Personal, Travel, Visa

U.S. Embassy Manila Tourist Visa Interview Experience

Once upon a time, it was my ultimate dream to go to New York City. All those high buildings, fancy streets, and that overall vibe. However, life happened; I matured and realized that there was more to life than NYC and what it is portrayed on the movies. I prioritized my European dream and worked hard to achieve it. Needless to say, my Eurotrip was the highlight of my whole existence. My USA fantasy went into the backburner but of course, I still want to have the option to visit it.

With all the horror stories I’ve heard from friends, families, and even on the Internet, I kept on delaying my plan to schedule an interview. They said that you need show money, land titles, cars, properties, businesses, and whatnots. The fact that I have just graduated a year ago, with less than 2 years in my current employer, single, no kids, and no properties, it was a risk to apply. Imagine PHP 7680 going down the drain in case I got denied? 

Because I’m me, I didn’t care; I just did it!


You wouldn’t believe how many people told me that it’s super hard to get a US Visa and they also said that I should wait for a few years just to be sure. I don’t know but I’m that kind of person that I jump when it’s the scariest to jump. What’s to lose? I mean, yeah, the PHP 7680 but I can still earn that. I can reapply if ever I get denied so I have to do it.

The plot twist is: I have no ties there. I have my distant relatives but they’re first and second cousins of my mother and I doubt the consul will acknowledge that. All I have with me is my closest college friend and she’s the one I want to visit first. I asked for her permission to use her information in filling out the DS-160 form and she happily agreed. I LOVE YOU, ANNE!

When I saw that they have an available interview on my preferred date, I immediately paid the visa fee via BPI Fund Transfer and waited 4 hours to activate the payment and confirm the interview date. I have less than a week from scheduling it to the actual interview and I didn’t do anything but secured the ff.:

  • Passport
  • DS-160 form
  • Appointment confirmation
  • Payment confirmation
  • Certificate of employment
  • Income tax return

That’s it! Remember what I told in my previous post that I have 150 pages of documents that I presented to the German Embassy? In US Embassy, it’s just that! The last two are not required but I brought it anyway just to be sure.

However, from the U.S. Embassy website, here are the things you should consider bringing:


You can do the whole application yourself that’s why I am still wondering why there are people who pay for visa assistance. They do not guarantee approval, they’ll just do what you can do which is assisting you on what you should answer in the form – all of which you know yourself. It’s useless and a waste of money. If you can read and you’re not dumb, there’s no use of getting their service.

Now, on to my experience! Click next!

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  • Reply Rhea September 12, 2016 at 1:03 am

    Hi Jacklynne! Congrats on getting your US Visa application approved! I, for one, am about to apply again. Yes, you read that right. My previous application was rejected. LOL. But I’m not one to give up so I’m trying again. I’d like to ask you some questions and tips, if that’s alright. Your story inspired me so much and I’m hoping that this time around, I’ll be able to do everything right. (Hugot) Thanks very much and I’m hoping for your response. 🙂

    • Reply Jacklynne September 12, 2016 at 2:02 pm

      Yes! Apply lang nang apply! There’s no limit. I’m sure you’ll have it at the perfect time. Good luck, my love and you can always send me a PM for your questions! 🙂

  • Reply Dreamer September 12, 2016 at 1:24 pm

    Youre so luck jack.:) congrats to you. i will be applying a tourist visa too this week. Hope you could give me thoughts and enlighten me haha. Coz since last week ive always wanted to throw up. That butterflies in my tummy feeling 😖 Scared/excited.

    • Reply Jacklynne September 12, 2016 at 2:03 pm

      Don’t be nervous if you don’t have any ill intentions in going to the US. Imagine the consul is just asking you and NOT judging you. Just send me a Facebook message if you have questions! 🙂

  • Reply Elle September 14, 2016 at 5:02 pm

    Hi. I started following u since ur Eurotrip was posted in WhenInManila. I am 28, living with a partner & with 1 child. We are travelers but only within PH. I shared ur post to my hub and i told him that we should go outside PH soon. I know it’s gonna be expensive coz we need to secure 3 passports and 3 two way tickets. BUT i know we can do it of we want to! I’m planning to go Japan or South Korea. And US / Europe is on my list. I don’t have a job. I’m a full-time mom. My hub is working his ass of and we have a comfy life. What tips can you give me so we can pursue or family goal?

    • Reply Jacklynne September 15, 2016 at 12:25 pm

      The only advice that I can give is for you to go for it and secure your requirements. Certificate of employment and leave of absence from your husband are really important. Good luck! 🙂

  • Reply bim cleofas September 25, 2016 at 5:36 am

    hi Jacklynne! thanks for sharing your experience 🙂
    i would like to ask, my interview will be tomorrow at 10:15am. my sister will accompany me, is there a waiting area inside where she can stay? or better if she wait for me at starbucks bayview ba?

    • Reply Jacklynne September 26, 2016 at 9:50 am

      Sorry for the late response. I’m sure you’ve had your interview already. How was it? 🙂

  • Reply Lawrence September 29, 2016 at 10:32 am

    I have read your experience in applying visa thanks it was worth the time, would it be the same for immigrant visa as well? because I have a pending visa application and my next step is to wait for the NVC (national visa center) to endorse it to the Manila Embassy and my schedule for interview…for now Im trying to find out if did you also went to medical exams prior to your approval?


    • Reply Jacklynne September 30, 2016 at 1:48 am

      Hello. Different process for different visa types. No medical exams for me. 🙂

  • Reply Hannah S. October 3, 2016 at 11:18 am


    Gurl, you are right! I understand your anger and intensity here ’cause I feel it too! SHOUTOUT TO THOSE WHO ARE PLANNING TO NOT DO IT LEGALLY!

