How to Apply a Visa for Diplomatic/Official Travel

Please understand that our determination of the purpose of your travel to the United States governs your visa classification under U.S. law. Holding a diplomatic or official passport does not automatically qualify the bearer for an A, G or C-3 visa. If you do not clearly qualify for a diplomatic or official visa, we will inform you of any requirement to appear for a visa interview and payment of visa fees. Travelers are advised to apply well in advance of their planned departure. After you have determined the appropriate visa type (A, G, C-3) for the purpose of your travel to the United States, please prepare the following documents and submit them in the order specified, in person or by a messenger, any time from Monday to Thursday between 13:30-15:00 p.m.

  1. A passport with at least six months’ validity remaining beyond your intended stay in the United States with sufficient pages for a visa. Please bring along any passports you have even if they are expired.
  2. Complete the visa application form DS-160 online and print out a confirmation page that have a barcode.
  3. Prepare one new color photograph (do not alter or photoshop it) that has been taken within the last six months. The photograph should be 5 x 5cm, taken against a white background, and present a full face frontal view with ears clearly exposed. The key requirement is that the photograph clearly identifies the applicant. For additional information about photo requirement, please see here.
  4. Gather supporting documents about your travel including invitation letter, diplomatic note issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs or a note verbale from the sending international organization.

As of July 1, 2014, the note submitted with any A-1, A-2, C-2, C-3, G-1 through G-4, or NATO-1 through NATO-6 visa application must include the principal applicant’s name, date of birth, position and title, place of assignment or visit, purpose of travel, a brief description of his or her duties, travel date, and the anticipated length of the tour of duty or stay in the United States, as well as the names, relationships, and dates of birth of any dependents and other members of household who will accompany or join the principal applicant. For accredited foreign government officials and employees who will be assigned to foreign missions or miscellaneous foreign government offices in the United States for 90 days or more (non-TDY), the diplomatic note must generally originate from the sending government’s foreign ministry.

After we verify the information you provide in your visa application that was transmitted online and other required documents you bring in, your visa application will be forwarded to the Consular Officer for adjudication. You will be given a pink card with specified date and time to return to collect your passport.

If your visa application is approved, generally, you should be able to pick up your passport within one week (between Monday and Thursday) at 4:00 p.m. Please bring a pink card with you. No assurance regarding the issuance of visas can be given in advance. Please do not make any binding travel plans or purchase airline tickets until you have received your visa.

In some cases, your visa application may require further administrative review. You may check the current status by visiting If the application does not qualify for a diplomatic or official visa, the Consular Section will return the application to the applicant or the messenger. The applicant will be directed to this link for detailed instruction on how to apply.

Please refer any inquiries to