Apply for Expedited Visa Processing

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Overview

If you have an unforeseen travel need as per one of the criteria listed below, you may qualify for an expedited appointment or drop-off visa renewal service depending on availability at the Embassy or Consulate General.

Qualifications

Before you apply for expedited visa processing, you must ensure that you have documentary evidence to prove the urgency. If it appears during your visa interview or drop-off service that you misrepresented the reasons for urgent travel, such facts will be noted on your case file and may adversely influence the outcome of your visa application. All applicants requesting expedited visa processing are required to first pay the MRV visa application fee and then follow the specific instructions below. Applicants who are granted an expedited appointment but are subsequently refused a visa at the U.S. Embassy or Consulate General will not be allowed to utilize this option to obtain another expedited appointment.

Note: Travel for the purpose of attending weddings and graduation ceremonies, assisting pregnant relatives, participating in an annual business/academic/professional conference, or enjoying last-minute tourism does not qualify for expedited processing. For such travel, please schedule a regular visa appointment well in advance.

Medical Need

Purpose of travel is to obtain urgent medical care, or to accompany a relative or employer for urgent medical care.

Essential documentation:

  • A letter from your doctor in China describing the medical condition and why you are seeking medical care in the United States.
  • A letter from the physician or hospital in the United States indicating that they are prepared to treat the case and providing the approximate cost of the treatment.
  • Evidence of how you will pay for the cost of the treatment.
Funeral/Death

Purpose of travel is to attend the funeral of or make arrangements for repatriating the body of an immediate family member (mother, father, brother, sister, child) in the United States.

Essential documentation:

  • A letter from the funeral director stating the contact information, the details of the deceased, and the date of the funeral.
  • You must also present evidence that the deceased is an immediate relative.
Urgent Business Travel

Purpose of travel is to attend an urgent business matter where the travel requirement could not be predicted in advance.

Essential documentation:

  • A letter of invitation from the corresponding company in the United States attesting to the urgency of the planned visit, describing the nature of the business and that either the U.S. or local company will suffer a significant loss of opportunity if an expedited appointment or drop-off service is not available.

or

  • Evidence of a necessary training program in the United States of three months duration or less, to include letters from both the local employer and the U.S. company providing the training. Both letters should include a detailed explanation of the training and explain why either the U.S. or local company will suffer a significant loss of opportunity if an expedited appointment or drop-off service is not available
Students or exchange visitors

Purpose of travel is to begin or resume a valid program of study in the United States within 60 days when no regular visa appointments are available. This option is limited only to students and exchange students who are within 60 days of their start date. It is also limited only to applicants who have not been refused a visa within the last six months at the U.S. Embassy or Consulate General.

Essential documentation:

  • Original Form I-20 or Form DS-2019 indicating start date of program within 60 days.
  • Evidence that you have paid the SEVIS fee (when applicable).

Applying for an Expedited Appointment

All expedited appointment requests should be made in English.

Step 1

Complete the Nonimmigrant Visa Electronic Application (DS-160) form.

Step 2

Pay the visa application fee.

Step 3

Schedule an appointment online for the earliest available date. Please note that you must schedule an appointment before you can request an expedited date. At the time you schedule your appointment, you will see an onscreen message showing the earliest available appointment date, which includes expedited appointments. Accordingly, you may find that it is not necessary to request an expedited appointment because there are no earlier dates available.

If you wish to proceed with requesting an expedited appointment, then submit the Expedited Request with explanations in English and submit online or contact the call center to request assistance. Please be sure to note the type of urgency you believe qualifies you for an expedited appointment. Once you have submitted your request, please wait for a response from the U.S. Embassy or Consulate General, which will arrive via e-mail.

Step 4

If the U.S. Embassy or Consulate General approves your request then you will receive an e-mail alerting you to schedule your expedited appointment online. Please understand that the call center cannot schedule your expedited appointment for you, but agents are able to assist you if questions arise. Should the U.S. Embassy or Consulate General deny your request for an expedited appointment, you will be notified of the denial by e-mail and you should keep your existing appointment.

