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Criminal conviction restrictions?

Did you or anyone you know travel while they had a criminal record? If so, which countries did you go to? Did you expericence any problems with getting a passport, visas, entering countries, working abroad..... because of your criminal record?
10 years ago, July 17th 2009 No: 1 Msg: #79938  

Myself and three friends are hoping to travel the world in 2010 one of the destinations being America. One of my pals has a criminal conviction for minor assault, we were told he would not be granted a traveling visa, is this true?

Is there any way around this as this misdemenour happened over three years ago?


Reply to this

10 years ago, July 17th 2009 No: 2 Msg: #79943  
Hello Patrick 😊

If your friends criminal conviction is not preventing him from getting a passport then it won't prevent him from getting tourist visas.

I have never been asked to show my police record to get a visa or to enter any country. I had to produce it twice. Once was when I wanted to work on the US army base in Germany and the other time was when I wanted a temporary students work permit for Canada.

Nobody would be able to get hold of your friends police record without him allowing it.

Mel Reply to this

10 years ago, July 17th 2009 No: 3 Msg: #79945  
The US immigration has added more rules in the last few years. They are getting very rigid about even tourist visas. Now that I think about it, a criminal record may be a problem, since so many other things seem to be these days.

Does anyone reading this know for sure? If it is the case, I think I would skip the US on your trip. Lots of other places to go.

Reply to this

10 years ago, July 18th 2009 No: 4 Msg: #80035  
What I would do is check what you have to produce for the visa application. That should be listed on the intenet sites of US consulates. If you do not have to show police records, then your friend wont have a problem. If you do, then he likely will. Reply to this

10 years ago, July 18th 2009 No: 5 Msg: #80052  
I think someone with a criminal conviction will have a problem - for a case in point, have a look at this:

Aussie bar mat mum Annice Smoel denied US visa

According to this article, there is a difference between a misdemeanor charge and a felony charge - however, even a misdemeanor charge still requires some work to enter the US. I suspect that an assault charge is a felony, and thus will preclude that person from entering the US for at least a period of five years.

However, to find out for certain, it is best to contact the nearest US consulate/embassy. Reply to this

10 years ago, August 10th 2009 No: 6 Msg: #82708  
Thank you for your help. Can he gain entry to the country without a visa and stay for a shorter period of time? Reply to this

10 years ago, August 10th 2009 No: 7 Msg: #82709  
No, I seriously doubt that. I think even short visits require a tourist visa.
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10 years ago, August 10th 2009 No: 8 Msg: #82710  
Which passport does your friend hold anyway, in case somebody who knows more about this comes along?
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10 years ago, September 10th 2009 No: 9 Msg: #85864  

10 years ago, September 10th 2009 No: 10 Msg: #85877  
My record isn't what you'd call "clean" ,lol, and I've had no problems.That is what passports are for.They are your government vouching for you so other countries don't have to check. Reply to this

10 years ago, September 10th 2009 No: 11 Msg: #85895  
B Posts: 137
The requirements for getting a visa for the USA are tough. But perhaps you come from a visa waiver country? In that case you still need to fill in an online form and be approved before travelling to the US. You can have a look at the information here:

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10 years ago, September 10th 2009 No: 12 Msg: #85903  
An American friend of mine was refused entry into Canada earlier this year, because he got a DUI (misdemeanour) six years ago - Canada will not allow him entry into the country for 10 years...

I was so surprised when he told me!

Definitely recommend checking every country your friend is planning to visit. Reply to this

10 years ago, September 12th 2009 No: 13 Msg: #86094  
B Posts: 105
I do know someone that was refused a visa into the United States because they had a DUI conviction. I also know of a case where someone was refused entry into the States because of a criminal conviction and they were only in transit. These were both Australian passport holders and happened a few years ago.

