After participating in the Green Card Lottery for several years, our former customer Kathrin and her husband finally hit the jackpot in 2010: They won a US Green Card! It took them a while to realize that the winning notification was no fake. But today, they are living their dream in the land of opportunity.
We had the chance to talk to Kathrin. In the following interview she explains why they wanted to move to America and how this dream turned into reality. Learn what they have experienced from winning the Green Card Lottery to the actual immigration to the USA and get helpful tips and tricks for your own way to your new home country.
Why did you apply for the Green Card Lottery?
It started when I met my husband (1995). He has always been a huge fan of the USA. He used to tell me how great America is, what there is to do and to see and all things like that.
I was fairly unimpressed but then again, I didn’t have any holiday experience in the USA like he had. For me it was more like: “What`s all the fuss about America?” Well, he eventually convinced me to fly over for a holiday. He was so excited and wanted to show me so many great things, so I said ok.
The stress at the airport in Frankfurt, the cramped airplane, all those people - it wasn't a very motivating start at all. But I remember the moment exactly when we arrived at the airport. We got out and as soon as I touched American ground, I had a fantastic feeling. I know it sounds corny but that moment was the beginning of our future.
Why did you decide to participate with the American Dream?
When we returned from our holiday, we talked a lot about our future. Since my husband was the bigger USA fan, he did some research about what you have to do to move to the USA. That’s when we learned about the Green Card. We went for The American Dream because back then it was the only government licensed immigration organization and we were instantly hooked.
What was your first reaction when you received the Green Card winning notification?
It’s only scam…junk…fake…fraud. We were in New Zealand at that time (2010) and had one day left before we had to leave for Australia. We were at a friend’s place that evening and checked our emails.
My husband was driving me insane. I wanted to check my emails one at a time but he wanted me to open something with Green Card and Congratulations.
Open this! Open this first! What is that? OPEN IT! Boy, he was annoying. I didn’t realize it in the beginning but then I saw it. I opened the email and we both went: NO! NO! NOOO!!!
Our friends got super excited, too, although they had no idea what we were talking about.
Then we got skeptical. Could that be real? We called the office [editor’s note: The American Dream office in Berlin] as soon as we got the chance: Yes, it was true and no, it’s no fake. Congratulations to your Green Card!
How did you go with the process of the Green Card application?
Since our lives were very chaotic at that time, we decided to book the entire package [editor’s note: The American Dream premium service] and we didn’t regret it for a second.
Do you have any advice for Green Card winners, who are right before their application process?
I would advise anyone to book your premium service. It is worth the extra money because you know much more about the things we have to pay attention to. If something is wrong or missing, you take care of it. You were a huge help. Even speaking with today’s knowledge, we would book the service any time again.
Take me as an example: With your help I managed to get my trainings acknowledged to be “equivalent to the USA high school education”, which is required to qualify for the Green Card.
How did you experience your Green Card activation trip?
We went to Washington, D.C., for our Green Card activation because we haven’t been there before. It helped us to cross another state from the list of potential places to move to.
Why? We liked Washington, D.C., but it was not the right place for us to settle down. It was different from the America that we have seen before, which was the Mid-West.
Where did you originally want to live in the USA?
I always wanted to move to Montana. But we did some research where we had better chances to find a job and that was in Colorado. So we moved straight into the cheapest Best Western hotel, that we could find: in Frederick, near Longmont.
What did you look forward to the most?
A new beginning, finding a place to call home, learning a new language, seeing many new things, finding a job etc.
Where do you live now and how different is your everyday life from the one back in Germany?
We had to relocate again and are now in Washington (state). Everything is new and we have yet to settle in. Even though, there were a few things that didn’t go well, I still find it easier to make it through the day here than in Germany. For instance, here are age limits for getting jobs, too, but it’s not as bad as in Germany.
What do you like about your new life in America?
You can go shopping without people crushing their trolley into your heels. Everything is more relaxed, friendly. I find it less complicated and easier and better. People are not as stressed and frustrated as I have experienced them in Germany.
Looking back, would you take the leap and move to the USA again?
Yes, without a single doubt!
Winning the Green Card resulted in a true adventure for Kathrin and her family. Now they get to live in the country of their dreams and made their biggest wish come true.
We wish our Green Card winners the best of luck for their future in America and hope that this review helped other potential USA immigrants to take the leap. If you want to find out more about Kathrin and her life in the USA, check out their digital photo diary!
If you want to live the American dream, too, apply for the Green Card Lottery today and take the first step towards your new life!