Can a single Russian woman get a visa to travel to the USA
I have been corresponding via email with someone I think though to be legitimate. She has now gotten plane fare and sent me the flight information but now says the embassy says she must prove material solvency in order to travel. She asks for $3000 US dollars.... is this true. She has also sent me many pictures and a copy of her passport.
What do you think?
Bob's Answer: Thanks for your question. First, I've always heard that it is VERY difficult for single Russian women to receive a tourist visas to the U.S. I would suspect that a Russian woman would probably need to show financial solvency in order to be granted a visa. This shows the government that she really is coming for "tourism".
But that's just the "business end" of my answer. My assessment: I'm quite sure this is a scam. Russian women asking men whom they've never met to send them travel money is almost always a scam.
There are several clues even in your short post (apart from the obvious request for money). First, she claims she has booked a flight prior to receiving her visa. No one does this!
Second, she has sent you a copy of her passport... Why? Clearly to prove her authenticity, right? Most serious Russian women would not do that... they would neither offer it, nor would they provide it upon request.
Trust me, all the good scams have many pictures, convincing flight information, information from and about travel agencies, plane ticket receipts, and even scanned passports and other IDs.
Here's a little experiment you can try... Copy phrases from randomly selected emails she has sent you and paste them into Google.
For instance, when scammers contact me, I usually play with them a little. Her emails built up this story that she was coming to the U.S. for work, and could work in any city she wanted, so she wanted to know what city I was in so that she could come here to be with me. So, in her last email before she supposedly was to fly to Moscow en route to the U.S., she said, among other things, "You should know that after sending this email I will go home, take my packed bags and fly to Moscow".
So take that phrase, including the double quotes, and paste it into Google. You'll see that this "girl's" messages to me were sent to many other men, including this last one saying essentially "I'm on my way!".
I think if you do a similar exercise you'll find that the messages she sent to you were sent to many others.
Anyway, I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but this is what I think.
Feel free to reply to this post with any additional information you would like to include and I'll be happy to evaluate it too.