Speaking to Hungarian state radio, New York Consul General Ferenc Kumin said that the number of Hungarian citizens denied entry at the United States border has risen sharply over the past week.
Kumin told Kossuth radio that it is up to the border patrol agent to decide whether tourists can be allowed to enter the country or if there is a risk that they will take on illegal work.
He said that obtaining all the necessary documents needed to take up legal work in the United States is an “unbelievably complex” process that could take years to complete. Kumin added, at the same time, that many people get conned by organized crime rings into thinking that they can work in the US legally and as a result end up in a vulnerable position.
In a statement, the Hungarian foreign ministry said that American authorities tend to deny entry to Hungarian tourists due to a high number of entrants planning to take up seasonal jobs without a work permit.
According to the statement, the majority of applicants for ESTA visas “do not know or overlook the fact that this visa is solely for tourist visits; any other purpose requires a relevant visa”.
The ministry warned all people wishing to travel to the US to find employment to acquire appropriate visas before leaving Hungary.
While it is unclear as to whether the two are connected, this news comes just days after the US Supreme Court allowed President Donald Trump’s “travel ban” to be partially enacted before it is reviewed by the court this October.