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How to pass your US Embassy tourist B1/B2 visa interview

I’m pretty sure you’ve heard all the horror stories. Despite bringing land titles, “show money,” proof of vehicle ownership, credit cards, bank statements, letters of financial support from relatives overseas and even wearing tons of jewelry, numerous U.S. visa applicants still got denied. Even well-traveled folks still didn’t get that seemingly elusive U.S. visa. You may have even read or heard testimonies that some American consuls are too strict, don’t listen to your explanations or don’t even bother to check your other credentials and proofs that you can sustain your trip to the USA.

I’m sure that those horror stories are the very reasons why you’re either scared or hesitant to apply for a B1/B2 tourist visa. Okay, let me tell you from the get-go: the entire process is VERY SIMPLE, you only need FOUR items and there aren’t any other secrets.

Just like what the U.S. Embassy Manila said in its official video: WALANG SIKRETO.

us visa

In this blog post, I will share my US Embassy tourist visa interview experience and some bits and pieces about the application process. Hopefully, this can help ease your doubts and worries and that this can also help you get a U.S. B1/B2 tourist visa.

Before anything else, let me point you to the official page where you can find the complete, step-by-step procedure on how to apply for your U.S. visa in the Philippines – http://www.ustraveldocs.com/ph/ This is the ONLY website that I used. Forget agencies that offer “visa assistance.” Don’t waste your money! You can most likely accomplish the tourist visa application steps on your own and in just a matter of hours. (our PWD and senior citizen friends may still need assistance, though).

Also, I would like to point out that the U.S. government granted me a J1 visa before for my 2012 International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP). I also had to undergo an interview at the time but it was more like a formality. Plus that visa already expired; hence, my need to apply for a new visa. This time, since my trip will for leisure purposes, I needed to apply for a US tourist visa specifically the B1/B2 visa.

B1 is for business while B2 is for pleasure/leisure, medical treatment or visiting relatives and friends. Usually, B1 and B2 are combined and issued as one.

The IVLP is the U.S. Department of State’s premiere exchange program for global leaders. You can read more about my llife-changing experience here.

So, okay, like I said, just follow that page for the application procedure. A few reminders, by the way:

1. Check the validity of your passport

2. Keep your valid passport nearby as you accomplish your DS-160 form

3. Best to have your photo professionally taken. When I applied for that J1 visa, I only took a “selfie.” Lucky for me, my brother is a professional photographer so I just requested him to edit the photo according to the Embassy’s requirements. This time around, though, what I did was go to a photo studio inside a mall. They actually had a “US Visa photo package” already. Since you have to upload the digital version of the photo when you accomplish your DS-160, I just paid a little extra for the studio folks to save the digital version in my USB

I went to a Bank of the Philippine Islands (BPI) branch to pay for my US visa fee (US $160 = Php 8,160 that time). Please note that the peso equivalent of the visa fee will depend on the current exchange rate.

Then, I went to this website to set my interview appointment. If you’re a first time user of the website, you need to create an account. The website is very comprehensive, don’t worry. Just key in the required details (e.g. your full name, passport number, bank receipt number etc) and you will be able to set your interview appointment. The website gives you the earliest available date. When I logged in at the time, however, I didn’t like the available date so I decided to wait it out.

The next day, I checked the website again and saw that there were available slots on my preferred date (YAY!). I immediately confirmed my interview date and printed my appointment confirmation. By the way, when you click on the available date (found on the left side of the website), you will be taken to another page where you can find all the other available dates, available time slots and the number of slots per day.

So going back to what I said at the start of this blog entry, you only need 4 items:

1. valid passport (previous and currently issued ones)
2. DS-160 confirmation form
3. appointment confirmation
4. payment confirmation (receipt from the bank)

Note: You might still want to bring supporting documents. There’s no stopping you 🙂 However, I can tell you that I didn’t need them at all.

UPDATE: Please bring extra copies of the photo you used for your DS-160

DAY OF THE INTERVIEW

My interview was set at 11 AM. There was an earlier slot available but I wanted to take my time. When I applied for my J1 visa, my interview was set at early morning (I think it was 8 AM, if I’m not mistaken) and I remember barely getting any sleep the night before.

Anyway, US visa applicants are only required to be at the Embassy 15 minutes before the interview. There is NO need for you to be super early!

Because I wasn’t too sure about Manila traffic anymore (Roxas Boulevard can be a nightmare!), I consulted my Manila-based friends and cousin. They all told me that it may take me a good 2 hours to reach US Embassy Manila from Makati so I left the place I stayed in at around 8:30 AM. Lo and behold, I arrived at 9:10 AM (LOL). So I decided to kill time at a coffee shop roughly 3 blocks away (unfortunately I didn’t know there was one right across the Embassy).

At around 10:10 AM, I decided to leave the coffee shop and just go to the Embassy and wait for the 10:45 AM call time. Under the searing heat of the sun, I walked towards the Embassy. Good thing I wore comfortable clothes and sandals! That’s another tip, by the way. Wear comfortable, decent clothes.

Several minutes later, I arrived at the Embassy. I saw a sign that said that the Embassy was now processing appointments for 11 AM! It was barely 10:20 AM. Hmm. So I went to the tent that served as the “entrance” and the lady told me to go to the next tent and proceed to Line 1. I went to Line 1. Save for a lady who served as a companion for a minor, there wasn’t anyone else in line. The Embassy staff asked for my passport and then she pasted a barcoded sticker on the back of it. I was then told to proceed to the doors.

As soon as you enter the doors, your bags will be checked. A few reminders:

1. You may bring a bag of any size. HOWEVER, you are NOT allowed to bring any kind of electronic and battery-operated devices (mobile phone, digital camera, laptop, music player, portable game consoles such as PSP, thumb drive, mobile tablet, e-readers, CDs and the like). You also cannot bring lighters and any flame-generating device, sharp objects including army-style multi-tool accessories, crayons and markers and any device with an on/off switch. PLEASE take note of this and PLEASE follow the rules. I spotted so many people who got disappointed when the guards asked them to dispose of their USBs, CDs etc.

UPDATE: There are many enterprising Pinoys who offer their “leave your stuff with me” services outside the embassy. So just in case you either mistakenly brought along your phone or any other prohibited items OR you want to still insist to bring prohibited items because you’re stubborn (tsk tsk…), then you might want to avail of the services of those enterprising Pinoys. I DO NOT RECOMMEND THAT, THOUGH. The last time I checked, you can leave your phone with them for Php 200.00!

2. You aren’t allowed to bring food and drinks inside including chewing gums. If you do get hungry or thirsty, there are some stalls in the waiting area.

3. No weapons allowed. Of course.

us embassy manila

* The signs and the first waiting area. First photo by my friend Jane, used with permission. Second photo from the US Embassy blog

IMPORTANT: Applicants who bring such devices will be denied entry and your receipt will be locked, preventing rebooking, for 30 days. So don’t take any chances.

Once you’re in the clear, you will be allowed to proceed to the main building.

Now this is where things got interesting for me. The waiting area was EMPTY so the security guard there told me to go straight to the main building. There was another scanner. I again noticed that the seats were EMPTY so the male usher told me to go to Step 1.

* This is how the waiting area at the main building looks like. This one was taken by my friend Jane at the second floor but the first floor looks like this. See the booths? That’s where the consular officers are. Photo used with permission.

Step 1 is the Pre-Screening Area. A Filipina Embassy staff member manned the booth and asked for my passport. Then I was asked when my birth date was. A few seconds later, she told me to go to the next step (which was like 5 steps away hehe)

Step 2 is the Finger Scanning Area. I was asked to put my left 4 fingers first and then the right 4 fingers. Finally, the 2 thumbs. The Embassy staff member looked at the screen and then told me to proceed to the next step.

NOTE that I was virtually alone at both areas (LOL – I guess the 11 AM appointment time isn’t a favorite of many applicants). I saw some Consuls conducting interviews so I figured I could sit down for a second and catch my breath (remember, I basically went straight from the coffee shop to Step 2 LOL). Unfortunately, the male usher saw me and said that I could proceed to Window 28.

OMG.

At that point, all I could think of was, “WAIT LANG. CAN’T I LOOK AT A MIRROR FIRST?”

But it was now or never. Window 28 was less than 10 steps away.

* Where interviews are conducted. Notice the electronic billboard on the wall? That’s where you’re supposed to monitor your number. Photo used with permission

A friendly looking male Consul sat behind the glass window. I gave him my passport.

AND THEN HORROR OF ALL HORRORS.

“I’m sorry. It’s so hot outside, hardly anyone in line and I just went straight here,” I said.

I know. I’m sure you’ve read other blogs where they said that you should just answer when asked and answer as briefly as possible. It was crazy. I honestly don’t know why I said that. I guess I just wanted to break the ice?

Fortunately, the Consul smiled and agreed. “Yeah, not a lot of people today.”

He took my passport. He didn’t check it yet.

“So, what do you plan to do in the U.S.?,” he asked, while looking at his computer screen.

I told him that I wanted to spend my birthday in New York City and explore the city more. I then told him that I was able to visit in 2012 but only stayed for a few days.

“Why were you there?,” he asked.

I told him that I was sent to the US for the IVLP.

“Ah, IVLP. You liked your visit? Where did you go?,” he asked. He was typing something. Note that he still didn’t bother to check my passport. I was beginning to feel a lump in my throat.

“Yes, of course!,” I answered. I mentioned the states that I visited and told him that my last stop was New York.

“I haven’t been to New York. What’s a good tip you can give me?”

I excitedly told him about taking a free ferry ride from Manhattan to Staten Island so you can see the Statue of Liberty. He was nodding his head and smiling.

“I see that you have a blog,” he said. Then he FINALLY picked my passport up and flipped its pages.

“Yes. Mindanaoan.com,” I said. Then he continued to type.

At that point, I saw him putting my passport inside a small plastic sleeve tucked on the booth divider.

“You’ll receive your visa in a few days,” he said with a smile.

“Wow, thank you very much! I truly appreciate that. Have an awesome day!” I said.

“You’re welcome. Have a great day, too. Don’t get arrested, okay?”

“Yikes, no! The Ambassador will get mad,” I joked.

And, just like that, I was granted a visa.

The interview lasted less than 2 minutes and, if you include all the walking, I’d say the entire process only lasted for 5 minutes! I was really pretty lucky that day.

Like anybody who was granted a US visa, I felt like I was floating.

As I walked away from the booth, the male usher saw me and said in jest, “Ma’am, kilala mo ba yung Consul?” I laughed and said no. I guess he heard how my interview went.

By the way, you can actually listen to the other interviews in neighboring booths. On my left was a couple and their small toddler. I heard the Consul deny the toddler’s visa. On my right, I heard the Consul ask, “How did you meet?” The applicant answered, “Through the Internet.” My guess was that it was a K1 (fiance) visa interview.

