The registration period for DV2020 is about to open (about 1 hour from now) – so a few pointers to help make it successful.


  1. The entry period is from October 3 to November 6 and it opens at Noon EDT – East coast USA time – not the time where you might live. It also closes at noon on the USA east coast.
  2. Entry is FREE and it is very easy to enter yourself.
  3. Do not lie in this process, EVER. To clarify, a lie is when you don’t tell the truth, or omit a relevant detail. People who have lied (“forgetting” they are married or have a child for instance) often get offended when I point out they lied.  Lies are toxic in this process.
  4. DO NOT let anyone enter for you. Every year I see cases of fraud, cases rejected and so on – simply because a third party entered the lottery.
  5. BEFORE you enter, read the instructions properly!
  6. The two biggest mistakes that people make are leaving a spouse or child off the entry (leading to certain denial) OR choosing the wrong country.
    • Make sure you accurately choose your marital status correctly. Include your spouse and all children under 21 (including step children)
    • Entry is based on country of birth. Not citizenship, country you are living at or ANYTHING else. The country where you were born. There  are a couple of exceptions to that rule – but those are rarely used (and discussed here)
  7. Watch the video to know how to enter.
  8. You can enter even if you are already selected in DV2019. Anyone can enter.
  9. Enter here:
  10. Take a new photo for the entry. Photo examples and instructions are here. The photo tool available there is a very useful tool to ensure the correct proportions and image size. You can take a photo with phone.
  11. Tell the truth as it is on the day of your entry. For example, if you are not married, but expect to be married within a few weeks, the reality is you are single so enter as single.
  12. Only enter once. A married couple can each enter and list the spouse as a derivative. Likewise a child of over 18 could be on the parents entry and have their own entry.
  13. It does not matter when you enter – the draw is random, there is no “best time” to enter, and I have proof of that statement.
  14. You don’t need to have a passport at the time of entry, but if selected you will need a passport to process your application.
  15. This is a lottery with a small chance of winning (being selected). Some people are selected on their first attempt, others could try 20 years and never get selected.
  16. You can enter the lottery from anywhere, on a computer/smartphone/similar device.
  17. There are no special tips to help get selected. Anyone who suggests otherwise is a fool, or trying to scam you. Just follow the VERY simple instructions and you may get lucky.


OK – that captures most of the questions I am typically asked.