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Ariane

Want to apply for a B1/B2 - Advice?

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Hi all, I need guidance!

 

I am planning on applying soon for a B1/B2 visa with multiple entries.

I have read that these visas can even be granted for 10 years! But I've also read they are often denied. 

I am very aware of how tough US immigration can be (I've had two J-1 visas in 2011 and 2012, and both interviews were so stressful) so I'd like to be as prepared as possible.

 

Here's my situation:

I am a 28 yo French citizen, working as an independent translator. 

I want to keep living in France, but I also love visiting the US each year. The thing is I always find these 90 days too short.

Having been in the US a lot on internships and long vacation, I have a lot of friends there and it just feels like a second home to me.

Being there also helps a lot with my language skills and to maintain a strong knowledge of American culture, which is very useful for my work in advertising and content creation.

All I want is to be able to come in and out easier, for practical and economic reasons (buying less plane tickets, basically).

 

To be clear, I do not intend on immigrating to the US. If I did, I would go to school, wait to fall in love with a US citizen to get married or play the DV lottery.

Now, the catch is that as much as I know this being the truth, I now need to convince a consulate officer :)

 

Here's what I have to show so far as a "proof of return":

 

Business ties to France:

90 % of my clients are located in Paris, and I need to meet up with them often, and be generally around to network and look for new clients.

I file my taxes in France et am registered at the France translators’ association.

... Unfortunately, I do not own property and I cannot prove that a steady job is waiting for me upon return, since I'm self-employed.

 

Family ties to France:

I live in the same town as my mother and my two grandfathers, to whom I am very close.

... But how do I prove this to immigration?

 

I have enough funds to support myself:

I do well as a translator and can definitely support myself in the States 6 months per year.

I can show a bank statement and a letter from my banker.

 

Here are my questions:

Do you think this is enough to convince a consular officer?

How can I ask for a 10 year visa? Or is that not up to me?

Should I go the business route (B1) or the tourist route (B2)? Or a mix?

Is it OK to say I'll keep working for my clients (French firms) while over there? Or should I just say I'm coming for a pure leisure visit?

Can you think of any trick question an officer could ask me?

Should I get help from a travel agent or a visa consultant?

 

Thank you SO much!

 

Ariane

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Your ties to France aren't strong and I think it's more likely than not that any B visa application you make would be denied.


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Your business and family ties contradict being able to spend long visits in the states. As you state, "90 % of my clients are located in Paris, and I need to meet up with them often, and be generally around to network and look for new clients." And, " I live in the same town as my mother and my two grandfathers, to whom I am very close." Then how could you possibly be able to spend up to 6 months in the states? If I can see this, so won't the c/o. To me you don't show any valid reason to have a B2, 90 days is more than enough to "maintain a strong knowledge of the American culture".

 

In my opinion, you'll be better off just using the VWP.

Edited by Teddy B

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I agree with the others. How is 90 days too short if you have a life in France?

 

Stick with what you have now. If you are denied the B2 then you may lose your VWP also.


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Some things just don't add up.. 

You say you can "definitely support yourself in the States 6 months per year", yet you need to meet up with clients, 90% of which are in Paris. How do you reconcile the two? 

You do well and have funds, yet you seem concerned about the cost of plane tickets. 

 

Doesn't sound like the CO will be convinced. Visa denial also means lost VWP privileges. 


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You would need to update ESTA if you are refused.

 

Also confused when you say you need to be close to various things but 90 days is not enough.

 

Plus you can not work in the US as a visitor.


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If a person has a life in their home country, they do not need and or cannot afford to be spending more than 90 days at a time outside their home country...that is what the CBP will think. VWP are for visits 3 month is pretty long for a visit! 


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You are putting your VWP privilege at risk. If you enjoy visiting the US, why take chances just for the sake of convenience? VWP was created to ease visiting the US for subjects like you (toursim is a significant industry in the US). It is meant to make it more convenient for you so why bother with B2 which is what citizens of most countries need? 


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