Is it OK to ask concrete questions about how to legally migrate to a different country? or is this site more for business and tourism type of travelling?

Essentially, is it ok to ask about legal immigrant procedures (and/or advice) to another country?

5 Answers 5


I recommend you read our faq on the site. Questions are allowed about working while on the go (WWOOFing, volunteer travel etc) - but not immigration or work visas, issues related to immigration / expatriates.

There's now a partner site for immigration/expats which we recommend for such questions.

  • 3
    I missed the last part, though IMHO that is kind of contradictory (or at least confusing) with "customs & border crossing, visas and other travel documents such as permits ". I'll check the proposal. Thanks
    – rantsh
    Mar 21, 2013 at 14:13
  • 2
    Note that for working in another country, The Workplace may be appropriate. For migrating for academia, Academia may be.
    – gerrit
    Mar 21, 2013 at 16:44
  • @rantsh it's not contradictory (although wordy, so maybe confusing) - those visas are for travel, however, not for work visas. Small but important distinction. Thanks!
    – Mark Mayo
    Mar 21, 2013 at 23:37
  • The FAQ now redirects to travel.stackexchange.com/about, which only says "Issues related to immigration / expatriation". Oct 17, 2013 at 23:17
  • “We” don't recommend nothing. Reading through several questions here on meta, I counted at least half a dozen users, some very experienced ones, speaking out in favor of relaxing our criteria regarding expat questions. Also, +7 votes to @jpatokal answer to the present question. At the very least, “we” can't agree on this, with a short majority for the statu quo.
    – Relaxed
    Oct 24, 2013 at 23:00
  • I, for one, think fragmentation between closely related topics is deadly to SE so while I try to respect the rules as they currently exist, I don't think that the expat proposal is a good way “to see a site exist that handles those questions” and, quite independently from the whole kerfuffle about immigration questions here on Travel, I don't recommend it as a way to achieve anything at all.
    – Relaxed
    Oct 24, 2013 at 23:03

So, I'm going to cast a dissenting vote and say we should allow more questions. As long as you're going somewhere with the intention of returning, it's travel in my book, and the endless stream of people asking about eg. student or short-term work visas indicates that this is what our users generally expect as well.

If we need an easy-to-define red line, I'd say anything that's about travel and for stays of under one year (be it for work, study or leisure) is fine, and anything about over one year, or not directly travel-related (opening bank accounts, finding kindergartens, whatever) belongs in Expats.SE.

Some specific examples. Should be OK:

Not OK: any of these.


  • 3
    I don't find that the endless stream of people asking expat questions are our users - most of them are first time visitors. I think the very best we can do is recommend them to throw their support behind the expat.SE proposal. The recent surge in these questions here has resulting in a surge in commits to the proposal on Area 51. I think this is a very good thing. It will be a win-win for everybody. Oct 18, 2013 at 5:02
  • 6
    What I'm saying is that we are driving away our first time visitors, when we should be welcoming them instead. They think their questions are travel questions, why don't we? Oct 18, 2013 at 5:20
  • 3
    I think the answer is to welcome them and be friendly and let them know the expats proposal needs them. Sometimes people contribute answers even though the questions get closed. That's probably not a bad thing. But I personally don't know much at all about those topics. And there's definitely a grey zone but just like the grey zone with outdoors.SE we can handle it. Oct 18, 2013 at 5:27
  • 2
    I like the way you have defined it "with the intention of returning". We get a lot of questions related to moving out for short to mid-term, and perhaps we could reexamine our "no immigrant questions" policy to allow some which could be of interest to very short-term travellers. I need to think more about this and will post a proposal on meta in a few days. Oct 18, 2013 at 6:55
  • 3
    I agree with you jpatokal. Especially that expats proposal isn't getting much love. Oct 18, 2013 at 11:23
  • @HaLaBi: I disagree. To me it looks like the proposal is now starting to pick up momentum - there's a noticeable uptick in commits if you look at the graph and they should hit 50% very soon. I think we could even risk undermining that if we're not careful. Oct 18, 2013 at 21:52
  • 2
    Any SE site gets many questions from first-time users and people who show no obvious intention of returning. But then thinking they are not “our” users (Who are our users? Seasoned travelers who identify with long-term travel and the backpacking community?) can quickly become a self-fulfilling prophecy.
    – Relaxed
    Oct 24, 2013 at 22:46
  • @jpatokal the expat site has now launched in private beta, if interested. It'll go public in a week.
    – Mark Mayo
    Mar 13, 2014 at 13:22

