Category Archives: Tips

Step by Step Guide on How to File for an IR1 or CR1 Spouse Visa for a Foreign Spouse

IR-1 / CR-1 Spouse Visas are immigrant visas issued to foreign spouses of US Citizens. After the US citizen spouse files (and has approved) the proper petition with the USCIS, the foreign spouse will complete the visa process completely outside the US. Upon approval and once issued, the foreign spouse may enter the US with their visa and pass through the arrival Port of Entry, where they will become a Permanent Resident immediately. They will receive a Permanent Resident Card (Green Card) in the mail at their US Address within a few weeks. The process for applying for a CR1 Spouse Visa is as follows:

Who is eligible to apply?

U.S. citizens legally married to a foreign national may petition for an IR-1 / CR-1 visa. If the marriage is less than two years old, the consulate will issue a CR-1 Visa (and if longer than two years it will issue an IR-1 Visa). The primary difference between these two visas is that a CR-1 Visa will result in a Conditional Permanent Residency (requiring a petition to be filed later to lift this conditional status) versus an IR-1 Visa resulting in full Permanent Residency upon arrival in the US by the foreign spouse.

Forms Needed to File for an IR-1 / CR-1 Spouse Visa

The following forms are needed while filing for a Spouse Visa:

● The payment as required by USCIS.

● Cover Letter. Should include a description of what you are petitioning for (I-130), a table of contents (list everything in the packet). If you need additional room to explain your case, attach a separate sheet (list the attachment on the cover sheet). Make sure to sign and date the cover sheet.

● Form I-130: Petition for Alien Relative

● Copy of the full Birth certificate (front and back) for the US Citizen or a copy of ALL pages of the US Citizen’s passport. This is used to establish citizenship.

● A copy of petitioner’s proof of naturalization. (If applicable)

● A copy of petitioner’s proof of permanent residency. (If applicable)

● A copy of the intending immigrant’s birth certificate and/or passport along with English translation. (If in any language other than English) (no longer needed)

● A copy of your marriage certificate (If not in English then again get a translation)

● If either you or your spouse was previously married, submit copies of documents showing that all prior marriages were legally terminated (court certified copies of the petitioner’s and/or intending immigrant’s divorce documents).

● A copy of a prior spouse’s death certificate. (If one or both of you were married before, and the prior spouse died)

● Two passport-type photos of the petitioner.

● Two passport-type photos of the non-US Citizen spouse.

● Form I-130A: Supplemental Information for Spouse Beneficiary

● Evidence of a bonafide marriage

What constitutes a bona fide marriage?

The USCIS now requires that when filing an I-130 for a spouse that you include evidence of a bonafide marriage. They list examples of acceptable evidence as:

● Documentation showing joint ownership or property; or

● A lease showing joint tenancy of a common residence; or

● Documentation showing co-mingling of financial resources; or

● Birth certificate(s) of the child(ren) born to you, the petitioner, and your spouse together; or

● Affidavits sworn to or affirmed by third parties having personal knowledge of the bona fides of the marital relationship (Each affidavit must contain the full name and address, date and place of birth of the person making the affidavit, his or her relationship to the petitioner or beneficiary, if any, and complete information and details explaining how the person acquired his or her knowledge of your marriage); or

● Any other relevant documentation to establish that there is an ongoing marital union.

Mail the I-130 Package to the USCIS

You should mail the completed form(s) to the proper USCIS Lockbox (Note the location & PO Box address for your filing type: stand-alone). Mail the package with return receipt requested / delivery confirmation. Send via USPS.

What happens after filing for the Visa?

A few weeks after you have sent your petition to the USCIS, you will receive a Notice of Action (aka NOA) letter indicating that they have begun processing your I-130 application. A while later, you will receive a call for an interview for the visa, upon passing which your spouse should be able to gain entry to the US permanently. Thus, the process of filing for an IR1 Visa has been demystified.