    Anyway, congrats on getting your US visa, Jacklynne! I hope to get mine soon but like you, I’m prioritizing my Europe trip, because over a decade ago my family had already tried to apply for a US tourist visa to visit my lola and tita (who are US citizens), but we got denied because of some abroad petition… in my understanding: if we go, we’re gonna have to migrate there already when all we really wanted was to visit for like 3 weeks! It’s been over 15 years since and I can’t just apply for a tourist visa on my own since there’s already a pending application for migration. Le sigh! Next time, soon, I hope. *fingers crossed*

    • Reply Jacklynne October 4, 2016 at 3:21 am

      Yes! I have heard tons of horror stories of getting denied because they have a pending petition. 🙁 That sucks! Well, elephant in the room – Europe is better than the US! So yes, go and prepare for that Schengen visa girl! Update me! <3

      • Reply Hannah S. October 4, 2016 at 10:56 am

        Yaaay, thank you! I’m devouring your Europe and visa posts like there’s no tomorrow 😁👍

        • Reply Jacklynne October 6, 2016 at 1:49 am

          I need to start writing a new blog post! Wahh!

  • Reply Deborah Paylago October 12, 2016 at 10:03 am

    I think it’s a plus factor in your application that you’ve been to Europe before, right? Like in my case, I have never been to US nor Europe before, I’ve only been to some countries around Asia (Korea, Malaysia, HK, Macau, China & Singapore) but planning to visit US soon. Do you think the embassy will approve my application given that it’s my first time to travel outside Asia?

    • Reply Jacklynne October 17, 2016 at 1:26 am

      Travel is a big advantage wherever what countries those are. It goes to show that you can afford to travel and come back. Good luck on your application! 🙂

  • Reply Steffy October 18, 2016 at 2:36 am

    Hi Ms. Jacklynne, thanks for these infos! Congrats by the way for being granted a US visa. I felt quite relieved about your insights on unemployed non-immigrant applicants, I am planning to visit the US with my parents and brother for a rotary organization convention next year but I am having second thoughts whether I’ll be granted one since I am unemployed. I’ve been to Australia/granted Australian visa when I was still in college, Thailand, Hongkong, and Macau. I recently graduated last April 2016 with a degree of doctor of dental medicine and currently I am reviewing for my dental board exams which will be this December 2016 and January 2017. My dad owns a construction firm and my mom helps him, my brother is also a medical student. I have a savings type bank accounts, land titles and 2 cars under my name given by my dad. Do you think there will be a bigger chance for me to get approved? 🙂 Hoping for your reply.

    • Reply Jacklynne October 18, 2016 at 8:26 am

      Hi Steffy!

      Your travel and visa from Australia is a huge plus. However, your current status being an unemployed is a red flag.

      My advice is to apply a US visa as a family and not individually. Tell the consul that you will come back for your board exam din so they’ll know you’ll come back. 🙂

      Good luck!

    • Reply Jan March 11, 2017 at 9:05 am

      hi steffy, can u be an employee of your dad’s own construction company?
      Bring all the business docs, dti, itr, municipal business permits, etc.

  • Reply Anonymous October 24, 2016 at 9:48 pm


  • Reply L October 24, 2016 at 9:50 pm


  • Reply nestor October 30, 2016 at 2:54 pm

    Hi, I am happy you got it at first attempt, but my experience is different I’m working in an American Company and has the stamped employment certificate. If you ask me if my purpose is really a visit then I can honestly say yes because my niece wanted me to travel with them in Vegas and my sister just arrived in the US as immigrant. During the interview I said I have my niece their and she is a US citizen and my sister as an immigrant and then ask me if I had traveled in other countries and I said no because I don’t like traveling alone and I’m really lazy traveling except if its for family…I mean that is an honest me and I have no plan to go TNT..but still im denied..so honesty is still not an assurance…

    • Reply Jacklynne November 1, 2016 at 10:07 am

      So sorry to hear that, Nestor. Sad to say that there are collateral damages because a lot of Pinoys go TNT with a tourist visa. Sucks that even those who are honest get their visas denied. You can still reapply. Hoping this time, you’ll be granted that visa. <3

  • Reply Stan October 30, 2016 at 3:21 pm

    Congrats for getting the visa. I applied once for a US visa back in 2009, same questions, same poker face and I was denied. I was planning to visit my mom. I just graduated that time and had no work. My mom ( my mom is legally working in the US) just told me to apply without thinking that it will not be easy. Now I’m in Europe working, so I guess this time I will have a better chance getting it, but one of the requirements in their website here is a letter from the employer that I have enough vacation leave for the visit. Do you think that the validity of the visa is random? or all visas that they give is for 10yrs?

