U.S. Visas

U.S. Visas

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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.

(Note: U.S. citizens don’t need a U.S. visa for travel, but when planning travel abroad may need a visa issued by the embassy of the country they wish to visit. In this situation, when planning travel abroad, learn about visa requirements by country, see country information in the International Travel Section section of this website.)

More Information about Visas


Visa Appointment Wait Time

Select a U.S. Embassy or Consulate:


Nonimmigrant Visa Type Appointment Wait Time
Visitor Visa -- days
Student/Exchange Visitor Visas -- days
All Other Nonimmigrant Visas -- days

Important Announcement

Due to the Russian government’s ordered closure of the U.S. Consulate General in St. Petersburg, we are no longer able to provide visa services there.  Please consult the website for the U.S. Embassy in Moscow.

Travel to the United States
Travel to the United States

Tourism & Visit

Study & Exchange




Other Visa Categories

Forms & Fees
Forms & Fees

DS-160: Online Nonimmigrant Visa Application

All Forms


<div style="height:40px"><span align="left"><a href="/content/travel/en/us-visas/visa-information-resources/temporary-workers.html">Rights & Protections for Temporary Workers</a></span></div>

<div style="height:40px"><span align="left"><a href="/content/travel/en/us-visas/visa-information-resources/fraud.html">Fraud Protection</a></span></div>

<div style="height:40px"><span align="left"><a href="/content/travel/en/us-visas/visa-information-resources/frequently-asked-questions.html">Glossary, A-Z Index, & FAQs</a></span></div>

<div style="height:40px"><span align="left"><a href="https://www.cbp.gov/travel/international-visitors/esta">Electronic System for Travel Authorization Application</a></span></div>

<div style="height:40px"><span align="left"><a title="Rights &amp; Protections for Foreign-Citizen Fiancees" href="/content/travel/en/us-visas/visa-information-resources/imbra.html">Rights & Protections for Foreign-Citizen Fiancé(e)(s)</a></span></div>

<div style="height:40px"><span align="left"><a href="/content/travel/en/legal/visa-law0/visa-bulletin.html">Check the Visa Bulletin</a></span></div>