06 May 2011

Georgia seeks to be added to US visa waiver program

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After a number of US visas for Georgia citizens recently had their maximum term extended from five to 10 years, the Georgian ambassador in Washington has stated that the next stage in relations between the two countries will be to 'eliminate the visa regime'.

While Temur Iakobashvili, the Georgian ambassador in Washington described the recent changes to a number of US Visas for Georgian citizens as an "unprecedented success", he made it clear that the next step was for a visa free regime to be implemented for Georgia, most likely through the country being added to the Visa Waiver Program (VWP).

The VWP allows foreign nationals from certain countries to travel in America for a period of 90 days for business or pleasure without having to obtain a paper visa in advance.  However, travelers must apply for an ESTA before travelling.

The previous maximum term for US visas for Georgian citizens was one year. However, the maximum term for tourist, work, transit and multi-entry visas has been extended to up to 10 years.

Additionally, the maximum term of other visas for has been increased from one year to five. These categories include student, scholar and religious figures visas.

The American Visa Bureau is an independent consulting company specialising in helping people with their US visa application to the US Embassy.

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