Many countries have multiple types of visas. There are tourist, work, business, and student ones.
The application process and turnaround times vary for each of those…sometimes dramatically so.
Some embassies and consulates require appointments to apply for a visa and yet others process visas only through a third-party agency. It all varies by country. You may need a plane ticket or even a letter of invitation.
If you need a visa, start the process three months in advance. Keep in mind you will need to give the agency your passport for this process. So, don’t plan any international trips during your wait time.