Get K1 Visa Easily with These Tips

K1 Visa – The Best Arrangement

By using this visa arrangement, American citizens can bring their fiancée to the country without any immigration problems. Procuring this visa is the best way to bring foreign spouses, as there is no stipulation that the marriage must occur immediately on arrival in the USA. According to the visa terms, there is a time gap of 90 days for getting married. The condition specifies that the couple can marry at any time within this period. Thus, this visa arrangement gives due time to the foreign partner to familiarize with the local conditions and customs. This supportive feature makes this visa more beneficial.

Get K1 Visa Easily with These Tips

 The first and most important thing to do is to get in touch with a professionally managed immigration and visas services agency. There is lots of paperwork to do, and if one decides to do it individually, without any doubt, mistakes are bound to crop up. Besides, this faulty way of preparing the documentation will delay the process. Hence, to make the required documentations perfect and to speed up the proceedings, it is a must that one must hire the services of a specialized visa service agency.

 By hiring a specialized immigration and visa services agency, you can make the process of procuring K1 visa easier. There are specialized agencies which have the relevant experience and expertise in this specific field. However, if your fiancée is from the Philippines, the agency must have thorough knowledge about the K1 Visa Requirements Philippines. Remember, it is only practical to seek professional guidance from such agencies, rather than filing on your own. The practiced staff of such established agencies will provide individual attention and will direct your partner to complete the required official proceedings without any flaws or flops.

 You must consult the agency to ensure that you satisfy all the required stipulations laid by the government. This clarification is significant to make sure that your application will not get rejected. If there are some likely problematic issues, you must correct the same before the original submission to the government.

 You will have to make sure that all the documents are proper with the translation to English, wherever applicable. The immigration and visa service agency staff will help you to complete this task.

 A vital part that will make your application for a K1 Visa for your partner is to make the government understand that your relationship with the related individual is justifiable. For this, you must produce the evidence of your connection; this can be by way of photos, emails, or the other forms of communication. The point here to note is that the government officials must comprehend that you are not making a false claim, and there will be no harm in bringing the individual to the country. If you have any SMS texts or letters, you can also attach those as clear evidence.

 There must be frankness in your application. You must not give falsified statements, which will confuse the officials concerned. Be straightforward and honest. Remember, visa service agencies will also support such genuine applications, and you will be able to bring your fiancée to the country at the earliest.

 The interview is highly significant, and one will have to get prepared for the same. Here also, the professional assistance and guidance of a visa service agency will become handy.

Hire an Expert Agency that Knows the K1 Visa Requirements Philippines

You must make sure that the agency that you hire for helping you and your Filipino fiancée is very much familiar with the K1 Visa Requirements Philippines. Besides, the company must be reliable and professionally managed. However, experience in this specific field is a significant point that you will have to consider while selecting a visa service agency. It’s easy to find such companies. You can check with your friends and also using the internet facility. You should enter the website of the agency and peruse the contents, especially the reviews given by the existing customers. These feedbacks will show you the professional ethics and capability of the agency. By hiring the expert services of such a company, you will be able to make the entire process easy, including the needed follow-ups and booking of flight tickets.

Factors to Consider When Looking for Retirement Visa in the Philippines

SRRV (Special Resident Retiree’s Visa)

Just because of the geographical peculiarities and the lower cost of living, many people decide to spend their retired life in the Philippines. Taking into account this existing scenario, the immigration department of the country has constituted a program, which they have named as the SRRV. Foreign nationals and Filipinos working abroad can apply for the Retirement Visa Philippines.

The main purpose of this arrangement is to pay the way for the arrival of foreigners and the Filipinos who live outside the country. By utilizing this method, such persons can live in the country and also can buy properties as an investment. Entitled individuals can stay in the country either permanently or for an indefinite period.

The privileges include multiple-entry and exit and the legal entitlement to live in the country. Apart from these, SRRV holders will be entitled to get PhilHealth benefits and related rights. To attract more individual retirees, the Philippine government has given more concessions. Such persons who opt for this visa can enjoy exemption from the exit clearance, annual registration, re-entry, travel tax, etc. Besides, they will be allowed to carry household goods worth US$7,000/- for individual use. There will not be any need for the SSP (Special Study Permit) for the dependent children.