    • Reply Jacklynne November 1, 2016 at 10:04 am

      Employment is really a big factor in getting a visa. Now that you’re in Europe and working, yes, I reckon you will get that elusive visa! Not all gets 10 years; my friend who has been to a lot of places with visa only got 3 months. Hope you’ll get the 10-yr visa! 🙂

  • Reply Leonie October 30, 2016 at 9:29 pm

    Jackie we are appplying for visa as family only for a month that we have to stay there to go to tourist spots in new york and visiting orlando for disney etc. What type of application form are we going to have? We had visited asian countries and the last was china for business purpose. Thank pls reply. By the way i am an author and businesswoman. All my children is now working and my youngest had a perfume business . thank you and pls reply

    • Reply Jacklynne November 1, 2016 at 10:02 am

      B1/B2 Group Visa. 🙂 Good luck on your application! 🙂

  • Reply Jan October 31, 2016 at 5:22 am

    Hi i have read your article and this really helped. For years, Ive been planning to visit the US and i finally decided to get a visiting visa next year. My particular reason to visit the USA is because i would like to tour as well as to see some friends who work there but definitely no reasons in staying there because i have my own businesses here in the philippines. I have been to hongkong, thailand, singapore, indonesia and other parts of the philippines and currently applying for a tourist visa in australia because i am planning to go there early next year. Do you think i can get that US tourist visa ive been dreaming of? Thanks in advance

    • Reply Jacklynne November 1, 2016 at 10:01 am

      Why not? You’ve been to places and you also have a business here. Those things prove your rootedness here. Good luck and keep me updated! 🙂

  • Reply Jaymee October 31, 2016 at 6:51 pm

    Hi Jacklynne,

    Congratulations on your 10 years B1/B2 Visa! I remember when I applied for a B1/B2 5 years ago. The consul asked me one question as he see that I’d been in and out the US using my C1/D visa (transit visa only). So he asked: You’d been to the States a number of times, why apply for a Tourist Visa now. I just answered him looking into his eyes: It’s been always my dream to visit Disneyland. His eyes lit up and said that’s interesting. He knew from my data that I work on cruise ships so he started asking about the cruise culture. In a matter of 5 minutes, he said my visa was approved.

    I still have to use my B1/B2 though. I am planning a NY/LV escapade soon 🙂

    • Reply Jacklynne November 1, 2016 at 9:59 am

      Confidence is the key! Can’t wait to visit NY, too! 🙂

  • Reply Arnell October 31, 2016 at 9:31 pm

    Well done …Im sure you’ll enjoy your 1st US visit. Cheers!

  • Reply Anonymous November 3, 2016 at 3:00 am

    Got my multiple entry visa in less than an hour too!

  • Reply Dyndyn Marquez November 3, 2016 at 3:25 am

    Hi! I just want to share that we also got our 10-yr M.E. US visas – all 5 of us. We applied as a family last July 2016. Our kids are aged 19, 17 & 10 y.o. Our 2nd child, our daughter, actually asked for a US Vacation instead of celebrating her 18th bday next with a fancy debut party. We eventually obliged. As parents, we want them to learn things through actual experiences, which in this case, will come from traveling to another country. My husband & I are working for the 2 top telecom company in the country and have been to the US 3x already so it was really an easy interview for us. I am just glad that my 3 kids were able to enjoy the privilege of us being previous 10-yr. US Visa holders. I had friends whose kid got only 5yrs while the parents renewed theirs and got 10. So, yes. It is indeed a surprising turn of events. Thanks for sharing your your experiences & travels. I have become a newly converted fan/reader. Bon voyage!

    • Reply Jacklynne November 4, 2016 at 1:39 am

      So happy to hear your experience, Dyndyn! I personally didn’t think I’d get the visa, I just took the risk and I’m glad I did it! Enjoy US with your family! 🙂

  • Reply Anonymous November 3, 2016 at 7:03 am

    You were approved simply because of your previous Europe and Asian trips. It would be more interesting if you wrote your experience in getting Europe visa.

  • Reply Kirby November 3, 2016 at 11:03 am

    Great information you got here! 🙂 So happy I found this.
    Anyway, many people usually say that getting a Schengen Visa first will make it easier for you to apply before obtaining US or Canada Visa – such sayings. Congratulations and will try out the luck like yours! 🙂 Thank you for sharing the experience!

    Kirby from Dubai

    • Reply Jacklynne November 4, 2016 at 1:43 am

      Hi Kirby! Thank you! Good luck in applying. <3

  • Reply EVLYN November 3, 2016 at 11:23 am

    congreatulations jackie, Honeslty for a long time I wanted to apply with my family even my son o

  • Reply EVELYN November 3, 2016 at 11:28 am

    honestly I wanted to apply with my family for along time we are not very rich and we do not have anybody in the states, for a long time we wanted to apply just to visit disney land in orlando for a week but being scare since to apply that since we do not have anybody there will it not affect our chances of getting the visa we actually want to go and come back. my little boy always run out when ever he hear the sound of earoplane and always say I will fly aeroplane to USA.

    • Reply Jacklynne November 4, 2016 at 1:44 am

      Awww, that’s so cute! <3 Prepare the requirements and get that visa na! Wishing you all the best! <3

  • Reply kate November 3, 2016 at 3:32 pm

    Hi Jack Lynne am planning to apply for a u.s.visit visa in u.s. with my husband I retired in govt office 4 years ago I am 56 y.o. and my husband is 62 y.o. still employed in govt office I have a travel agency but I only registered my business just recently I already applied u.s. visit visa year 2009 was denied I’ve been to Australia 2009 china Singapore hongkong Thailand Canada for 2 years tourist visa and recently last October 5-12 2016 in dubai but my business only run for 6 mos dti only bir still on process what do you think?

    • Reply Jacklynne November 4, 2016 at 1:48 am

      The reason you’ve been denied is maybe you’ve just started your business. Now that it’s already running for 7 years and you’ve already registered it, I think you have a good chance if you reapply. Also, you’ve been to lots of countries since then so that proves that you can afford to travel. Good luck in applying and keep me updated! <3

  • Reply Nepthaly Pita November 3, 2016 at 5:02 pm

    Well done, now please take Amtrak or Bus from DC to NYC :-). Much cheaper and convenient (5 hrs drive for bus , 3.5 hours by train).

