*Please keep these points in mind before reviewing the Sample below.*

1. What is an "invitation letter"? An invitation letter is simply a letter signed by a
U.S. Citizen or Lawful Resident inviting a tourist visa applicant to visit the U.S., usually
with an offer to pay some or all of the trip costs, such as airfare, lodging and other expenses.

2. The U.S. State Department (USDOS) states that an invitation letter is NOT a required document to apply for a Tourist Visa, but may be submitted as a supplemental document to help the applicant. DSOS states also that additional documents may be requested such as documents to show the purpose of the trip, the applicant's ability to pay all costs of the trip, and the intent of the applicant to leave the U.S. and return to the home country.

3. The Tourist Visa is intended for a SHORT VISIT ONLY to the U.S. and for tourism only. The tourist visa holder is required to return to his/her home country at the end of the tourist visa visit. The Tourist Vis applicant is required to show proof, especially financial proof, that he/she will return to the home country. [NOTE: There are an estimated 4 to 5 million people from foreign countries who traveled to the U.S. under a Tourist Visa and then simply "overstayed" their visa. For this reason, the Tourist Visa is not an easy visa to obtain.]

3. In my practical experience, an invitation letter, no matter how well-written, is no gurantee that the Tourist Visa will be approved. In some cases, the Tourist Visa can be helpful, but in other cases, it does not help. The reason for this is that the primary requirement for approval of Tourist Visa is NOT an invitation letter but sufficient practical and often financial proof that the Tourist Visa applicant will return to the home country at the end of the tourist visa visit.

4. It is true that an invitation letter can sometimes be a benefit to show that the Tourist Visa applicant has a family member or close friend in the U.S. inviting the applicant for a visit and prepared to help with costs. In other cases, the Consular Officer is concerned that the existence of a family member or close freind in the U.S. can serve as a temptation to the applicant to "overstay" the tourist visa or to otherwise investigate a way to remain in the U.S.


[Identify who you are, Name, Address, Telephone Number, E-mail address and that you are a Lawful Resident or U.S. Citizen]

My name is [Name].
My address and contact information is: [Address, Telephone Number, E-mail address]. I am a U.S. Citizen [or Lawful Resident][ in the U.S. since [Insert Month and Year].

[Identify the person who is the Tourist Visa applicant]

I am writing this letter for [Name of Tourist Visa applicant] in support of his/her Tourist Visa application with the U.S. Consulate.

[Identify your relationship to the Tourist Visa applicant, and explain how you know him/her]

The Tourist Visa applicant is my [brother, sister, father, mother, close friend, etc.].

[State that you invite the applicant to the U.S for a SHORT VISIT FOR A LIMTED TIME.]

I invite [Name of person] to the U.S. for a short visit for a limited time. [Insert the locations and places where you invite the person for a short visit]. My invitation for a visit is from [Put in the dates of the invitation, such as for example from March to June 2016].

[Identify the purpose of the applicant's visit, and state that you offer to pay some or all of the costs of the trip, such as airfare, lodging and other expenses.]

The purpose of [Put in name of person]'s visit to the U.S. is: [Insert reason(s) for visit.]
I offer to pay some or all of the costs of his/her visit, such as airfare, lodging and other expenses. [Explain what you agree to offer to pay for here.]

[State why the applicant will return home to their home country, in your belief]

I believe that [Put in person's name] will return to his/her home country of [Put in name of country] because: [Put in all the reason(s).]

Thank you for your kind consideration of this letter.

If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact me.

I am ready to answer your questions.

I certify that all my statements in this letter are true and correct.


Your Signature


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Gary Bala, USA Immigration Attorney.