How To Apply
ANNOUNCEMENT: IMPORTANT NOTICE: ALL PINK MRV RECEIPTS FROM THE NATIONAL COMMERCIAL BANK BECOME INVALID ON MARCH 12, 2014, NO EXTENSIONS WILL BE GRANTED
Effective March 12, 2014 the U.S. Embassy will cease honoring Machine Readable Visas (MRV) receipts purchased at the National Commercial Bank prior to March 14, 2013. If you purchased a MRV receipt prior to March 14, 2013 and have not yet scheduled an appointment, please contact the Nonimmigrant Visa Unit at KingstonTransApp@state.gov. No appointments will be granted after March 12, 2014.
In your email to KingstonTransApp@state.gov, please include the following information:
- Applicant Surname:
- Applicant First Name:
- Date of birth:
- Passport Number:
- Type of visa:
- Amount Paid:
- Date Paid:
- MRV receipt number:
- Contact Phone Number:
All other applicants should follow the instructions on this page to begin the process of applying for a visa, starting on March 18.
All Jamaicans who are not U.S. citizens or legal permanent residents need a visa to enter the U.S. This page explains each of the steps required to apply for a nonimmigrant visa.
Nonimmigrant visas (NIVs) are intended for those who plan to visit the U.S. for business or pleasure; students or exchange visitors embarking on study or cultural work programs in the U.S.; people who are transiting through the U.S. to other onward destinations; seasonal temporary workers or workers who have been hired by U.S. companies for longer periods of time; visitors on diplomatic, official or U.N. business; journalists who are providing media coverage of time-specific events; and others who are traveling to the U.S. for limited time periods.
Please note that any non-U.S. citizen may apply for a visa at U.S. Embassy Kingston, but individuals who are not citizens or legal residents of Jamaica or the Cayman Islands may experience delays in the processing of their applications. Applicants should be aware that language difficulties and interviewing officers’ unfamiliarity with local conditions in other countries may make it more difficult to demonstrate your qualifications for a visa here than in your home district or at a post designated for your application.
Applicants from Visa Waiver Program participant countries are advised that if their visa application is denied, they may no longer be eligible to participate in the Visa Waiver Program, which could complicate any plans to transit or return to the U.S.
Step 1: Prepare Your Documentation
The U.S. Department of State requires all applicants to fill out an electronic version of the DS-160 form. This form must be completed before you pay your application fee or schedule an appointment. Each applicant must print their DS-160 confirmation page and bring it with them to their appointment.
In addition to the DS-160, applicants need to prepare other documentation for their interview, depending on their visa category.
Step 2: Pay the Application Fee
Each applicant is required to pay a non-refundable visa application fee. You may pay the visa application fee by credit card online. The fee can also be paid at any National Commercial Bank branch using a deposit slip obtained online. You must complete the DS-160 form before paying this fee. NIV fees must be paid before an appointment can be scheduled.
Please note that nonimmigrant visa application fees are not transferable to another applicant.
Things to note if paying by cash:
It can take up to 2 business days for the cash payment to be activated and allow the MRV/visa fee payment number to be used to schedule an appointment in the CSC appointment system.
Each applicant must print out their PDF of the MRV fee payment slip as each applicant will have a unique MRV number.
The PDF will expire five days after it was created. This means that applicants will have to make the payment in cash at the bank within that five-day period.
Things to note if paying by credit card:
This service is available no matter where you are located and operates 24 hours per day, seven days a week.
The transaction will be instantaneous as the applicant will receive confirmation of the fee payment within seconds of clicking “Submit”.
CSC agents will not take credit card information over the phone.
**Agents (not families) who are making group appointments consisting of 5 or more persons will not be able to pay the MRV fee online using the credit card option. This amount will have to be paid at NCB. Please note that you will need to print each applicant’s PDF to take along with you.
Step 3: Schedule An Appointment
All applicants must have a confirmed appointment in order to apply for a nonimmigrant visa, regardless of their age. Most applicants can schedule a visa appointment either by phone or online. To schedule an appointment, please call 876-632-7400 or follow the instructions available here. If you are calling from the United States, you can dial (703) 439 2360, or if you are calling through Skype, contact "usvisajamaica". Individuals applying for certain categories of worker visas should schedule appointments as a group, using the procedures described here. Applicants are encouraged to schedule their appointments long before their intended travel date, because there may be a wait time of several weeks or longer before the next available visa appointment. When scheduling an appointment, you will be required to enter a delivery address for your visa. Please ensure that this information is entered correctly, as you will not be able to change the address on the date of your appointment at the Embassy.
Once you have scheduled your appointment through the new system and selected your DHL delivery option, you will receive an e-mail confirming your appointment date and time almost instantaneously. We strongly recommend that you print your appointment confirmation sheet because you will need your passport number and personal information in order to track your passport delivery online if your visa is approved.
Step 4: Visit the Embassy's Consular Section
Applicants who are 13 years old or younger and applicants over the age of 79 do not need to appear in person unless requested, although they must still schedule an appointment for their application documents to be submitted. Parents or legal guardians of children 13 years old or younger must appear for an interview on their child’s behalf. Children between the ages 14 and 17 need to appear in person and must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian.
For adults applying for children, it is highly encouraged that the adult brings official documentation that can establish the relationship between the adult and the child who is applying. This can include birth certificates or legal guardianship papers. Additionally if a parent or the legal guardian of the child has traveled to the U.S. previously, it is encouraged that the applicant bring the passport(s) with the visa(s) of that parent or legal guardian. These documents are not required, however they can help better facilitate the visa adjudication process, particularly in situations where the child cannot be present.
The requirement to appear personally applies both to first-time applicants and to most applicants seeking to renew previously issued visas. Some individuals who are renewing full-validity visas issued in 2007 or later may be able to submit their applications via courier. You will receive instructions on how to proceed when you schedule your appointment.
Step 5: Visa Processing
Approved nonimmigrant visas will be delivered through a professional courier service, DHL. The visa application fee includes the cost of DHL delivery service within Jamaica. Applicants will have an opportunity to select their DHL delivery point when scheduling their appointment. The passport can be picked up at one of the two DHL locations, Kingston (19 Haining Road) or in Montego Bay (14 Sunset Blvd). DHL also delivers to your home address if it is within the limits of their services.
DHL typically delivers the passport with visa affixed approximately five (5) business days after the date of the Embassy interview. Please note: Additional factors, such as the need for administrative processing and incomplete applications may influence the processing of individual cases.
Information about visa processing for applicants living in the Cayman Islands can be found on the Cayman Applicants page.