    • Reply Jacklynne November 4, 2016 at 1:49 am

      Yes!!! I’ve been researching on how to take Amtrak! Thank you and I can’t wait! 😀

  • Reply Anonymous November 6, 2016 at 1:11 pm

    hi ms. jacklynne! can i ask for some tips? i’ve been reading some blogs about what the consuls might ask during the interview. One of the question is “what would make you come back to the philippines?” aside from answering your family, job, boyfriend etc. is ok to say that “i don’t want to have a bad travel record” ? my interview will be on nov.21 with my grand father and i’m quite nervous but at the same time excited. 🙂 anyway i hope you’ll reply. Thanks. -Pauline

    • Reply Jacklynne November 7, 2016 at 1:47 am

      Yes, you can say that. Say that you’ve never overstayed and you have no plans to. Good luck! 🙂

    • Reply Mark louie sison February 18, 2017 at 5:23 pm

      Good day! I just recently arrived in Canada a month ago as an immigrant, I want to apply for US visa. Can you help me how ? Thank you so much and more power

  • Reply Pauline November 6, 2016 at 1:12 pm

    hi ms. jacklynne! can i ask for some tips? i’ve been reading some blogs about what the consuls might ask during the interview. One of the question is “what would make you come back to the philippines?” aside from answering your family, job, boyfriend etc. is ok to say that “i don’t want to have a bad travel record” ? my interview will be on nov.21 with my grand father and i’m quite nervous but at the same time excited. 🙂 anyway i hope you’ll reply. Thanks.

  • Reply Ron November 13, 2016 at 6:26 am

    Hi.. good afternoon.. I’ve been in the US just this year for almost four months under the Summer Work and Travel (J1 Visa). From march – July 2016 then I go back home after. I also got my Social Security from the US given the fact that I work there.
    I just wanna ask if I have a chance to get a tourist visa for this time? What would be my chance to approval?
    Though I’m still a student right now and no work yet. Thanks for your reply..

    • Reply Jacklynne November 13, 2016 at 6:42 am

      Better if you apply after you’ve graduated and have a stable job. That will give you more chance to have a tourist visa. 🙂

      • Reply Ron November 13, 2016 at 7:14 am

        Though I’ve been there in the US just this year but in different Visa Category?

        • Reply Jacklynne November 13, 2016 at 10:13 am

          I’ve heard a lot of stories from J1 holder having their tourist visas denied. I don’t want to discourage, I’m just basing my response from real-life experiences. You can still try, though. I have a lot of red flags but I still got my visa. Good luck! 🙂

  • Reply Olive November 13, 2016 at 3:02 pm

    Hi i just want to ask if incase im going to apply a (US) tourist visa w/ my son & mom what will be our chances? I stayed in japan for 1 yr under spouse visa, but unfortunately i went back to the Phils & surrendered my alien card at the immigration in Narita. My husband & i are separated we have 1 child.

    • Reply Jacklynne November 14, 2016 at 8:48 am

      The fact that you lived in Japan and did not abuse your visa says a lot about you. I think you have a good chance. Then again, I’m not a consul and what I can do is to pray for your success in getting that elusive US visa. 🙂

  • Reply Andrea November 14, 2016 at 12:04 am

    Wow! To God be the Glory! Congrats Jacquie! (Feeling close with the name) haha just read your blog ang galing talaga Ni Lord. Kasi para sayo siya talaga kaya ibigay sayo. Soon sana magkaroon din ako ng lakas ng loob kagaya mo. God Bless you more! 😊

    • Reply Jacklynne November 14, 2016 at 8:49 am

      HAHAHA! Just call me “Jack.” Yes, God is so good! My faith went to another level with all the blessings he’s giving me. Good luck in everything you do and plan to do, Andrea! 🙂

  • Reply hahashah November 16, 2016 at 12:36 pm

    hi jack ! how if your appointment is Dec. 23 and the expected arrival at the US is Dec 22 ANWERED on line non immigrant application. what would you think be the effect of this?

    • Reply Jacklynne November 25, 2016 at 6:48 am

      You will be rejected because why would you put your arrival date in the US before your interview? The purpose of the interview is to assess whether you will be eligible to travel US.

  • Reply hahashah November 16, 2016 at 12:44 pm

    I didnt expect when scheduling on line get easily fill up the target date i want for interview. Anyway expected arrival can be change plus a friend invited me for a trip to hong kong and macau. my trip in hong kong will be on dec 19-22 and my sched date of appointment for b1/b2 interview will be on Dec 23. Try try lng and claiming that i will be granted a visa. To GOD BE THE GLORY!

    • Reply Neil December 2, 2016 at 6:05 pm

      Hi. Initially my interview date is dec 20 bu i should be in the US on dec 14. I got a tip from my friend to call the call center and ask if there are slots that has been freed up. And just had an interview yesterday. Try to call this monday.

  • Reply Gem November 30, 2016 at 11:30 pm

    I died at “works at Krusty Krab”! 😂 This whole thing gave me hope for my NYC dreams.

