Mail-in Service & Visa Renewal

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Overview

If you live in Latvia, you may be eligible to apply for a U.S. visa without an interview by using the mail-in service based on your age, or if you are renewing a prior U.S. visa that is still valid or expired less than 12 months ago. Using the mail-in service may eliminate the need for an in-person interview at the embassy. In some mail-in cases, after the initial application review, the embassy may still require the applicant to schedule an in-person interview.


Note that the mail-in service is available only to sea and air crew members renewing their C1/D (transit/crew member) and B1/B2 (visitor for business/pleasure) visas. Applicants who do not benefit from the mail-in service should follow the standard instructions and schedule their in-person interviews at the embassy.


It is important to know that you can travel to the United States with your two passports (old and new), as long as the visa is valid, not damaged, and is the appropriate type of visa required for your principal purpose of travel. (Example: tourist visa, when your principal purpose of travel is tourism). Also, the name and other personal data, including nationality, should be the same in both passports. You cannot travel with two passports if your citizenship has changed, i.e., you used to be a Latvian noncitizen and you have a U.S. visa in your passport, but you naturalized and became a Latvian citizen or acquired citizenship of some other country. You are required to apply for a new visa in such case. 
Latvian citizens may benefit from visa free travel using ESTA instead of applying for a U.S. visa. To learn about this option, please review the guidance on the Visa Waiver Program.

Qualifications

Qualifications for Mail-in Service

You may be eligible to use the mail-in service if you are a sea or air crew member renewing your previous U.S. visa C1/D (transit/crew member) OR if you are simultaneously renewing your C1/D and B1/B2 (visitor for business/pleasure) visas and meet the below conditions:

  • You live in Latvia and will be physically present in Latvia at the time of your visa application processing;
  • Your most recent U.S. visa application was approved;
  • Your prior visa is still valid or expired within past 12 months;
  • Your nationality (citizenship) is the same that you had when you received your prior U.S. visa;
  • Your last visa does not include a visa annotation “waiver granted” or “clearance received”;
  • Your last visa has not been reported lost or stolen;
  • You have not received an ESTA denial for visa free travel to the U.S. after receipt of your prior visa;
  • You have not been detained, arrested, prosecuted, or convicted after your last visa was approved;
  • You did not apply for extension of stay or adjustment of status in the U.S. after receipt of your last visa.

 

Supporting Documentation

To request the mail-in service you should prepare the below listed documents:

  • Valid passport;
  • Prior passport containing the unexpired visa or visa that expired less than 12 months ago (if applicable);
  • Confirmation page on Visa Application Form DS-160 completion;
  • One printed quality photo, if electronic photo is not attached to your Form DS-160;
  • Printed copy of your visa application fee payment receipt. Note that applicants who are simultaneously renewing their C1/D and B1/B2 visas should pay only one application fee;
  • Printed copy of your Latvian residence permit (if you are not a Latvian passport holder);
  • Your current sea book (except for cruise line and airline employees);
  • A copy of your current work contract OR employment confirmation letter from your employer/crewing agency.

How to Apply

'Step 1

Complete your Visa Application Form DS-160.

Step 2

Create your account at www.ustraveldocs.com. When you have your own account, choose Schedule appointment. As you go through the process you will answer a list of questions that will help you to establish whether you may use the mail-in service or require an in-person visa interview. You will also use this account to pay your visa application fee and schedule your interview appointment, if required.

Step 3

After you answer the questions, you will be prompted to pay your visa application fee. If you are eligible to apply for a visa without an interview, your www.ustraveldocs.com account will generate instructions for you on the mail-in process and required documents (Mail-in Service Confirmation Letter). See the official guidance above on supporting documentation for submission to the embassy.

Step 4

When you are ready to mail in your application and other documents to the embassy, please send an e-mail to support-Latvia@ustraveldocs.com and in 1-2 days we will provide you with instructions on the free mail-in process through Latvijas pasts (Latvian post). For applicants in Riga, a free courier service, DKL Latvia, will collect your documents and deliver them to the embassy for visa processing.

Step 5

Visit Latvijas pasts (Latvian Post) office to mail in your application and other documents. You should use the address label that we will provide for free mail-in service. If you are from Riga, you will be contacted by our courier service DKL Latvia to arrange document collection from your address.

Step 6

If your mailed-in application can be approved, the embassy will return your visa and passport to the delivery address that you listed in your www.ustraveldocs.com account. It normally takes two business days to process a visa application. After the visa is prepared, delivery takes from 2-4 business days depending on your document delivery address.  In some cases the embassy may, however, require an in-person interview. In these cases, the applicants will receive embassy’s guidance about appointment scheduling.