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Improve Your Approval Chances: B-2 Visitor Visa

Updated: Aug 15, 2023

Want to Visit USA? How to Strengthen Your Application for a U.S. Tourist Visa.

A U.S. Consular officer has a large number of U.S. B-2 Tourist Visa applications to adjudicate daily; usually adjudicating ten or more per hour; and so the officer has less than 6 minutes in which to approve, deny, or banish the application to the dreaded chasm of “Administrative Processing”. [In consulates that fall under Mission India, the interview can consist of just two questions before the Tourist Visa is denied]. Enhance your chances of success and avoid a “214(b)” denial (the most popular denial) by taking the following documentary evidence to your interview:

1. Primary residence;

2. Employment, (both active and recent employment history);

3. Real estate property ownership (whether a deed, tax bill);

4. Ownership of a motor vehicle (preferably something of substantial value, like a car, sport utility vehicle, van, or truck, but a scooter is acceptable for Asians);

5. School enrollment (if you're a student);

6. Close relatives residing in your home country (such as a spouse and/or children who are not traveling with you);

7. Other social and cultural ties to your home country, e.g. community groups in which you are actively involved;

8. A roundtrip airline ticket with a reasonable return date, with a short trip being favored over a long trip;

9. Reason for the visit to the United States, (e.g. vacation-related documents, information on the medical treatment being obtained in the United States, etc.);

10. Your planned U.S. itinerary, (including hotel stays, car rental, etc.); and

11. Your ability to finance your trip, even if through a benefactor.

12. A "pocket letter" from a U.S. immigration lawyer, which is normally short and sets forth a cogent set of reasons why you should be granted the U.S. visa for which you're applying.

How much finances are enough? Lawyers calculate that figure using the Federal Poverty Guidelines. In 2023, 125% of Federal Poverty Level (FPL) for one person is $350.48 USD per week, and is therefore the absolute minimum amount of funds that you should show being available to you.

I would recommend that you at least triple that figure, especially if you'll be staying at a hotel, which works out to $1,051.44 USD per week, . After all, you're not visiting the U.S. to live by barely surpassing the federally recognized poverty level. However, if you can show that you have access to $9,112.50 USD, which would keep you at 125% of the FPL for the six month stay that you'll likely receive by default on entering the U.S., go ahead and show it to the consular officer.

For each person accompanying you on your trip, you would need to have a minimum additional $123.56 USD per week to meet the 125% FPL figure. Accordingly, if three people are accompanying you, 125% of the FPL for all four of you would be $721.16 USD per week (i.e. $350.48 + $123.56 + $123.56 + $123.56), which when tripled is $2,163.48 USD per week.

If you're nervous about an upcoming U.S. visa application or want to know whether you should apply for a visa, reach out to a U.S. immigration lawyer at your convenience.

Photo by Lisha Riabinina on Unsplash

A view of the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, California, U.S.A.


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