Note: The e-mail confirming or denying your request will come from no-reply@ustraveldocs.com. Some e-mail applications have rules which filter unknown senders into a spam or junk mail folder. If you have not received your e-mail notification, please look for the message in your junk and spam e-mail folders.

Step 5

Visit the U.S. Embassy or Consulate General on the date and time of your visa interview. You will need to bring a printed copy of your appointment letter, your Form DS-160 confirmation page, one photograph taken within the last six months and your current and all old passports. Applications without all of these items will not be accepted.

ESTA Denied

You may request an expedited visa appointment if you are a citizen of a Visa Waiver Program partner but have received notice that you are no longer eligible to travel to the United States under that program. Such travelers include those who are dual nationals of Iraq, Iran, Sudan or Syria, or those who have travelled to Iraq, Iran, Sudan, Syria, Libya, Yemen, or Somalia after March 1, 2011.  Your travel must be imminent to qualify for an expedited appointment. Please include in your request the date and purpose of your travel.

Essential documentation:

    1. A copy of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection message you received regarding your ESTA status. 

Applying for Expedited Drop-off Service

Step 1

Complete the Nonimmigrant Visa Electronic Application (DS-160) form.

Step 2

Log-in to our online applicant system and create a profile to pay the visa application (MRV) fee. Once logged in, choose “Schedule appointment”. As you go through the process you will answer the drop-box questions which will evaluate your eligibility to apply for a visa without an interview.

Step 3

If you are eligible to apply for a visa without an interview, you will print the “Application Drop-Off Letter” which you will include with your visa application.

Step 4

Gather your DS-160 confirmation page, MRV fee receipt, current and previous passports, photo, and a letter explaining your travel purpose and itinerary. Depending on the visa category, you may require additional documentation and a reciprocity fee. Please refer to your specific visa category page for additional required documents.

Step 5

If you have an unforeseen travel need and will need to travel within two weeks (see the criteria listed above for more details), you may submit a request for expedited drop-off service processing through the Feedback Button and select in the Reason tab “Expedite Drop Box Request“. Please provide documentary evidence to prove the urgency; requests will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.

If approved by the Embassy, you will receive a Confirmation Letter by email from the Embassy in Beijing.

Step 6

Please print the Confirmation Letter, and complete the Expedited Dropbox Cover Letter that you will affix on an envelope containing all your documentation.

Step 7

Go to one of the CITIC Bank locations specified below with your Confirmation Letter received by the Embassy, your application drop-off letter, and all required documents in a mailing envelope to enclose your documents.

Note: Please do not submit any documentation in a sealed envelope as this will be rejected by the US Embassy /Consulate. If you use an envelope to submit documents, it must remain open at all times.

Please affix the completed Expedited Drop Box Cover Letter on the envelope:

Beijing - Operation & Business, Investment Plaza, Jia No. 27 Financial Street, XiCheng District, Beijing (please bring your documents before 10:00 am for same day delivery at the Beijing Embassy)

Guangzhou - Branch Office, 1, 2 Floor, CITIC Plaza, 233 North Tianhe Road, Guangzhou, Guangdong (please bring your documents before 15:00 am for next day delivery at the Consulate General)

Shanghai - Pacific Plaza
GF, No 1168 Nanjing West Rd, Shanghai (please bring your documents before 17:00 for next day delivery at the Consulate General)

Chengdu - Lingshiguan Road, Unit 1 of west zone,Baoli Centre,No 7 of lingshiguan road (please bring your documents before 10:00 am for same day delivery at the Consulate General)

Shenyang – Nanhu Branch No.50, Cai Ta Street, Heping District, Shenyang (please bring your documents before 10:00 am for same day delivery at the Consulate General)

Documents will not be accepted in any other CITIC Bank locations.

Step 8

At the end of the visa adjudication process, the Embassy or Consulate General will return your documents and your passport to the CITIC Bank branch at which you dropped off your application materials (see locations above). When the documents are returned to CITIC Bank, you will receive an e-mail with the tracking number. If issued, your passport will contain your visa.