Tips for obtaining a United States Visa
to Attend the 2017 Aglow Global Jubilee Conference
September 28 to October 1, 2017
In recent years, with the threat of terrorism in many nations of the world, obtaining visas to travel to the United States has become more difficult. U.S. Embassies around the world are given the responsibility of deciding who should, and who should not, be given permission to enter the United States. The U.S. State Department issues uniform guidelines for granting visas to each of its embassies. Looking for applicants who plan to stay in the United States, illegally, the U.S Embassy will carefully screen each applicant. Here are a few recommendations to help you through the process.
- You must have a new-style passport that can be read by a scanner. Your passport must be valid for at least six months after you return to your country.
- The U.S. Embassy in each country may have a different procedure for obtaining a U.S. visa. Go to the U.S. Embassy in your country and request an application, together with instructions outlining the documents you will need to bring with you to the U.S. Embassy.
- Fees vary by nation. Check with the U.S. Embassy in your nation for fees involved in obtaining a visa. Be aware that you may be required to pay a fee when you deliver your paperwork as well as when you go to the Embassy for your interview.
- You must have necessary documents. You may need:
- Proof of ownership of property
- Bank statements
- Savings accounts
- Letter from employer (stating your job status and permission for leave of absence)
- Airline and flight plans you will make once you have your visa (with proof of funds to purchase a roundtrip ticket)
- And your letter of invitation from Aglow International to attend the conference.
- Be sure to allow plenty of time to get your visa. You may need to return to the embassy more than once because of long lines.
- It can take weeks or even months to get an appointment for an interview. If you apply too late, your appointment could be too late for your planned departure date.
Letters of invitation
- For the 2017 Global conference, requests for letters of invitation will be honored for the following individuals:
- Aglow leaders
- Aglow advisorsd
- Active Aglow members for at least one year
- Spouses and youth of Aglow members
- You must request your letter of invitation from your national Aglow leadership, early in the year. They will then forward your request to the Aglow Worldwide Headquarters.
- The last date for sending letters of invitation from Aglow Headquarters will be August 1, 2017.
- The letter of invitation prepared by Aglow International will state the person’s relationship to Aglow, and the advantage to them in attending the conference.
- ALL names requesting letters must be sent to the Aglow Worldwide Field Office by the national leader. The names and addresses must be typed and be the full name as it appears on the passport of the person requesting the letter.
The official last name of each person must be typed in ALL CAPITAL LETTERS so that Aglow headquarters staff can address the letter of invitation properly.
- All prepared letters of invitation will be sent by color-scanned copy via email to either the Aglow national leader or to the individual receiving the letter. We will use this method for all letters of invitation unless we hear from you that this is not acceptable in your nation.
If the letter must be mailed or faxed, the national leader must specify the mailing address or fax number for each letter. Due to the high cost of FedEx or DHL, letters that must be mailed will be sent by First Class post. Make sure to plan accordingly.
No letters will be sent directly to the embassy. Embassies have informed us that letters get lost and do not get connected to the individual requesting a visa. If a letter addressed to the embassy is needed, a scanned color copy of the letter will be sent by e-mail to the individual for them to take to the embassy.
What the u.s. embassy will be looking for:
- The embassy will assume that you are applying for a visa because you plan to stay in the United States. (There are thousands of visitors who defect annually to the U.S.)
- What you must establish is that you will definitely return to your country. Such proof might be: your job, your property, your car, your business, your bank account showing your income, your ties to your children and husband, your ministry, etc. (Single people are often denied a visa to the United States.)
- Do not try to schedule a “group” interview unless requested by the embassy. Each person must qualify on his/her own merits.
- Be on time for your appointment.
- Be certain you bring all the requested documents for the interviewer.
- Tell them you have been with Aglow for _X_ number of years, and give your position of leadership or area of involvement.
- Be informed. Know the name and address of the hotel where you will make reservations (after you have your visa). Know the dates of the conference and the city where it will be held. Be prepared to give the reasons why it is important for you to attend our conference. Know what you plan to gain (i.e. leadership training that you cannot get anywhere else; a world perspective on how to help the women of your country; and what, as an Aglow leader, you plan to benefit from this opportunity.)
- A sincere and honest attitude for obtaining a visa will get the best results. Many people with wrong motives have used attending a U.S. conference as a way to enter the United States.
After the conference is over
We realize that you may want to spend time with friends or relatives in the U.S. after the conference.
- PLEASE: Once you are in America, DO NOT OVERSTAY your time granted on your visa. Those who do so, (even by one day) and apply for a visa to visit the United States again, are often denied a new visa. If you keep your word, and return within the allowed time, your chances of getting a visa in the future is much greater.
If rules and regulations are not followed, the embassy will remember that you came by invitation of Aglow International, and may withhold future visas requested from legitimate Aglow leaders. Most U.S. Embassies keep a folder on Aglow International, and they will be reviewing it.
Thank you for carefully following these guidelines. God bless you as you seek to obtain your visa to travel to the U.S. to attend the 2017 Aglow Global Jubilee Conference, celebrating 50 years of Aglow.