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applying for a US VISA

Posted By: spl

applying for a US VISA - 09/29/05 07:58 PM

In reviewing how one applies for a US Visa I see there is lots of requirements/documentation needed and it can be quite a process.

I also see that one can have someone from the US sponsor them (which is quite a lot of paperwork/info needed).

Has anyone ever sponsored someone for their US VISA? Does anyone know anyone from Belize who gotten a US Visa and how the process went? Does one have a greater chance of getting approved if they have a sponsor or does it not matter?

Anyone who can assist I greatly appreciate it.
Posted By: BelTex

Re: applying for a US VISA - 09/29/05 09:21 PM

If you don't mind my asking...What is your purpose or interest in relocating?
Posted By: spl

Re: applying for a US VISA - 09/29/05 09:27 PM

relocating, no interest. I am interested information on a non-immigration visitors Visa.

A trip for pleasure for 7-9 days. I am American and interested in having a friend visit the states for a week.
Posted By: klcman

Re: applying for a US VISA - 09/29/05 09:48 PM

Thats a straight tourist visa and requires no sponsor. Sponsors generally are associated with some of the other types of Vuisa, like H1,H1B,H2, H2B

Here's a governmental link on how to obtain a tourist visa:
http://www.unitedstatesvisas.gov/visiting2.html
Posted By: spl

Re: applying for a US VISA - 09/29/05 09:59 PM

thank you, I reviewed that website last night. However have also read a lot of info which contradicts as well as heard from several Belizeans that many get denied.

I hope someone has some advice and further info as to how to ensure/better the chances of getting it.
Posted By: klcman

Re: applying for a US VISA - 09/29/05 10:10 PM

The whole problem with the bureaucracy, and I deal with it extensivley in terms of student visas, is that too much discretion is permitted to the "interviewers" who all too frequently are on power trips.

People are turned down daily for reasons such as " I don't think you can afford this"...that one really P***** me off. If the applicant can provide documented evidence he/she has the funds avaialable, and documented by his/her bank, what the h*** does it matter to the interviewer how the applicants spends his/her hard earned cash?

That is the mind set you are dealing with...broad rules which allow for even broader interpretation.

Oh, and heaven forbid, if you happen to be a young single male - no matter ewhat kind of visa you apply for!
Posted By: SimonB

Re: applying for a US VISA - 09/29/05 11:06 PM

If they have nothing tying them to Belize (land, business, children, etc.) they will have a difficult time. Best to provide a letter with specifics on when they are going, who they will be with... I just went through this process with a close friend and she was able to get one but only for 30 days.

Denials are not uncommon and both of my friends were denied Canadian visas even though we were to stay with my family.
Posted By: SimonB

Re: applying for a US VISA - 09/30/05 01:03 AM

Bring a reference letter from work and originals of all their pay stubs, that should help. A reference from a US warden goes a long way as well.
Posted By: spl

Re: applying for a US VISA - 09/30/05 01:06 AM

this is a shame. So what if I personally invite them, write a letter, and show the funds that I have, write that I am fully responsible for all expenses on the trip.

So if my friend does not have anything tying them to Belize as mentioned above and happens to also be a young, single male I hope it is still possible.
Posted By: seashell

Re: applying for a US VISA - 09/30/05 02:16 AM

Best of luck, spl. My friend had many ties including property ownership, the required cash+, longterm employment history and a written offer of invitation. He was still refused a visa for a two week vacation.
Posted By: spl

Re: applying for a US VISA - 09/30/05 03:00 AM

your friend can re apply according to the US Visa sites. If you don't mind me asking, what was the reason for denial? They are supposed to give you a reason. This makes me sad. I want to give a written invitation and cover the trip, so I don't understand why it could be a problem for my friend. I am sad about it though frown

Would it help to go through the process of sponsoring him? The paperwork for sponsoring someone is quite an ordeal, but if it makes a difference/makes the chances greater perhaps I will.

KLCMAN might be able to advice me on this.
Posted By: klcman

Re: applying for a US VISA - 09/30/05 03:19 AM

Re-apps rarely get approved.

