Announcements

Presidential Proclamations on Novel Coronavirus

4 February, 2021

Entry of foreign nationals who were physically present within the following list of countries within 14 days prior preceding their entry or attempted entry into the United States is suspended, per Presidential Proclamations 9984, 9992, 9993, 9996 and 10041, the Presidential Proclamation issued on January 25:

  • South Africa;
  • Brazil;
  • The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, excluding overseas territories outside of Europe;
  • The Republic of Ireland;
  • The 26 countries that comprise the Schengen Area (Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and Switzerland);
  • The Islamic Republic of Iran;
  • The People’s Republic of China, not including the Special Administrative Regions of Hong Kong and Macau.

There are certain exceptions to the suspension of entry, including exceptions for U.S. lawful permanent residents and certain family members of U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents, among other exceptions listed in the proclamations. If you reside in, have traveled recently to, or intend to transit or travel the above list of countries prior to your planned trip to the United States, we recommend you postpone your visa interview appointment until 14 days subsequent to your departure from the subject country(ries). Additionally, if you are experiencing flu-like symptoms, or believe you may have been exposed to the novel coronavirus, you are strongly encouraged to postpone your appointment by at least 14 days.

Please visit the following link for additional information: https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/News/visas-news/presidential-proclamation-coronavirus.html

Extension of Visa Fee Validity

4 February, 2021

The U.S. Department of State understands that many visa applicants have paid the visa application processing fee and are still waiting to schedule a visa appointment. We are working diligently to restore all routine visa operations as quickly and safely as possible. In the meantime, rest assured that U.S. Missions will extend the validity of your payment (known as the MRV fee) until September 30, 2022, to allow all applicants who were unable to schedule a visa appointment as a result of the suspension of routine consular operations an opportunity to schedule and/or attend a visa appointment with the already paid fee. Please continue to monitor this site for information on when we will return to routine visa operations.

Rescission of Presidential Proclamations 9645 and 9983

4 February, 2021

On January 20, 2021, President Biden signed a Presidential Proclamation titled "Ending Discriminatory Bans on Entry to the United States." This proclamation ends the travel restrictions under Presidential Proclamations 9645 and 9983 that had suspended entry into the United States of certain nationals, based on visa type, from Burma, Eritrea, Iran, Kyrgyzstan, Libya, Nigeria, North Korea, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Tanzania, Venezuela, and Yemen. Please visit the link for additional information: https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/News/visas-news/rescission-of-presidential-proclamations-9645-and-9983.html

CDC Expands Negative COVID-19 Test Requirement to All Air Passengers Entering the United States

2 February, 2021

Effective January 26, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) will require all air passengers entering the United States to present a negative COVID-19 test (a viral detection test for SARS-CoV- 2 approved or authorized by the relevant national authority), taken within 72 hours of departure​. Airlines must confirm the negative test result for all passengers before boarding. Airlines must deny boarding of passengers if they do not provide documentation of a negative test or recovery. This requirement is separate from the visa application process. All Presidential Proclamations restricting travel due to COVID-19 remain in place, and continue to apply to subject potential travelers regardless of their test results or vaccination status. Travelers holding a National Interest Exception also remain subject to all applicable pre-departure testing requirements. For more information on waivers to the testing requirement, please refer to the country-specific information provided at the website links below:

Ireland:
https://ie.usembassy.gov/covid-19-information/

Israel:
https://il.usembassy.gov/covid-19-information/

Italy:
https://it.usembassy.gov/covid-19-information/

Jamaica:
https://jm.usembassy.gov/covid-19-information-jamaica/

Kenya:
https://ke.usembassy.gov/covid-19-information/

Kosovo:
https://xk.usembassy.gov/coronavirus/

Mexico:
https://mx.usembassy.gov/u-s-citizen-services/covid-19-information/

Netherlands:
https://nl.usembassy.gov/covid-19-information-3/

North Macedonia:
https://mk.usembassy.gov/covid-19-information/

Paraguay:
https://py.usembassy.gov/covid-19-information-2/

Peru:
https://pe.usembassy.gov/covid-19-information/

Portugal:
https://pt.usembassy.gov/covid-19-information/

Rwanda:
https://rw.usembassy.gov/health-alert-covid-19-information/

Senegal:
https://sn.usembassy.gov/covid-19-information/

Serbia:
https://rs.usembassy.gov/serbia-covid-19-information/

South Africa:
https://za.usembassy.gov/covid-19-information-2/

Spain:
https://es.usembassy.gov/covid-19-information/

Tanzania:
https://tz.usembassy.gov/covid-19-information/

Trinidad and Tobago:
https://tt.usembassy.gov/covid-19-information/

Turkey:
https://tr.usembassy.gov/covid-19-information-2/

Uganda:
https://ug.usembassy.gov/covid-19-information-page/

United Arab Emirates:
https://ae.usembassy.gov/u-s-citizen-services/covid-19-information/

