Last Updated on 07/28/2014
The Department of State Bureau of Consular Affairs is currently experiencing technical problems with our passport/visa system. This issue is worldwide and is not specific to any particular country, citizenship document, or visa category. We apologize to applicants who are experiencing delays or are unable to obtain a passport, Consular Report of Birth Abroad, or visa at this time. We are working urgently to correct the problem and expect our system to be fully operational again soon.
- Please note: U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Announces Enhanced Security Measures for Travelers to the United States (July 6, 2014)
A U.S. non-immigrant visa is a sticker placed in a traveler’s passport which gives the bearer permission to apply for entry to the United States for a temporary period of time. The specific length of time the traveler may remain in the United States will be determined by the immigration officer at the border.
There are over fifty different kinds or "classifications" of non-immigrant visas to the United States. Many have different requirements and provide different benefits – some allow a visitor to study or to work, while others do not. The classification of visa depends on what the traveler intends to do in the United States. Therefore, all applicants should have a clear idea of their purpose of travel to the United States before they apply for a visa and be prepared to explain that purpose at the visa interview.
As of February 2, 2014, all information about non-immigrant visas and how to apply for them is available at: Visa Information and Appointments
Visa Waiver Program (ESTA)
Electronic System for Travel Authorization - Get It and Go
Video by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security - wmv, 6.3 MB
(in English with English captions)