Traveling abroad can be expensive for you, especially if you have been looking forward to relocating for work, study, medicals, visit, joining a spouse, and tourism. The visa lottery system has been set up to qualify immigrants for the green card and access to other countries of their choice.
The United States, from a trend, discovered that most immigrants have come from a similar group of countries, hence the establishment of the Diversity Immigrant Visa Program (DV Program) after the immigration Act of 1990. The program aims to give an opportunity to other countries’ immigrants or diversify the immigrant demographics in America.
The U.S. Department of State conducts the lottery program, and immigrants from countries who have been inadequately represented can register for the Diversity lotteries at the end of the budget year. Upon winning the lottery, the immigrants can obtain a green card.
Apart from the United States, other countries such as the United Kingdom, Switzerland, Holland, and more also offer visa lottery to give access to immigrants who are not fully represented in their country.
The United States Visa lottery
The United States Visa lottery is also known as the Diversity Visa Program (DV Program). To qualify for the visa lottery, you must be a native of an eligible country. Being a native means that you must be born to a parent who is from the eligible country, whether resident there or not.
Eligibility for the Diversity Visa
- If you are from a country with a high immigration rate to the U.S., you are not qualified to apply for the Diversity Visa lottery. To qualify, you have to come from a country whose immigration rate to the U.S. is low i.e., for the past five years, your country has sent less than 50,000 immigrants to the U.S.
Eligible African countries include Algeria, Angola, Benin, Botswana, Egypt, Eritrea, Gabon, Guinea, Niger, Sudan, Togo, Uganda, South Africa, Seychelles, and more.
Countries that are eligible for the DV visa in Asia are Iran, Israel, Iraq, Taiwan, Kuwait, Maldives, Oman, Malaysia, North Korea, Singapore, Thailand, Jordan, and Nepal. You can check for other eligible Asian countries here.
Eligible countries in Europe are Austria, Malta, Cyprus, Finland, Germany, Netherlands, Romania, Russia, Greece, Monaco, Croatia, Norway, Poland, Spain, Switzerland, Turkey, and Ukraine. A list of more European countries that are eligible is listed here.
Countries that are eligible in South America, Central America, and the Caribbean are Cuba, Dominica, Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Chile, Costa Rica, Paraguay, and Uruguay. Checklist of eligible countries here.
Note that the country of your residence or citizenship does not determine your eligibility but the country of your birth.
- Education and work experience
To be eligible for the Diversity Visa lottery, you must have at least a U.S. high school degree or an international equivalent of a U.S. high school degree.
You must have a minimum of two years of work experience within the last five years.
For more information, you can visit the U.S. website of Green Card DV-Lottery for a list of occupations that require at least two years of training.
You can be disqualified for the green card application if you have a criminal record and don’t meet medical requirements. The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) are in charge of the green card application. Thus you have to meet their requirements to qualify.
The United Kingdom Visa Lottery
You might need the U.K. visa lottery for reasons such as work, transit, visiting, and more. To apply for the U.K. visa lottery, you will have to meet some requirements, which depend on your type of visa application. You can apply for the U.K. 2021/2022 visa lottery if you meet the requirement below:
- Passports photograph
- A copy of the completed and signed visa application form
- Recent passports or other travel documents (with a blank page on both sides)
- Evidence of civil status such as marriage certificates, divorce papers, or civil partnership letters.
- Evidence of present work or study
- Travel plans, if you have any.
- Identification cards, evidence of employment, an invitation letter from family and friends in the U.K.
- Evidence of sufficient funds and accommodation
Visit the United Kingdom Visa website to apply and follow the application procedures.
The Switzerland Visa Lottery
The Switzerland visa lottery is an opportunity for you to visit or become a Swiss green card holder for your various reasons of visiting Switzerland. The 2021/ 2022 visa lottery is open, and you will have to be eligible before applying.
Types of Switzerland visa includes school, work, visitor, diplomat, transit, and more, and it is open to all individual to apply irrespective of civil status. Below are the requirements:
- Passport photograph
- Travel document or passport that is not more than six months old.
- Proof that you have traveled to the U.K., UAE, Schengen countries, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand.
- Proof to show that you have enough funds to sustain you all through your stay in Switzerland and bank statement of not more than six months old. If it’s a sponsored trip, you need to present your payroll slips with a seal and the name of the company sponsoring your journey.
- If a family member invites you, you are required to present an invitation letter.
- If you are a student traveling without your parents, you have to present a consent letter from your parents and a NO-Objection letter.
Holland Visa Lottery application
The Holland visa lottery invites immigrants from another country to participate in the lottery to grant them entry into the Netherlands. You will have to meet the Netherlands requirement to be eligible to apply. The Netherlands’ eligibility and conditions are listed here. Your type of visa also determines your requirements.
Be careful that you do not go through the wrong visa lottery application process so that you will not be duped. Make sure that the websites you click to apply are verified.
Ensure that all your details are correct before submitting them online.