Long Wait Times Make Travelling to the United States Difficult
In 2004 Congress required the U.S. State department interview 100% of all visa applicants. In addition to the proper visa application, visa applicants must secure an appointment with the local Consulate Office for a personal interview to determine risk and intent to stay in the United States.
The Jobs Originated through Launching Travel (JOLT) Act, recently introduced by Congressman Joseph Heck, proposes new procedures and policies to facilitate travel for viable non-risk visitors. Some of these reforms include: introducing secure video conference interviews, publishing wait times for visitors, and expansion of the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) to new countries. Expansion of the Visa Waiver Program forces the State Department to take a risk approach to travelers, requiring interviews only for those deemed a risk.
The JOLT Act, also includes other provisions that may not be well received and accepted.
Representatives Mike Quigley (D–IL) and Aaron Schock (R–IL), along with Senator Mark Kirk (R–IL), have also introduced a bill that calls for the expansion and reform of the Visa Waiver Program without stuffing the bill with other compromising policies and “small print.”
Travelling to the United States? Do you have your pre-planning checklist in order? Visit our ESTA Guide for more information about obtaining your travel permit. We'd love to hear from you. Send us your comments or questions for travel assistance.