Anyway, as I headed towards the exit, a lady walked past me and opened the exit door. As she held the door, she looked at me and asked if I passed. When I said yes, she flashed me a look of sadness. “Ako, hindi eh. Pangalawa na ‘to.” (I didn’t pass. This is my second attempt.)

I felt bad for her but then again, there’s always a next time.

My first instinct was to call my family but since I didn’t have a mobile phone with me, I had to wait until I arrived at my Makati abode. Which reminds me – to not have a phone feels really weird but a little liberating. It’s nice to be “disconnected” from the world even for a while.

Anyway, here are a few notes.

You only need to be at the Embassy 15 minutes before your appointment. Strict enforcement of this rule allows applicants to avoid waiting and lining up unnecessarily outside the Embassy for long periods of time. There is no advantage given to an applicant who arrives hours before the interview appointment.

At Step 1, just in case you’ll be told that your photo doesn’t meet their requirements, you can proceed to a photo booth at the first waiting area. There are also stalls here that sell snacks and drinks. You can’t bring food inside the main building.

At Step 2, just in case the scanner can’t seem to read your fingerprints/biometrics right, you can apply hand sanitizer. There’s a big bottle near the glass window.

Here are my tips on how to pass your US visa interview:

1. Do your research and, even with assistance from family or friends, you should try to accomplish everything yourself. This is especially true when you fill in the DS-160 form. There will be important questions there that you should know your answers by heart.

2. Be confident. Remember, you’re a tourist and America, like any other country in the world, will be happy to welcome tourists. Have this kind of mindset: “I am a tourist and I intend to go back to my country within the allowed period of stay.” If you know that you have no intention of doing illegal things in the USA, there’s nothing to worry about.

3. Review your travel history. Although the Embassy doesn’t explicitly say that your travel history plays a factor on your application, I think that helps. If you’ve been to other countries and you haven’t violated laws or overstayed, then it proves that you are indeed a tourist and are capable of coming back.

4. Answer honestly. Consuls are professionally trained to detect if you’re hiding something so don’t risk it! Remember – what you need to do is CONVINCE the consular officer that you will only be in the USA as a non-immigrant.

5. If you think you’re not comfortable speaking in English, you can request for a Consul who can converse in your preferred dialect. There are American Consuls who can speak perfect Filipino.

6. Dress decently. Wear appropriate clothes and comfortable footwear.

7. Prior to coming to the embassy for your interview, you should check the U.S. Embassy website https://ph.usembassy.gov/visas/nonimmigrant-visas/ to ensure that is the visa section is open, particularly in times of inclement weather or heavy traffic conditions in Metro Manila.

WHAT TO DO NEXT WHEN YOU ARE GRANTED A VISA

In my case, a text message was sent to my phone informing me of the status of the delivery of my passport with US visa. It only took 3 days! Yup, it was that fast. On the day of the supposed delivery, a text message was again sent to me. Since I wasn’t home, my brother received it on my behalf. My passport with U.S. tourist visa was delivered by 2Go courier service. Do note that you should not pay any additional fees as the delivery fee was included in the fee you paid at the bank.

Now, if you haven’t been granted a visa, PLEASE don’t despair. According to the US Embassy website, you will be given instructions on what to do next and you can also reapply at any time. Kindly read the letter that was given at the end of your interview.

Anyway, I received my passport with a 10-year multiple entry visa in it 🙂

how to apply us tourist visa pass interview

Thank you for reading this. Please feel free to share this post with someone who might find this useful. If you have a US visa, please do share your experience in the comments section below. I’d be most happy to hear from you.

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234 Comments

    • Hi Arlene! Salamat sa pagbisita 🙂 Invitation letters are optional, unless stated doon yung official reason why you’re supposed to visit the US. For example, if you need to attend a conference or something, then it would help if you bring the invitation letter. For leisure purposes, hindi kailangan but it won’t hurt if you bring one 🙂

  • Hello there,had my interview today May [email protected] 8:15am,,i have all things and documents i guess for supporting documents pero na denie application ko,i dont know whats the reason honest naman sagot ko,i apply here in Malaysia US Embassy since i am living and working here for a long years,reason ko for us tourist visa it visit my bf. Naka apekto ba na nalagay ko estimated travel or length of stay is 1month? Kasi sa iba lusually they put 2weeks. Please help.thanks?

  • ac

    Hi Irene, pwede ba makadala ng comb, press powder with mirror inside of the bag para lang makasalamin before entering the US Embassy, how about ballpen dapat ba magdala nito?

  • my first travel is in japan, second is in south korea and this coming june I will be going to Australia to tour. I want to apply u.s visa after my Australia trip, kinakabahan lang ako cuz I’m a nursing grad, and they said na most of the nursing grad hindi daw na approved. haist.

    • Chary

      Maam irene tinatanong ako kung ano work ko ang sabi ko private nurse!possible ba na yun ang dahilan na denied ako kasi alam nila na nurse ako at cguro sa isip nila hindi na ito.babalik sa pinas.

  • Joy

    Hello po tanong ko lang po ate ko interview MAY 24 2017 d cla pasado sa interview kasama 2 anak nya pude po ba uli kuha nag interview nla June 2017 any date thank you po

  • Joy

    Hello po pude mag tanong ate ko at 2 anak nya d cla pasado interview noon MAY 24 2017 sa U.S embassy pude ba uli mag kuha sila interview nla June 2017 any date po o mag intay pa ba po sila nag 6 month bago kuha sla uli interview thank you po

  • Ed

    I was reading your blog yesterday for my interview at 11 am the same day. Just answered 3 questions from the consul then got my visa application approved.?

  • Cez

    Thanks sis. laking tulong ng blog mo sa m ga gustong magapply ng us tourist visa. Sana nga lng talga approved din ang visa ng husband ko nyan. kukuha xa this year. Sobrang kabado nq pra sa kanya.

    • Hi sis, salamat sa pagbisita sa aking munting blog 🙂 Kung may tanong ka, please feel free to ask ha. Tutulong ako sa abot nang aking makakaya. Basta dapat confident lang si hubby at sagutin lang ang questions without the unnecessary extra details. Kaya yan! 🙂 Update me sis ha. Good luck sa inyo

      • jean amistoso

        hello miss irene, may interview ako ngayong august 7,2018 d kc ako makatulog sa kakaisip kung ano ang mga requirements na dapat kung dalhin ,first time ko po kaya wala masyadong alam hehe .Tapos na ako fill up ng DS-160 ,tapos narin ako mag bayad then may appointment interview narin.Kaso lang wala ako work dito sa cebu at tsaka wala ako bank account ,ang pagbisita ko sa US ay sponsor lamang sa isang kaibigan ,SA tingin mo kaya miss irene hihingian kaya nila ako ng bank account or else may visa get denied?ano anoo po bang requirements ang hihingiin ko sa sponsor ko na sa tingin mo ay kailangan .i really have no idea , I REALLY NEED YOUR ADVICE THANKS

  • Chris

    Hi Irene!
    Thanks for the tips! It has been helpful. ?
    You posted this when I was applying online and filled up my D160 form. I had hesitation because I don’t have any travel experience. But I still applied. Original schedule is on April 30 but was cancelled due to the ASEAN summit (sayang ang air fare and hotel!). I reschedule it to June 16 and was very nervous before the interview because I saw few people being denied (even those who have travel experience to US). The interview went quick (less than two minutes). I even gave extra details to few of the consulate’s questions. But I answered directly, quickly, consistently, and honestly. No documents were asked, the consulate didn’t even bothered opening my passport as I have no travel experience. The questions are usual, about family, work and income. After the last question “Do you plan to be an immigrant?” which I simply said “no”, he told me that my visa is approved. ?
    Four days later, I picked up my passport at 2go with 10-yr multiple entry tourist visa. I’m so happy that the first country I’m going to visit abroad is the US.

    • Congratulations, Chris! I’m very glad that you found this post helpful. It is my aim to help as many people as possible. Walang sikreto nga sabi ng embassy 🙂 Please do share this post to your friends and let me know what your plans are in the US. I’m here in NYC

    • Franz

      Hello!

      I plan to get a US Visa this Dec but I will used it on March pa sana sa Bday ko. Ok lang kaya mag pa appointment ako ng maaga. Hehe. First international flight ko rin to. Sana ma approved din ako. Inask po ba kayo if my relatives kayo sa states? Ano po questions sa inyo? Ano sinabi ninyo na purpose of travel? My hiningi po ba na docs? Thanks po sa pag sagot. 🙂

      • Mae

        Hi,

        Any suggestion po this my case I have an interview for b1b2 this comming May 29 US visa here in Riyadh US embassy. Almost 5 years na po ako sa company and mag eend ang contract ko by September. Still I applied US visa. 1 month before po ksi nag rerelease ng contract para i sign. I have a copy of my coe from sept 2014 to 2019 I will still renew my contract. Hopefully this will not make me worry. Travel history Ive been to Hongkong and Qatar. I also have bank account at Arab national bank. Hope to hear from you po for your opinion thanks God bless.

  • Toni

    Hello! Ask ko lang gano katagal pinrocess yung payment mo bago ka nakapagschedule ng interview? Sabi kasi sa website 4 hours after payment pwede na magschedule pero hanggang ngayon hindi pa rin valid yung receipt ko, 8am ako nagbayad, 4pm na (BPI online ako nagbayad). Thank you in advance!

  • Antonio Llano

    Thank you for this informative information, I already apply for visa, I already have my confirmation for DS-160, I am hoping and praying to God na sana ma-approved ako. please do pray for me. thanks

  • Hi sis! Just read your blog and planning also to get a visa once i got my passport next week. I just wanna asked what is the best day to pick to have an appointment (like not so many people falling-in-line) and if there’s a line for PWD? Cuz i’ll be travelling my son who has ASD (autism spectrum disorder). Thanks in advance!

      • Hi May! I’m not sure about the SLEC. What I can say is that whatever is placed lang talaga as the list of requirements on the website, yun lang dalhin. You can try to call the Embassy hotlines, though to be sure 🙂 As for the best day to pick – I believe there is a fixed number lang of allowed applicants in a day and on a certain time slot. You can see that when you check for open slots. You can see na there are, halimbawa, only 9 spots left on Tuesday, 10 on a Thursday etc etc. Good luck! 🙂

  • Paul

    Hi irene, ask ko lng may interview kame this friday 7am, kasama ko parents ko senior citizen na cla, and ako im married and im currently employed. Gusto kasi mag visit ng parents ko sa kapatid ko na nasa Us then kaya nila ako sinasama kasi takot sila magbyahe alone kc hirap cla magsalita at umintindi ng english, possible kaya mabigyan kame or sila? And me ito un first time ko lalabas ng bansa. Tnx

    • Hi, Paul! Thank you for reading my post 🙂 If you may notice, may ibang commenters dito na nag-share na even if it was their first time to apply and first time din if ever na makakalabas ng bansa, they still got approved 🙂 Nasa way lang talaga yan ng pagconvince nyo sa consul officer that you will really come back and not overstay.

