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Business News/ News / World/  US likely to launch digital visa; check how these are different from e-visa
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US likely to launch digital visa; check how these are different from e-visa

We don't call it an e-visa (like India) because we have the same visa process up to the point of the paper, official said

The United States has recently announced that it might start issuing digital visas soonPremium
The United States has recently announced that it might start issuing digital visas soon

The United States has recently announced that it might start issuing digital visas soon, doing away with the need to stamp or paste on the passport pages of applicants. However, officials further clarified that US digital visas should not be mistaken as e-visas, as the features are a lot different. 

The announcement comes after the US successfully completed a pilot project of issuing "paperless visa" at its diplomatic mission in Dublin.

Speaking about the same, Julie Stufft, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Visa Services, "We did our first small scope pilot of a paperless visa, which means that the visa process is the same but there's no physical visa in someone's passport. We just piloted this for the first time, so this is not something that's going to be happening in the next year."  

When the US is likely to start the paperless visa process? 

“It will probably take 18 months to have widespread use of this or longer. But it is very exciting that we have had this first step where we have actually seen visitors come through and, in this case, they were immigrant visas without a physical paper in their passports."

Why US digital visas are not the same as e-visa? 

“We don't call it an e-visa (like India) because we have the same visa process up to the point of the paper. So an interview is still required by law. If you are a first-time applicant, you will apply in the same way with the same forms," Stufft said.

If you are getting a paperless visa, it will look all the same until the point where there is no paper, she adds.

"That is the main difference between an e-visa like in India and this visa. But just the ability for people to renew their visas without a piece of paper means people can keep their passports. There will be fewer problems with sending things through the mail. It just will have tremendous benefit for both the applicant and for us," Stufft said.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Sanchari Ghosh
Sanchari Ghosh is a Chief Content Producer with LiveMint. She covers news, human interest, epidemiology and personal finance stories
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Published: 09 Dec 2023, 02:58 PM IST
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