These are 10 Things to Note When Applying For a UK or US visa as a Nigerian

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Nigeria is not the country with the highest US visa refusal rate. Shocking, right? Cuba has an 82% refusal rate (2016) while Nigeria has a 32% refusal rate (2015). So what are the 68% of Nigerian applicants who got visas doing right?

These are 10 things to note when applying for a high-stakes visa as a Nigerian. That would be a visa to the UK, US, etc. The decision to issue a visa is up to the immigration officer but these are first – hand tips to improve your chances.

Make sure you have a legitimate reason to travel

Sounds like a no-brainer but some people stroll into the embassy with fraudulent travel reasons. Make sure you have a school admission, legit tourism plan, family event/visit, conference, etc.

Wanting to go visit The Eye or the Statue of Liberty is a specific reason. You don’t have to have a fancy reason, but you must have a legitimate and specific reason. Don’t go there saying…”I just want to go to America” or “I just want to go to England.”

Make sure you KNOW your travel plans

If you are going for tourism, know your sites. If you are going to school, know your school & major. If you are going for a conference, know what it is about. If you cannot tell the officer about your plans, it will come off as fake.

At this point, let me say that this thread will be focused on the US visa process alone. I just realised that we might need a whole need thread for the UK. So…yes, this is for the US specifically with US anecdotes.

Have your authentic documents and have them all

All your documents can be easily verified by an immigration officer. If s/he wants to, they can call your bank, school, etc. Don’t give them a reason to do so. Make sure your passport info matches your form info.

Never forge documents. Don’t be a special breed and forge documents that the US embassy can verify with a click of the button…SAT scores, I-20 docs, previous travel, etc. Don’t forge documents and make sure your agent is not forging documents for you. Speaking of agents…

You do not need an agent to fill out a US visa application

If you want to use a legitimate agent, that’s fine. Know that everything you’re asked is info you have. Here are the steps: –

a.) Fill out the form online b.) Pay c.) Schedule Interview d.) Prepare docs e.) Attend Interview.

Make sure your form and documents do not have mistakes

Sometimes, a small mistake could look like an intent to deceive. Cross-check your info thoroughly. Write your family name in the right place and your age correctly. Again, don’t forge anything. Old names, detail them.

Be confident

Truth is many people do not get asked for a slew of documents because their immediate application looks legit enough. So have your documents ready but be confident when answering questions. Know your name and don’t let anyone feed you a rehearsed story.

Make sure you establish ties to Nigeria

A job, a company, family that relies on you, etc. The most likely non-fraud reasons for denial are weak ties to home country, no proof that you can fund your trip and incorrect information. Make it clear that you will come back!

Don’t overstay your visa!

Fam, if you would like to return for another visa, make sure you return within the stipulated time granted by your visa. You will most likely (most likely) be given a 2-year visa but you cannot stay for more than months at a stretch. Don’t do it.

Don’t do ANYTHING that will violate the terms of your visa…

Students, don’t work outside campus and for more than the number of hours your visa allows. Visitors, don’t work. Period. Don’t get arrested 🙄. You’ll need to renew your visa so don’t soil your chances.

Conclusion

The US has one of the most straightforward visa application processes among ‘high-stakes’ countries. You deal with the embassy directly, you are told at the point of your interview whether your visa has been approved or denied, and it only takes a few days to deliver it to you.  Enjoy the States. It is perhaps one of the most culturally and geographically diverse places in the world. There’s a new story in every state!

Source: Tweet Thread by Funmi Oyatogun

feature image source; Afritalks Community

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