  • Rica Mae Serrano

    Hi, Mindanaoan Irene ?
    Just want to consult something. I’m planning to set my B2 application next week. I’m still a student, a dependent so I don’t have the funds and such. I have an American boyfriend for 1 year and a half and he’s willing to pay my way there because it’s his idea. We met twice. He’s going to send me the needed documents to prove his capability. Is there any chance I would be granted? What is the best way I should do? Thank you so much in advance :*

    • Hi Rica! 🙂 Best advice I can give you is have solid answers as to why you only have to VISIT and not stay in the US for good. In your case kasi, you’re still a student so you can say that you’re enrolled in this school naman and that you have all the reason to come back since you want to finish your studies. Bring proofs of enrollment 🙂 Good luck!

  • chin-chin

    Hi Ms. Irene… I have been working in Saudi Arabia for 5 years and 3 months. I will apply a US visa scheduled next month. I am so nervous. My parents already have 10-year multiple entry, they just applied last month to visit my brother. I have traveled different countries and even had a Schengen visa. But as I read your blog, some of the comments say that the consul did not even bother to look at their passport. I am worried that maybe I will get denied because I am working here in KSA and may think that I want to stay in US for good. What other proof should I present other than my employee certificate? Thank you.

    • Hi chin-chin thank you for visiting my blog 🙂 Where will you be applying for the visa? Sa Manila ba? Unfortunately, I cannot offer any other advice except to just follow the guidelines on the DS-160. There will be a portion on the application form where you can indicate the other countries you’ve been to 🙂 As for the proof, maybe bring more documents that would indicate that you’re really coming back. Maybe investments you’ve made back home?

  • Matilda

    Hello everyone! I just found this blog site a night before our US visa interview. We were scheduled for 9:00 AM. We arrived 30 mins earlier. My husband already have a visa.He has been traveling to US since he was a kid. The only applicants are Me (housewife) & my 2 daughters, 6 & 3 years old. Anyway, it was drizzling that time and the guard and a lady staff were considerate to us,they let us stay beside them, under the portable tent. Exactly 9:00 AM they called all the applicants for that certain slot. They let my husband accompany us since my 2 daughters are applicants.1 representative for each child. We were able to use the priority access, no lining up in the pre screening all the way to the interview.
    The scenario inside the embassy was very organize, it’s just sad to see that some staff were kinda rude in the way they talk or give examples to those who looks like ignorant inside the embassy. This is just my observation. You can really see all the applicants if they were approved or not. But majority from what I saw, a lot of applicants were successfully got a visa, you can see it from their faces and can also hear how does the interview goes (only for the first 2 window,which are near the waiting area for priority lane).
    I can hear a female consul who sounds like very friendly & a male consul who was very stiff. The female consul approved all applicants from her window. The male consul which happens to be our interviewer, denied some applicants, and he really interviewed all the applicants “thoroughly” Like 10-15 mins. So it’s our turn now, we were assigned to this male consul. I was really nervous. He only asked my husband. He didn’t even ask me & my daughters. He was not also friendly.? the interview goes like this:
    CO: how many days are you staying in the US
    Husband: 2 weeks
    (but I also answered 17 days
    because that was indicated in the application.Im the one who did the DS160. The consul looked at us scratching his eyebrow!? then he asked again, I answered 17 days only)
    CO to husband: How long is your longest stay in the US & when?
    Husband: I think 4 months year 2000 I actually forgot,it’s was a long time.
    CO: (nodding his head!!!?) smiling with sarcasm I guess?
    *This time I was really nervous!*
    CO: What is your job?
    Husband: Senior Admin Assistant.
    CO: What???
    (with confusing voice, like he didn’t understand what my husband said)
    Husband: (repeated the answer)
    CO: how much do you earn?
    Husband: I also have a business
    CO: ok your income from everything?( he didn’t ask what kind of business)
    – I was nervous again! His left hand was on the top of the blue papers!-
    Husband: (stated the income)
    CO: Do you have your children’s birth certifacte?
    Me: Yes sir ( handed the NSO BC)
    – bring your BC if traveling with kids, he really asked BC to all applicants with an infant.Just to be safe-
    CO: What are your plans in the US?
    Husband: Just going around,like universal, disneyland & somewhere else.
    -Suddenly my 6 years old daughter talked, out of nowhere, maybe she’s getting bored, she said ” It’s so relaxing here!” The consul smiled just a little…
    CO: ok just wait for the visa after a week.
    -Whew! I thought he was saying have a great week!We just said, Thank you. –

    Sorry, it’s really long. Just like to share our experience. The interview is really spontaneous.You really need to review your DS 160,all the information. Above all, Prayer is really powerful!?? Can’t wait to make memories with the family!

  • sheryl

    Hi I just want to ask question I have an appointment interview schedule this months for tourist visa cause my fiancee wants me to visit US to meet his family in person he had been here twice already last year the thing is we didn’t apply for the fiancee visa is because our requirements is not yet ready were still waiting for his divorce paper to finalized do you think they will approve my application for tourist visa and I’m sure I will come back here cause were planning to have our wedding here in Philippines..thank you

  • Chy

    Hi ask ko lang is it ok to apply for a us visa even if my husband has no financial document to present.. Im the one working. Hes a manpower agent pero per comm basis only. We were granted 10 yrs back in 2004. But he has his business p that time..

        • Hi Chy, thanks for your reply. I think my best advice is to provide as many proofs of financial capacity as possible. Maybe certifications from your husband’s clients? Or a list of your husband’s clients the past few years. You have to show the consular officer that even though he no longer has his business, he still has the financial capacity and a compelling reason to come back to the Philippines. Yun kasi ang important for a consular officer to see 🙂

  • Mikaela

    Hello!! I’m a SHS student who would be having an interview this August 31.. I’ll be having the interview because my grandma would like me to visit her during Christmas break especially i wanted to meet my step grandpa. Do you think i would get approved? Since my family is based in Philippines and i would soon be returning to my studies after my christmas break?

  • Chacha

    Hi, ask lang ako ng opinion, dating immigrant ang father ko…He was already 85 years old. Di na sya nakabalik ng US dahil 3 times syang noa heart attack during his stay here sa Philippines. Ang mother ko ay dual citizen. Ngayon, since american citizen ang mother ko bumalik sya ng US ngayong AUGUST 2017 lang para humabol lng pension nya… Naiwan si father dito… Ngayon sobra syang nalulungkot…. Gusto ko syang ipa interview sa as TOURIST…ano sa palagay mo Sis…. ma aaprove kaya sya …nag overstay kasi sya dito sa PINAS. Then, sa interview nya magpapa interview din ako para samahan sya .. ESL teacher ako for almost 4 years, may properties naman ako , once nga lang ako nag travel abroad at Hongkong lang……Do you think mabibigyan ng tourist visa father ko..?

  • vIC

    HI Irene i have a question kasi may appointment ako this aug 16 10am , im working as a call center agent i am also fond of travelling, my mom and my dad and my 3 sisters had their visa approved ( magkaiba yung appointment date namin kasi before hndi ako nakapagleave para sa interview so basically late ako, ang reason namin ay family tour ( my family business din kami then yun ung support ko for financial then it is more into family tour lang dun lang tlga umiikot tingn mo maapprove ako haha kinakabahan ako eh

    • Hi, Vic! Maybe you can tell the consul officer na family tour siya. So halimbawang he or she will ask what you will do there, sabihin mo I will be joining my family for a tour on ___ and I will come back on ___ because I’m working. Their visas have already been approved. Para alam ng consul officer yung situwasyon. I always say that you have to be truthful always and they can see that naman sa system nila na approved yung visas ng other family members mo 🙂 Bring copies of your employment and letter of approved period of leave. Just be confident, be honest. Have coffee and/or breakfast before your interview, pray. Good luck!

      • vIC

        Hi, Wala pa kasi kaming itinerary and wala pa akong nafifile na leave kasi gusto nila mom and dad na ma make sure na may visa muna bago mag plan sayang kasi sa pamasahe eh, however ill check kung meron na kasi plan nila xmas break eh, do you think maaapprove kaya

  • Czarina

    Hi, Mag aapply ako ng US visa kasi bibisitahin ko yung bf ko mag celebrate kami ng 7th Anniv. Pero student pa naman ako graduating palang ako. Sa tingin mo ano yung pwedeng advice mabibigay mo po sakin? 🙂

    • Hi Czarina, the rule of thumb is — if you will apply as a tourist, just be a tourist 🙂 You have to come back so you need to convince the consul officer that you will indeed come back and not stay sa US 🙂 Since student ka pa, be ready with copies of your enrollment and maybe a certification stating na you’re up for graduation this March or something 🙂

  • mary

    hi ms.Irene,i had my interview sched on aug.15,2017 and i feel very nervous bcoz this is my 1st time to apply a us tourist visa.my bf want me to visit him in us,because he did not have time to visit me here in the philippines because of his work,we need to meet in person in order for him to be able to apply for a k1 visa.iv been in kuwait b4 but i did not finish my contract.and when i filled up my ds 160 there’s a question like this “have you been travelled in other country?”and i answer no..omg..maybe that woulb be counted for us to be denied.

    • Hi Mary, just explain to the consul officer that you got confused. Tell him/her that you did go to Kuwait before BUT ONLY if the consul officer will ask. Do not offer information that wasn’t asked of you. Also, please know that if you’re going there as a tourist, you just have to be a tourist. Don’t say that you are going there because you will apply for a K1 visa. That will increase your chances of getting denied. Good luck!

  • Joix

    Hi Ms,. Irene. May interview ang mama ko n isa ng senior citizen s US embassy soon. Pde bang may magsama s kanya pra i-assist xa??

  • Sheila

    Hi Irene. Your occupation as a blogger means you can work from anywhere, right? Is it your main source of income? I’m a designer working full time for an SG based company. I work from home so I’m a little worried that it might be a problem. I have sufficient funds to support my trip and I’ll be paying for everything. I’m single, 25 yo. female. Any advice will be appreciated.