Factors to Consider When Looking for Retirement Visa in the Philippines

  • The main criterion is that the applicant must be a foreign national, who wishes to invest in Philippines property for retirement settling or as an investment option.
  • The applicant for the Retirement Visa Philippines can be either a foreigner or an ex-Filipino citizen who would like to return to the country.
  • He or she must be 35 years and above.
  • If married, the partner must be a legally recognized partner to the applicant.
  • As far as the children are concerned, the applicant must have legally adopted them and must not have reached 21 years of age.
  • The Retirement Visa Philippines applicant must deposit a fixed amount in one of the PRA- approved bank in the country. The method of depositing must be inward remittance. The presently required amount is US$1,400/- for the applicant and US$300/- for the individual dependant. Apart from this, there will be an annual fee, which will come to US$360/- for the applicant and two dependants.
  • There are some primary documents which the applicant will have to produce while applying. These include.
  • Legal Passport, which is stamped with a temporary visa.
  • Official PRS application.
  • Medical clearance certificate
  • The applicant must also produce a clearance certificate from the police department of the country, from where the applicant comes.
  • There is also the need of NBI (National Bureau of Investigation) certificate, in case the applicant is in the Philippines for more than 30 days from the entry date.
  • The applicant must include 12 (2”x2” sized) photos.
  • The required caution deposit (inwardly deposited).
  • One time processing fee.
  • Marriage certificate in case of married applicants.
  • Birth certificate of children.

You must be aware that the validity of both the medical and police clearance certificates will expire within a few months. The expiry date is six months from the issue date. If the original certificate is in any other languages, the applicant must have translated those into English with the proper attestation from the Embassy of Philippines or consular office, whichever is nearest to the residence of the applicant.

Pick a Professional Agency for Retirement Visa Philippines

It will be practically advantageous for you to seek the professional assistance of an agency that is well experienced and knows the ways to make things easier for you. There will be a lot of paperwork to do; these documents must be clear and precise. You must make sure that the agency that you approach to get the Retirement Visa Philippines operates both in the Philippines and USA. This arrangement will make the process of procuring the visa easy and swift. However, you must also ensure that the provided services are supreme, and the price is not inflated. You can peruse the testimonials provided by the existing customers to assess the professional competence and the ethics of the company.

Advantages of the K1 Fiancé Visa

K1 Fiance Visa

These days marrying a foreign spouse is not unusual, but, bringing the individual to the USA needs a special visa arrangement. The American citizens need a K1 Fiance visa for this purpose. Just because of the intention behind this visa, this is also termed as fiancé visa generally. The introduction of ‘K visa’ was just after the Vietnam War when many of the Americans started to tie the knot to Vietnam citizens. Such Vietnamese found it very difficult to enter the USA because of the stringent laws. The then government of the USA decided to give a helping hand to its citizens, by enacting a new law by which it will be possible to bring foreign spouses to the country.

There are some formalities for obtaining a K1 Fiance visa. One will have to file the required documents to the USCIS (The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services). When USCIS approves this application, the application goes straight to the National Visa Center (NVC), from where it will move to the American Embassy in Manila. The embassy officials will ask for the original petition and the related documents from the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services.

K1 Visa is a single entry visa, and the estimated processing time of this visa will be more or less 3 to 6 months. The petitioner must be prepared to attend a personal interview. The visa will be valid only for 90 days. The petitioner must marry the individual within this period. However, there is ample time available for the new entrant to get familiarized with the country and the new surroundings.

Various advantageous are attached to a K1 visa when compared to the IR-1 or CR-1 Spouse Visa. However, for making the entailed processes of filing the application for K1 Fiance Visa flawless, it is wise to go for the help of a professionally managed agency. They will have the needed experience and expertise to do the process as it should be.

Advantages of the K1 Fiance Visa

 The processing time will be comparatively less than the IR-1/CR-1 spouse visas. Here, in all probabilities, the applicant will be sanctioned with a visa within 3 to 6 months. As far as the other categories are concerned, you will have to wait for almost10 months to get the visa.

