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Preparations and advice for travelling to the US
Sat Apr 23, 2011, 10:00 AM (This post was last modified: Sat Apr 23, 2011 10:00 AM by nightPhaser.)
Post: #1
Preparations and advice for travelling to the US
So I'm aware a number of members here know a fair bit on international travel. With regards to going to the United States, and speaking as a Malaysian, I'd like to ask about:

(1) Integral things one has to do before the trip e.g. procedures, documents

(2) Any additional advice, mostly regarding the travel aspect than the "already there" stuff.


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Sat Apr 23, 2011, 03:25 PM
Post: #2
RE: Preparations and advice for travelling to the US
I think as you're a Malaysian citizen, the number one priority is to get a visa for entry: http://malaysia.usembassy.gov/visas.html

And that requires planning the details of your trip in advance and going for the interview at the US console in KL for your application.
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Sat Apr 23, 2011, 09:31 PM (This post was last modified: Sat Apr 23, 2011 09:40 PM by Canis Enigmas.)
Post: #3
RE: Preparations and advice for travelling to the US
A key tip that a friend of mine told me when it comes to the interviews for visas to America : Never demonstrate that you're capable of speaking English!

Reason for this is for them to be more convinced that you're less able to get a job while in the US and hence unlikely to overstay your visit.
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Sat Apr 23, 2011, 10:40 PM
Post: #4
RE: Preparations and advice for travelling to the US
@nightPhaser
Are you applying for a visitor visa? I just got mine last month in preparation for AC. I can probably write up a play-by-play tutorial... ^^

(Sat Apr 23, 2011 09:31 PM)Canis Enigmas Wrote:  A key tip that a friend of mine told me when it comes to the interviews for visas to America : Never demonstrate that you're capable of speaking English!

Not a good idea. It's better to act smart, be honest, present the proper credentials rather than to act clueless. It's difficult to fool the interviewers -- so it's best not to!
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Sun Apr 24, 2011, 12:35 AM
Post: #5
RE: Preparations and advice for travelling to the US
If you are planning a long-haul flight, do check to see if you will need a stopover or two. Or three. Or four (depending on which state you will be flying into).

When I flew to Russia, there was a lengthy 5 hour stopover in Amsterdam. The group I was travelling with wisely opted to rent a few rooms at the airport hotel, which was very welcome. After a long flight (approximately 13 hours) onboard a very nice (but cold) Boeing 777, you want to stretch your legs out on a comfortable bed, use a proper WC and have proper hot water to shower under. It made the next leg of the trip much bearable and definitely made us more alert to the hassle of travelling in a large group, especially since we were travelling for a competition.

When travelling long-haul, it would be wise to make your luggage as distinct as possible, so that you can easily identify as it is coming off the luggage carousel. We achieved this using brightly coloured ribbons either bound or tied to the handles. It would also be useful if you had your own personalised destination tags to indicate where the bag is going. Once, my Army commander travelled to China, only to have his luggage stuck in Hong Kong (the transit point) because the check-in staff didn't stick the sticker that directed it all the way to mainland China. Also, remove past transit stickers to avoid confusion among baggage handlers. If you have customised luggage tags, and some basic contact information on it should it get mishandled, that will definitely make luggage tracking easier.

Do take note that travelling into the USA does mean you need to invest in a TSA lock-equipped luggage. This allows security to inspect your baggage (somewhere behind the scenes) with a special master key without having to physically pry (and damage) your luggage.

Insurance is a definite must, especially when travelling overseas. I got a quotation from my insurance agent for about SGD$110 for 10 days in BOTH Russia and Rome. It was quite a suitably comprehensive plan; it wasn't the cheapest, neither was it the most expensive. It suited my needs and a little bit more, which was how I wanted to feel; safe and secure. Check with your insurance agent on how much it would cost to cover you internationally. I recommend getting a plan to cover you for lost luggage, especially if you have to transit quite a fair bit. That way, in the event something does go wrong, you'll be suitable covered.

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Mon Apr 25, 2011, 09:54 AM (This post was last modified: Mon Apr 25, 2011 09:55 AM by nightPhaser.)
Post: #6
RE: Preparations and advice for travelling to the US
(Sat Apr 23, 2011 10:40 PM)cartoonwolf Wrote:  @nightPhaser
Are you applying for a visitor visa? I just got mine last month in preparation for AC. I can probably write up a play-by-play tutorial... ^^

That would be much appreciated! Either PM me or I PM you about this, whichever comes first. I'm particularly curious about the interview as well.

Would've settled most of this a lot earlier, but hit major snags in work/study. Really hoping I could pull this off, like, boss! =x



(Sun Apr 24, 2011 12:35 AM)Hollud Wrote:  If you are planning a long-haul flight, do check to see if you will need a stopover or two. Or three. Or four (depending on which state you will be flying into).

etc.

Thank you for these, hoss-sama, def helps with working out my budget.


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Tue Apr 26, 2011, 09:26 PM
Post: #7
RE: Preparations and advice for travelling to the US
Fancy me just logging in and just happening to bump into this thread.

Let me know when you come to looking around for air tickets. I may be able to work out some lower rates (lower relative to general SIA pricing) for your travel!

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