    • Hi Sheila, the best advice I can give is to provide the consular officer proof of your strong ties back to the Philippines. Give him or her the most compelling reasons as to why you just need to stay temporarily and will still need to go back. In my case, I have my family, I have existing contracts and business investments in our homeland 🙂

      • Sheila

        Based on what I’ve read online and heard from friends experiences, they don’t ask for supporting documents and that the interview is so quick. So I’m kinda worried I won’t get a chance to prove them that I’m coming back

  • Mikaela

    Hellooo!! It’s me again! I would be having my interview this Aug. 31. Almost two days left. I’m quite excited of answering the imterview questions since I would only be visiting my granma and grandpa and also visit disneyland and universal studios but i’m nervous with the fact that there’s still a chance I would get denied even though there’s nothing wrong. What should I do?

    • Hi Mikaela, you have to take a breath and just relax. The more nervous you look, the scarier the interview will be. If I were you, I’ll go to the embassy early, maybe have breakfast, relax, pray. If you have nothing to hide and if you know naman na you will really come back, there is no reason to be scared 🙂

  • Nina

    Hi. I’m a fresh graduate and my aunt(US citizen) wanted me to visit her at Hawaii as her graduation gift for me para rin mag tour. Hindi pa naman po ako nag aayos ng papers at nagfifill up ng form para sa interview ng US embassy pero nagtry na ako magcheck ng blogs about this, wala din naman po akong plan na magstay don ng matagal, kaso nag aalala po ako kapag tinanong na ako about sa kung ano dahilan ko para bumalik dito sa PH. Halos lahat po kasi ng nababasa ko ay may work na, kaya yun ang dahilan nila na makakabalik pa talaga sila sa PH, but for me, magiging dahilan ko po is my mom, separated sila ng dad ko bata pa lang ako and isang anak lang ako that’s why I need to be with her po. I mean, baka madeny ako kahit na magsabi ako ng totoo. I hope you can give me an advice about this po. Thank you and Godbless!

  • Cath

    Hi Ms. Irene, just want to ask if net pay on your payslip affects the approval of the visa. Kasi mababa lang ang net pay ko (coz of loans) though I’m a permanent government employee for 5 years.. I have personal bank accounts, its my savings actually. I’ll be traveling for an international conference. Do you think my payslip would be an issue? Thanks in advance!

  • Bogart

    Hello. I would like to ask some question. Me and my wife were approved this month (Aug). We have 2 children (5 yrs old & 2 yrs old) We are planning to fly in US on October and get back here after 2 weeks. Question, can we apply our children on November for Christmas vacation trip? Or can we apply now para sabay sabay ang alis namin?

    What are possible questions po?

    Thank you in advance

    • Hi Bogart, congrats on the approval! What do you intend to do during those 2 weeks? A little warning lang. I personally know of someone who went to the US, came back, tapos she applied agad for visas for her children. Na-deny. Our theory is sobrang konti lang ng time na she spent in the US and she might go AWOL na when she has her children with her. Best siguro if you can establish the reasons as to why you intend to go back and for how long lang kayo for your Christmas trip. Good luck!

  • deodi

    Hello po, may i ask if do i need a transit visa kahit hindi mag exit ng US airport like JFK, stay lang sa loob ng airport even if yong next flight is 1 day after to bahamas with valid permit? purpose of travel is an OFW engineer

  • Jerald Tamayo

    hello po mag mag kakaroon kasi kami ng US OJT.. and next year pa magiging sched namin sa embassy.. pero ngaun palang kinakabahan na ako.. any advice po.

  • Maria L.

    Hello. 🙂 thank you so much for this post. I’ve read a lot of blogs too about U.S Visa interview. Any tips for a newbie? I’m 25 yrs old and this will be my 1st interview (tomorrow naaa!) and trip to the U.S. Though I have my old and new passports with me, kaso wala pang laman. I haven’t left the country yet since I got my 1st passport lol. Would that be okay?

  • Edrian Tuliao

    Hi,nag apply po ako ng b1/b2 visa last sept.12 but it was denied,J1 din po ako dati and nag naka travel na din ako sa ibang country,at may strong ties naman ako dito sa pilipinas,bakit kaya ako na denied.salamat.

    • Hi Edrian, what were asked sa yo during the interview? Minsan kasi during the interview may mahahanap na problema ang consular officer. Like maybe you didn’t establish your ties or yung compelling reason bakit uuwi ka din eventually.

  • Jayson vincent aganon

    Im just interview tiday, im just wondering why i denied i have many properties and business here in the philippines. I dont know what is the requirement for tourist visa…

  • JANNINE

    Hi there! I read your blog about tourist visa and I find it very helpful. I’m planning to visit in California 1st quarter next year and my aunt will paid for my visit. I’m a nursing student now and I think that would be a strong ties to convince them that I’ll be back here in ph. My plan is to stay there 2-3weeks. My question is do you think they will allow me to visit my relatives there?

  • Mari

    Hello ms. irene. I am planning to apply for US tourist visa. I already have 2 schengen visas. And Qatar visa. Lahat tour lng and visiting relatives. Do you think they would be enough in a way to convince the consul that i’d never plan to over stay in any countries i have visited and would help me to get the visa approved? Thank you in advance 🙂

  • Franz

    Hello Miss Irene!

    I plan to apply this December pero sa March ko pa gagoamitin as a bday gift for myself, pag ask ako consul ano purpose ng travel ko un lang talaga po saaabhin ko na bday treat ko sa sarili ko. First Intl Flight ko din to. Haha. Meron po ako relatives sa US pero cousin lang ng Dad ko sa Indiana and Ung Mom ko naman cousin lang din sa Anaheim. Pag inask po ba if my family member or relatives ako sa US il mention it pa? Or wag na po. Im not going to visit them kasi di ko naman sila close. I am planning to tour lang sa New York sana for two weeks? Un land din kasi leave credits ko 14days VL sa work. Thanks po in advance!

    • Hi Franz! As far as I remember, only immediate family members in the US ang tatanungin sa DS 160 🙂 But just in case iniba na ang form, just write the details down. Always be honest sa consul officer because they always have a way to find out. During your interview, pag tatanungin ka, dun mo na lang sabihin na hindi mo naman sila balak bisitahin 🙂 And yes, tell the consul officer the real reason why you’re flying to the US. Walang problema sa birthday gift. Yun din ang rason ko 🙂 I told the consul officer na part of the reason why I intend to visit the US is to celebrate my birthday sa NYC 🙂

  • Jane

    Hi po! Ask ko lang po. May plano po kasi ako kumuha ng tourist us visa pero kasi unemployed ako ngayon pero icocover ng father ko ang expenses. Paano po yun? Possible ba magrant ang visa ko kung ganun? Thank you in advance!

  • Chary

    Hi ms.irene good day..omg schedule ko na thia coming nov 9..ask ko lng po hindi ba maapekto ung pgka denied ko dati sa schengen?ng aaplly ko for tourist visa tapos ung sponsor ko bother in law ko okay lng po ba yon?hindi ba complicated?

  • Chary

    Hi ms Irene thank u po..one question nlng po.ok lng ba 100k lng yung show money ko..kasi yung agency kapag ng avail ako ng show money 300k may interest na.5% bali 15k sa kanila.

  • Silver

    Hi Ms. Irene, thanks for the useful article! I currently have a situation.
    I’m planning to apply for a tourist US visa kaso I’m not sure if I’d get approved.
    My family is on the process of petition from our relatives kaso we’re still waiting for the grant, it took us more than 20 years to receive a feedback from the embassy regarding our petition status.

    So my plan is to apply for a US visa to visit my parents. For traveling/leisure lang kumbaga. Kaso should I declare ba na meron kaming pending petition or wait til they ask me that question?

    Thanks Ms. Irene!

  • Diana

    Hi Irene! Thank you so much for the very detailed tips! Just wanna ask, would you know if there’s a specific time as to when you can apply for a visa? Like maybe 3 months before your planned trip or something like that? Thanks! 🙂

  • Chary

    Hi everyone share ko lng po yung experience ko sa tourist visa kahapon.grabe ang strict na nila..ang aga ko doon maam around 4am ng pila na ako at 7:10pumasok na kami ako pa talaga ang na unsa sa line hindi ako kinakabahan kasi alam ko na may strong tie ako.sobrang confident ko talaga at consistent.around 8am ayon na ng start na ng processing.Sa interview na ako ay grabe napunta ako sa babae na buntis moody cya.Tatlo lng ang tinanong niya sa akin first What are you doing in US?sumagot ako ng confident at consistent with smile pa yan.2nd question Are u working?3rd did u travel international before.eh wla akng travel experience sinabi ko No maam ay agad agad na denied ako..
    Maam irene tanong ko saan ako ngkakamali?dahil ba na wla akng trave experience ineligible na application ko?useless lng pala ang mga documents na dinadala ko.only passport lng hinawakan niya…dami na denied maam irene.may citizen nga na denied iniinvite cya ng anak nya na mg visit sa US. Halos sa consulate ko doon cla na dedenied…

    • Lia

      Hi Chary! Possible na dahil wala kang travel history. Don’t worry may next time pa naman. Don’t lose hope! Mag-travel ka muna kahit sa countries na walang visa para ma-establish mo rin na talagang traveler ka lang at walang balak magtrabaho sa US. 🙂

  • Chary

    Maam irene i want to reapply ang sabi doon sa mga fixers sa embassy after 1 month pwd hindi ba 6 months?at saka kung mgtratravel ako sa asian country possible ba na ma aapproved ako???

  • Michael

    Hi,
    I am 24years old vet med student. My sister is a greencard holder then yung mga anak nya naiwan dito (born here Philippines with american passport).

    Yung sister ko kasi gusto nya ng kunin yung mga anak nya. (Well hiwalay sila ng american na asawa nyano way to contact).

    So hindi pwedi yung mother ko at father ko na mag travel because may business sila.

    So ako pinag apply ng tourist visa. Sa tigin nyo ba mataas chances ko kahitna student lang ako at mag assist lang ako ng bata to travel and i don’t have travel experience sa ibang bansa.

    Thank you in advance.

  • leigh

    hi! im going to have my interview this monday, im just quite confuse kasi sabi ng iba na before ako punta sa consul for the interview may booth daw dun kung san mo ipapasa yung documents mo. may nagsasabi din na wala na you just have to wait for the consul to ask the documents

  • Ann

    Hi good am. Ask ko lng, klngan b tlga my itinerary na ippakita at roundtrip ticket? Sayang kc kung d naaprubahan tas nkbili n roundtrip. ..

  • Horsie

    Hi this blog is very helpful thought you might help me as well, I am a freelance Videographer and Drone Pilot. I am in the list to compete international sa Las Vegas Drone Racing. They already sent me certificate to compete. Since its a freelance job. what chances do I stand…

    • Hi! I know of a couple of freelance photographers who also visit LV to compete sa WPPI. I guess it’s the same thing with you. Better if you ask for a letter of invitation from the organizers and prepare documents showing that you have enough money to support yourself during your stay. Good luck!