 Very soon after the official approval, the applicant will get the visa. It will just take only a few days after the approval.

 One can file the visa application in the USA; for the other categories, the applicant will have to file abroad. Practically, this means that the applicant will not be forced to run after the documentations in an alien country.

 There is no stipulation like in the other visas that the marriage should take place soon after the arrival in the USA. There is a time gap of ninety days. This arrangement will be helpful to the foreign individual who steps into the USA for the first time. There will be enough time to get accustomed to new surroundings, which will make the individual less nervous.

 The visa holder can apply later on, if he or she wishes so, for a work permit.

Select a Professional Agency

For procuring the K1 Fiance Visa, there will be the need to submit several related documents to the authorities. When one does it individually, there will be the possibility of making errors due to the lack of awareness of the proceedings. These mistakes or omissions will cause a practical delay to the submission, which will slow down the speed of the overall procedures. For avoiding such a situation, it is only wise to choose a specialized immigration and visa support agency to process your application. However, you must pick an experienced agency for the same. However, you must pick an experienced agency for the same. Experience counts a lot. If an agency has decades of experience, the company will be reliable. You can also take into consideration the feedback and reviews given by the existing customers.

Tips for Finding the Best Holiday Travel Deals Online

The internet gives us access to just about anything we can imagine. This includes finding flights, trains, buses, hotel rooms, and rental cars that we can use to travel for the holidays. While most of these entities are more expensive when you travel over the holidays due the demand, you can still find some good deals if you take the time to look.

You will generally find that you can save the most money on holiday travel if you purchase a complete package deal. This is less expensive than buying each piece that you need individually. It also provides you with only one confirmation number that you need to keep track of instead of several different ones.

There are literally hundreds of sites online where you can look for holiday travel deals. You can search by your destination in a search engine or choose the various sites you have heard about. It is a good idea to keep a list of the sites you visit and the prices you are coming across. This way you can compare the prices and easily remember where you want to go back to.

Most of the time fares will be cheaper online than by contacting the place directly because it saves their business time of having to set up the travel arrangements for you. Make sure you carefully read all of the information though because some travel deals have hidden costs that you don’t want to be liable for. You also need to check into the cancellation policies and about rescheduling your trip.

Some online travel deals don’t offer any refunds at all so if a family member dies or you have an unexpected illness you won’t be able to get your money back. Even if you show up late for your flight because you got caught up at security they won’t honor your purchase. This can be extremely risky because there are too many variables that can affect holiday travel.

Make sure you also pay close attention to the amount of time that you will be in the process of getting to your destination. You may find a killer price but it isn’t going to be worth it if you have several connecting flights and layovers along the way. Look for direct methods to get to your destination whenever it is possible. There are simply too many delays during holiday travel to ensure you can get to those connections on time.

Many of the sites you visit online will allow you to sign up for special offers and promotions. You should take advantage of these offers so that you don’t have to continually return to their site to check for changes in prices. Some of them even allow you to enter a price so that you can be notified if the price of the trip you want drops to that price. For those that can only afford holiday travel if it fits a specific budget, this is a valuable feature.

During your search online for holiday travel, be flexible with your dates. You will be able to save hundreds of dollars just by being willing to leave a day earlier or leaving in the evening instead of the afternoon. Those that want a specific travel arrangement will find this ties them into more expensive offers. Even if you travel a day earlier and have to pay for a hotel room that extra night you could save hundreds of dollars.

It does take some initial planning of where you want to travel and how you are going to get there in order to find the best travel deals. Investing a few hours of your time in getting the best price though is well worth the savings you will get from it. Millions of people travel each year over the holidays but some of them pay more for the same trip because they didn’t look for holiday travel deals online.

Choosing The Best Travel Accommodation

There are many things to consider when choosing your travel accommodations. The decision could make your trip fun or a disappointment. Choosing the right hotel is a must. Most travelers spend more time in airline ticket reservations and bargains but less time in choosing the right accommodations. Thus they may end up on the wrong side of the bed during their stay.