(SS - not sure how you might approach this in your part of the world, but sometimes, and only rarely, intervention by our US Senator has helped - RARELY.)

SPL - In my experience sponsoring usually will not work in a short term situation like a vacation. Those usually only succeed in cases where the individual is bringing in some talent or skill of benefit to the sponsor and his organization - OR in special cases, relieving the sponsored individual of severe economic or political difficulty. Is this the case? A quick phone call to a lawyer in your area who specializes in Immigration issues might be fruitful - or not.

It's a different world in which we now live. frown
Posted By: Teenah

Re: applying for a US VISA - 09/30/05 03:28 AM

spl,

I ran into the same problem with a friend who was trying to get a visa to come visit us. He has a family in San Pedro and even with that, they felt like he was a flight risk. They denied him and told him to try again later. Everytime they apply, it costs $100 and I think they automatically deny them visas, banking that it will prove to be too costly for them to keep re-applying. I wrote letters of invitation and agreed to accept financial responsibility for him while he visited us, but that didn't seem to help. I have another friend in the processes right now. Needless to say, I won't hold my breath.

I think you're right on the money KLC. The whole process is very subjective and often times depends upon which side of the bed the custom officer wakes up on.

Good luck spl. If you find the magic solution, let me know!

Teenah
Posted By: klcman

Re: applying for a US VISA - 09/30/05 04:34 AM

I had a potential student from (a country that shall be kept nameless) who had the blessing, approval and even full financial support from a quasi-governmental agency get turned down because he was a profiled not-to-return...this despite a gov't job in his home country upon completion, a wife and 3 kids awaiting his return ( oh, and this un-named country is given tons of $$ by our gov't evey year, yet this same gov't denies admission ) mad

It's gotten so bad that I get depressed everytime I initiate the paperwork frown maybe it's time to move to AC full time and chuck it all.
Posted By: spl

Re: applying for a US VISA - 09/30/05 04:39 AM

thanks, good luck to your other friend applying, stay in touch on what happens.

I will be very sad if my friend is denied, when all we want to do is have a vacation for a week in a different country!
Posted By: seashell

Re: applying for a US VISA - 09/30/05 05:06 AM

My friend was denied because they didn't believe he would return home, despite having family and owning property, both on the mainland and on AC. It was very confusing to me and it also made me very angry.

I can travel most anywhere I want with little difficulty but someone from Belize, who has jumped through all the hoops still gets denied?!! Crap.

I don't believe my MP (senator equivalent)would have been any help in this regard. My biggest mistake was taking a "passive" role. Not that I was actually passive, for all the good it did raging against the machine. What I mean by not taking a passive role, is that I should have taken on the role of respresentative. That way the government deals directly with me as the applicant's representative. As it was, I was denied any direct information or input.

I too think it is appalling that the Visa application fees are so high and non-refundable.
Posted By: spl

Re: applying for a US VISA - 09/30/05 05:17 AM

ok, so I should sponsor/ represent my friend then forsure
Posted By: kcbc

Re: applying for a US VISA - 09/30/05 10:09 AM

We have tried the contacting your state senator to see if they would aid in helping get someone a visa to the US for just a visit. No help there and then we had asked if we could post a bond to guarantee that our visitor would return to Belize.
The US has no program like this for people just planning on a short term visit.

I don't know how many letters we have written for people to take to the embassy. Also my husband has gone with people to the embassy (twice, you might as well stay home because you just get to sit on the bench and never get to see anyone.)

One of the family tried to get a visa for a child to go to the states this summer, the Mom went to the embassy and they asked for a letter from the common-in-law husband. She claimed she could not get a letter because she did not have any contact with him. Well a computer check at the Embassy showed that he was in the states on a visitors visa that he has overstayed and so the child was denied.

For a small country Belize has to have a terrible reputation for people not returning to Belize.

