It is still difficult for people from most countries to visit the USA, but this could be changing soon.
I am an American, I am a traveler. I have been traveling the world perpetually for over 11 years, through over 47 countries. I go to the countries who invite me in, I stay away from those who have closed doors. It is only a pity that my country has some of the thickest doors in the world.
The United States of America increasing says that it wants to promote tourism, all while making it more difficult and expensive for people from most countries to visit. This is a perilous irony that creates not only a divide between the people of my county and most of the world but also creates an authoritative structure where businesses in my country do not receive as much money as they easily could if the borders of the USA were not so difficult to get through.
As each year passes the visa fees to go to the USA rise, the requirements go up, and foreign tourism in the country goes down. For a Chinese person, to visit the USA they need to go to one of four centers for an in person interview — a process which alone often takes upwards of three months to complete. The same can be said of citizens of Brazil or India.
“Can you imagine if you wanted to go to Brazil and you had to have an in-person interview just to be considered, and the only place you could go do it would be Seattle, Phoenix, Cleveland or Richmond?” said Jeff Freeman, vice president of public affairs for the U.S. Travel Association. -Tourism officials seek to make travel to USA easier
To visit the USA, most people in the world do not only need to prove they have adequate funding, that they are politically on par, that they have amply reason to return home and not overstay their visa, but also that they are willing to jump through extensive and often expensive and time consuming hoops.
In point, getting the required documents to visit the USA is often too much of a hassle for millions of would be tourists to deal with. The world is no longer full of poor masses just dying for a chance to enter the USA, work illegally, and never leave. No, there is a giant middle and upper class in many one time poor countries who just want to visit the country they see in movies on their TV news, and listen about in their music: the world is now full of people with adequate means who just want to visit the USA, look around, spend money, and then go home like the tourist they are.
The U.S. Travel Association is currently trying to spearhead changes in immigration policy to make travel to the USA easier for people who live outside of visa waiver countries.
With Europe erecting walls to keep the tourist out, my country is provided with the opportunity to act as a global model that shows that they can adapt to the changes that have resulted from the globalization process that it spearheaded: the USA needs to open its borders to the masses of tourists who just want to go there and spend money. Sitting in the archaic dustlands of yesterday is to put yourself in the bins of history. If the USA is to remain a rich country it needs to adapt to the times and let the tourists in.
About the Author: VBJ
I am the founder and editor of Vagabond Journey. I’ve been traveling the world since 1999, through 90 countries. I am the author of the book, Ghost Cities of China and have written for The Guardian, Forbes, Bloomberg, The Diplomat, the South China Morning Post, and other publications. VBJ has written 3679 posts on Vagabond Journey. Contact the author.
VBJ is currently in: Papa Bay, Hawaii
Next post: Asus Eee PC Motherboard Problem
Previous post: Entering Europe on an Invalid US Passport