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 have canceled all routine immigrant and nonimmigrant visa appointments as of March 20, 2020, but will continue to provide emergency and mission-critical visa services as resources and local conditions allow.The Embassy in Cairo remains open and the Consular section continues to process cases as expeditiously and safely as possible given the Covid epidemic. We have a process for expediting emergency visa cases, and a limited capacity for handling such cases given the needs to maintain social distancing for the safety of our applicants and staff. Our priorities at this time given the restrictions necessary to keep our staff and applicants safe are American Citizen Services, life-or-death emergency visa cases, and certain priority student visa cases. We will resume routine visa services as soon as possible but are unable to provide a specific date at this time. Please see these notices which contain detailed information about the current status of visa services worldwide and visa restrictions related to the COVID-19 global pandemic:
NOTICE TO DIVERSITY VISA APPLICANTS
Because of a recent court decision, U.S. Embassy Cairo will be adjudicating limited Diversity Visa (DV) selectee applications from now until the DV-2020 Program expires on September 30, 2020. Because of time constraints and limitations due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Embassy will not be able to adjudicate all Diversity Visa selectee applications by that date. There will be no extension of the 2020 Diversity Visa Program and no 2020 Diversity Visas will be issued after September 30, 2020.
The U.S. Embassy in Cairo will contact you directly if we determine that we can attempt to adjudicate your DV application before the September 30, 2020 deadline. We have already begun contacting affected individuals. Contacting the embassy directly to request that your DV application be adjudicated will not increase the likelihood that your application will be processed. The Embassy will prioritize interviewing named plaintiffs in the court case Gomez v. Trump and its companion cases and then process DV selectee applications based on statutory standards and categories of cases most likely to result in timely issuances. If you feel your DV application question has not been addressed by the above information, you may email CairoIV@state.gov and include your DV case number (All the DV case numbers will likely start with 2020AF followed by 4 to 8 numbers) and name in the subject line. For additional information please see https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/News/visas-news/diversity-visa-DV-2020-update.html.
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.
Travel to the United States on a temporary basis, including tourism, temporary employment, study and exchange.
For foreign citizens who want to live permanently in the U.S.
What is a 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.).
Customer Service Statement
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.