GENERAL INFORMATION: INTERNATIONAL TRAVEL TO THE UNITED STATES FOR A CONFERENCE

 

Do you need a visa to attend this conference?  This depends on where you are from.  The easiest way to find out, it to use the Visa Wizard website.  This will inform you on the type of visa that is needed.

IF YOU NEED TO APPLY FOR A TRAVEL VISA TO THE UNITED STATES:

 

It is recommended that you plan your travel and visa application as far in advance as possible, since the visa application process to enter the United States can take longer than expected, especially during the summer months.

Consult with the U.S. Consulate or Embassy in the country where you live for detailed instructions on the several steps to apply for a travel visa as early as possible, as the procedures from every Embassy or Consulate might require additional supporting documents.

Below, we have provided some general information for you with the appropriate links to use as a guide.  We highly encourage you to read further, research your own requirements, and check for any updates or changes about travel to the US.

NO VISAS:

Citizens of Canada and Bermuda do not require visas to enter the United States to visit, for tourism, or for temporary business travel purposes.

 

COUNTRIES UNDER THE VISA WAIVER PROGRAM

Certain countries can travel to the United States without a visa (see the list below), when they meet certain requirements for the Visa Waiver Program, however, each traveler must have authorization under the Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA).

 

In order to travel without a visa on the Visa Waiver Program, you must have authorization through the Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) prior to boarding a U.S. bound air or sea carrier. ESTA is the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Customs and Border Protection's (CBP) automated web-based system to determine eligibility to travel without a visa to the United States for tourism or business. Visit the ESTA webpage for more information and to apply. See  Frequently Asked Questions for more about the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) and the Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA).

 

What You will need for the ESTA application:

  • Valid passport from a Visa Waiver Program
  • Valid credit card (MasterCard, VISA, American Express, and Discover (JCB, Diners Club)) or PayPal to pay the US $14 per application.
  • Your contact information.
  • Your most recent employment information, if applicable.

 

Citizens or nationals of the following countries are currently eligible to travel to the United States under the Visa Waiver Program.

Andorra Hungary Norway
Australia Iceland Portugal
Austria Ireland San Marino
Belgium Italy Singapore
Brunei Japan Slovakia
Chile Latvia Slovenia
Czech Republic Liechtenstein South Korea
Denmark Lithuania Spain
Estonia Luxembourg Sweden
Finland Malta Switzerland
France Monaco Taiwan
Germany Netherlands United Kingdom
Greece New Zealand  

 

 

COUNTRIES THAT NEED A NONIMMIGRANT VISA
A citizen of a foreign country not under the Visa Waiver Program and who wishes to enter the United States and “attend a scientific, educational, professional, or business convention or conference”  (Business visa category B-1) must first obtain a nonimmigrant visa for temporary stay.

 

IF YOU NEED TO APPLY FOR A TRAVEL VISA:

Check all the requirements needed to apply for a visa to travel to the U.S. with both:

  • S. Department of State and Homeland Security: https://travel.state.gov , and
  • S. Consulate or Embassy in the country where you live.

 

How to apply:

 

First gather the required documentation:

  • Passport - Your passport must be valid for at least six months beyond your period of stay in the United States.
  • Photo – A valid passport photo (See the Photo Requirements page for valid photo instructions and a cropping tool).
  • Travel itinerary, if you have already made travel arrangements.
  • Dates of your last five visits or trips to the United States, if you have previously travelled to the United States. You may also be asked for your international travel history for the past five years.
  • Résumé or Curriculum Vitae- You may be required to provide information about your current and previous education and work history.
  • Other Information- Some applicants, depending on the intended purpose of travel, will be asked to provide additional information when completing the DS-160.

 

Complete the Online Visa Application

  • Go to Form DS-160 to begin your Online Nonimmigrant Visa Application
  • Please print or record your Application ID in a safe and secure place.
  • You must: a) complete the online visa application and b) print the application form confirmation page.
  • Photo – You will upload your photo while completing the online Form DS-160. Your photo must be in the format explained in the Photograph Requirements.