While it is easy for Americans to come to Thailand for a holiday, Thais and other nationalities have to undergo a thorough procedure in obtaining a tourist visa that they may be able to enter the US for vacation.

Nature of a Tourist Visa

Obtaining a travel permit to visit the US proves to be very difficult to obtain particularly for ordinary Thai applicants relying on the invitation of their American friends, fiancé, spouse or relatives. The US government’s rigorous immigration procedure may be accounted for their inherent assumption when dealing with non-immigrant visa applications. The officer when evaluating the application immediately assumes that the tourist visa applicant who is seeking admittance to the US is in fact eyeing for a permanent stay in the country.

As such, this assumption needs to be overcome successfully by the applicant in such a way that he/she will be issued the necessary entry permit. However, it’s important to note that the application is evaluated subjectively and its approval or denial is entirely on the discretion of the officer evaluating the application. This is the reason why compared to other entry permit types a tourist visa has a lower success rate. It is also the reason why an application is still denied despite the applicant’s providing all the necessary requirements to substantiate his/her visit to the US.

Preparing for the Application

As the evaluation of the tourist visa application is solely based on the applicant’s capacity to prove that he can support himself financially through out his stay in the US and that he comes back to Thailand after his allowed visit, it’s a must that the applicant has the following qualifications in support of his entry permit application. First would be a decent and a stable job in Thailand.

An employment letter or contract, income tax and pay slips are some ways to substantiate this. A 6-month job stint might not be enough to establish the stability of your employment but it’s definitely better than nothing. A job involving prostitution or working in a bar or night club doesn’t add appeal to your application so it might not be good declaring it. Second, you have to show assets and properties in Thailand. Assets can be in the form of cars, a piece of land, a house among others. Land or House Title deed, Mortgage agreement, Car registration certificate and other documents can be submitted to prove your possession of these assets. Supposing you own a business in Thailand, you would need to show your business registration certificate, income tax, balance sheet among others. A savings account with substantial amount of deposit in it could also serve as one of the evidence to prove your financial capability.

You can ask your bank for your latest 6-month bank statements or you can show your passbooks for this matter. Just a note on the savings account, having a big money in your bank account doesn’t guarantee a successful application though it helps establish your financial status. However, if your sponsor abroad plans depositing an amount of money in your bank account just to show that you have money, make sure that the funds have been deposited discretely not in a lump sum as this will be obvious.

Finally, if you have your family or children in Thailand, then you can mention them as your dependants to support your visa application. Don’t also miss to provide an outline of your itinerary detailing the whereabouts of your trips i.e. accommodation and places to visit. What if you don’t have most of the above qualifications as you rely on the sponsorship of your American relative, boyfriend or friend? This would considerably make your chances even more slimmer. However, you can still proceed with the application. As mentioned above the approval or denial of your application is entirely on the discretion of the officer. For family members visiting their relatives or families in the US their situations are viewed differently.

By Robert Smith

John Smith: John, a former software engineer, shares his insights on software development, programming languages, and coding best practices.