Our attorneys can represent you in U.S. immigration matters regardless of where you are located because U.S. immigration law is federal: you can be in any state, or in any country in the world.

Contact Us | About Us

521 Fifth Avenue, Suite 1700, New York, NY 10175, U.S.A., Telephone: (212) 488-6899

Travel Without a Visa

Related topics:

As a general rule, any foreign national seeking to temporarily enter the U.S. must present a PASSPORT (valid for a minimum of six months from the date of the expiration of the initial period of the alien's admission) AND a valid nonimmigrant VISA. However, there are certain EXCEPTIONS to this general rule. This section discusses some of those exceptions.

One of the most important exceptions is under the VISA WAIVER PROGRAM, which exempts citizens of participating countries from to enter the U.S. for up to 90 days WITHOUT A VISA provided that certain conditions are met.

U.S. immigration law also allows for some citizens of certain countries to travel to the U.S. without a visa, such as Canadians and Mexicans under certain circumstances. Note that this type of travel is usually for short term, "tourist" type travel. See below for a list of countries whose nationals may be entitled to this type of exception to the general passport and visa rule. Note also that although Canadians in TN status, usually do not obtain a visa, TN status is considered a form of work authorization, and is not covered in this section.

In addition, there are certain classes who are exempt from the general rule requiring a passport and visa to enter the U.S. temporarily, as stated in the applicable federal regulation (22 CFR § 41.), as follows:

(a) Alien members of the U.S. Armed Forces. An alien member of the U.S. Armed Forces in uniform or bearing proper military identification, who has not been lawfully admitted for permanent residence, coming to the United States under official orders or permit of such Armed Forces (Sec. 284, 86 Stat. 232; 8 U.S.C. 1354).

(b) American Indians born in Canada. An American Indian born in Canada, having at least 50 per centum of blood of the American Indian race (Sec. 289, 66 Stat. 234; 8 U.S.C. 1359.)

(c) Aliens entering from Guam, Puerto Rico, or the Virgin Islands. An alien departing from Guam, Puerto Rico, or the Virgin Islands of the United States, and seeking to enter the continental United States or any other place under the jurisdiction of the United States (Sec. 212, 66 Stat. 188; 8 U.S.C. 1182.)

(d) Armed Services personnel of a NATO member. Personnel belonging to the armed services of a government which is a Party to the North Atlantic Treaty and which has ratified the Agreement Between the Parties to the North Atlantic Treaty Regarding the Status of Their Forces, signed at London on June 19, 1951, and entering the United States under Article III of that Agreement pursuant to an individual or collective movement order issued by an appropriate agency of the sending state or of NATO (TIAS 2846; 4 U.S.T. 1792.)

(e) Armed Services personnel attached to a NATO headquarters in the United States. Personnel attached to a NATO Headquarters in the United States set up pursuant to the North Atlantic Treaty, belonging to the armed services of a government which is a Party to the Treaty and entering the United States in connection with their official duties under the provisions of the Protocol on the Status of International Military Headquarters Set Up Pursuant to the North Atlantic Treaty (TIAS 2978; 5 U.S.T. 875.)

(f) Aliens entering pursuant to International Boundary and Water Commission Treaty. All personnel employed either directly or indirectly on the construction, operation, or maintenance of works in the United States undertaken in accordance with the treaty concluded on February 3, 1944, between the United States and Mexico regarding the functions of the International Boundary and Water Commission, and entering the United States temporarily in connection with such employment (59 Stat. 1252; TS 994.)

[52 FR 42597, Nov. 5, 1987, as amended at 56 FR 30428, July 2, 1991; 61 FR 1835, Jan. 24, 1996]

Reader Comments

greencard holder out of the US for 20 months

I am american citizen and i have a wife who is a greencard holder. She is outside the US for 20 months now because she just gave birth to my son and i had to apply for my sons US passport, now that my son is able to come here to the US i want them to come here to live with me. Is it possible that my wife can enter the US with her greencard, although she is gone for 20 months and didnt apply for a re=entry? pls. i need help, i want them to come before april 2009.

Search for H1B Visa Employers

You can search for "H1B Visa Employers" using this database, which was compiled by Antao & Chuang, Attorneys at Law from government sources. This database identifies those U.S. employers who have filed for H-1B visas in the past, or who have at least started the process by filing for the LCA. If you find an employer you are interested in, you can then contact them to inquire as to whether they have any current job openings in your field. Please tell your friends about this valuable resource.

Use this form to search for H1B Visa employers.

"FMG Friendly" Employers

Foreign Medical Graduates ("FMGs") should be aware that there are "FMG Friendly" employers, and "FMG Unfriendly" employers. This database (compiled by Antao & Chuang, Attorneys at Law from government sources) identifies those U.S. employers who have filed for H-1B visas for foreign medical graduates in the past (or at least started the process by filing for the LCA), and who can therefore be deemed "FMG Friendly". Please tell your colleagues about this valuable resource.

Use this form to search for "FMG Friendly" employers in a given state.

Recent comments

Antao & Chuang

AntaoandChuang.com

© 1996-2014 Antao & Chuang, Attorneys at Law

Important Notices/Disclaimers

This website located under the world wide web domain "AntaoAndChuang.com" ("website"), and any subdomains, are owned, and maintained by Antao & Chuang, Attorneys at Law, whose practice includes U.S. Immigration Law. Since U.S. Immigration Law is federal in nature, Antao & Chuang, Attorneys at Law, serves clients who are located throughout the U.S. and the world in U.S. immigration matters, from their offices located at 521 Fifth Avenue, Suite 1700, New York, N.Y. 10175. Antao & Chuang, Attorneys at Law’s attorneys are licensed attorneys in the states where they practice. However, since said states do not recognize any specialization in U.S. immigration law (attorneys in said states are simply licensed in said states to practice law in general), Antao & Chuang, Attorneys at Law does not claim any such specialization, and nothing on this site should be deemed to constitute any such claim. Antao & Chuang, Attorneys at Law does not claim expertise in the laws of states other than where our attorneys are licensed. This website is an advertisement. This website is provided as a public service and not intended to establish an attorney client relationship. Antao & Chuang, Attorneys at Law does not accept clients on the strength of advertising materials alone but only after following our own engagement procedures. Any reliance on information contained herein is taken at your own risk. The information contained on this site is intended to educate members of the public generally and is not intended to provide solutions to individual problems. Readers are cautioned not to attempt to solve individual problems solely on the basis of information contained herein and are strongly advised to seek competent legal counsel before relying on information on this site. See Terms of Use.