  • josh

    Hello Ms. Irene ,ask ko lang po during interview kung pwede ba may kasama ung senior citezen during interview na family member .( tourist visa interview)

  • Jessa

    Hi!

    You mentioned that you are not allowed to bring your phone inside the building so you left it at home. If ever I decide to bring it, is there any place (i.e. paid lockers) where I can leave it?

    Thanks!

  • Geraldine G.Examinada

    My pleasure to read your blog…..i loved to read these since it was my first time to apply tourist visa soon.thank you very much it helps me a lot.godbless u always and forever.

  • Jocelyn

    Hello po Ms.Irene .. 2nd attempt ko na to sa pagaapply ng US Visa .. Appointment sched ko is this coming tuesday Nov.28 ..Nafailed ko na kasi yung una .. May chance kaya na makapasa ako ?? I just want to visit my husband ..

    • Hi Jocelyn! Thank you for visiting my humble blog. If nag-change ang situation mo (maybe you traveled to another country after the first attempt, you bought more properties sa Philippines etc), may chance 🙂

  • Kai

    Hello ms irene.. plan po sana nmin ng bf ko kukuha ng u.s tourist visa. Nakapunta na din kmi sa ibang bansa with visa like kore japan at china.. pwedw na sabay kming dalawa iinterview ng consul. Kc lahat ng lugar pinuntahan ko ay kasama sya.. tnx!!

  • AgapeLove

    Hello po! ? It’s a relief to read your blog since wala po akong pwedeng mapagtanungan sa ngayon. First time ko po kasing magtatry to apply for US Visa and so intimidating po talaga. I’ve asked the guards outside the embassy if anong fastest way to get a visa and they told me yung fiancée visa daw. Kaso sa pagkakaalam ko po, mga 3-6 months pa yata ang processing. I’m planning to visit my boyfriend and his parents in the US for a few weeks lang naman kasi I’m a government worker and I need to go back immediately because of work. Ma’am ano po ba yung ma-advise nyo po as to the kind of visa I should be processing? Mas mabilis po ba yung Tourist since visiting palang naman po ako. Your blog is greatly appreciated po, God bless and more power! ??

    • Hi! Thank you for visiting my blog. Are you already engaged? If your boyfriend is willing to sponsor you for a fiancee visa, then that’s the way to go. However, if your intention is just to visit and nothing else, a tourist visa is needed.

  • Jenny

    Hi! Just got my visa today. Is it normal na they put your first name and middle name together as your Given name in the visa? Thank you in advance!

  • Kristine

    Hi! My family and I have our visa interview tomorrow at 8:15am. When I was double checking our documents I noticed that 1 of the MRV bank receipts is missing. I already called the US embassy online customer service who weren’t much help. The CS rep suggested I try the bank where I paid (no luck there) or makiusap na lang daw sa embassy. Any tips? Ikalawang beses na kasi mag-apply nung family member na nawawalan ng receipt; that is to say, he’s already paid for the MRV application fee twice. Ayaw na sana namin umulit. Do the guards/embassy personnel just look at the bank receipt? Do they get any particular info from it?

  • Mc

    Hi po, Just like everyone here I am also planning on applying for visa, I have a sister there with her family na, but i’m really eager to go there because of my boyfriend as well, i’m single with professional job here naman, meron nakong onting ipon to go there, scared lang ako madeny kasi they say na single ladies are prone to be denied, I have a good standing here in PH with my career, should I reveal that im visiting my boyfriend but will stay at my sister’s house (magkalayo sila ng state mga 4hr-drive) or just reveal my sister then wag ko na sabihin na ang purpose is to visit my bf? Btw pinoy si boyfie. I just want to visit him and my sister and pamangkins and tour na rin. Will it be advisable if work related naalng yung purpose ko rin?

    Thank you in advance ?

    • Hi Mc, thank you for visiting my humble blog. All I can say is that you just have to be honest with the consul during your interview. If your intentions are honest and real, the consul will know. Since you’re single and you have a boyfriend in the States, there may be a chance that you get married kasi and that can signal the red flag sa immigration.

  • Beng

    Hi, Miss Irene. 🙂 Papaano po kung yung friend ko lang ang mag iinvite and sponsor sa akin sa US. Married couple sila, both us citizen pero nasa Philippines sila ngayon and they’re thinking if pwede kami sumabay ng sister niya pabalik ng us sa April for a vacation. I’ve never been out of the country and Im a graduating student pero may work na po ako. Nag wowork po ako sa restaurant na yung friend ko din po ang owner. Mag 2 years na po ako dun pero wala po akong ITR and bank account since inventory control specialist lang po ako and soon to be manager palang. sila naman po ang mag sho shoulder ng trip, kailangan ko pa po ba ng mga bank statements and own account? and strong enough na po ba na reason yung work ko para bumalik ng philippines kahit na ang mai ppresent ko lang po is yung COE ko and payslips?

    • Hi Beng, you will need bank statements and a letter of invitation from your sponsor/s. Also may concern ako – if your friend owns the restaurant that you’re working for, bakit wala kang ITR and bank account?

  • Carmi

    Hi Ms Irene,

    What if I wanted to apply for a tourist visa now and In case it gets approve and granted a visa , is it really necessary to travel immediately or you can travel anytime you prefer? Thanks

  • jap

    hello po.. ask ko lang po.. pede po ba magbayad ako ng visa fee pero ngayon sa march ko pa balak mag interview.. im planning to visit US, nurse po ako, single, i have ties here in philippines (land title) pede ko din ba dalhin ung offer letter ko to UK? no history of travelling outside the philippines and at the start of the interview ipapakita ko ba agad ung supporting documents ko or saka ko lang ipapakita pag nagtanong sila? sa totoo lang kasi excited ako na kinakabahan eh haha!

    • Hi Jap, thanks for visiting my blog! I think you’re only given a number of days na you can use the receipt number from BPI eh. Also, why do you need to bring the offer letter to UK? Or was that a typo and US yun? As for the documents, no need to offer them to the consular officer unless he or she asks for them. Please read the end part of my post 🙂

      • Lia

        Hi Jap! Share ko lang experience ng friend kong nurse din. Red flag kasi sa embassy kapag nurse and single dahil iniisip nila gusto mo magwork dun. Twice na siya nadeny kahit nakapagtravel na siya sa Europe, Middle East and Asia. Siguro if may business ka rin dito sa Pilipinas as source of income eh may chance na maapprove ka next time. Madalas kasi di nila hinihingi supporting docs ng properties and bank accounts. Application form tinitignan nilang mabuti. Try ka lang ng try. Laging may next time.

  • Kimberly

    Hi Miss Irene,

    Good day. Good to bump in your blog, this greatly helps alot.
    By the way, I’m planning to get a US tourist visa since my sister wanted me to visit them and to spend my summer vacation there with them and together with my parents as well since they got their immigrant visa approved. Also, I’m currently employed, single and had been to China for a business trip for not so long. My question is that knowing my parents just recently flew going to US (just yesterday to be specific), wouldn’t it create a doubt to the consul why just right after they left I’m now applying for a tourist visa? Appreciate your thoughts.

    Thank you and God bless.

  • Mavi Santos

    Hi Ms. Irene,

    Malaki ba ang chance ko ma-approve kahit Asian countries pa lang napuntahan ko? Plan ko magbakasyon sa Guam sa birthday ko.
    Government employee ako ngayon and 1 year na ako sa agency. Ang memorial lot title and ORCR ng car pwede bang supporting documents na may strong ties ako dito? Both are under my name.

    Thanks!
    Mavi

  • Anj

    Hello po. Me and my parents were planning to get a US tourist visa, I’m still a student here in PH and Im the one who’s taking over my parents business since they reached their seniority. And my sister will send us a notarized invitation letter. Do you think it will help? Or I’ll just say that I will be my parents companion during the trip since they were both senior citizens. Or I just apply on my own? I’m just really nervous that I don’t get the consul’s approval. Maam what do you think is the highest possible way to get a visa? I’ve never been out of the country.

  • Mishel

    Hi Miss Irene,
    I just want to consult or ma enlighten ako sa worries ko since ayoko po masayang yung gastos, time and effort but i’m willing to take the risk din naman. I’m planning to apply a US Tourist Visa within this year. Here’s my questions po:
    1. Ano po mas madali ma approve, ako yung gagastos or yung bf ko? dual citizenship po siya Filipino and US.
    2. Kung ang bf ko ang gagastos, what documents needed on his part? kasama na ba dun yung invitation letter Mam?
    3. If he’s in Phils, he stayed with me more kaysa dun sa bahay nila sa Baguio. Meron sila bahay dun at isa niyang ate and the rest of his siblings nasa America na, pati mother niya kase dun na sila naninirahan eh. Yung father niya sa US namatay pero sa Baguio nakalibing. dami namin domestic travel kase 9 months siya andito for 3 consecutive years pero mag 2 years pa lang kami. We’ll this enough na ma approved yung application ko kung siya ang ilagay namin na mag shoulder ng gastos?
    4. Ako gagastos ng plane fare (round trip) ko pero other expenses like food, travel expenses dun sa US siya na po bahala, dun din kami titira sa Ate niya since nakatira lang siya dun but meron siya condo in florida na pinaparentahan niya.
    5. I don’t have much saving since kase apartment, internet, sky cable, electricity, water. Last Nov.2017 lang na fully paid yung car ko, under my name. Also may motorcycle ako under my name. More or less may 50K savings po ako. Ma grant ba ako kahit ito lang pera ko?
    6. I owned a lot sa province po number under my name, maliit lang po siya. Will it help kung ilagay ko siya sa DS160 form ko?
    7. I’m a Branch manager here in Cebu pero nung June 2017 lang ako nag start. Sa nabasa ko one factor kung gano katagal sa work eh. Hindi ba siya maka apekto sa pag apply ko?
    Been employed for 9 yrs and few months (2009-2017) before ako ng jump to another company.
    8. Hindi pa ako naka apply ng leave sa work para sa plan namin na US Vacation kase hindi ko pa alam ilan ang e grant ng employer ko, gut feel ko max. of 3 weeks lang. Pwde na ba ako mag apply ng Tourist Visa?
    9. May dalawang (2) life insurance din ako binabayaran, considered po ba to na strong ties na need ko talaga bumalik sa Phils.?
    10. Ano po kayang magandang gawin Mam?

