I'm an Indian on H1B working for a US firm. I am going to London on a business trip end of this month and my American friend decided to join me. We made the plan after I got my visa, so I did not declare her as a traveling partner in my UK visa application form. She is a student and doesn't have a source of income but have some savings. I will take care of both of our expenses for the week we will be there. My questions are -

  1. Should we approach the immigration together? I have an Indian passport and she just got her, which is blank because she doesn't need a visa.

  2. How do I explain to the officer the reason for not including her in my visa application? She's not my spouse or girlfriend.

  3. Should I carry my US bank statements to clarify I will take care of her expenses? Mine will be provided entirely by my employer, which is written on the letter of support I will be carrying.

1 Answer 1

  1. It's best not to approach immigration together. Immigration prefers to process people together only if they are related in some way.
  2. You do not have to explain anything about that. You won't be asked, and the explanation that your friend decided to travel after you had made your application should be sufficient.
  3. The only things necessary to getting your friend through immigration is to establish that she has the resources to support herself, she will leave when she says she will, and that there isn't anything strange going on. As an American your friend is unlikely to be asked about her finances. If she is she should answer truthfully and if necessary get you involved. It would be a good idea for you to have documents with you to prove you can afford to make this gift, including bank statements.

Another thing you should be prepared for is some questioning about why you are doing this? Because it is very unusual for people to pay for an entire vacation for people who they are just friends with.

  • I appreciate your thoughtful response. I realize the unusual nature, she's a close friend and a travel buddy. We traveled extensively in the US in a group before. I'm not sure if circumventing the truth is the right direction to take. She bought her own tickets and we will be sharing the same apartment provided by my employer. So my expenses are minimal. But you gave me an important pointer think about.
    – fantaxy
    Aug 16, 2018 at 3:17
  • Agree. I was not quoting you.
    – fantaxy
    Aug 16, 2018 at 3:24

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