United Kingdom:
https://uk.usembassy.gov/covid-19-coronavirus-information/

Uruguay:
https://uy.usembassy.gov/covid-19-information/

Zambia:
https://zm.usembassy.gov/covid-19-information-2/

Questions and Answers regarding the “Negative Covid-19 Test Requirement”:

Q: What about American parents traveling overseas to complete international adoptions?

A: U.S. citizens completing adoptions overseas should review CDC’s guidance regarding travel into the United States, as it applies to both parents and children.

Q: Is the Department of State going to start requiring proof of a COVID-19 vaccination or test for visa applicants?

A: We have no changes to visa requirements to announce at this time. Information regarding required vaccinations for immigrant visa applicants may be found on our website: https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/us-visas/immigrate/the-immigrant-visa-process/step-10-prepare-for-the-interview/medical-examination-faqs.html.

Q: Given the CDC has begun requiring negative tests to enter the United States, will foreign nationals with a negative test or vaccine be able to get a visa/enter the United States even if they would normally be restricted by one of the Presidential Proclamations? If a foreign national obtains a National Interest Exception, will they be exempt from the negative testing requirement?

A: All Presidential Proclamations restricting travel due to COVID-19 remain in place, and continue to apply to subject potential travelers regardless of their test results or vaccination status. Travelers holding a National Interest Exception also remain subject to all applicable pre-departure testing requirements. For more information regarding testing requirements, we refer you to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Q: If your workforce is now getting vaccinated, are you going to restart full visa services at all posts?

A: The health and safety of both our workforce and customers remains paramount. U.S. embassies and consulates are working to resume routine visa services on a location-by-location basis, in accordance with public health data and local conditions. We will only resume all services worldwide when it is safe and appropriate to do so. See each U.S. embassy or consulate’s website for information regarding operating status and which services it currently offers.

Our embassies and consulates have put in place safeguards to keep staff and customers safe, including implementing physical distancing in our waiting rooms, scheduling fewer interviews at a time, frequent disinfection of high touch areas, and following local health and safety regulations. These necessary safeguards have temporarily reduced the visa processing capacity at many of our posts, requiring them to prioritize the most urgent and mission-critical cases. In order to protect the health and safety of visa applicants, these measures will remain in place even after all of our staff have received COVID-19 vaccines.

Q: There are reports of foreign nationals traveling to Florida to receive vaccines. Is that permitted under the law?

A: Seeking medical treatment in the United States is a permissible purpose of travel for individuals holding a valid visitor visa; you may find more information here: https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/us-visas/tourism-visit/visitor.html. For questions regarding entering the United States under the Visa Waiver Program, we refer you to the Department of Homeland Security.

For questions regarding individuals' eligibility to receive the vaccine in the United States as part of a priority group, we refer you to local health authorities.

Q: What will happen to U.S. citizens or foreign nationals who present forged or otherwise illegitimate negative COVID test results in order to try to enter the United States?

A: Per the CDC’s order, travelers must present a verifiable, documented test result to their airline in order to travel. Individuals found to have provided forged or otherwise illegitimate test results may be denied boarding and/or entry into the United States. We refer you to CDC, Department of Homeland Security, and Department of Transportation for information on implementation.

Q: Will travelers be able to request CDC waivers (exemptions) from the testing requirement for emergency or humanitarian reasons at Embassies and Consulates?

A: Waivers to the testing requirement may be granted by the CDC on an extremely limited case-by-case basis when extraordinary emergency travel, such as emergency medical evacuation, must occur to preserve someone’s health or safety, and testing cannot be completed before travel. Individuals who believe they meet the criteria will find information on how to request an emergency waiver on the website of the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate. There are no waivers available through this process for individuals who test positive for COVID-19.