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9 years ago, April 21st 2010 No: 14 Msg: #109281  
hi me and some friends are thinking of going to bali for holiday but one of them has a drug conviction from his younger days does any one know if there are restrictions on visas for that in bali cheers for any info shauno Reply to this

9 years ago, April 27th 2010 No: 15 Msg: #109718  
B Posts: 105
Hi Shauno, I would double check this with the Indonesian embassy. They are going to give you the most accurate and up-to-date advice. I think it will depend on how serious the crime was and where your friend is from. Reply to this

9 years ago, May 1st 2010 No: 16 Msg: #109981  
hi laandal thanks guys sounds like the right idea better find out or one of us will be flying home and that wont be fun cheers Reply to this

9 years ago, June 18th 2010 No: 17 Msg: #113528  
B Posts: 897
I have been refused a Visa to the US on the grounds that my EX husband is a member of an organised crime gang so apparently this means that I too have links to organised crime (?)....Shauno I cant see your friend having any problems with Indonesian visa on arrival. Im from Aus and have minor old drug convictions (depends how recent they are and for what..i guess if your friend got out of prison for heroin importation last year might be a different story) and had no problems with Indonesia. I was refused entry to singapore 25 years ago due to arriving with visible tattoos and my male travelling companion having long hair...I havent tried entering Singapore since but have transited through there twice in the last year without any problems. Reply to this

9 years ago, June 18th 2010 No: 18 Msg: #113547  
thanks for that littlewing that sounds positive should take his stress away cheers Reply to this

9 years ago, June 26th 2010 No: 19 Msg: #114151  
Hi there,

I was very apprehensive about going to the USA about 2 months ago.
I have a criminal record and served a year in jail about 7 years ago. It was also a federal offence.
I read all the forums and stuff...unless someone has actually done it, i wouldn't really listen to them...it just makes you go crazy.

Here is what I did:
* Wait until 48 hours before flight and fill in the visa waiver thing at ESTA.
* Answer no to all of them. if you answer truthfully, you will not get in.
* Don't worry about any visas. People say you "should" get one...but once again, unless they haven't actually done it themselves, they're just guessing.
* Before landing in Los Angeles, they gave me the usual forms. One of them asks similar questions to the Visa Waiver questions.
* They take fingerprints and eye scans of everyone, but that is more for their own records, not to check if you are a criminal.
* I assume that they don't check criminal records with australia because i got in totally fine.
* They scan your bags etc to make sure you don't have drugs and guns on you etc.

I was anxious all the way until i got out of the airport, but there was nothing to worry about.
I don't want people not being able to enjoy their holiday because of something they did years ago...that's why i'm posting this. Reply to this

9 years ago, July 23rd 2010 No: 20 Msg: #116348  
Criminal Conviction Restrictions:
Speaking from experience here - I have a serious drug conviction from 20 years ago - Distribution LSD, a first degree felony. Though it was my one and only offense and I was 18 at the time current laws prevent me from getting it expunged. I was very nervous about booking a flight on my first traveling experience, worried I would be turned around when I arrived. I hold a US passport. I have traveled to the following countries and recieved a visa on arrival:

Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore, Thailand, Cambodia, Nepal, Egypt, Jordan, Israel, Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, Mexico, Belize, Honduras, Guatemala, Nicaragua, El Salvador, Costa Rica, Puerto Rico, Peru, Bolivia.

I had to apply ahead of time for my visas to India, Vietnam and Laos and had no problems getting them, none asked for my record. I was especially worried about India since I applied in New York and I know they are very particular about their visa.

I was turned back from trying to enter Canada about 15 years ago, I tried to minimize my conviction to the border guard saying I had a marijuana charge and after a trip to the back room he came back and told me apparently they had me for dist. LSD and I would probably never be able to get into Canada. So they have access to US criminal records.

I know that Australia has very restricitive policies but there is some discretion awarded to the visa official on who can pass the 'of good character' test but I have never applied for this visa. I believe UK also has restrictive policies.

I would like to teach in Asia this fall but I am worried about getting a work visa, I know Japan and Korea would be a waste of time but I dont know about Thailand or Indonesia - anyone have any info on these countries? Reply to this

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