  • Reply Moana December 1, 2016 at 7:21 pm

    Hi Jack, I first knew about your blog because of your Eurotrip that went viral, and can I just say #travelgoals!!! You go girl! 🙂 Would just like to ask if you think I have a good chance of getting a visa if I were to say that I want to attend my cousin’s college graduation this coming June 2017?(And tour California after haha!) I’m 21 going on 22 this December, I’ve been working at an advertising agency for almost 2 years, and I’ve traveled around Asia (SG, MY, TH, KR, HK, Taiwan, and Korea again before my planned US Trip). My mom (single mom) already has a 10 year visa so I’m applying alone. What’s the earliest time you can get a visa? Other countries like Japan and Taiwan have the 3-month rule, is the US the same? 🙂

    Thanks and keep on doing great, girl! 🙂

    • Reply Jacklynne December 5, 2016 at 12:12 am

      Hi Moana! Thanks for dropping by! I think you have a really good chance considering that you have a stable job. When I applied for a US visa, I was just working for 1 yr and 4 months. 🙂 The fact that you’ve been out of the country without any issue in immigration says a lot about you, too. BTW, I followed the 3-month rule, too. Good luck!

  • Reply Nonchalant December 2, 2016 at 10:04 am

    Hi Jacklynne! First thank you for writing about this. I’ve been researching for quite awhile now and found yours the most useful (and candid!). Got linked to your blog from your article form Rappler. I just scheduled an interview on December 22. However, I just realised that I put office delivery and our office might be closed when they deliver it there because of the holidays. How long did it take for them to deliver your documents when you got approved? Thank you! 🙂

    • Reply Jacklynne December 5, 2016 at 12:14 am

      Hello. Thanks for dropping by! I got my visa almost 2 weeks after the interview. You can still change it up to 24 hours after the interview.

  • Reply Neil December 2, 2016 at 5:59 pm

    Hi! Just wanted to ask on how many business days passed before you received your passport? Just had my interview yesterday. Thanks

    • Reply Jacklynne December 5, 2016 at 12:14 am

      Almost 2 weeks. It was an excruciating wait! Ugh.

      • Reply Neil December 5, 2016 at 5:35 pm

        Thanks. i read from a blog that the person was interviewed just this nov 25 (fri) and received the visa on dec 1 (thurs).
        I’m banking on this one coz I need to book my flight asap! I hope that I have the same fate!

  • Reply Neil December 2, 2016 at 6:01 pm

    How many business days passed before you received your passport? Thanks

  • Reply Mary December 3, 2016 at 5:36 am

    hi jack, congrats for getting the visa. I am applying a tourist visa too and my interview is this coming wednesday. I am so confuse to the reason why ill go there. The reason why I need to go there is because my sister will deliver her second baby. So, if she and her husband will go in the hospital, no one will take care of her first son at home. Do I need to tell that to the consul or ill just say that I want to visit them and have a vacation? I am employed as a government teacher.
    I hope I can get a reply from you. Thank you

    • Reply Jacklynne December 5, 2016 at 12:15 am

      I don’t want people to lie on their interview. Let them know your real plans in getting a visa. This is a family/visit visa, right? I think it’s different than tourist visa. Not sure.

  • Reply Em December 15, 2016 at 3:09 am

    Hi! I am applying for a visa as well. Is an NBI clearance required?

  • Reply Mich December 27, 2016 at 7:13 am

    Hi Miss Jacklynne, congrats on your application. I was wondering if you ever heard stories from nurses who wish to apply as tourist? If you have known someone with you at the embassy tried to apply for a tourist visa.thanks!

    • Reply Jacklynne December 28, 2016 at 8:30 am

      Sorry, never heard visa application from nurses. You can check PinoyExchange as they share their experiences there 🙂

  • Reply Jojie Velasco January 13, 2017 at 3:10 am

    Hi! I applied for my US visa in Sept. 8, 2011 and until now I can still remember how nervous I was that time. It’s like I will throw up anytime and my heart was in my throat. When the consul interviewed me, he asked me the purpose of my travel, my work here and how much my salary is. That time I was already 34 years old. I answered his questions truthfully. Then he said, Im sorry, I dont think your salary can sustain your stay in the US, while giving me the blue slip. Then I just blurted out, but my husband just renewed his visa. He took a second look at ne, then asked for my marriage certificate. After that, he told me, ok your visa will be delivered in a week. Thanks to my instinct of reasoning out, I got multiple entry visa.

    • Reply Jacklynne January 13, 2017 at 6:12 am

      Wow, this is a unique story! Never heard anyone who reasoned out and got their visa after a denial. Guess that’s really meant for you! 🙂

  • Reply mikee January 13, 2017 at 4:41 pm

    Hi Jacklynne! super loving your blog entries! I had a US visa before and then I got denied when I applied again when I was still in college. Lol. Anyway, planning to go to Europe this year, do you think your Schengen Visa really helped you to get a US Visa? I am also in my early 20s, i did not graduate college yet, but I already have a business. Do you think it would be best if I go to EU and then apply for a US visa? thanks so much Jacklynne!!!

    • Reply Jacklynne January 23, 2017 at 5:08 am

      Having an EU visa is not a guarantee that you will get a US visa vice versa. It will help but not an assurance. 🙂

  • Reply Jeffrey Monsanto January 19, 2017 at 11:03 am

    Hi,i am planning to apply for a US visa,since my aunt invited me to visit her,finance everything including airfare and everything. Im currently working for 4 years now but the thing is i’m only a minimum wage earner here…is it really the reason for the visa officer to reject my application and get denied?

    • Reply Jacklynne January 23, 2017 at 5:06 am

      Just as long as you can prove that you won’t stay illegally there, then you’re good to go.

  • Reply Brad January 31, 2017 at 12:44 am

    “….… *drumrolls* … http://WWW.FILIPINOCUPID.COM. I never thought that site actually has some success stories – if you may call it.”
    Wow, you never knew? Yea, many successful relationships start online with Filipinas and Foreigners. “If you may call it”? Why the smartass tone? Sorry, just always baffles me when people are so negative about how two people met. Disclaimer, I am a 30 year old American, my girlfriend is 23 Filipina, we met online. Totally normal relationship.