Q: If I'm vaccinated, do I have to present a negative COVID test to fly to the United States? Why?

A: All passengers age two and older are subject to the order, even those who have received a COVID-19 vaccine. For questions regarding the testing requirements, we refer you to the CDC, which has information on Requirement for Proof of Negative COVID-19 Test or Recovery from COVID-19 for All Air Passengers Arriving in the United States and Frequently Asked Questions about COVID-19 Vaccination.

The U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem and the Embassy Branch Office in Tel Aviv remain unable to resume routine immigrant and nonimmigrant visa services at this time

2 January, 2021

The U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem and the Embassy Branch Office in Tel Aviv remain unable to resume routine immigrant and nonimmigrant visa services at this time. We will resume routine visa services as soon as possible but are unable to provide a specific date. The MRV fee is valid and may be used to schedule an interview appointment in the country where it was purchased within one year of the date of payment. If you have an urgent matter and need to travel immediately, please follow the guidance provided at the appointment website to request an emergency appointment. Applicants for H1B, H2B, H4, L and certain J categories covered by Presidential Proclamation 10052 should request an appointment only if you have reason to believe you may qualify for one of the exceptions listed in the Proclamation here: https://www.whitehouse.gov/presidential-actions/proclamation-suspending-entry-aliens-present-risk-u-s-labor-market-following-coronavirus-outbreak/.

Suspension of Entry of Certain Immigrants and Nonimmigrants Who Present a Risk to the U.S. Labor Market

1 January, 2021

On December 31, 2020, the President signed a Presidential Proclamation on Suspension of Entry of Immigrants and Nonimmigrants Who Continue to Present a Risk to the United States Labor Market. This proclamation extends Presidential Proclamations (P.P.) 10014 and 10052 through March 31, 2021. P.P. 10014 suspends the entry to the United States of certain immigrant visa applicants, while P.P. 10052 suspends the entry to the United States of certain nonimmigrant visa applicants who present a risk to the U.S. labor market during the economic recovery following the novel coronavirus outbreak. Specifically, the suspension in P.P. 10052 applies to applicants for H-1B, H-2B, and L-1 visas; J-1 visa applicants participating in the intern, trainee, teacher, camp counselor, au pair, or summer work travel programs; and any spouses or children of covered applicants applying for H-4, L-2, or J-2 visas. U.S. citizens, lawful permanent residents, and aliens who are or were inside the United States or those holding valid nonimmigrant or immigrant visas on the effective date are not subject to the proclamation.

Urgent Information For Visa Applicants Regarding Novel Coronavirus

16 September, 2020

Due to the global COVID-19 pandemic, the U.S. Government has imposed restrictions and requirements that may affect travel to the United States. Please review the information below before scheduling or attending a visa-related appointment.

Presidential Proclamations on Novel Coronavirus

Extension of Visa Fee Validity

CDC Expands Negative COVID-19 Test Requirement to All Air Passengers Entering the United States

Rescission of Presidential Proclamations 9645 and 9983


U.S. Visa and Travel Updates

For the latest information from the U.S. Department of State regarding visa issues and travel to the United States, please visit: https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/News/visas-news.html.

VISAS: National Interest Exemptions for Certain Professional Athletes and their Essential Staff and Dependents

2 June, 2020

On May 22, Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Acting Secretary Wolf signed an order exempting certain foreign professional athletes who compete in professional sporting events organized by certain leagues from Presidential Proclamations 9984, 9992, 9993, and 9996. This exemption only applies to certain professional athletes, essential staff, team and league leadership, spouses, and dependents. Individuals who believe they may qualify under this exemption should ask their athletic league representative to contact DHS for guidance on whether they are exempted.

  • If you have a valid visa and have questions about this order, please contact your athletic league representative to clear proposed travel with DHS.
  • If your athletic league or group has been exempted by DHS and you require a visa to travel, follow the instructions on the website of your nearest Embassy or Consulate to complete your application and request a visa appointment.
  • Embassies and consulates have canceled all routine immigrant and nonimmigrant visa appointments as of March 20, 2020, but will continue to provide emergency and mission-critical visa services as resources and local conditions allow.  Travel by individuals excepted by DHS under this order may qualify as mission-critical. Please see these notices which contain detailed information about the current status of visa services worldwide and visa restrictions related to the COVID-19 global pandemic:  https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/traveladvisories/ea/covid-19-visa-services-and-restrictions.html.

