The U.S. Department of State welcomes the IUCN World Conservation Congress 2016 in Hawai’i and is committed to providing visa processing for Congress participants as expeditiously as possible. We strongly recommend visiting the website of your nearest Embassy or Consulate at https://www.usembassy.gov/ to learn more about the application process. Waiting times for interview appointments vary by location, season, and visa category, so you should apply for your visa early. Participants requiring a visa will need to apply for a B-1/B-2 visa for the Congress. For more information please visit http://travel.state.gov/.
Most embassies and consulates will be able to schedule a visa interview within 20 days, however, a very small number of embassies and consulates have longer waiting times. To view current waiting times for a visa interview please see https://travel.state.gov/content/visas/english/general/wait-times.html/.
The registration agency will regularly share registration information with the U.S. Department of State to help facilitate visa review and processing. Consular officers will have access to this information through their internal system. All Congress delegates should produce the official visa invitation letter as part of their visa application. The letter can be obtained from the registration agency once an individual has registered and paid in full.
Visa Waiver Programme (VWP)
Citizens of 38 countries may be eligible for the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) provided they have not traveled to or been present in Iran, Iraq, Sudan, or Syria on or after March 1, 2011 and do neither hold the nationality of these countries. You can find more information at https://travel.state.gov/content/visas/english/visit/visa-waiver-program.html. Citizens of these countries must have a machine-readable passport that is valid for at least 6 months after the planned departure from the United States and they must apply online for the Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) and receive approval prior to boarding a flight to the United States. The ESTA fee must be paid with a credit or debit card online before the request is processed. Each approved ESTA application is generally valid for two years or until the applicant’s passport expires, whichever comes first.
Interview Waiver Programme (IWP)
Repeat travellers to the United States may, under some circumstances, renew their visas without appearing at the U.S. Embassy/Consulate for an interview. You may still be required to attend an appointment to provide your biometric fingerprints. Review the instructions on the website of the U.S. Embassy or Consulate where you will apply to determine if the IWP is available and if you qualify.
If you are a media representative you need to apply for an I visa. Activities in the United States while on a media (I) visa must be for a media organisation having its home office in a foreign country. Activities in the United States must be informational in nature and generally associated with the news gathering process and reporting on current events. For more information please see: https://travel.state.gov/content/visas/english/employment/media.html
Keep in mind that you need to:
- Find out about visa requirements, costs and timing.
- Apply early.
- Be prepared with appropriate documentation as there is no appeal process in the case of visa denial.