Nonimmigrant Visas

IMPORTANT INFORMATION: Due to the COVID-19 situation in Portugal and for the health and safety of the public and our staff, Consular Services are limited to emergency services at this time.

  • In-person visa services have been suspended.
  • If you have an urgent life and death situation requiring travel and you need a visa, contact the Nonimmigrant Visa Unit at:

Return Courier Services by the Local Post Office CTT

Passport and document courier services are no longer available through the visa application website for visa applicants in Lisbon.

Applicants must submit a local Post Office CTT “Correio Verde” pre-paid, pre-addressed envelope that will be used by the Visa Services to return your passport to you.

For visa applicants who are applying for an in-person visa interview, please visit the following link for detailed instructions:

For visa applicants who qualify to waive their in-person appearance for a visa interview, please visit the following link for detailed instructions:

COVID-19 Testing required for all passengers boarding flights for the United States – Testing Requirement (PDF 543 KB)

All airline passengers to the United States ages two years and older must provide a negative COVID-19 viral test taken within three calendar days of travel. Alternatively, travelers to the U.S. may provide documentation from a licensed health care provider of having recovered from COVID-19 in the 90 days preceding travel.  Check the CDC website for additional information and Frequently Asked Questions.

National Interest Exception Waiver Requests to Presidential Proclamations Related to COVID-19

Even Travelers with a Valid Visa or Approved ESTA are currently required to qualify for a National Interest Exception (NIE) visa waiver before traveling from Portugal to the United States. New visa applicants must first be approved for a NIE prior to being scheduled for an emergency appointment while visa services are suspended.

To do so, travelers must email us at with the following subject line “Initial Request for National Interest Exception Waiver.” You will then receive an auto-response with a link, and very specific instructions on next steps. Read and follow these instructions carefully!

The U.S. Consulate in Lisbon will no longer consider NIEs for professional sporting events. Athletes must contact DHS/CBP directly to apply for a NIE waiver.

Please note that you must be a Portuguese national with a valid Portuguese passport with current residency in Portugal, or a foreign national with lawful residency in Portugal. You will be required to show proof of residency, such as a valid residency card or other document issued by the Government of Portugal.

Additionally, you cannot apply for an NIE visa waiver while you are in the United States. If you plan to leave the US to return to Portugal for any reason, you must apply for the NIE visa waiver when you are physically present in Portugal.

We encourage all Portuguese to remain in the United States during the State of Emergency as declared by the Portuguese Government.

Finally, please note that all requests for tourism and non-emergency, non-humanitarian, personal travel will be denied.

MRV Fee – Visa Application Processing Fee

The U.S. Consulate in Lisbon 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 U.S. Consulate in Lisbon will extend the validity of your MRV fee until September 30, 2022, 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, once we resume visa services.

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.

Please continue to monitor the U.S. Embassy Lisbon website for information on when we will return to routine visa operations.

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
  • 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



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.


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.


  • 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.

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