State Department Suspends Routine Visa Services at All U.S. Embassies and Consulates Worldwide

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 will cancel all routine immigrant and nonimmigrant visa appointments starting on March 20, 2020. As resources allow, embassies and consulates will continue to provide emergency and mission critical visa services. The embassies and consulates will resume routine visa services as soon as possible but are unable to provide a specific date at this time. Although all routine immigrant and nonimmigrant visa appointments are cancelled, the Machine Readable Visa (MRV) fee is valid and may be used for a visa appointment in the country where it was purchased within one year of the date of payment.

This development does not affect the Visa Waiver Program. However, ESTA travelers should be sure to consult the CBP Website for information as recent travel to certain countries (including China, Iran, Schengen area, U.K. and Ireland) may be deemed to have voided their ESTA registration.

Services to U.S. citizens continue to be available. More information is available on each Embassy’s website.

Applicants with an urgent need to travel immediately should follow the guidance provided at the Embassy’s website to request an emergency appointment. Country-specific COVID-19 information is available here.