt like I was in grade school and had been sent to the principal's office!! lol  But when he came back to his office, he was very friendly and then got me the application forms I would need to apply for my Pensioner Visa.  There was also a sheet listing the supporting documentation I would need.

Now he was speaking English, but I was not understanding.  His English was perfectly pronounced but I was already figuring in my head that as simple as this was I going to get the information needed!  Here is what the instructions were:

1 - Passport valid for at least 3 more months before expiring - check.
2 - Two copies of the pages of the passport containing information, as well as all previously granted visas - trip to Kinkos and that will be a - check.
3 - Two originals of the Visa Application Form duly signed and completely filled out. - that would be easy and then - check.
4 - 3 recent color passport-type photosgraphs (1.5"x1.5") - check
5 - Original of the certificate issued by the proper authority be it a government, a public or private enterprise; or by a foreign company, in which it is stated that the applicant receives a pension.  This certificate must be dully legalized by the Colombian Consul or APOSTILLED, whichever applies - okay this is where the clouds began to form - NO check here!!

I had 4 out of the 5 but it was that 5th one that had my head spinning.  My "pension" is Social Security and a Private Insurance pension.

There were notes explaining that all documents issued in languages other than Spanish MUST be submitted duly TRANSLATED INTO SPANISH, and both versions should be notarized by a Notary Public.  They must also be certified with an APOSTILLE by the Office of the Secretary of State where they were issued.  Each time I saw the word APOSTILLE, it was underlined, in blue and in all caps.  I had never even heard of the word much less what I would have to do to get it from the Secretary of State!!  Oh my where to start?
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Showing the needed documents to ap…
Showing the needed documents to a…
photo by: vulindlela