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New US visa policy worries Vietnamese travelers

VietNamNet Bridge - The new US visa policy will have adverse effects on Vietnamese students and travelers who want to go to the US, experts have warned.
VietNamNet Bridge - The new US visa policy will have adverse effects on Vietnamese students and travelers who want to go to the US, experts have warned.


Travel firms have warned travelers about the changes in the US visa policy. The maximum extension time one can get is 12 months since the expiry day instead of 48 months as previously applied. 

Those who cannot satisfy the requirements will have to register for interviews similar to those who apply for visas for the first time (in the past, direct interviews were waived in nearly all cases).

According to Nguyen Tien Dat, deputy director of Transviet, the new policy with tighter requirements will be applied commencing February 1. It is foreseeable that travelers to the US will have to undergo stricter interviews and the proportion of visa applications  rejected will be higher.

Tran Ngoc Hien Thanh, director of Co Viet Travel, noted that to date, those who apply for visas for the first time still have not been affected by the new policy. However, she thinks the policy will affect people who want to go to the US many times, or those who fly to the US to visit relatives and do business regularly.

For example, travellers to the US for the second time may have to follow procedures as if they are visiting for the first time. They may still have to prove relations and financial capability, and the application may even be rejected even if these procedures are fulfilled.

The new US visa policy will have adverse effects on Vietnamese students and travelers who want to go to the US
HG Travel also said the new policy would mostly affect people who have visas expired for more than 12 months and want to enter the US once more.

LTC, a businessman in HCMC, who often flies to the US on business, said he will have to spend more time on procedures and expenses for visa and administrative procedures.

Thanh commented that the new visa policy may create insecurity for people who need to enter the US many times to visit relatives or do business.

Many of them, when visiting relatives in the US for the first time, often ask for tourist visas and then ask for a visa extension. They may feel worried that they may not be able to return the next time.

“This may worry Viet Kieu (overseas Vietnamese) who want to come to Vietnam. However, no need to worry too much about that,” she said. “The US immigration policy does not mention the entry of Vietnamese people.”

The executive from HG Travel said many Viet Kieu who have green cards now also feel insecure. They fear that if they visit Vietnam, they may not be able to return.

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