General Question

2late2be's avatar

How likely is that I find an immigration officer in the airport?

Asked by 2late2be (2286points) October 6th, 2009

I know that many people here are illegals haters, but I really want to go visit my family in Virginia, but I’m afraid to find immigration officers in the airport, how likely is to see them in the airport?

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12 Answers

Darwin's avatar

In an international airport there will be customs and immigration officers present, and these days in any airport there will be security personnel looking for folks who seem nervous. You also may have to present identification several different times. If you have a valid id, such as a driver’s license, and if you can keep your cool and not fall into a high risk profile there shouldn’t be a problem.

Have you considered driving or taking the bus or the train instead? Terrorists are less likely to use those forms of transportation to hurt large numbers of people, so no one keeps as strict an eye on them.

gussnarp's avatar

I don’t imagine you’ll have much trouble on a domestic flight as long as you have the proper ID to board. They check your ID at the security checkpoint, basically to see if you are who you say you are. They do check it pretty thoroughly, so if your ID is fake then you should be very concerned.

YARNLADY's avatar

Hater or not hater, it makes no difference to an immigration officer. All they are interested in is do you have the proper documentation? If not, prepare to be arrested.

RedPowerLady's avatar

I’m not an illegal hater :)

What you could do is go to a local community center for ‘insert culture here’ and ask them your questions. Usually there is one person there who has all the good info and even some tips :) Sometimes you have to be a bit discreet in asking but I find most often no one cares, lol.

Also I second the idea of taking bus or train. I’d go for the train myself, they are much cleaner and more comfortable.

Darwin's avatar

I love taking the train. You get a sight-seeing tour as you move across the country, and you can get up and move around any time you want.

RedPowerLady's avatar

oh ya that is a huge bonus, being able to move around when you want (and of couses the site-seeing is as well). And they have food on train which is nice.

curiousk's avatar

In contrary to what @Darwin and @RedPowerLady might think, the trains (e.g. Amtrak) and many bus companies (e.g. grayhound) have been target of several homeland security random raids—so to answer your question, I do not suggest a train or a bus for a long distance ride. There are INS officers at many international airports, but like the responders above have said, they only check to make sure you have the proper documentation. Make sure you have a passport or even a consualr ID and you should be fine. Don’t look nervous, if you can, try to wear something a bit formal (slacks n shoes or something nicer than jeans). Also, depending on what airport you are departing from and what airport you will be arriving to will make security a bit tougher or a piece of cake. So, good luck.

RedPowerLady's avatar

Considering that most people who are “illegal” do not have proper documentation it might be a better bet to take the chance of a random raid than the sure shot of having your papers checked. But that is, of course, a personal decision.

curiousk's avatar

@RedPowerLady True, but if @2late2be is so eloquent to be posting this question in English AND on Fluther, I imagine that he atleast has a passport (from his/her country of origin but issued here in the US from the consular office of that country). So, even if its not a US passport, you can use your native country’s passport as long as it has been has been issued from the consular office here in the states. The requirements for such a passport should be minimal, as long as you are not a felon here or back home. Did that make sense?

Darwin's avatar

@curiousk@2late2be would also need to have the appropriate stamps indicating visa status, and probably does not have that. Hence, the comments about illegal immigrants were made by the OP.

The random raid would have perhaps better odds of not happening.

RedPowerLady's avatar

@curiousk Yes it makes sense what you are saying and I’m sure the OP appreciates your POV. I personally think the AMTRAK and the Greyhound are better options but to each their own.

bellusfemina's avatar

Take a bus. It’s cheaper and you won’t have to worry about immigration officials.

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