The Expatriates StackExchange Site has now entered the Public Beta stage. As such, it's now open to everyone, an so people with Expatriate style questions are able to ask them there!

(To see the questions asked so far, see the answers given, and join in, head to expatriates.stackexchange.com. To see how it's doing as a site, see the Area51 proposal)

  • 2
    Public beta now.
    – Jonas
    Mar 26, 2014 at 9:27

The distinction between the travel and expatriates sites is clear to long-time users, but it's not obvious to all first-time users, and they often post a good expatriates question on travel. To work around this, questions posted on the wrong site between travel and expatriates should be migrated, so the original URL becomes a redirect. Such questions should not be closed, since closing would keep the question on the wrong site but prevent answers from being posted.

  • I agree, but please bear in mind I asked this question in early 2013 (8 years ago)
    – rantsh
    Oct 20, 2021 at 12:21

I believe it should be allowed to ask immigration questions here until there is a separate SE for it. These two topics overlap too much, and a lot of people (including myself) have questions that lay in both of these areas, and actually come to Travel SE for help with certain immigration related questions too.

I believe we are here to help each other after all, so even though we should try to keep things as organized as possible, it should not interfere with our primary objective.

  • It was actually decided during the beta by SE staff as well (not just the community) that it is out of scope.
    – Mark Mayo
    Jul 15, 2013 at 23:51
  • Don't forget that the expat/immigration proposal just needs a few more votes on questions to reach beta status - feel free to help out.
    – Mark Mayo
    Jul 16, 2013 at 0:10
  • It is definitely out of scope, but that does not mean we should not include it in Travel SE until there isn't a specific one for it. Like back then when there was only stackoverflow, the questions not directly related to programming were not blocked.
    – Elchin
    Jul 16, 2013 at 5:42
  • I would not say "few more" votes. So I see two proposals there, one is Visa & Immigration, and another one Expatriates. Visa & Immigration has only 36 followers
    – Elchin
    Jul 16, 2013 at 5:44
  • I was focusing on the linked one (expats) as the previous immigration one went by the way side. It has 118 followers and only needs 11 more questions to reach a score of 10 to hit beta. So that really is just a few more votes. Had never even seen the visa one.
    – Mark Mayo
    Jul 16, 2013 at 5:49
  • So will Expatriates allow immigration questions? It seems that now that there is a Visa & Immigration proposal, it will be out of scope there too :(
    – Elchin
    Jul 16, 2013 at 5:51
  • Judging by many of the example questions they have, some of immigration stuff will be on topic. Doesn't matter that there's a visa proposal if it doesn't get anywhere.
    – Mark Mayo
    Jul 16, 2013 at 5:53
  • 1
    "Doesn't matter that there's a visa proposal if it doesn't get anywhere" That's exactly why I am for allowing long-term stay/immigration questions in Travel SE!
    – Elchin
    Jul 16, 2013 at 5:56
  • Ugh, I knew you'd go there :) As I said above - it was decided by the SE Staff AND Community that it's out of scope on Travel. However, it was a decision MADE. Therefore, it's entirely reasonable that it could be out of scope here, and yet the staff and community decide that it's ON scope in expats to have visa/immigration stuff. However it's been well established that it's not going to be in travel.
    – Mark Mayo
    Jul 16, 2013 at 5:58
  • 3
    No, it has not been "well established", that's why we're having this discussion. If anything, my suggestion to open up Travel.SE for all travel <1 year currently has more upvotes than downvotes. Oct 24, 2013 at 23:07

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .