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USA Holiday

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harriet99 | 06:13 Thu 20th Jan 2005 | Travel
5 Answers

About 4 years ago I was a seasoned business traveller and have friends all over the world. I used to travel to New York every couple of months for work/pleasure and never had any problems or got into any trouble. About 4 years ago I was convicted of drink driving and banned from driving for 1 year commuted to 9 months, it cost me my job (among other things) and I have not been outside of the UK since. I really miss my friends, especially the ones in New York and Australia and Canada, they keep asking when am I coming to visit again but I just make excuses. They come here but it's not the same,do you think I have any chance of getting into New York etc. just for a 2 week holiday? Someone told me that if you travel to the US and are refused entry they stamp your passport and and put you on the next plane back home ?


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If you have a criminal conviction you have to declare it prior to travelling and usually have to apply for a visa that isn't impossible to get, merely a bit of a faf. If you had a conviction for drug possession then you'd have no chance, but DUI isn't so bad.

Perhaps a discreet phone call to the consulate in London is in order.
I cannot believe that a lapsed driving ban counts as a 'criminal convicition' in imigration terms. I would certainly advise a call to the American Embassy in London to clarify this.
if you get arrested, charged and appear in court, for something then I'd say it probably does. If it was penalty points leading to automatic ban then maybe not.

In practice they would probably never know, but when they get antsy they can over-react - ask Cat Stevens.

I don't think it will prevent you from going at all - at worst it will prob just cause a bit of hassle before your trip.
This happened to a friend of mine because of a drink driving offence, he was literally put on the next plane home when they discovered the offence. As Ian said, you need to contact the consulate to apply for a visa.
My friend was banned from driving for 2 years in 2000.  Last year he went to the US, entering the country at Newark airport, and had no problems at all.  I think all the visa requirements were arranged through the tour operator he used.

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