The U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem and the Embassy Branch Office in Tel Aviv are accepting certain visa applications which qualify for an Interview Waiver

28 May, 2020

The U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem and the Embassy Branch Office in Tel Aviv are accepting certain visa applications which qualify for an Interview Waiver.  You will be informed of whether you qualify for IW when you fill out your application at the Visa Service website. More information about Interview Waivers is available on the Embassy website. Please note that processing times may be longer than usual.

Covid-19 - Visa Services and Restrictions

21 May, 2020

In response to significant worldwide challenges related to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Department of State has temporarily suspended routine visa services at all U.S. Embassies and Consulates. Embassies and consulates have canceled all routine immigrant and nonimmigrant visa appointments as of March 20, 2020, but will continue to provide emergency and mission-critical visa services as resources and local conditions allow. We will resume routine visa services as soon as possible but are unable to provide a specific date at this time. Please see these notices which contain detailed information about the current status of visa services worldwide and visa restrictions related to the COVID-19 global pandemic: https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/traveladvisories/ea/covid-19-visa-services-and-restrictions.html.

Urgent information for visa applicants regarding novel coronavirus

19 March, 2020

As of March, 18, the United States Embassy in Jerusalem and its Branch Office in Tel Aviv are cancelling routine Immigrant and/or Nonimmigrant visa appointments. [If applicable] From March 15, the U.S. Embassy is not accepting applications and/or follow up documents through Israel Post or Wassel for all visa types. We will resume routine visa services as soon as possible but are unable to provide a specific date at this time. The MRV fee is valid and may be used for a visa application in the country where it was purchased within one year of the date of payment. If you have an urgent matter and need to travel immediately, please follow the guidance provided at https://ais.usvisa-info.com/en-il/niv/information/faqs#need_earlier_appt, or contact by email Jerusalem: JerusalemIVInquiries@state.gov, Tel Aviv: NivTelAviv@state.gov, or by phone 03-9058062 to request an emergency appointment.

Visa appointments are usually available much sooner in Jerusalem

22 January, 2020

Visa appointments are usually available much sooner in Jerusalem. Please check the appointment availability in Jerusalem before Tel Aviv. However, until February 28, 2020, applicants with mobility issues may have difficulty accessing the Jerusalem consular section because of construction projects.

Starting November 4, the parking lot at the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem will no longer be available to the public

16 October, 2019

Starting November 4, the parking lot at the U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem will no longer be available to the public. Public parking in the surrounding area will continue to be available. If you choose to drive, please allow sufficient time to find parking and walk to the Embassy. You may also use public transportation, including buses or taxis. The following buses have stops near the U.S. Embassy:

Egged Bus 7-Alef
Egged Bus 78-Alef
Egged Bus 7
Egged Bus 78
South Bus 203
South Bus 204
South Bus 222
South Bus 224
South Bus 231

Extension of Validity for Venezuelan Passports

12 June, 2019

As of June 7, 2019 the Department of State recognizes that previously issued Venezuelan passports and “prorrogas” have been extended by decree of interim Venezuelan President Guaido for an additional five years past their printed date of expiration. Passports rendered valid by this decree will be accepted for visa and other consular services.

IMPORTANT NOTICE TO NON-IMMIGRANT VISA APPLICANTS RESIDING IN GAZA

31 October, 2017

If you are an applicant residing in the Gaza Strip and require a permit to attend your non-immigrant visa interview:

  1. After completing your DS-160 at https://ceac.state.gov/CEAC and creating a user account at https://ais.usvisa-info.com/en-il/niv, select the option stating that you reside in Gaza. Then, schedule a Consular Section appointment by selecting the specific date/appointment reserved only for Gazan applicants. Please choose a date over 60 days in advance in order to allow time for the permitting process.
  2. Apply for your permit to leave Gaza through the District Coordination Office (DCO). You may present a printout from this website as proof of the date of your appointment.
  3. A shuttle from Erez to be coordinated by the Israeli authorities will take you directly to the U.S. Consulate General Jerusalem Consular Section at 14 David Flusser Street. Same-day return shuttle service will also be provided.

Note: This guidance does not apply to immigrant visa applicants or Green Card holders. Guidance for immigrant visa applicants and Green Card holders residing in Gaza is available HERE.