Nonimmigrant Visas

Last updated: June 14, 2022

Most travel to the United States from the Schengen zone (including Portugal) HAS RESUMED.  However, new vaccination requirements, outlined below, have gone into effect.

Effective Sunday, June 12 at 12:01 a.m. EDT, the CDC rescinded its Order requiring all airline or other aircraft passengers to show a negative COVID-19 test result or documentation of recovery from COVID-19 to board any aircraft destined to the United States from a foreign country. Of note, CDC’s Order requiring proof of vaccination for non-U.S. citizen nonimmigrants to travel to the United States is still in effect. For more information see Requirement for Proof of COVID-19 Vaccination for Air Passengers. 

NEW VACCINATION REQUIREMENT

Only fully vaccinated travelers (defined as those traveling 14 days after the second dose in a two-dose series or 14 days after a single dose in a one-dose series) and inoculated with vaccines approved by the FDA or on WHO’s Emergency Use Listing (EUL) will be permitted to travel.

Non-vaccinated travelers ARE PROHIBITED from flying to the United States, with the following exceptions:

U.S. Citizens and Legal Permanent Residents

Official and Diplomatic visa holders

Crew members

Travelers with an exception from the CDC. To request an exception, follow this link: CDC Waiver Request  

Travelers from countries with low access to vaccines, as designated by the CDC

For the latest information on vaccine and travel requirements please visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website:

https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/noncitizens-US-air-travel.html

If you need to apply for a visa to travel to the United States, appointments are now available for most visa types at the following link:  https://ais.usvisa-info.com/en-pt/niv/information/niv

Vaccination status does not prevent applicants from applying for and being issued a U.S. visa, if they qualify.

MRV Fee – Visa Application Processing Fee

The U.S. Embassy Lisbon Consular Section understands that many visa applicants have paid the visa application processing fee, known as the MRV fee, and are still waiting to schedule a visa appointment or have seen their visa appointment be canceled due to suspension of non-immigrant visa services due to COVID-19 situation in Portugal.

Please rest assured that the consular section will recognize the extension of the validity of your MRV fee until September 30, 2023 (or one year from date of payment, whichever date comes last) to allow all applicants who were unable to schedule/reschedule a visa appointment as a result of the suspension of non-immigrant visa services, an opportunity to schedule and/or attend a visa appointment with the already paid fee.

Please note that the MRV fee is non-refundable and non-transferable as per the terms and conditions that you agreed to at the time of payment and can only be used in the country where the payment was made.

Return Courier Services

Per the new agreement with CTT, you can collect your passport at several post offices around CONTINENTAL Portugal. If you would like to have your passport mailed back to the Azores or Madeira, please continue to bring a CTT “Correio Verde” pre-paid, pre-addressed envelope with an additional 2€ in stamps (not currency), as per the instructions below. This envelope will be used by the consular section to return your passport.”

For applicants wishing to have their passport mailed back to the Azores or Madeira and you will attend an in-person visa interview, please visit the following link for detailed instructions: https://pt.usembassy.gov/visas/return-courier-services-by-the-local-post-office-ctt-in-person-interview/.  

If you qualify for an interview waiver and want your passport returned to the Azores or Madeira, please see the instructions here: https://pt.usembassy.gov/visas/return-courier-services-by-the-local-post-office-ctt-interview-waiver/. 

The Consular Section of the U.S. Embassy in Lisbon is responsible for providing visa services to those seeking to enter the United States for a temporary period and for those wishing to take up indefinite or permanent residence in the United States.

Please visit our Global Support Services (GSS) website for complete information on applying for a nonimmigrant U.S. visa, including a directory of nonimmigrant visa categories.

To contact a customer service representative, please visit the GSS Contact Us page for full information or use contact information below:

  • Email: To reach a customer service representative via email, please write to visaslisbon@state.gov.
  • Telephone: Please contact a customer service representative using one of these telephone numbers:
    • Callers in Portugal: +351 308 803 811
    • Callers in the United States: Call 1 703-831-3424.
    • Skype : usvisaportugal

All visitors to the Consular Section are screened by security personnel prior to entry. Electronics are not allowed inside the U.S. Embassy, so please bring hard copies of all documents with you to your interview.

DO NOT bring large backpacks, laptop computers, or large cameras. There is no storage available for large items, and you will be required to store them offsite. You may deposit small tourist cameras and cellular phones with the security guards until your departure.

Only applicants with a scheduled appointment are permitted into the Consular Section. Parents or Guardians of minors, caregivers of disabled applicants, and translators may be allowed to accompany the applicant if needed. Applicants will only be admitted to the Embassy 15 minutes before the scheduled appointment time.

 F-1 and M-1

  STUDENT VISAS

ELIGIBILITY:

You must have a student visa to study in the United States. Your course of study and the type of school you plan to attend determine whether you need an F-1 visa or an M-1 visa.

For short periods of recreational study, a Visitor (B) visa may be appropriate

Your school will determine your duration of study and will send you Form I-20. You must bring the original to your visa interview.

FAMILY:

Your spouse and/or minor children may accompany you during your studies.

They must apply for an F-2 or M-2 visa.

Derivatives require their own I-20 form, but do not need to pay the SEVIS fee.

Your minor children are permitted to attend school in the United States while accompanying you.

NOTE:

  • You must pay a SEVIS fee before your interview. The SEVIS fee is in addition to the visa application fee.
  • Employment on F or M visa is very restricted. See our website for more information.
  • Students cannot study on the Visa Waiver Program or on a Visitor Visa.
  • There are restrictions on student F-1 visa holders attending public school in the United States. See our website for more information.
  • You may hold more than one valid type of U.S. visa, depending on your purposes of travel.

https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/us-visas/study/student-visa.html

See our Directory of Visa Categories on usvisas.state.gov to determine which visa category might be appropriate for your purpose of travel to the United States.