Many US Visa interview waivers are scheduled to expire at the end of 2022, and with visa backlogs causing some immigrants to wait months or even years for their interview, it’s important to take advantage of a waiver now if you qualify!
According to the Department of State’s Foreign Affairs Manual, consular officers are allowed to waive interviews through the end of the year for the following applicants:
Note that if you are in one of the previous two categories and are a citizen or national of a Visa Waiver Program country then you must have previously traveled to the US using an authorization through the Electronic System for Travel Authorization, or “ESTA.”
Also, as we recently discussed on my channel, Conditional Permanent Residents who are filing for the removal of conditions on their two year marriage green card may also be eligible to waive their interview.
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The Department of State has not indicated whether it plans to extend the nonimmigrant visa interview waivers after they expire on December 31, 2022.
It is likely that they will given how serious the visa backlog has become, but those eligible for waivers should still act now.
Also note that just because you might qualify for a visa interview waiver does not mean that you will be granted one.
The authority to waive interviews is not being consistently applied across all US Embassies and Consulates, despite the Department of State recently claiming that 30% of all nonimmigrant visa applicants should be able to waive their interviews.
What do you think? Will the existing visa interview waivers be extended into 2023? As the visa backlog continues to grow will new visa interviews be added?