Transit Visa. Do You Need a C Visa to Pass through the United States?

Transit Visas of C type are non-immigrant visas for persons traveling an immediate and continuous transit through the United States enroute to another country. According to U.S. Department of Homeland Security there were 165 million non-immigrant admissions to the United States in 2012 and 313,414 of these admissions were Transit Visas.


Travel purposes which require a Transit Visa

  1. Generally you need a transit visa if you are a foreign citizen that travels to anotherCarnival-Triumph_2477610b country and has a brief layover in the U.S.A.
  2. If you are a passenger embarking from a foreign port on a cruise ship or other vessel which is proceeding to another country.
  3. A crew member traveling to the U.S. as a passenger to join a ship or aircraft he or she will work on.
  4. A foreign citizen proceeds and immediate and continuous transit through the United States to or from the United Nations Headquarters District.

A C visa is issued for no longer than 29 days.

There are distinguished 3 types of C visas:

  • C-1 is issued for persons in transit through the United States;
  • C-2 is meant for United Nations transits;
  • C-3 is used for Foreign Government Transit.

Purposes not permitted on a transit visa:

  • ¬†Tourismtest
  • Study
  • Overstay the term – 29 days
  • Change of the status.

If you already have a valid visitor B visa, you may be able to use it to transit the United States. If you are a citizen of a participating country, you may be able to transit the U.S. on the Visa Waiver Program.


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