A head of state or government and their immediate family members must travel on an A-1 visa regardless of the purpose of travel to the United States.Other foreign diplomats or government officials must apply for visas that correspond to their purpose of travel.
- G-1, G-2, G-3, or G-4 visa is required for a foreign official traveling to the United States to attend meetings, visit, or work at a designated international organization. This applies also to their accompanying immediate family members. The authorized list of designated international organizations is available in the Foreign Affairs Manual (9 FAM 402.3 ).
- A-1 or A-2 visas are required for diplomats and foreign government officials traveling to the United States to engage in other official duties or activities, unrelated to international organization, on behalf of their national government. (Note: Officials of local municipalities must travel on B-1 visitor visas or under the Visa Waiver Program when going to the United States for official duties.)
- NATO-1, NATO-2, NATO-3, NATO-4, NATO-5, or NATO-6 visa is required for a foreign official traveling to the United States under the applicable provision of the Agreement on the Status of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization or the Protocol on the Status of International Military Headquarters Set Up Pursuant to the North Atlantic Treaty. This includes national representatives, international staff, and immediate family members.
- Personal employees or domestic workers of an A, G, or NATO visa holder may be issued A-3, G-5, or NATO-7 visa respectively. Learn more here: www.ustraveldocs.com/lv.
- Diplomats and other foreign government officials going to the United States to perform non-official or non-governmental functions of a commercial nature, or traveling as tourists, must apply for the appropriate visa category for the specific travel purpose, such as a B-2 visa for tourism, or travel visa-free.
Required documents for A, G, or NATO visas
- Traveler’s passport.
- Confirmation page of the electronically submitted Form DS-160.
- One photo – you must make at least one attempt to upload a photo while completing the online Form DS-160. If the photo upload fails,one printed photo 5×5 cm in the format explained in the Photograph Requirements must be prepared for submission. IMPORTANT: Visa applications with photos taken more than six months ago or otherwise not meeting the requirements may be rejected.
- Diplomatic note with the following information:
- the government official’s or employee’s name, date of birth, position and title, place or organization 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, and
- the names, relationships, and dates of birth of any dependents and other members of household who will be accompanying or joining the government official or employee.
- For personnel of designated international organizations – an official letter from the employer with details of a traveler and any accompanying immediate family members and information about his or her employment contract.
Required documents for U.S. Government-sponsored exchange visitors
- Traveler’s passport.
- Confirmation page of the electronically submitted Form DS-160 for each traveler.
- One photo – you must make at least one attempt to upload a photo while completing the online Form DS-160. If the photo upload fails, one printed photo 5×5 cm in the format explained in the Photograph Requirements must be prepared for submission. IMPORTANT: Visa applications with photos taken more than six months ago or otherwise not meeting the requirements may be rejected.
- Signed DS-2019 from your U.S. program for each traveler.
A, G, NATO, or C-3 (Foreign Government Official in Transit) visa applicants are exempt from visa fees.
U.S. Government-funded exchange visitors and their dependents (spouses and minor children) are exempt from visa application fees if they are participating in a Department of State, a U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), or a federally funded educational and cultural exchange program. Exchange programs eligible for the application fee exemption have a program number that begins with the prefix G-1, G-2, G-3, or G-7 program serial number on the Form DS-2019, Certificate of Eligibility for Exchange Visitor (J-1) Status.
Submitting documents and receiving a visa
Generally, an interview and personal appearance is not required for A, G, NATO (except A-3, G-5, and NATO-7), or C-3 visa applicants, unless specifically requested by a consular officer. Therefore, documents may be submitted directly to the U.S. Embassy Riga Consular Section either by an applicant personally or their representative. An appointment for document submission must be made in advance by phone +371 6710 7034 or email email@example.com.
U.S. Government-funded exchange visitors and their dependents over 14 are required to visit the U.S. Embassy Riga Consular Section in person for fingerprinting purposes and should call +371 6710 7034 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule their appointments.
If a consular officer determines that a visa application may be approved, usually, the applicant’s passport with a visa in it is available for pick-up on the following working day between 3 p.m. and 4 p.m. Sometimes more time may be required for processing. Note that same day processing is NOT possible.
Non-official travel for foreign diplomatic passport holders
A head of state or government and their immediate family members must always travel on an A-1 visa (see the application procedure above).
Other diplomatic passport holders with non-official travel purpose should:
complete and submit electronically the Form DS-160,
prepare one photo – you will upload a photo while completing the online Form DS-160. If the photo upload fails, you will need to bring one printed photo in the format explained in the Photograph Requirements. IMPORTANT: Visa applications with photos taken more than six months ago or otherwise not meeting the requirements may be rejected,
- submit an e-mail inquiry to the Consular Section for further instructions and determining if a visa application fee applies. Your email must include your DS-160 confirmation number.Individuals holding diplomatic passports may be exempt from visa fees regardless of visa classification and purpose of travel, if they meet one of the qualifying categories. Possession of a diplomatic passport or the equivalent is not by itself sufficient to qualify for a no-fee visa. The consular officer will make the determination whether the visa applicant qualifies for an exemption of fees under U.S. immigration laws.