    Strong ties ko to be back in the Phils kase andito family ko, may assets ako, may car and motorcycle ako, lalo na andito yung work.
    I travelled SG and Malaysia (2014), Bangkok (2015) and hopefully this year HK with my siblings. Finished two (2) bachelor degree year 2008 and 2012. Credited po kase yung minor subjects ko kase same university lang. And MBA, graduated 2015. Yung 2nd course ko and MBA ko ako na nag support. Na acquired ko yung assets ko kase been living with my parents until mid of 2016. Nag sarili na kase ako kaya meron ako mga monthly dues which I mentioned above. My bf is a retired veteran sa US, early retirement kase allowed sa kanila. Wala din ako balak sa US manirahan kase napag-usapan namin na dito sa pinas manirahan kase ok naman dito, ok naman yung work ko, pupunta lang dun to travel, madalaw family niya. Sa Phils kase anytime pwde mag travel, dami mapupuntahan kase dami Island natin, mura bilihin than US. And honestly hindi ko kaya ang lamig heheheh… Main purpose ko lang talaga makita yung mother niya, matanda na din kase 86 na siya, ma meet yung other siblings niya. Some of his siblings, relatives and friends na meet ko na din kase umuwi sa pinas last year and just this january and may coming pa this february 2018. Ayoko kase na ma feel niya na hindi ako intresado ma meet ang family niya lalo na yung mother niya kase last year gusto niya mag apply na ako, tapos lage niya ako nire-remind na asikasuhin ko na yung papers. Kaya plano namin this year na.

    Overall po ba may chance ako na approved? base dun sa sinabi ko po. Sinabi ko po lahat kase para alam niyo din po pano ako sagutin dun sa worries ko, kung pano niyo po ako matulungan, para ma enlighten din po ako. Takot kase ako ma deny kase sayang po yung gastos eh.
    Please po Mam, help po. Your response is much appreciated po. Sorry po ang haba ng sinulat ko 🙂

  • nicille flores

    Hi Maam can you give me some piece of advices im planning to have my OJT at US that is one semester 6months (1000hours). THankyou Maam.

  • Sann

    Yeyyy my husband and I were approved today!
    But what I want to share was how the couple ahead of us got their visas too…

    The usher called us and led us to stand at window 28 and wait for our turn. The couple was still being interviewed and since we were just a few steps behind, we overheard everything. The husband did all the answering and the wife would simply just nod or shake her head.

    Consul: Where are you planning to stay in the US?
    Husband: next month.

    C: No… saan? Saan?
    H: Las Vegas
    C: Who will you visit there?
    H: My child.
    C: Your son?
    H: No. My child.
    Ay! daughter.…daughter pala
    C: How many children do you have?
    H: 12
    C: O my God … that’s a lot!
    C: How many are in the US?
    H: One only. My daughter.
    C: And the 11? All are staying with you?
    H: Yes! Yes
    C: Did your daughter fill a petition for you?
    H: No.
    C: Are you working?
    H: No
    C: Both of you are not working?
    H: Yes… No! No… I work I work
    C: So, What’s you work?
    H: Barangay tanod…
    C: And your wife?
    H: Housewife only
    C: So, How did your daughter get to US?
    H: My daughter is pregnant and will …… ah ah give birth on May and ah ah ah
    C: Wait! wait stop (sigh) typing
    C: Ok your visa is approved wait for your passport after 3 to 5 days…

    WOW

  • Anne

    Hi miss Irene!

    I have relatives in the US, and balak ko sana umattend graduation ng pinsan ko this May, yung dad niya sa US Navy. I also have another uncle and an aunt in the US iba ibang state lang sila with their families.. andun din nanay ko, kaya lang according to my grandma who’s a dual citizen and nakasama yung nanay ko dun, di niya daw ako nadeclare as daughter niya. Madedeny ba ako pag ganun? Thanks so much for your answer.

  • ReAnne

    Hi Miss Irene 😉

    I am planning to visit my bf in December sa US, apat na beses na naka visit yung bf ko dito sa pinas, pang limang visit niya sa sa April. My Bf is a college student pero may monthly allowance siya from US Army. Pwede ba kami mag apply for K1 visa kahit hindi pa naman kami engage or tourist visa? 2 weeks lang po yung plano na mag stay ako sa US.

  • mightyosef

    Hi!

    I’ll be applying for a US visa. Pwede po ba magpaassess ng profile if may chance po ako? Here’s my profile.

    Male, 35 y/o, single with one kid
    Team Supervisor for 4 yrs and 2 months in a BPO company, all in all I’ve been a supervisor for 8 years in a BPO industry
    Salary is 50,000 ++
    Savings is P160,000
    Travels: Japan, Singapore, Maldives, China, Taiwan, Malaysia, Vietnam, Cambodia, HK, all for tourism
    Has relatives in the US
    Purpose of travel: tourism, will celebrate thanksgiving in the US
    Will travel along with some friends/officemates

    • Nova Collier

      Yes you have a good chance of getting approved. My family’s first trip abroad is here in the US! Their passports’ first stamp is a US visa. Best wishes

  • Nova Collier

    I applied for a K-1 visa last year and was granted. Now, i dont want to just get married in a foreign land without my family. So i filed a tourist application visa for my mama, papa and younger sister. The chances of them getting a visa was really low tho coz they have never been abroad! And just like you i didnt use any visa assistance agency. The day i left for the US is also the day for them to go to Manila for their interview. We live in Cebu. All throughout my trip i was praying that theyll be approved or else ill be getting married without them. That was really nerve-wracking. Once i got here in Virginia, i opened my messenger and saw a message from my sister” see you in two weeks, visa approved! I was not able to contain my happiness. My parents were able to walk with me in the aisle. My sister was my maid of honor(her dress was ready before we know the result). They spent 3 weeks here in the US and was able to go to DC, NYC and Connecticut. Back to their interview, they said it went sooo fast. They were just asked why they are going in the Us, when my wedding is and where in the US they will stay. And to top their embassy experience, they were in the same line with the very gwapo Ian Veneracion!! So sad cameras are not allowed. Just want to share my story here too. Hope this will help lessen the nervousness of our fellow Filipino who will apply soon.
    Nova?

  • Tisha

    Hi,
    I would like to ask if I apply for j1 visa, is medical exam required? And my passport will expire on May 2020.what if I will be approved for J1 visa, do I have to renew my passport now since j1 visa has the validity for 3 years..

  • Migs

    My question is if i do not have any history of travel on my passport; How can i be assured that i won’t be denied a tourist visa when i apply for one? How do i defend myself if the consul asks me if i ever been out of this country? Please help. Thanks

  • Ana

    Hi I just want to ask if there’s a big possibility to denied me coz I went as j1 visa and stayed for a year last year and I came back last week of November 2017 and now I’m planning to apply as tourist visa. I’m so scared and I don’t have work but I’m going to school to take a masteral. Can you give some advise to what I’m gonna do. Thank you!

  • Tann

    Hi. possible ba maaprubahan kaya kmi ng 3 brothers ko at father ko.
    Retired na father ko 70 yrs old… sya ang mag sponsor ng trip namin to u.s.
    May sched na kmi interview sa april.
    At ngayun lang kasi sya nagka pera ng malaki. I mean wala sya bank cert or statements etc…
    nakabenta sya ng property namin.
    Plan nya tlga for leisure lang gusto nya isama kmi.
    Plus may invitattion letter din kmi from our family friend based sa u.s
    Thanks God Bless

  • jenny

    Hi po, kakagraduate ko lang po wala pang work, at first time mag travel kung sakali, may bf po ako na foreigner at sya po ang mag ssponsor saken, ano po ang dapat ko isagot sa interview if ever na tanungin ako, okay po kaya na isagot ko for purpose to travel is to visit my bf? Tska po kung sakali, ano po ang mga pwedeng ipadalang documents para proof po na iinvite ako at ssponsoran? Salamat po

  • Gli Jean

    Hi po 🙂 Just want to ask, kase po may invitation ako going New york this coming June 2018 To attend a Youth conference in a Church gathering. Possible po ba na maaprove ako kahit wala pa po akong bansa na nappuntahan? Salamat po 🙂

  • Isabela

    Hi mindanaoan, me and my husband together with 2 kids planning to have interview this may 2018. Im a nurse, my husband is a navy officer here in ph. My kids are still studying. 10 and 4yrs old. I was an ex ofw in uae i wasnt able to finish my contract because my husband insisted to jusy stay here with them. Reaso to travel to u.s
    To celebrate my bday, advance wedding anniversary celebration, go to disneyland with kids and visit my sis in law in arizona

  • jec

    Hello maam. I was invited to visit my sponsor in college sa US and his family. I have my business and plan on taking my masters, balak ko sana mag visit don this coming semester break. however yung laman ng bank statements ko is galing sa kanya lahat. wala akong show money pero balak ko lng tlga mag visit don to at least say thank you sa lahat ng nagawa nila sakin. ma approve kaya ako?

    • Hi Jec, thanks for visiting my humble blog. Lahat naman may chance 🙂 Just ask your sponsor for a letter that you can show sa consul officer stating na they’re hosting you and that they’re paying for the expenses etc. Good luck!

  • Juicy

    Hi po…May scheduled Appointment na ako for B1/B2 visa interview. It will be on the last week of April. I am so nervous po…It would be my first time to go abroad. Gusto ko lang po kasi Ifulfill iyong mga sinulat ko sa Life Bucket List ko when i was in high school. Ive been preparing for this travel since 2015. Iyong mga inihanda ko lang na mga supporting documents ay iyong Authority to travel from DILG (since government employee po ako), leave of absence, employment certificate, real properties docx (kaso naka deed of sale pa po), pay slips, ITR and my itinerary for my Malaysia travel on October (Iyong plan ko po kasi to visit USA is August since it is only in this month that i could get an approval for a two-week leave)

    Nakahanda na rin po iyong list ng mga places na gusto kong i-visit with the corresponding budget (food, accomodation and transportation). Iyong nilagay ko po sa DS-160 na place na pupuntahan ko when i get there was the first hotel i am going to check-in. Ano po kaya percentage na makakakuha ako ng visa kahit na wala naman akong ipinakita na pera sa bangko? hindi po kasi ako nag-iinvest sa bangko. Ano pa po kaya dapat kong dalhin?

    I will really appreciate your repsonse. Thanks po.

  • Kaye Cruz

    Hi sis,

    Same tayo ng situation, I was also a J1 visa holder and it expired Jan 2017. My cousin is coming home from US Dec 2018 and we’re planning na sumama ko sa kanya pabalik ng US and we’ll travel together. However, my civil status changed as I got married Jul 2017. Will that affect my visa application? Also, if I would bring bank docs, may amount bang tingin mong enough to show I can support my stay there financially?