To get the most out of your hotel accommodations, remember to book as early as possible and make your dates more flexible. Hotels that specialize for business people will consider weekends as off season. Family vacationers could tap into these special packages during weekends. Primarily, you should choose your hotel based on name, amenities, features, price, packages and location.

Here are some considerations in choosing your best travel accommodations:

1. Accommodations should be family-friendly. Always ask if your hotel offers children activity areas with educational and fun activities supervised by duly-trained care-givers.

2. Your hotel should provide a swimming pool for children, daycare service, crib rental and child-proof electrical outlets.

3. Stay in a hotel that has electronic room-key cards and has a security viewer installed on their doors.

4. Make it a priority to choose a room on the upper floor.

5. If you’re the one who likes to spend more time in your hotel room and the balcony, you should ask for the available amenities and the conditions of the surrounding environment.

6. Depending on whether you’re on a private or business trip, ask your hotel about the availability of laundry service, hair dryers, coffee makers, newspapers, free meals, fax machine, bar, cable television, parking, shuttle service, internet connection, etc.

7. The hotel property layout and its location may speak more of its surrounding environment. Noisy locations such as construction on adjacent property, car traffic and noisy waterfalls are not specified on hotel flyers. So be sure to ask about it.

8. Beautifully landscaped surroundings with trees, flowers and inner courts also enhance your travel pleasure. Moreover, gift shops and restaurants all add up to a wonderful travel experience.

9. The location of your hotel with respect to main attraction is equally important. It could save you money on taxi and bus fare.

10. Make sure that the room service is provided 24 hours a day.

11. Check out the room itself. Is it brightly colored or classical? It sets the mood of your travel.

In order to get the most out of your travel, whether for business or family vacations, be sure to know everything about the hotel you are planning to check in to. Ask friends and relatives who have been there. Don’t just depend on the hotel’s webpage which is undoubtedly biased. Having to stay in a hotel which you don’t like could ruin your trip.

How to Save Money with Cheap Travel Deals

You must consider some critical aspects when it comes to getting the cheap travel deals. Some of these include van or car arrangements, hotel accommodations, cruise or flight charges etc. while you are going out on a vacation. Each of these small components can help you save big with the travel deals these days. Let us look into how you can benefit from the cheap travel deals for your abroad or inland travels.

When you look online, you can find cheap deals for a particular destination that includes cruise discounts, hotel accommodation and air travel discounts. You will be amazed to find discounted special rates for bargain hotels with free nights and breakfast; it may also include local sightseeing fees and special cruise that are given in single packages. These cheap travel deals can be a great way to save money and have fun while travelling.

Rental cars are available at competitive prices until the price of gas goes up again. Tourist destinations and hotels are going GREEN with increase in environmental awareness. Some hotels supply foods that are grown through natural farming procedures. These ensure you retain a healthy body, free from any disease while travelling.

Cheap travel deals come with different names like leisure packages, weekday specials, weekend offers and the last minute deals. It is essential that you do research to find out the time when you get the maximum discount. The discount rates tend to vary on the basis of seasons, destinations, and popularity of the attractions. Plenty of travel agents are offering integrated leisure packages to some of the most exotic locations. If you are going for a vacation on an off season, you can expect to save up to 60% of the travel expenses with such cheap travel deals. If you are a last minute planner also, you will benefit immensely from the cheap travel deals.

In case you are looking for the last minute deals, you need to be flexible in terms of the schedule and timing.

You can subscribe to the e newsletters for regular updates and follow them on the social networking sites as well.

However, you get the best discounts when you book in advance.

You can get nearly hundreds of cheap travel deals today on the Internet. So, make sure to compare the different deals and find the one that suits you the best. A well planned tour will not only allow your family to have a wonderful time ahead, you can also make some big savings as well. So, these are some of the vital travel tips and tricks you need to keep in mind to get the best offers and discounts. Most of the travel deals online come for a limited period. So, make sure to avail of the discounts before they close.