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U.S. Visa Information

Many non‑U.S. cit­i­zens need a visa to enter the Unit­ed States to vis­it, work, and live. The fol­low­ing sec­tion gives you rel­e­vant infor­ma­tion.

Keep in mind, that you need a busi­ness visa to attend the WVTF | IMWA 2024 con­fer­ence. Details are here.

Keep in mind, that it can take up to two weeks until you might get an appoint­ment at your rel­e­vant U.S. Embassy or Con­sulate. Check your indi­vid­ual wait­ing time here.

What is a U.S. Visa?

A cit­i­zen of a for­eign coun­try who seeks to enter the Unit­ed States gen­er­al­ly must first obtain a U.S. visa, which is placed in the traveler’s pass­port, a trav­el doc­u­ment issued by the traveler’s coun­try of cit­i­zen­ship.

Cer­tain inter­na­tion­al trav­el­ers may be eli­gi­ble to trav­el to the Unit­ed States with­out a visa if they meet the require­ments for visa-free trav­el. The Visa sec­tion of this web­site is all about U.S. visas for for­eign cit­i­zens to trav­el to the Unit­ed States.

For Cit­i­zens of Cana­da and Bermu­da, spe­cial reg­u­la­tions apply. Please vis­it this web­site.

How Can I Use a Visa to Enter the United States?

Hav­ing a U.S. visa allows you to trav­el to a port of entry, air­port or land bor­der cross­ing, and request per­mis­sion of the Depart­ment of Home­land Secu­ri­ty (DHS), Cus­toms and Bor­der Pro­tec­tion (CBP) inspec­tor to enter the Unit­ed States. While hav­ing a visa does not guar­an­tee entry to the Unit­ed States, it does indi­cate a con­sular offi­cer at a U.S. Embassy or Con­sulate abroad has deter­mined you are eli­gi­ble to seek entry for that spe­cif­ic pur­pose. DHS/CBP inspec­tors, guardians of the nation’s bor­ders, are respon­si­ble for admis­sion of trav­el­ers to the Unit­ed States, for a spec­i­fied sta­tus and peri­od of time. DHS also has respon­si­bil­i­ty for immi­gra­tion mat­ters while you are present in the Unit­ed States.

What Types of Visas Are There?

The type of visa you must obtain is defined by U.S. immi­gra­tion law and relates to the pur­pose of your trav­el. There are two main cat­e­gories of U.S. visas:

Visa Waiver Program

The Visa Waiv­er Pro­gram (VWP) per­mits cit­i­zens of par­tic­i­pat­ing coun­tries to trav­el to the Unit­ed States for busi­ness or tourism for stays of up to 90 days with­out a visa. Yet, Trav­el­ers must have a valid Elec­tron­ic Sys­tem for Trav­el Autho­riza­tion (ESTA) approval pri­or to trav­el. There are cur­rent­ly 41 coun­tries par­tic­i­pat­ing in the Visa Waiv­er Pro­gram (the year when VWP was put in place giv­en in brack­ets):

Andor­ra (1991), Aus­tralia (1996), Aus­tria (1991), Bel­gium (1991), Brunei (1993), Chile (2014), Croa­t­ia (2021), Czech Repub­lic (2008), Den­mark (1991), Esto­nia (2008), Fin­land (1991), France (1989), Ger­many (1989), Greece (2010), Hun­gary (2008), Ice­land (1991), Ire­land (1995), Israel (2023), Italy (1989), Japan (1988), Korea, Repub­lic of (2008), Latvia (2008), Liecht­en­stein (1991), Lithua­nia (2008), Lux­em­bourg (1991), Mal­ta (2008), Mona­co (1991), Nether­lands (1989), New Zealand (1991), Nor­way (1991), Poland (2019), Por­tu­gal (1999), San Mari­no (1991), Sin­ga­pore (1999), Slo­va­kia (2008), Slove­nia (1997), Spain (1991), Swe­den (1989), Switzer­land (1989), Tai­wan (2012), Unit­ed King­dom** (1988)

Require­ments to par­tic­i­pate in the Visa Waiv­er Pro­gram can be found here.

Reading and Understanding a Visa

Additional Resources

Please vis­it these web pages: