Not too long ago, I reached the reputation level necessary to access the Close Votes review queue. This has been a rewarding journey so far; one of the things that puzzled me is the prevalence of questions where we (the Travel Stack Exchange community) are asked to 'predict' what a certain authority would do in a certain situation (most often, but not always pertaining to visas). Examples:
- Visa schengen processing time?
- travelling to us with 10 years visa and being asked to carry hospital bills of my us born kids
- How long it takes for the German embassy to remove my details from Database after I drop a mail to [email protected]
- USCIS appointments for UK Visas - General Availability
- How strict is Swiss/Edelweiss about pet carrier dimensions?
For more examples of questions recently closed as 'primarily opinion-based', see this SEDE query.
While I generally agree about closing these kind of questions, I'm not sure if this is really a matter of opinion. I'm wondering if it makes sense to add another off-topic reason boiling down to "we're not Customer Service for authority/company X", like Stack Overflow does.
Closing as primarily opinion-based might be confusing to new readers ("How can this be an opinion based question? They will either get their visa approved or declined.") and it provides the option to link to an extensive meta post which could explain why we do not allow these questions and what other resources are available for the author. We already do that for the other three off-topic reasons:
- What is a shopping question?
- The WANTA™ debate (We are not travel agents)
- Is it OK to ask questions about immigration?
(I am aware that the ♦ moderator interface doesn't allow adding more than three boilerplate off-topic reasons. Still, quite a few Stack Exchange sites have done so in the past when the need arose).