    • Reply Jacklynne February 28, 2017 at 3:19 am

      You’re being defensive. Chill.

  • Reply Anonymous February 3, 2017 at 3:15 am

    Jaccklyn can you pls show me the DS-160 form so that i will have an idea on how to fill up the form…do u still have the copy?

    • Reply Jacklynne February 3, 2017 at 8:08 am

      I’m sorry, I no longer have it but I can help you! 🙂

  • Reply William February 3, 2017 at 8:42 am

    I think your main asset was your history of travel to Europe. I applied for my US visa when I was in 1st year med school. At my age then, probably I was a high “flight” risk/ a TNT risk. But when the lady consul asked me what countries I have been to, I replied France and UK, aside from the assorted SEA countries. She typed a few things and then affirmed my visa application. I strongly suspect these EU countries/ US allies share info so they know the good, the bad, and the ugly.😃
    p.s. i also got a 10 -year visa.

  • Reply Shayna February 4, 2017 at 5:31 am

    Hi Ms Jacklynne,

    Glad to found your story on getting US visa through rappler and your blog, too.

    Me and my husband (both freelancer but I am also employed in private company) will be needing to get US Visa because one of our employer (in the freelance job) wanted me to be in their office in US for a training, for about 2-weeks. My husband wanted to join me going to US because first, it’s our dream to visit US and travel together on foreign countries, and 2nd, I’m afraid of travelling alone since this will be my very first travel outside PH. We’ve never been into other countries because when we’re still both single we’ve been busy doing a living for our families and we never had a chance to travel because of limited budget. Our purpose of visiting US is because of work and do a little tour of course. He wanted to watch a live NBA game 🙂

    What do you think of chances for us to get approved? What other documents I/we needed aside from those you mentioned? We will surely come back here because we have our baby which will be 1yr old this month and we don’t like to work abroad, I also still have job here in PH. Being a freeelancer is my part time job. Thanks in advance! 🙂

  • Reply Mark John February 10, 2017 at 12:01 am

    My friend and I were interviewed yesterday for our US tourist visa.
    We were both denied.

    Ive been to Australia, Netherlands, Germany, France, Sweden, Denmark, Italy, Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia, Hongkong, Macau.

    My friend even have relatives in the US but she was denied also.

    It is maybe bacause of Trump administration?

    • Reply Mark John February 10, 2017 at 12:03 am

      I was not even asked which countries I’ve been to.

    • Reply Jacklynne February 16, 2017 at 3:09 am

      That sucks! What were you asked?

  • Reply georgina February 20, 2017 at 3:01 am

    hi! would you know if i can still submit another DS160 after getting to the confirmation page? because i need to change a few of my answers. would that affect my visa application? thank you!

    • Reply Jacklynne February 21, 2017 at 5:05 pm

      Will reflect but you can still change it! 🙂

  • Reply M February 24, 2017 at 3:41 am

    Hi, Ms. Jack.

    Your post really inspired me to push for our family’s U.S. visa application. Thank you so much for sharing. My husband, my son, and I would like to apply for a U.S. visa so we can accompany my mom and dad (both senior citizens with a 10-year multiple entry U. S. Visa each!) this summer to the U.S.. They plan to visit their siblings who they have not seen in more than 10 years. I am very anxious about applying for a group visa and I hear a lot of horror stories of denial bec of the change in admin. But I think it is worth a shot. My son really wants to vacation in the U.S. and my parents want to see their siblings and get to spend time with them. What piece of advise can you give us?

    Thanks in advance and take care!

    • Reply Jacklynne February 28, 2017 at 3:17 am

      Just be honest, prepared, and read forums on Pinoy Exchange regarding the visa. It has helped me a lot. Good luck!

  • Reply May Penaflorida February 24, 2017 at 6:30 pm

    Hi Jack. I just want to ask Mark John over there what are the question ask to him. My interview is scheduled on March 7. Eversince I scheduled my interview I have sleepless night thinking of the upcoming interview. They said that government employees are always denied. I work in the Senate as consultant for 2 years and 7 months and Im the only person assigned in Region 1 and CAR and my salary is 23k only. I travel to netherlands malaysia thailand hk and macau. Is it being a government employee prove strong ties in the Philippines?

    • Reply Jacklynne February 28, 2017 at 3:18 am

      It can be a good thing plus you’ve already traveled to Netherlands so that’s a bonus!

  • Reply Anne March 1, 2017 at 6:34 pm

    Hey congrats! 🙂 May i know when was the exact date you had your interview?

    • Reply Jacklynne March 7, 2017 at 2:45 am

      Forgot na but last week of August or first week of September.

  • Reply Anne March 1, 2017 at 6:48 pm

    I’m surprised when you mentioned which school did you graduate. We actually have the same alma mater and while reading I could envision myself in you (ha ha). Anyway, I know you really got that confidence, truthfulness and faith girl that’s why you got approved. 🙂 Im so inspired w your story. I hope you enjoy your future US travel! I’ll follow your ig! 🙂

  • Reply thefan March 8, 2017 at 4:06 am

    Very useful information – maraming salamat! You’re lucky to have traveled to so many places.

    As for the description of the people you met – your impression of them left a bad taste in my mouth. Judgy McJudgerson medyo? Anyway, it sounds like you never had to lie to be with your TNT parents and you never had to use an online dating service to find someone you love and you were never nervous before an important interview. Consider yourself lucky. Again.

