I was born in Albania (but have British Citizenship). If I apply for a Green Card (through the Green Card lottery) and was unsuccessful, would I have issues later if I just wanted to travel to the US as a tourist? Could I be refused entry if they thought I would stay there indefinitely because of the unsuccessful green card visa? I wouldn’t, I’ve got a pretty comfortable life in the UK working as a software dev, but always wanted to work in Silicon Valley.

I visited America once for a few weeks (on an ESTA) and enjoyed it a lot. It would be a shame to not be able to go there as a tourist again.

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    Also dont forget the other case if you get accepted. There could be repercussions (for future visa/visits) if you turn down a Green Card acceptance.
    – lalala
    May 23, 2020 at 10:19
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  • You've said that you were born in Albania, but you've tagged uk-citizens. Whilst this is not impossible, it does strike me as unusual. Please review the tag(s), and if correct, update your post to indicate that you are British.
    – CSM
    May 24, 2020 at 21:22
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    @CSM i’ve updated it
    – Brunaldo
    May 24, 2020 at 21:56
  • @lalala, You are not getting a GC automatically after winning the lottery. Even if you get selected in the DV lottery there's a few more steps for you to take that can go wrong until you become a Permanent Resident with a Green Card. They always select more winners than there is DV visas available. And in some years visas run out before you. Then you take medical exam, submit DS-260 and if your docs are in order you're invited to the interview where you get an immigrant visa. And only after you enter the US with your immigrant visa you become a Permanent Resident. May 25, 2020 at 5:23

1 Answer 1


Submitting an application to the Diversity Visa Program (green card lotto) is generally not considered evidence of immigrant intent by itself since there is no guarantee that an applicant will even be selected. This means you should be fine applying for a visa or ESTA to visit in case you are unsuccessful.

This link (which deals with another non-immigrant visa but the advice holds true) gives more detail. Anecdotally, I entered the lottery years ago and was unsuccessful and have had no problem applying for the B1/B2 visa or visiting the USA since.

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