    • Hi Kaye, I don’t think your status change will affect your application naman because the embassy considers each application separately. In this case, B1/B2 na rin kasi yung ina-applyan mo. Regarding the bank account, I’m not sure since I didn’t bring any documents outside of the 4 that the embassy required me to bring 🙂

  • Mitch

    Hi i read your blog and makes me decide to share my plan to visit USA again, I’ve been in USA last year and stay there for 2 months, with my K1 visa with my daughter we not overstay, unfotunately me and my fiance decide not to get married and decide to breakup coz we not have a good relationship for 2months together, its a long story. And now i decide to apply for a tourist B2 visa since my sister is in USA and married to american guy and she will get birth to their first baby and my sister is always alone coz my brother in law is busy at work, they will be the one to pay for my trip, they invite me to visit them to be with my sister for 1 month, i have already my scheduled interview this coming 1st week of may, but this time only me is planning to visit USA again since my daughter will go to school this coming june, my strong ties to come back home is my daughter i am a single mom, and i have my transportation business, and have a house, but some of my vehicle and the house is deed of sale. I’ve been to singapore last january too for vacation. Do i need a supporting documment from my sister and brother in law? Or i need an invitation letter form them. Looking forward for your response, honestly i feel nervous even though its not my first time to face the consul ? wish me luck.God Bless us everyone.

  • Kamylle

    Hi! Okay lang ba na yung iprepresent na invitation letter ay naka handwritten lang yung name nung ininvite ? kasi ininvite si Papa nung friend nyang nandun na sa US sa isang gathering nang mga pinoy na tga dito sa amin. every year yung gathering. government employee sya – Fire Marshal. kaso hindi pa nak travel si papa sa ibang countries. ewan ko sa kanya. may tip po ba kayong maiibigay on how to pass the US tourist visa? 🙂

  • Mark

    Hi ma’am Irene

    Gusto ko po mag tanong ok lang Lang sabihin sa embassy may pending petition ako ? Balak ko Kasi mag tourist nalang muna Kasi matagal pa Ang petition ko po Kasi over 21 na ako. Thanks

    • Hi Mark, I can’t say for sure if it’s okay but what I can say is that the embassy has ways to know if you hid certain information. So my rule of thumb is, be as honest as possible na lang. If you have a pending petition but you want to visit muna, make sure that you really prove to the consular officer na uuwi ka. Yun kasi risk pag alam nilang you’re under petition tapos of course there’s a risk na hindi ka na uuwi especially if you have no compelling ties. Hope this helps!

  • AJ

    Hi Irene, question. My father had an invitation from his brother. He is already 72yrs old and he asked me to accompany him. What documents should I need to provide? I am currently employed but no assets.

    • Hi AJ! Thank you for your message and for visiting my humble blog 🙂 Same documents as stated here lang naman. Just say during your interview na you will be your father’s chaperone 🙂 Good luck!

  • Terry

    Lucky for you Miss Irene, walang masyadong tao during your interview. Yung sa amin, naku ang haba ng pila. I was with my parents. When I noticed that my father (who’s turning 79 years old a few months after the interview) can’t seem to handle anymore as his feet were already aching, I requested the usher to include us in the priority lane. Luckily, he agreed so nauna kami sa iba. You know what, the consul was so handsome I was mesmerized I kept on looking at him. Eh maintain eye contact daw kasi sa consul kaya yun ang ginawa ko hahaha (palusot! ?) The interview lasted for just less than 5 minutes. Sa pila lang kami tumagal. We were not asked to present any documents at all (marami kaming dala just in case). And you’re right, dapat honest ka at walang tinatago para ma grant yung application mo.

  • Chelma

    Hi Irene,

    Thank you for your blog 🙂 gave me a bit of peace and hope hehe… I just had my interview this morning. Only took me less than 5 mins sa window with only 4 questions. The consul did not even bother to check any of the documents that I have…not even my old passports. I wonder if they have a record of our travel history? Anyways, he took my passport and said that it will be ready and delivered within a week. I would just like to know what are my chances na multiple yung ibibigay (aside from praying hard hehe)? It is my first time to apply for US Visa. My passport is very fresh (kaka-renew lang). I only have the most recently issued Japan Visa there which I don’t think he bothered to check. Passport has no other stamps yet. I’m trying to retrieve my info submitted in my DS-160 to see sana what info I have there that would merit for a multiple visa just to be sure… guess I have to wait till my passport is delivered next week.. nakaka excite na nakaka-kaba. Waaah

    • Chelma

      By the way, the purpose of my trip is attending a global council for the Non-Profit organization that I work with which is headquartered in Colorado where I stated to be where I am going, and will be there for only 1 week… sana talaga multiple ibigay waaha

    • Congratulations! And thank you so much for sharing your experience. I’m sure your testimony will help others as well. I haven’t heard of a single entry visa issuance as of late. Let’s hope and pray lang talaga that you get a multiple entry one. Update me ha 🙂 Congrats uli and have fun in Colorado!

  • Migs

    Hi Irene. Can you help me? I just would like to know what my chances are in getting approved of a u.s. b1/b2 tourist visa if i do not have any history of travel on my passport? Your response is greatly appreciated. Thanks

    • Hi Migs! Travel history isn’t necessary, as far as I know. It’s your ability to come home after your stay in the U.S. You have to prove to the consul officer that your stay is only temporary 🙂 Hope this helps!

      • Migs

        Thank you so much for the piece of advice. I am in the process of accomplishing the DS-160 form. I may not have a formal invitation such as email to visit my aunt in new jersey but still she keeps convincing me to come over through our phone conversations via facebook messenger. She is already old and an old school type of person. All i have is her phone number and legal address in new jersey for the form. My questions are as follows : Will this be enough because i do not want to lie on my application by creating medical certificates which in fact my aunt is not even really ill . Should i ask her to create an invitation letter? or should i gamble not asking for any supporting document to justify my reason for applying a tourist visa in the first place and appear in the interview without it? Hoping for your favorable reply. Thanks

  • GRETA

    Hi! I have plan to spend my vacation in US but this will be my first time to travel abroad.
    i’m researching for any tips pero sa mga nababasa ko, ang advise dapat nakapagtravel na rin ako in other country.
    Do I have a chance na maapproved ang tourist visa ko?

    • It’s not a requirement to travel to another country before you apply for a US visa. What the consul officer will be interested to know is yung capacity mo to come home. You must prove na you have strong ties in the Philippines and that those will compel you to come back. Hope this helps

  • Angel

    Is it possible for me to go the US? I am married and just a housewife, my husband has a very good stable job but my parents and brother are Immigrants there. But I have no plan to stay with them because I am definitely wanna go back here in Philippines to my husband. I just want to visit my parents, brother and relatives and of course explore and sightsee.

  • Aleissabeth Domingo

    Hi po miss Irene. Nagapply po ako ng US tourist Visa, at nabasa ko po itong blog nyo, nagre-research po kasi ako paano mga gagawin sa interview. Isa po akong student at first time ko lang po mag visit sa US at may relatives naman po ako doon. Ano po kaya sa palagay nyo ang mga dapat ko pong gawin sa interview. Student po ako, makakatulong po ba yun para di po ako mapagisipan na hindi uuwi. Kasi my purpose po is to visit and celebrate my birthday lang po doon. Pero uuwi din po ako kasi nagaaral po ako. And need po ba ng letter from my school na pinapayagan ako umalis kahit nagaaral pa ako pero babalik din po kaagad? Malaking tulong po sa akin kung masasagot niyo po. Salamat! 🙂

    • Hi! How long do you plan to stay? Kasi if you only want to celebrate your birthday, then siguro a maximum lang of 2 weeks yun. You also need to provide proofs na enrolled ka at pinapayagan ka ng school to be away for 2 weeks at least.

  • Ysa

    Hi mam Irene. Thank you for this very informative post. Mam may tanong lang po ako. Mag a-apply po sana ako ng DS-160 Tourist Visa para ma meet at makilala ko bf ko sa Pennsylvania. Siya po bahala sa gagastosin ko para maka punta sa US kasi unemployed naman po ako. Ang tanong pwede po ba yun na e state lang dun na sya mag sponsor sakin? Anu po ba mga tips or mas mabuti gawin? Yung mag travel ako na sabihin ko lang na para dun ko e celebrate yung birthday ko or dahil sa gusto ko ma meet family ng bf ko? Please help me po. Thanks ??

    • Hi Ysa, yung pagpunta mo to celebrate your birthday will be a better option kasi if you say to meet the family of your boyfriend, parang fiance ka na. Eh iba yung visa for that. K1 visa yun and may separate process.

  • Nix

    Hi mam irene, my appointment for interview is on next tuesday (july 24), I just wanna ask, do I need to ask my friend to send me a invitation letter since I put him as person to visit and Im going to stay in their house once I get there? Thanks!

  • May

    Hi
    ask ko lng im single but i have an 11 month old daughter. gusto ko itry to apply for a visa. i only have a homebased job. i have japan multiple entry visa, been there twice, and have been to hongkong and vietnam. malaki ba chance na maconvince sila na i will come back cince kasama ko nmn daughter ko and i have travelled although homebased ang source ng income ko?

  • rapaeng

    Good afternoon, Irene!

    First of all, I just want to thank you for sharing your experience with the whole process of applying for US Visa. It helped me to visualized the step by step process of the application especially the dreaded interview with the Consul.

    Allow me to share with you and your readers my experience as well:

    On July 23, 2018, Monday, I paid the Visa Fee at BPI Visayas Avenue. I did not know that you need to state in the receipt your Passport Number so I did not bother to bring my passport with me when I paid the Visa Fee. So, I went back home to get my passport just to state in the receipt the Passport Number.

    After paying the Visa Fee, I went to a studio at SM North to have my photo taken. It pays to follow the guidelines of how your photo should be taken so I suggest that have your photo be taken by a professional photographer. Just tell that you will use it for US Visa.

    On July 24, 2018, Tuesday. I filled up the DS-160 Form. It took me more than 4 hours just to fill up the whole application online. I suggest that you have your CV/PDS with you together with your Passport while filling up the DS-160 Form.

    After I completed the DS-160 Form, I scheduled my interview on August 2, 2018 at 10:30AM.

    While waiting for the day of my interview, I requested a Certificate of Employment from the Personnel Division of our Department (I am a government employee). I also visited my bank and requested for a Bank Certification just in case the Consul will ask for it. I also spent a lot of time ‘memorizing’ everything what I stated in the DS-160 Form. But most importantly, I prayed fervently to the Almighty God that He will grant me with US Visa.

    I was not able to sleep good on the eve of my interview, and I was very nervous while I am on my way to the US Embassy for so many reasons.

    I know that electronic devices are not allowed on the Embassy grounds so I went to a coffee shop right across the US Embassy and I asked one of their staff if I could deposit my phone at the counter and she was kind enough to obliged to my request.

    At around 10AM, I went to the US Embassy as they are now processing the applications of applicants who are scheduled with 10:30AM.

    Here are the relatively “New Steps” of the Interview:

    Outside the Embassy Grounds:

    1. Present your Appointment Confirmation before the US Embassy Staff to show that you are scheduled for an interview on that day.

