The Visa Waiver Program (VWP) permits citizens of certain specified countries to visit the United States on a temporary basis without obtaining a visa. Under the VWP, entrants are allowed to travel throughout the U.S. but similar to B1 (business visitor) and B2 (pleasure visitor) visa holders, they are not authorized to work in the country or to enroll as students in degree-seeking programs. The U.S. Department of State maintains a listing of current VWP participating countries on its website.
Qualified visitors entering the United States under the VWP are permitted to remain in the U.S. for stays of 90 days or less to engage in the following types of activities:
In order to travel to the United States without a visa under the VWP, you must be able to meet specific program requirements, including:
Even if you are eligible to visit the United States under the VWP you are still permitted to apply for a visa. If you are unable to meet the VWP eligibility criteria, then you must apply for a visa in order to travel to the U.S. Additionally, if you plan to remain in the U.S. beyond the 90 day limit, or intend to change your status once you are in the U.S., you will need to apply for a visa.
If you are planning to travel to the U.S. under the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) and have questions about your ability to meet the program’s requirements Miranda & Weisman can help. Every Maryland immigration lawyer at our firm has an extensive understanding of the specific eligibility criteria under VWP. We will take the time to carefully review your situation and advise you on all of the options available to you as you seek to travel to the U.S.