American tourist visa: appointments opened for Colombians who need to renew it

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The Embassy of the United States announced the opening of the agenda this Friday and recalled that no intermediaries are required to advance the process

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American tourist visa: appointments for Colombians who need to renew it have opened

Remember that the appointments are worth 160 dollars —to be paid directly on the page, with PSE or credit card.

While the efforts of the Colombian government to remove the requirement for tourist visas to the United States are yielding some results, it is still necessary to complete the entire process to request this permit for the first time and to renew it, if it is about to expire. It is well known that obtaining an appointment to meet with a US official can take several months or years. However, in the case of those who need to renew their American visa, the embassy of that country announced this Friday, November 4, that an agenda was opened for the following weeks.

The diplomatic team made the announcement through its official Instagram account: “We have been working hard to reduce the wait for visas! Appointments are currently available in the next few weeks for people who are 𝗥𝗘𝗡𝗢𝗩𝗔𝗡𝗗𝗢 on their B1/B2 visa. If you already have an appointment scheduled, you can go to the page to find one closest to you”, says the terse statement.

It should be remembered that the B1 visa is the one that allows you to travel to business meetings or professional conferences, while the B2 visa is the one that allows you to enter the United States to take vacations, visit relatives, receive medical treatment or attend events such as concerts or lessons. Both have a duration of ten years; once that time passes, it is necessary to carry out the renewal process.

Those who have one of these visas and are looking for a nearby appointment to renew it, must enter the embassy website, log in to your account and choose one of the available dates. It is recalled that the appointments are worth 160 dollars —to be paid directly on the page, with PSE or credit card—, that changing the date is free of charge and that no brokers or intermediaries are required to advance this process.

< h2 class="header">Colombia's request to end this procedure

It should be remembered that the proposal to eliminate the tourist visa to the United States for Colombians was announced< b> initially by the Ambassador of Colombia in the United States, Luis Gilberto Murillo. According to Murillo, the exemption of the tourist visa for the entry of Colombians to the United States would allow strengthening the ties of both nations “in conditions of equality and within the framework of our special strategic relationship that celebrated 200 years”< /b>.

The ambassador would try, then, that Colombia enter the select list of countries belonging to the Visa Waiver Program (VWP for its acronym in English). An important requirement is to have high standards in counterterrorism, law enforcement, border control and document security. Currently, Colombia requires support from countries like the United States to fulfill this task. In addition, Americans ask to have an extensive flow of law enforcement and security-related data between their country and the government that enters this program. These are difficult to comply with because they compromise national sovereignty and security from certain perspectives.

On the other hand, two other factors depend on the exemption of the visa: that an electronic passport is issued for Colombian passports —which is already happening— and that there is timely notification of lost and stolen Colombian passports, whether blank or issued.

Similarly, it should be clarified that regardless of whether the country applicant to participate in the program meets each of the requirements, the members of the VWP could simply not give the entrance to the country to the program and, therefore, tourist visas will remain in force as a mandatory document for entry to the United States.