The impending doom that has fallen over the world is due to the level of uncertainty of the winner of this upcoming election. The United States on a whole will be affected by this life-changing decision but while they have to reap the benefits or repercussions of such an election, there are many countries that will also bear its brunt. One such region is the Caribbean, more specifically the island of Jamaica as a very interesting phenomena has been taking place over the past year.
Jamaicans love their country, but it is inevitable that at some point in their lives they will need to venture into the United States of America for whatever reason. Whether it is for vacation, in transit, visiting a relative, work, a passing or wedding, they have to go to the United States maybe not immediate but in the near or distant future. Not to mention the fact that some of the Jamaican people are dependent on certain aspects of the United States for the benefits they reap from the country to sustain themselves and their families, e.g. e-commerce and wholesale shopping of goods. Also, there seems to be a fascination with their culture and the sheer curiosity alone makes us as Jamaicans want to journey there either way. However, a Visa prior to travelling to the land of red, white and blue, the country of opportunities, is mandatory.
But, are we in fear of the new elects actually being elected into power why there is now a desperation?
Will this mean decreased opportunities for travel for our country?
Well only time will tell…
An article in the Jamaica Observer 2016 confirmed that something was going on because the US Embassy has revealed that they have exhausted all US Visa appointments for the year. Having some 1000 plus interviews recently, the US Embassy has facilitated the desire for persons to obtain their visa for any of the aforementioned reasons but has also noticed an unusually high number of applications.
“The number of applications that has gone up from approximately 85,000 per year to 185,000 per year. In order to accommodate this, we have scheduled as many as 1,000 appointment daily; the number on any particular day is based on the number of consulate officers available to conduct interviews.” – Joshua Polacheck, Counsellor for Public Affairs for the US Embassy.
This has resulted in issues faced by the people of Jamaica who have to go change their plans to visit the United States. However the embassy admitted to while having exhausted all interview dates for the end of the year 2016, they will none-the-less consider applications which were submitted on an emergency basis.
The cost that goes with an application for a non-immigrant Visa is $160 US Dollars. One can apply online or through a travel agency for a fee. Those requested the other visas however have a shorter time as Visas for students (J1/F1), crew members (C1/D) and temporary workers (H2A/H2B) have separate appointments.
By Alexandra Daley