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I understand that my visa fee will not be refunded, but I gave the clerk flight money as well. Will they refund that amount?

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    Who is "the clerk" ? What entity or office does "the clerk" work for? Who is "they" in the second sentence? Commented Mar 15 at 16:45
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    I never heard of an embassy getting flight tickets for visa applicants. Are you sure you were dealing with the embassy and not with a "visa service" or a scammer pretending to be either?
    – Sabine
    Commented Mar 15 at 17:15
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    Did you actually visit the US embassy, or did you just meet someone who said they were acting in their behalf? How did you pay? How much? What for exactly? I would be surprised if you just had enough cash to pay for a flight to the US on you while visiting the US embassy… Lost likely you just let a scammer pretending to work for the US embassy.
    – jcaron
    Commented Mar 15 at 22:11
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    I think the question should remain here as visa provisioning related scams are travel related and common enough in some countries that the local embassies explicitly warn about them. Commented Mar 16 at 11:25
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    i agree clsing this question is a terrible idea as there is important information in it.
    – deep64blue
    Commented Mar 16 at 11:32

2 Answers 2

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As others have said, this appears to be a scam, and you should contact your bank to see if there is any chance of tracing or retrieving your funds.

If you paid cash that is a red flag all by itself and the money is almost certainly irretrievably gone.

If you are still interested in traveling to the United States, the visa application process is outlined at https://ng.usembassy.gov/visas/

For applicants within Nigeria, the above linked page shows that

In the country you selected, visa applications and interview scheduling are primarily facilitated by a third-party company, U.S. Travel Docs. Please visit their website at: https://www.ustraveldocs.com for additional information on determining what visa type is best for you and how to apply.

Digging further, I find that as of 2024 the nonrefundable visa application fee is payable online directly to that handling company or in person via a specific form at a GT Bank branch.

In particular note that, the US Department of State has issued a fraud warning about scammers targeting US Visa applicants: https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/us-visas/visa-information-resources/fraud.html which says (about the Diversity Visa process) in part

Also avoid visa consultants who charge money because they claim they can improve your chances of winning. We do NOT work with consultants and they CANNOT improve your chances of being selected.

and also

Some websites and emails try to mislead customers and members of the public into thinking they are official U.S. government websites. These websites are designed to appear official, and often have images of the U.S. flag, U.S. Capitol, White House, or Statue of Liberty. What these websites and emails are missing is the “.gov” suffix on their addresses. Remember that anything that does not end with “.gov” should be considered suspect

While there appear to be a variety of legitimate visa assistance services (in general, charging a fee to help you fill out your visa application correctly and with an eye to a successful outcome) and travel agents that also offer visa services in Lagos and elsewhere in Nigeria, the legitimate ones would not claim to be US Embassy staff, and US Embassy staff do not arrange commercial flights.

Note: It's not completely impossible that you purchased a nonrefundable plane ticket from a legitimate travel agency, who attached proof of round trip airfare to a visa application they submitted on your behalf to improve your chances of acceptance. (While this is a common misconception, the US State Department directly states Do not make final travel plans or buy tickets until you have a visa.) Even if you were merely confused into thinking that you were dealing directly with the US Embassy, in that case you should have a receipt where you signed your acceptance of such terms -- and having signed those terms, you would have no recourse, and the money is equally gone.

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    Logically, why would the USA care if they gave you a visa and you had no flight ticket? No problem for them.
    – gnasher729
    Commented Mar 18 at 7:03
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    @xLeitix most countries, including the US, have realized that some people who are determined to overstay their welcome are willing enough to throw away the return portion of a round-trip ticket. A booking is meaningless; a ticket only slightly less so. At travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/us-visas/tourism-visit/… the US State Department says "do not make final travel plans or buy tickets until you have a visa."
    – phoog
    Commented Mar 20 at 20:38
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    @xLeitix The misconception that a ticket is necessary for the visa application is precisely what makes people vulnerable to this scam. We should be correcting the misconception, not perpetuating it.
    – phoog
    Commented Mar 20 at 20:41
  • @phoog If you say so. I deleted my comment.
    – xLeitix
    Commented Mar 21 at 9:01
  • Added that quote and link to the page at State; thanks, @phoog
    – arp
    Commented Mar 22 at 0:45
64

US Embassy in Nigeria told me to pay them for my flight when applying for Visa, however my visa was denied. Will they refund me my flight money back?
...
but I gave the clerk flight money as well. Will they refund that amount?

This looks like a scam. I doubt you will ever see the money again.

A US visa is issued by a US consulate (or consulate department inside an embassy).

It is not their task to book or accept payments for flights as a precondition for a visa applicaton acceptance.

Even if they did, they would issue a receipt which would clearly state US government (in some form) and the reason the payment was accepted for.

I doubt that you have such a receipt.

If you do have a receipt, then add an image of it into the question. The question could then be passed on to another stackexchange site that may be more helpful than travel.stackexchange.

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    ... in the unlikely event of having a receipt to upload, of course the OP should black out any personal information first. Commented Mar 17 at 6:20
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    What justifies the hostility from the initial vote to close the question to the demand to upload a receipt? The gist of your answer seems correct but you can make your point, even ask whether the OP has a receipt without being so hostile.
    – Relaxed
    Commented Mar 17 at 16:25
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    @Relaxed - This "hostility" appears to me to be something you are reading into the initial comment and this post. I don't see it. Maybe you consider bold font to be hostile? It is intended merely to emphasize important points, to make sure they are not overlooked: the requested action is not something an embassy employee should be doing, and official government documents will be clearly stated as such. It is too late to save HisMainEvent from this scam, but making sure they are aware of warning signs may help them avoid future ones. Commented Mar 17 at 18:38
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    @Relaxed There was never any hostility from my side. Without a receipt no one can give a proper answer as to how to start the process of getting a refund. An image would show details that could lead to a more precise answer. Commented Mar 17 at 19:57
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    @Relaxed - The questioner never claimed to have a reciept, so saying it is unlikely they have one is not in any way expressing a disbelief in what the questioner said. The reason for doubting that they had a receipt was because the information given suggests this is a scam, making it unlikely they would have gotten one. And Mark Johnson has expressed why he requested an image both in the post and in his reply to your comment, and it had nothing to do with proving the questioner's claims. (But I agree the OP should black out any personal info if they post it.) Commented Mar 18 at 1:55

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