A B2 visa interview is basically meant to determine whether the applicant has any intentions to illegally immigrate to the United States or exceed their allowed stay period. The key to cracking this interview is to come prepared for the questions that are likely to be asked and to always answer honestly and confidently.
Here’s a list of the most commonly asked questions during a B2 visa interview, along with the best way to answer them and improve your chances of getting the tourist visa.
Why do you wish to go to USA?
You’re applying for a tourist visa. So, you should simply say that you’ve heard so much about all the sights of America, from the Statue of Liberty to Niagara Falls and the Grand Canyon. And, you wish to see all these places. In case you are planning to meet family or friends there, mention that as well.
Is this your first trip to the US?
Answer this question truthfully. Don’t say that you’ve been to USA before, hoping that it would improve your chances of securing a visa. Lying will do more harm than good because they can verify your responses.
Don’t forget to get insurance.
It is recommended that you get travel insurance when traveling to USA, as medical expense (even for common flu) can run into hundreds of dollars! Here are some of the best insurance for US visitors.
Why did you plan your trip for this particular time?
Simply tell them why this is the ideal time for you to take a vacation, whether it is because you got leave from your job or it is the children’s vacation time. In case, you have some other reason, state that. For instance, you could say that you’ve been saving for this trip for a long time and have finally gathered enough funds for the trip. Don’t be nervous. Just speak the truth.
Will you be meeting someone in the US?
In case you are meeting up with relatives or friends in USA, make sure you know all the basic information about them. For instance, where they live, what they do, how long they’ve been in America, etc. Failing to do so can raise suspicion about your reason for trying to enter the country.
What all places are you planning on visiting?
Simply stating the places that you plan to visit might be sufficient as an answer to this question. But, it is best that you do some basic research about those places. This will help you in case there is a follow up question to this.
How long will you be staying in the country?
The maximum allowed stay under the B2 visa is 6 months. Therefore, your answer cannot be more than that. Study your itinerary carefully and answer accordingly. In case you’re an employee, it would help if you could bring along a letter stating your leave credits.
Can you stay for a shorter duration?
Defend what you have answered in the previous question by showing the interviewer your planned itinerary. Also, in case you’ve booked a tour guide, you can say that you’ll have to adhere with the guide’s schedule, which is why you’ll require the specified duration of stay.
How much do you think your trip will cost you?
Just like many other tourist visa interview questions, this is asked to judge whether you are planning to stay in USA to look for a job. It is highly advisable to create an itinerary for your trip to USA. This will help you estimate the budget you need to allocate for your vacation and you’ll be able to answer this question convincingly.
How do you make a living?
This question is asked to judge how established you are in your native country and whether you’re planning to illegally immigrate to USA in search of greener pastures. Explain your business or job and also mention your side jobs, if any. You’ll need some documents to support your answer and convince the interviewer that you will return home in time and that you won’t look for jobs during your stay in USA. These documents include:
- Certificate of employment
- Business permits
- Proof of salary for 3 months prior to the interview
- Bank statements
Most of the times, the consular officer won’t ask for these proofs. Still, it’s best to be prepared and bring the relevant documents when you go for your B2 visa interview. Those who work online, such as writers and designers, won’t have the IT returns. However, they can print their income transactions on their PayPal account and then compile their various online portfolios.
How much do you earn from your work?
The documents that you’ll present during the online application process will contain your monthly income. So, you must tell the accurate figures in your answer. In case, the interviewer deems your income insufficient for your trip, there will be a follow up question that needs to be answered convincingly.
How do you plan to finance your visit to America?
In case, you have saved for your trip, show the proof of those savings. Or, if someone is sponsoring your visit, get in touch with them. Get all the necessary information and proofs for your sponsor. Find out how they make a living and ask them for the relevant documents, such as job certificate, bank statements, tax details, etc.
Do you have any relatives in USA?
Even if you don’t plan on visiting your relatives, don’t deny the fact that they are there. You must know all the basic details about them, such as their names, their status in the country and where they reside. It would also be helpful if you had some photos of them with you.
Do you have any friends in USA?
Just like the above question, you must know some basic details about your friends in the country, especially if you plan on meeting up with them during your stay. If they’re not very significant to you, you can mention that as well.
Where do your friends and relatives reside?
Don’t just mention names of cities in your answer to this question, be specific. Try to get exact addresses, especially if you’ve mentioned these people in your online application. Review this info before you go for your interview. This will improve your chances of securing the visa.
How long have your relatives and friends been living in the US and what is their current status in the country?
In case your purpose of visiting the country is visiting you relatives and/or friends, it is advisable that you spend some time chatting with them over the phone before the interview. This will go a long way in helping you be confident in front of the interviewer when you are asked questions pertaining to your friends and relatives.
Where do your relatives/friends work and how will you spend your time during their office hours?
Basically, the job of the interviewer is to ascertain whether you are telling the truth or making up stories. So, he is likely to bombard you with all kinds of questions. The questions might seem redundant, but the way a person answers them tells the interviewer everything about their intentions. To answer the second part of the question above, you can say that you would go on short solo trips during these times, since you want to make the most of your visit to the US.
Do you plan to work in the US during your stay?
Answer this question with a strong NO. Don’t say that you’re looking for opportunities or anything of this kind. Also, never try to work in USA, whether full-time or part-time, while you’re in the country on a tourist visa. If you’re caught doing so, you will get deported immediately and will never be able to set foot on US soil again.
Have you booked your plane tickets yet?
Find out possible booking dates before the interview. Tell the interviewer that you’re eyeing these dates for your trip. If possible, have the flight details ready, but don’t make the payment for your tickets until you get the visa approval. You don’t need to show a flight ticket during the interview.
Have you traveled to another country before?
While having visited a few countries before can improve your chances of getting the B2 visa, lying about having done so will be counterproductive. If you haven’t, just tell them that because they can easily validate all the information you provide.
How can you assure us that you will return home on time?
In case you have a letter from your current employer, show them that. If you own a business, explain it to them. Also, add that you don’t wish to ruin your travel records since you plan on seeing more places in the future.
A B2 visa interview can seem intimidating to a person who is applying for the first time, especially if they have heard about stories of visas being denied. However, the key is to be honest and confident, without appearing overconfident or arrogant, and dress appropriately.