    • Reply Jacklynne March 9, 2017 at 6:00 am


      Though not sure why you think I’m judging when in fact I’m just astonished how these people “searched” for their true love. Also, yep, I’m totally judging people who lie just to get their visas approved.

  • Reply Louise March 9, 2017 at 11:37 am

    Hi, goodevening to u jacklnne, i just want to ask if its ok to have a family tourist interview ,my husband,and two kids 3 yrs old and 8 yrs old. Were planning to tourist visa,coz we had an invitation from our alumni school reunion.we own r family business,and my kids r schooling. But the problem r passport were fresh we even ‘t go to other asias country. Pls help ..do we hav a chances? We just want to try coz our school reunion invited us and it will be held in USA..pls help us..thank u

    • Reply Jacklynne March 12, 2017 at 9:51 am

      Yes, you have a chance. Good luck!

  • Reply lulu March 10, 2017 at 12:25 pm

    hi there,

    can i ask how much your bank deposit account contain or how much you earn in your job? did these things matter or strictly looked up to by the embassy personnel?

    do u think your recent euro trip substantially gave an impact on ur visa approval?

    pls enlighten me ❤❤❤

    • Reply Jacklynne March 12, 2017 at 9:50 am

      Sorry, asking about another person’s salary is something personal. Aside from my EU visa, my rootedness in the PH is the reason I was approved.

  • Reply Anonymous March 10, 2017 at 2:19 pm

    We almost had the same experience, and back then I was 23 years old. What struck me hard was we thought of the same thing about the Filipino people working the finger scans. I’m appalled that our own people are the ones bullying us. This isn’t even an isolated case. Almost every time they act like this. I personally witnessed this at one of the Japanese accredited travel agencies too, worst Philippine Embassies around the globe. Anyway, going back to the US visa topic, not that I was being nosy about people’s interview when I was there but, not everyone gets asked about finances and based on my observation, most of the people that were asked about it were denied.

    Hope you had a great New Year since this is a very much delayed reaction from the day you wrote this. Lol.

    • Reply Jacklynne March 12, 2017 at 9:48 am

      The Filipina in the US Embassy shocked me….

  • Reply Wehng March 10, 2017 at 5:18 pm

    I agree with you. The interview is really nerve wracking but you must not show it to the consul. You must be confident and honest when answering the consul’s questions. Look at them eye to eye while replying to them. I think they are reading you thru your body language. I remember during my interview, the consul had so many questions to me so I thought I won’t be approved so when he said “Your visa is approved” I was a bit shocked and can’t believe it. I won’t forget that moment because after saying thank you to him I looked for a comfort room to freshen up but since I was a bit stunned with what happened I didn’t notice that I went straight to the men’s room 😂 Good thing there was no one inside the restroom.

    • Reply Jacklynne March 12, 2017 at 9:47 am

      Hahaha funny memories! Glad you got that visa!

  • Reply carlo March 10, 2017 at 8:36 pm

    I didn’t have many history of travel outside the Philippines. I’ve only been to thailand twice and I have a Visa for Korea which I applied a week before my application in the US embassy.

    What I did is to act professionally and as If I didn’t care if I get approved or not.
    I have documents in my envelope (COE, ITR etc.) and did not even use them.

    My Family are immigrants; Parents and 3 siblings in hawaii. I applied for new york also.

  • Reply carlo March 10, 2017 at 8:38 pm

    I didn’t have many history of travel outside the Philippines. I’ve only been to thailand twice and I have a Visa for Korea which I applied a week before my application in the US embassy.

    What I did is to act professionally and as If I didn’t care if I get approved or not.
    I have documents in my envelope (COE, ITR etc.) and did not even use them.

    My Family are immigrants; Parents and 3 siblings in hawaii. I applied for new york also.

  • Reply charito Martinez March 11, 2017 at 3:25 am

    Thanks for the informations. I think we have the same experience only i differ to some aspects like for ex. I was pushed if i may say…by a friend of my brother that he actually gave me a blank visa application . During that time it was not yet computerized. So one day as i can recall without preparation ,what i only brought was my passbook, passport which was placed on a SM plastic bag , without jewelries and just wearing my casual pants. I got my U.S. visa .And another thing that we differ was i have a sister in U.S. and relatives which i wrote or stated on my application. What was on my mind before who cares if i didnt get a visa …anyway i did tell my sister about it not until i was approved that was the only time i told my sister. She got me a ticket and told me that i have to pay her when i arrived in U.S. but her husband did allow me to pay them. I didnt spent anythinģ only what i bought on the malls. Thanks to them.

  • Reply Kristian March 19, 2017 at 8:43 am

    I got the 10 years visa with just 25 thousand pesos in the bank…..
    I thought that he will refuse my visa because he meticulously check my bank statements…. Hehehe
    I guess i was just lucky..

  • Reply Timothy Reyes March 24, 2017 at 4:45 pm

    Hi Ms. Jacklynne,

    I read your story, congrats. Here’s mine: I won a trip for 2 to San Francisco, California (Round-trip Airfare, 10 days accommodations + $2,200 pocket money.), my travel would be on 1st week or 2nd of May. The company told me get visa for me and my niece, this is my first time not for my niece she got denied i think last year. I chose my niece as my birthday gift. I am planning to comply all the requirements as soon I got my passport, ( March 28 or so the schedule of release). So, any tips? by the way I’m a government employee and my niece is a student. Thank you! God bless.

    • Reply Jacklynne March 27, 2017 at 2:37 am

      Wow, first of all – where did you win? You’re so lucky! Anyway, just prove that your niece is a student and has plans to continue her study here. Tell the consul that she is enrolled for her next school year. Good luck!