We have had friends apply for years and some have eventually gotten their visa's.
Posted By: Wyoming Carla

Re: applying for a US VISA - 09/30/05 02:50 PM

You know you're in a third world country when............. :rolleyes:
Posted By: SimonB

Re: applying for a US VISA - 09/30/05 03:20 PM

Reading below gives a slight hint at why Canada refuses almost all Belizean visa requests. Before the incident it was not that difficult, afterwards there were cases of people being turned back upon arrival even if they had a visa. Having a Belizean passport was enough to be denied, mainly due to the fact that, as noted below, you could buy citizenship. The results of the passport program still linger to this day. It's very unfortunate that honest, hard-working Belizeans such as my friends continue to be denied without valid reason. One was denied because she had insufficient funds, she had $3000 and I was providing all accommodations in Canada. The other was denied as being not well traveled enough even though she had been to the US 12 times, along with Mexico, Guatemala and Honduras numerous times. Basically they just make up reasons to deny.

Excerpted from http://www2.lanka.net/sundayleader/2000/Feb/27/politics.html

"Meanwhile, an Indian national, Iqbal Singh was quietly deported from Canada to Belize on Jan 6. The Canadian authorities had charged him earlier with being an active member of the Babbar Khalsa International (BKI) involved in raising funds for terrorist purposes. The CSIC had alleged then that the B.K.I. was "an internationally active Sikh terrorist organisation committed to the establishment of an independent Sikh homeland and Khalistan." The CSIS also stated that it believes Iqbal Singh would, "While in Canada engage in or instigate the subversion by force of the government of India."

After losing a protracted legal battle, Iqbal Singh opted to leave for Belize quietly having obtained the citizenship of that country first by paying 50,000 US dollars under an investor immigrant programme. Unlike the Algerian, Iqbal Singh was running a profitable trucking business at the time he was arrested and had ample access to funds. As such it was easy for him to purchase’ citizenship in Belize easily.

A controversy however has now erupted in Belize after local television exposed Singh’s terrorist’ background. Belizean officials have charged Canada with not having informed them of Iqbal Singh’s antecedents. The legal conditions governing Belize’s accepting Iqbal Singh do not include any provision for revocation of citizenship if false details were supplied or if full details were not declared at time of application. It remains to be seen as to what turn the controversy would take.

With US pressure on the one hand and hostile public opinion generated by the judicial rulings, all indications are that Canada will crack down hard, even more heavily on perceived terrorists trying to use the country as a safe haven."
Posted By: Diane Campbell

Re: applying for a US VISA - 09/30/05 03:26 PM

Check the thread on Jevon Mahler.
Visas for Belizeans are not easily obtained.
Posted By: seashell

Re: applying for a US VISA - 09/30/05 03:28 PM

Wow. Well now, that explains something that was said to me by a government employee in Immigration. He said that things have been quite a bit tighter since 9/11. And I laughed and said "you are kidding!? Do you really expect that a Belizean will be a terrorist?" Oops, guess they do.
Posted By: Teenah

Re: applying for a US VISA - 09/30/05 03:40 PM

It's not Belize Carla, but US immigration that keeps denying Belizean's visas. American officials on a power trip.
Posted By: klcman

Re: applying for a US VISA - 09/30/05 05:29 PM

The USA is one of, if not THE most difficult nation to enter and is getting more difficult each day.

In the not too distant future even Canadians and Mexicans, our border sisters & brothers will need passports and visas just to come here on vaca! It's true........
Posted By: snowbird6858

Re: applying for a US VISA - 09/30/05 06:08 PM

Or you could just walk across the Mexico/Calf. border.
After you are in don't forget to pick up your free driver lic. & welfare card.
Posted By: SimonB

Re: applying for a US VISA - 09/30/05 06:58 PM

Actually, the US visas were relatively easy to obtain (with exception of having to line up at 5:30 in the morning in the pouring rain in BC) using the exact same documentation that was supplied to the Canadian embassy.

On the flipside to entering the US, US nationals are now having to show passports to many Caribbean countries and on cruise ships where they didn't have to in the past.
Posted By: klcman

Re: applying for a US VISA - 09/30/05 07:01 PM

yup it's relatively easy now.....but just wait.

it's called payback! try going to Brazil
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