    2. After that, present your Passport with another US Embassy Staff right after queueing in Line 1 for Non-immigrant Visa Applicants. The US Embassy Staff will put a barcode number at the back of your Passport.

    3. Then, you are now ready to enter the US Embassy.

    Inside the US Embassy:

    Step 1

    A staff of the US Embassy will assist you to go to one of Windows 6-10. Present your Passport to one of the available windows. The staff therein will ask you some questions like your birthday and the place where you want to visit in the US. The staff will also ask you when was the photo (that you uploaded in the DS 160 Form) take. N.B. The photo must be taken with 6 months from the time it was uploaded in your application form.

    I noticed that some of the applicants were asked to present a photo that fits their guidelines. If they cannot present a photo, there is a studio on the Embassy grounds which may help them with providing a photo that fits their guidelines. Sobrang hassle iyon!

    Step 2

    Present your Passport to one of the Windows in 11-15. The staff will scan the Passport and she will also ask you to have your fingers scanned. Just follow her instructions.

    Step 3

    One of the staff will assist you to go in line together with other applicants for the interview proper. I suggest that you should compose your mind and ready yourself with whatever the Consul Officer will ask.

    This is my Personal Experience with the dreaded interview:

    While waiting for my turn to be interviewed, I prayed to God that I would love to be interviewed by the Consul Officer who is at Window 23. Then, the staff instructed me to go to Window 23. Aside from the fact that 23 is my favorite number, I noticed that the Consul Officer seemed to be asking a lot of questions before he will make a decision kasi I would love to present the totality of my case before the Consul Officer will decide on my application.

    While queueing in front of Window 23, I was so nervous that I noticed that I was palpitating. I prayed to God to calm me. And I did. Two of the applicants before me was approved by the Consul Officer and I got nervous because he might deny my application.

    Interview Proper:

    Me: Good morning, Sir!
    Consul Officer: Good morning as well!

    First question: Have you traveled abroad?
    My answer: I have not traveled abroad yet, Sir.

    Second question: What is the purpose of your visit?
    My answer: For tourism only, Sir.

    Third question: What is your profession?
    My answer: I told him that I am ______ for the Department of ________ for five years already. I told him that started working for the said Department since ____________ (Specific Date).

    Fourth Question: How are your related to Ms. ______________ ( Contact Person in the US).
    My Answer: It is Mr. ___________, Sir. (I corrected the gender of my contact person in the US). He smiled and he re-phrased his question. I told him that he is just a friend.

    Fifth Question: How long is he staying in the US already?
    My answer: Since 19___.

    Sixth question: When was the last time you saw him?
    My answer: Last April ___ when he visited the Philippines.

    Seventh Question: So, how are you related to him?
    My answer: He is my friend, Sir.

    Consul Officer: Your visa is approved. (I totally forgot what he said after telling me the magic word)! hehehe
    He told me: Have a great day! Then I replied, “Have a blessed day as well, Sir! 🙂

    My realizations during the whole application process.

    1. Pray fervently and solely trust in the grace and mercy of God from the time you paid for the Visa Fee until the Consul Officer says that your Visa Application is Approved.

    2. Review everything what you stated in the DS-160 Form like you are preparing for an exam.

    3. Just be honest and truthful.

    4. Answer the questions of the Consul Officer briefly and concisely.

    5. Never forget to smile and be natural. It is okay to be nervous but do not let the pressure that you feel control your composure.

    6. Be courteous with the Consul Officer. Always.

    7. Thank God for everything. And share His goodness especially after your Visa Application is Approved!

    I hope that my experience will help applicants in processing their application for a US Visa.

    May God bless all of you!

  • ann

    Thank you for your helpful blog, Ma’am! I am a nurse and there’s a fear in me applying… Have you heard of any nurses who applied for a tourist visa and got granted? And can you help me for possible answers on how am I going to prove that I will definitely come back in the PH? I will be staying in Chicago for 2 weeks max only because I just wanted to visit my mother and also I wanted to explore some of the tourists spots in Chicago. Thank you for your help!

    • Hi Ann, I have a lot of nurse friends who got their tourist visas 🙂 I suggest that if you’re employed, bring a certificate of employment with you just to prove that you have ties in the Philippines. Do your other family members live in Chicago or meron pa sa Pilipinas?

      • ann

        Thank you for the reply! I got my COE last March… is it okay to bring it with me to the embassy even it is not dated on the current month? My mom is living in Chicago for almost 7 years now and I am living with my sister here in PH.

  • nomet

    hi miss irene, just wanna ask kung malaki ba chance ko na magrant ng visa. im a single mom of two kids, unemployed but i do have travel records outside the country, nagwork po ako sa taiwan. my magsponsor naman po saken since i dont think din na kaya ng savings ko ang gastos pra dun. i dont have any properties po. birthday gift po kasi saken ang trip na to kaya gusto kong ipush ang once in a lifetime experience na to. how can i tell them na babalik ako para sa mga anak ko. your response will be a great help.. thank you.

  • Gadiel

    Hi Ms. Irene! This is a helpful post. I have no immediate plan to go to the US but might consider to go there for a close friend’s wedding. (I travelled to Canada once for a friend’s wedding as well.) I am just curious why you seemed to have been staying in NY already (seeing your posts & pictures) when your visa is a B1/B2? I hope you don’t mind sharing how were you able to stay longer–i.e., it seems that have been there for more than a year already? Is there a possibility of extension beyond 6 months? While I don’t think I would want to stay that long (I am happily married, have work and a business here, plus properties and a lovely dog that need to be attended to), any advice will be so much appreciated. 🙂 Thank you! Happy travels!

    • Hi, Gadiel! Thank you so much for reading 🙂 Yes, there’s a possibility to extend your stay. While in the US, you can apply for an extension of up to 6 months making your entire stay a full year. That is, if your application for extension gets approved. If not, then you have to leave the country ASAP 🙂

  • MariJane

    Hi po Ms. Irene ask ko lang po kung may chance po ba ako maka punta to visit my boyfriend for 3 months stay., cause he invite me to go he’s country but I don’t have experience yet and this is my first time to take tourist us visa, I don’t have work yet at wala po akong bank account or anything but my boy friend give me a petition..at ano po ba ang pwedeng dapat kung gawin
    Thank you and godbless po…

    • Hi MariJane! Mahirap ang situation mo, I have to be honest. Dapat kasi you have to show the consular officer na may reason ka to come back. Bale may ties ka talaga dapat sa Pilipinas. Halimbawa, may trabaho ka, may ari-arian etc. Ngayon kahit na yung boyfriend mo ang magbabayad, mahihirapan kang i-prove yung “strong ties” mo back to the Philippines. I suggest that you travel to another country first or if medyo seryoso na kayo ng boyfriend mo, maybe he can petition you for a fiance visa 🙂

  • Joehanie Jolero

    Hello! I’ve just started my travel last October in Singapore and Malaysia. I’ll travel in Taiwan in the 1st week of December. I’ll turn 21 next year. I want to celebrate my New Year and birthday in NYC. I also want to experience my first ever winter season in US. I’m planning to fill out the form and have an interview after my Taiwan travel. However, my planning trip in US is in the last week of December. Will be it okay? Honestly, I just got denied for Korean Visa last September. Thank you!

  • Gani

    Hello Ma’am, thank you! Very helpful talaga yung blogpost niyo 🙂 Schedule po ng interview ko this coming Dec. 11, and taga Negros ako. Prepared na po ako sa interview ko, ready na lahat na documents esp yung business permit ko. I was invited kasi ng Tita ko, and she wants me to stay there max of 5month, kasi after ng 5months magbabakasyon dito sila sa Pinas, isasama na lang nila ako. Tanong lang po, nagda-doubt kasi ako, 5 months is a long stay, baka po hindi ma approve, pero yun talaga nilagay ko sa DS 160, para honest. For you Ma’am, tama po ba nilagay ko dun max of 5 months stay?

    • Hi Gani, wala namang problema kasi up to 6 months naman ang allowed na stay for a tourist. Kaso, you have to prove to the consul officer kung bakit may need for you to stay that long at kung may enough budget ka for you to stay that long. Just tell the officer the truth. Did your Tita send a letter of invitation? Mas maigi din kasi siguro para makita ng officer na may magho-host sa iyo.

  • DoroExplorero

    Hi! I got approved po sa US Visa. But didnt get my passport kasi kanina lng yung interview ko. Ang question ko, bakit di kinuha yung photo ko. Hiningi lng sa pre screening tas ibinalik. Di naman hiningi ng consul upon interview. Basta sabi lng nya, “Approved”.

  • Sheena May Bulaun

    Hello. I just ready your blog. Im planning to apply for my B1/b2 on June 2019. I’ve been in usa same like you as J1 but I stayed in usa for a yr and I just get back here in PH last Nov 2018. May concern is possible ba na ma deny ako? Ksi nag stay nko sa us. But my plan is just to visit disneyworld and orlando florida for my bucket list. Coz last year hndi ko napuntahan yun dhl busy sa work (j1). So nov 2018 umuwi ako dto sa pinas at hndi nmn ako nag overstay sa us.

  • Bernie Franco II

    All the things that you are saying are true! I had my interview with the US Embassy for my B1/B2 last Feb. 1, 2019 and the consul granted my visa! What a coincidence that we both proceeded to the same window during the interview, and that was Window 28! I guess that window is such a lucky charm! Thank you for this article! God bless! <3

  • DADa

    hi po, Im still a student and I dont have any proof of income tax or ownership.pero po ininvite po ako ng bestfriend ko to visit NYC and magcelebrate kasama siya sa birthday niya.. and they will be the one na magbabayad s lahat.. pwede po ba yun? kahit hnd kami magkaanoano?

  • Donde E. Raguine

    Hi po. Thanks for this article, I was able to prepare the visa interview today and my visa was granted. It was a great experience, my purpose of trip is Factory Acceptance of our newly purchase chiller. The interviewer questions to me as follows;

    1. What is your name.
    2. Have you applied for the US Visa before?
    3. Why are you going to US?
    (They ask me to show the Invitation letter from the company as proof)
    4. What is your position in the company?
    5. How long have you been in your company?
    6. How many are you travelling?
    7. Are you married? do you have kids?
    8. How long you will stay in the US?

    I answered all the questions and got my visa approved.;)

    Thanks po and goodluck to all.

  • Bles

    Good eve, just read ur article it helps a lot, plan din po kasi nmin mgapply ng visa as tourist to visit family of my husband and to surprise mother on her 70th bday pero sabi ng iba ng pag ask ko wag na daw kc madenied lng kmi , meron kc on going petition husband ko …. ngbased din ba tlga sila sa petition

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