Instructions for Requesting an Invitation Letter

To obtain a letter of invitation for an event, please send an e-mail to travel-invitations-committee AT SPAMFREE gnome DOT org. This is an archived private mailing list for a small group of people handling invitations for GNOME events. This currently includes Neil McGovern, Sam Thursfield, Christoph Simon, Marina Zhurakhinskaya, Srinivasa Ragavan and Fabiana Simões. For invitations to events other than GUADEC, please CC the organizer of the event who resides in the country where the event will take place. Please state what date you need the letter of invitation by.

Please note that the letters of invitation for events outside of the United States usually come from an organization or entity in the host country, not from the GNOME Foundation. If you are sponsored by the GNOME Foundation, the GNOME Foundation can provide a letter confirming your sponsorship.

Please cut and paste the following into the e-mail and provide all the answers:

  • Name and address of the embassy or consulate general where you will apply for the visa
  • Full name, as it appears on the passport:
  • Last name:
  • Pronoun (he or she):
  • Living place address:
  • Name and address of workplace:
  • Dates of stay in the city where the event will take place (check in date - check out date):
  • Name and address of the place of stay:
  • Links that show your involvement in GNOME (foundation membership, blog, commits, mailing list archives, and/or Bugzilla history):
    • If you have approved sponsorship by the GNOME Foundation, you don't need to provide these.
  • Reasons to be at the event:
    • For GUADEC 2016, your motivation, your main contribution to GNOME and the title of your talk, if you have one accepted.
  • Date of birth:
  • Passport number:

If you have approved sponsorship by the GNOME Foundation, please include the following information, which will be cross-checked with the travel committee:

  • Amount sponsored for air travel:
  • Number of nights sponsored for accommodations:
  • Dates for the nights sponsored (check in date - check out date):
  • Is the sponsorship full (does it fully cover the cost of the inter-city travel and the nights you need to stay for the event):
    • For GUADEC 2016, some of the travel sponsorship might be partial

Notes on UK VISA regulations for GUADEC 2017

  • You may need to apply for a UK Standard Visitor visa, which takes 3 weeks to process. Use this tool to check if you need a visa -- select "Work, academic visit or business" as the purpose of your trip.

  • You need to show that:
    • you’ll leave the UK at the end of your visit
    • you’re able to support yourself and any dependents for the duration of your trip
    • you’re able to pay for your return or onward journey and any other costs relating to your visit
    • you have proof of any business or other activities you want to do in the UK, as allowed by the Visitor Rules -- this will be your GUADEC 2017 invite letter.

Sample Invitation Letters

Handling Process

This section is for event organizers. It explains how to handle the invitation process for an event, such as GUADEC.

  • Create letter templates for your event based on the examples above. Usually, you will want to offer two letters:
    1. A letter from an organization in the hosting country, which includes any details about the housing if arranged for by the organization and any details of the invitee's activities at the event, such as a talk. This letter should be signed by a representative of the local organization.
    2. A letter from the GNOME Foundation describing the sponsorship the invitee will receive to attend the event, if one was offered by the travel committee. This letter should be signed by a representative of the GNOME Foundation, such as someone from the board of directors.
  • Add any commonly needed information to the instructions above, such as a website with locations of the embassy and consulate generals for the hosting country in India (since we typically have many event attendees from India who need invitations) and the address of the arranged housing.
  • Get an approval from the board for the local organization representative to be signing all letters for the GNOME Foundation members OR people who were offered sponsorship by the travel committee OR accepted speakers
  • For people who say they were offered sponsorship by the travel committee, forward the e-mail to travel-committee for them to confirm that the listed sponsorship has in fact been offered
  • For people who are GNOME Foundation members, or accepted speakers, or not GNOME Foundation members forward the e-mail to the board-list and wait for the board to inform you that the voting completed with an authorization to issue an invitation letter before doing so (if the situation is urgent, the vote receiving +4 can be taken as a pass for the vote)
  • Once you have appropriate confirmations and approvals, prepare one or both letters for the invitee, get them signed by corresponding representatives, and send the letters to the invitee, with the travel-invitations-committee and the organizer in the email loop.

Travel/Invitations (last edited 2017-06-22 14:08:42 by SamThursfield)