The American Travel Ban
In case you have been living in a cave on the moon for the past few months, you will be aware that the incumbent President of the United States is attempting to change the entry process for visitors to the country supposedly in the interests of national security. The drama is unceremoniously playing out across the world’s media with seemingly endless twists and turns; you could therefore easily be forgiven for being slightly confused about the correct, current position regarding entry.
Today we will try to answer as clearly and fully as possible the bang up to date position regarding entry into the USA and what you need to do to get your Visa.
The Ban And Who It Effects
The ban introduced 27th January 2017 unilaterally forbade nationals from Syria, Iran, Iraq, Yemen, Libya, Somalia, and Sudan from entering the United States of America. Even applicants who had successfully obtained Visa’s prior to the ban were retrospectively denied access and in some cases were even turned away from the countries borders. The ban was however overturned one week later and at the time of writing has not been re-instated meaning that nationals of these countries are once again free to travel the States.
However, there may be a sting in the tail yet and it is presently too early to say what the knock on effects of the drama are. For example, for all citizens of the affected nations, the entry Visa was never guaranteed and they still had to apply for them. What we may therefore yet come to see is a “ban via the backdoor”, where increasing numbers of applications are just turned down. In order to minimise the risk of this, applicants should leave nothing to chance, err on the side of caution and take all necessary steps to ensure that their visa application is as in order as possible. One of the most effective ways to do this is enlist professional support from a specialist visa firm.
For everybody else, the position on entry has not officially changed but, again the position may now look very different in practice. Visitors from western countries with passport stamps from the banned countries are already reporting been detained at airports and interrogated about their business in the USA and the banned country in question. It may well be that in due course we begin to see even westerners turned down for entry Visa’s because of past travel behaviour or purported links to the banned countries. If in doubt check with your nearest embassy.
With this is mind, I would advise all travellers to the USA to think very carefully about the Visa application process and consider obtaining assistance from a professional Visa service provider such as ESTA. Whilst the Visa application can be completed online by the traveller themselves, it can quickly become very confusing and even the slightest omission or oversight can see it rejected and ruin even the best made travel plans.
Why Use Esta?
There are a number of Visa service providers out there but we here at Poor Explorer recommend ESTA. This is because they have many years and countless thousands of hours of experience in helping travellers obtain their Visa’s. They are on hand to answer all questions, provide guidance on what information to include and guide prospective travellers through every step of the process. Their dedication to customer service is first rate with 10 hours a day online, instant chat and a 100% prompt, response rate to emails. There fee’s are also very competitive.
Despite the controversy, there has still never been a better time to travel to the US of A and with a little help from ESTA, there is no reason why all of us can’ t get our Visa’s!
Happy travels guys.