Visas to the U.S.
Note: Citizens of the British Overseas Territory of Bermuda generally do not need a visa to travel to the U.S. Please go to Visa Exemptions for Bermudians for more information.
Every day, the United States welcomes thousands of visitors and immigrants from all over the world. The Consular Section's Visa Unit can help you sort through whether or not you need a visa, what kind of visa you need, and what you need to do to apply for a visa.
- If you wish to come to the United States for a short visit, then please first select Visa Waiver Program (VWP) to see if you are eligible to travel visa-free.
- If your trip does not meet the requirements of the Visa Waiver Program, then please select Nonimmigrant Visas.
- If you wish to move permanently to the United States, then please select Immigrant Visas.
As of January 12, 2009, Visa Waiver Program (VWP) travelers are required to obtain a travel authorization via the Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) prior to boarding a carrier to travel by air or sea to the U.S. The ESTA registration fee is $14. Please note that persons entering the United States on a visa and lawful permanent resident aliens (Green Card holders) do not need an ESTA registration.
What is a Visa?
A visa is a document issued by a U.S. embassy or consulate and placed in the bearer's passport. A visa entitles the holder to travel to the United States and apply for admission; it does not guarantee entry. A U.S. Customs and Border Protection officer at the port of entry determines the visa holder's eligibility for admission into the United States and the length of stay.
Who needs a visa?
Anyone who is not eligible to enter the United States visa-free under the Visa Waiver Program, or any other exemption from the visa requirement under the Immigration and Nationality Act will require a visa. NOTE: Citizens of the British Overseas Territory of Bermuda generally do not need a visa to travel to the U.S. Please go to Visa Exemptions for Bermudians for more information.
Please proceed to Types of Visas.