Can I Renew My American Visa Online?

by • June 17, 2022 • The Legal World, TravelComments (0)277

From the top of the Empire State Building to the heights of Hollywood Hills, the U.S.A is a country bursting with sights to see and places to visit. After receiving the generous 10-year visa, eager travelers might want to hop on the next plane and visit the States but there are a few hoops to jump through before that can happen.

Chinese passport holders who have a valid 10-year visa must also be registered Electronic Visa Update System, an easy electronic system that ensures that all VISA information is current.

The EVUS system is for people with the 10-year visitor visa, B1, B2, or B1/B2 and enrollment must be completed before arrival in the USA.

The 2014 bi-lateral agreement between China and the U.S.A. allows citizens to acquire a 10-year visitor’s visa but the EVUS system was introduced in 2016 to allow 10-year visa holders to keep their information up to date.

Here is everything you need to know on how to renew EVUS to enter the USA hassle-free and enjoy an unforgettable holiday in the land of the free and the home of the brave.

EVUS Validity

The EVUS is only valid for 2 years from the date of approval and must be renewed if the passport or visa expires (whichever comes first).

On its own, it does not act as a visa and is simply used as a way for U.S. border control to have the most recently updated information of travelers.

The EVUS should only be valid when arriving in the USA and it is not required to update it if it expires while the holder is already in the country.

It is also only for citizens of the People’s Republic of China and those with travel documents from Hong Kong SAR, Macau SAR, and Taiwan need not apply.

Information required for EVUS renewal

The renewal process only takes around 20 minutes and visa holders will be required to update their basic information. If no information has changed, travelers still need to complete the following details correctly:

  • Passport number: The passport number must be the same as the passport number which appears on the B1/B2 visa.
  • Passport issue date and expiry date: Both dates appear on the first page of the passport.
  • B1, B2 or B1/B2 visa number: The visa number is shown at the bottom of the document in red, below the validity period of the visa.
  • B1, B2 or B1/B2 visa issue date: This date is also shown in the middle of the visa document.
  • Full Name: The applicant’s name must match the information on the passport and visa. Titles such as Mr/Mrs/Ms should not be included.
  • Date of birth: The traveler should provide the date of birth in the following format: DD/MM/YYYY. Be mindful that the visa displays the date of birth in a different format (year, month, and day).
  • Emergency contact details: Details of a U.S. point of contact should be provided in case of an emergency.
  • Employment details: Applicants must provide the details of their current or most recent employer.
  • Security-related questions: There is a section on the form related to security.

The application does not require travelers to update their fingerprints or photograph and will merely ask information about their recent employment and travel history.

As the visa is valid for 10 years, it is expected that many personal details will change during that time so it is important to keep our visa updated through this convenient system.

Important information about the EVUS

Currently, there is no fee required to process this biennial renewal making the process free to everyone. Some applicants do however opt to use a third party to help with the application, especially if they are not able to complete the form in English.

It is only required for Chinese citizens but there is framework in place to roll out the network throughout parts of Central and South America in the near future. This would include Venezuela, Mexico, and Argentina.

Approval of the documentation happens within minutes but travelers should be advised that it could take up to 72 hours, so applying well before intended travel is recommended.

Airlines do have access to EVUS information and will deny issuing a boarding pass for passengers who do not have updated information status.

The website is translated into Mandarin English but all questions need to be answered in English. It is a mobile-friendly website and applicants may ask the help of a trusted friend, family member, or travel agent if they cannot write the answers in English.

All passengers, regardless of their age, should hold a valid EVUS or will face delays when arriving at the airport.

If a new passport is issued while the EVUS is still valid, holders will need to enroll again to reflect the new passport number.

Photo via Unsplash

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