      • Reply Timothy Reyes March 27, 2017 at 3:43 am

        Last December, I bought a watch from Time Depot – Robinsons Place Palawan. That time, they had a “Cheers to 2017” Raffle promo. Like everyone, I didn’t expect. The letter came and I was surprise. As of now, I’m on step 3 – the VISA processing. Thank you!

        • Reply Jacklynne April 23, 2017 at 3:11 pm

          Hoping you will get approved!

  • Reply Roel April 3, 2017 at 1:31 am

    Hi Jacklynne,
    I already got my 10 year M.E. US Visa. I’m planning to get a Schengen Visa, esp to Sweden & Norway. What are my chances of being approved? Any tips on the application?

    • Reply Jacklynne April 23, 2017 at 3:08 pm

      It will be a bonus but not a guarantee that you will be granted. Just present all documents required and it will be up to the consul. 🙂

  • Reply Marie April 3, 2017 at 1:05 pm

    hi Jack, this is my second time to read your blog, I was so amazed and truly inspired me..My ate ( bestfriend only of my father, but treat me as a daughter too) wants me to visit her in New york, she told me that, told to the consular officer that she’s my Aunt. She will shoulder all my expenses especially my airfare. On April 5 pa ang schedule ng passport ko…I just want to ask kung need pa ng medical exam.as one of the requirements in applying for tourist US visa. And my plan to go there is before May 25 because that day is her 60th birthday. I can’t view the DS application because of wala pa akong passport so di ko maview yung appointment date. I have a small business here for almost 19years na. Any documents coming from her needed ba as my sponsor? Thanks in advance, anyway we have same birthday 11-18-72, sometimes matapang din ako but sometimes I’m weak too! KAya I feel nervous na kasi I know how to talk in English, ang problem kapag ako ninerbyos na ba block ako.hehehe.Hope you can give me some tips and advice. God bless you more.

    • Reply Jacklynne April 23, 2017 at 3:08 pm

      So cute that we share the same birth date. Scorpios should always be strong and fighting. 🙂

      Yes, bring as many documents as you can but don’t present it without being asked. I wish you all the best!

  • Reply Relyn Tirambulo April 6, 2017 at 7:06 am

    Now. I am not nervous 🙂 I applying for a Tourist Visa because I’ll be accompanying my niece who is a green card holder. By the way she’s minor and she’s only 10 years old. I am positive for my application upon reading your experience. My interview will be this coming May 2017.

    • Reply Jacklynne April 23, 2017 at 3:06 pm

      Hope you will get approved! 🙂

  • Reply Aya April 13, 2017 at 2:57 am

    Hello Ms. Jackylynne,
    I hope you can response. I have scheduled interview this coming Monday. My purpose of travel ? our company in US require me to have a 2 weeks training for the 2-3 systems that will be implemented here in Philippines for . I don’t have an invitation letter to bring. Will the consul ask for that documents?

    • Reply Jacklynne April 23, 2017 at 3:05 pm

      Sorry for the late reply. I just opened my blog. How did it go?

  • Reply Camsie April 13, 2017 at 3:15 am

    hi! 🙂 is it important po ba yung salary mo sa current work mo? Like for example hndi sya ganun kataas, pero marami kang ipon sa bank? 🙂 thank you!

    • Reply Jacklynne April 23, 2017 at 3:05 pm

      I think both should be balanced. Not really high salary but enough to sustain your traveling lifestyle.

  • Reply :) April 17, 2017 at 5:13 pm

    What do you mean by “They know you better than you know yourself”? hehe

    • Reply Jacklynne April 23, 2017 at 3:04 pm

      I was just exaggerating lol but they know a lot!

  • Reply SONNY BARRETTO April 24, 2017 at 10:46 am

    read your story. congratulations and definitely will use your tips when i apply. i recently helped my aunt in her online application. i was confused on the part wherein after being approved, how long will take it take to get the visa and passport?

  • Reply Airakim April 25, 2017 at 3:22 am

    Hello.ask ko lng sana kasi sabi mo sa blog na wala ka relatives in US?did they ask you about where you will stay pagdating mo like hotels here sa US?im planning kasi to let my partner apply for a tourist visa this july.dati sya cabin steward sa cruise ships, been to new york and boston already , and lot of different countries because of her work.meron sya aunt dito sa US sa california pero dito sya diretso sa las vegas 😊 She’s unemployed now but has an online business for 5 years now.you think she has a chance?thank you in advance & God bless ☺

    • Reply Jacklynne April 27, 2017 at 9:08 am

      No, they didn’t ask naman since it’s already written in the form. I think may chance sya so goodluck!

  • Reply Airakim April 25, 2017 at 8:13 pm

    Hello. Congrats! I would just like to ask if they asked you about accomodation on your tour?if you’re gonna stay on hotels,like that?you think it’s safe to say that you will be staying on your friends house?i have a friend who wants to apply for a tourist visa in july.she is a former cabin steward in a cruise ship.been to new york and boston because of her job and lot of other countries.but now she’s not working anymore but she has an online business.you think that would be enough?i mean the online business?she’s a baker,orders of cakes and other pastries through online, in particular.thank you in advance.God bless.

  • Reply Jassie April 26, 2017 at 4:58 am

    Hi Jacklynne! you are really lucky 🙂 I’m planning to apply US tourist visa my family is there and I’m the only one left here. I don’t have assets as well but I’m currently employed for 2 1/2 yrs I have sideline photography.

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