Dear Khun Virasin,
My wife and I are elderly US Citizens. We are long time visitors to Thailand. I am currently undergoing treatment for cancer in America.
My treatment will take several months, and we have been trying to get a visitor visa for our friend of many years, who is a Thai citizen, to come here to help and be with us.
Our friend is a 52-year-old woman who is licensed in massage therapy. She is a woman of extraordinary character and integrity.
She has a large, close family. She owns a home, some farm land, and a condo in Bangkok. She is debt free and has significant savings.
She filed an application for a B2 tourist visa. The application included full documentation about her, and letters of support from my doctors, letters of recommendation regarding our character and integrity; letters to document our ability to pay for the flight and living expenses while she was here, and even an offer to post a bond insuring her timely return to Thailand.
When she arrived for her interview in Bangkok, the interviewer asked three questions.
- What city will you go to?
- Why will you go?
- What work do you do?
At that point, without looking at the documentation provided, he terminated the interview and denied the application. We found such behavior to be insulting and frankly quite bigoted, but we also understand there is no process for appeal.
My question is this. We have all of the documents prepared for the application and we know that a new application can be lodged. Is that a waste of time? And, do you see any other conceivable category for a Visa that we might pursue?
The US Embassy Officers generally only reviews the completed DS-160 for information, the appearance and demeanor of the applicant, and answers to a few questions before making a determination. If the person has ever been denied a visa before, this will affect the decision of the case. The primary purpose of the interview is whether the applicant will return to Thailand. The burden of proof is on the applicant.
With a long line of Visitor’s visa applications every morning, the office only takes a few minutes to make a decision. That is the reason why they did not review the documents which your friend brought with them.
I understand that it is not fair but that is the system that the Embassy is currently using. The officer has full discretion to approve or deny a visa application.