Visas

Important Notice: Visa Services during the COVID-19 Pandemic

Vaccination Required for Travel: 

Starting on November 8, foreign national air travelers to the United States will be required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and to provide proof of vaccination status prior to boarding an airplane to fly to the United States, with only limited exceptions.

The CDC has determined that for the purposes of entry into the United States, vaccines accepted will include those FDA approved or authorized, as well as vaccines with an emergency use listing (EUL) from the World Health Organization (WHO).  Covishield will be accepted for the purposes of entry into the United States since it has an emergency use listing (EUL) from the World Health Organization (WHO).  (For a full list of vaccines in the Emergency Use Listing process see the WHO website: https://extranet.who.int/pqweb/key-resources/documents/status-covid-19-vaccines-within-who-eulpq-evaluation-process.)  According to the CDC, people are considered fully vaccinated 2 weeks after their second dose in a 2-dose series, or 2 weeks after a single-dose vaccine (from https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/fully-vaccinated.html).

Starting December 6, all air passengers, regardless of vaccination status, must show a negative COVID-19 test taken no more than 1 day before travel to the United States. This requirement applies to all travelers – U.S. citizens, lawful permanent residents (LPRs), and foreign nationals.

For additional questions, see the following official sources:

Please read our FAQs page for more information on COVID-19 related travel restrictions.

Drop Box Appointments: Consular sections across India are now accepting a limited number of drop box applications for renewals of H, L, C1/D, O, I, F, M, and J visas at our Visa Application Centers.  Please visit our website to determine whether you are eligible for drop box processing and schedule an appointment for document drop-off.  A list of drop-off locations is available on our website.

How to Request an Expedited Appointment:  Applicants can request an expedited appointment through our online appointment system at https://www.ustraveldocs.com/in/expedited-appointment.html.  You must already have a confirmed interview appointment date in order to request an expedited appointment.  If your expedited appointment request is approved, you will be notified with instructions via email.  You should not cancel your existing appointment unless you receive a confirmation that your request for an expedited appointment has been approved.  If you have not yet received an approval or denial, your request is still under consideration.

Expedited appointment slots are very limited. Please note that due to  the high volume of requests, we cannot accommodate all  travelers prior to their planned travel dates, even if the purpose of travel is time sensitive. 

Visa Fees Validity Extension:  The U.S. Embassy and Consulates in India understand 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, the U.S. Mission will extend the validity of your payment (known as the MRV fee) until September 30, 2023 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.

The purpose of your intended travel and other facts will determine what type of visa is required under U.S. immigration law. As a visa applicant, you will need to establish that you meet all requirements to receive the category of visa for which you are applying.

See our Directory of Visa Categories on usvisas.state.gov to determine which visa category might be appropriate for your purpose of travel to the United States.

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.).

To contact a customer service representative, please visit the GSS Contact Us page for full information or use contact information below:

  • E-mail: support-india@ustraveldocs.com
    This is the fastest and best way to reach us. We read every email and strive to reply within 3 working days. Occasionally, complicated requests can take longer.
  • Telephone: (91-120) 4844644, (91-22) 62011000 and 1-703-520-2239 (for all calls from the United States)

The Department of State manages the visa process strictly but fairly in order to best protect the United States.  We are committed to the essential openness for which the United States has always been known.  Travel to the United States is welcomed and encouraged.

We promise to you, the visa applicant, that:

  • We will treat you with dignity and respect, even if we are unable to grant you a visa.
  • We will treat you as an individual and your case as unique.
  • We will remember that, to you, a visa interview may be a new or intimidating experience and that you may be nervous.
  • We will use the limited time available for the interview to get as full a picture as possible of your travel plans and intentions.
  • We will use our available resources to fairly assist all applicants to get appointments to allow travel in time for business, study, and other important obligations.
  • We will post detailed and accurate information on visa requirements and application procedures on every Embassy and Consulate website.
  • We will provide information on non-immigrant appointment waiting times at every Embassy and Consulate posted on http://travel.state.gov.
  • We will explain the reason for any visa denial to you.

Furthermore, if you are a:

  • Student, we will make every effort to ensure that you get an appointment and, if qualified, a visa in time to start classes.
  • Medical and humanitarian emergency traveler, we will expedite processing for those dealing with life threatening emergencies.
  • Business traveler, we will establish appropriate mechanisms to facilitate business travel and expedite cases of particular concern to American business.

At the same time, we expect you, the visa applicant, to:

  • Plan your travel and visa application as far in advance as possible.
  • Complete your application fully and accurately.
  • Be forthcoming about your purpose and plans.
  • Prepare for your interview by being able to clearly and concisely describe your intentions.