INTERTANKO comments on recent US Visa Restriction

INTERTANKO has submitted comments on two recently published U.S. Interim Rules that significantly restrict the ability of seafarers to enter the United States either onboard their vessels or when in transit through the US en route to their ship or home.

Visas - personal appearance

INTERTANKO has submitted comments on the U.S. Department of State Interim Rule, effective 1 August 2003, which severely restricts the authority of U.S. consular officials to waive personal appearances by applicants for non-immigrant visas. This rule

will make it virtually impossible for most foreign crewmembers to obtain U.S. visas, as they generally do not know in advance whether they will be serving on a ship that will call in the United States in the near future. Even if they know of such U.S. port calls, they may reside in a location distant from a U.S. consulate. This rule also effectively ends the crew list visa, as the owner would be required to produce the entire crew for interview by the consular official.

Please click here to download the State Interim Rule

Please click here to download INTERTANKO’s comments

Suspension of Immediate and Continuous Transit Programs

INTERTANKO has submitted comments to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Interim Rule on the Suspension of the Transit Without Visa (TWOV) and the International to International (ITI) programmes. This rule would have an impact on crew changes for ships where the crew member was planning to travel through the United States en route either to the ship or to home. With this new regulation, such non-U.S. persons will have to have a U.S. visa to travel. The suspension does not impact citizens of U.S. visa-waiver countries. There are limited exceptions for persons already travelling.

Please click here to download the Interim Rule on the Suspension of the TWOV

Please click here to download INTERTANKO’s comments

Details of the suspension are explained in the State department Press Release and in the accompanying Brochure

Contact: Dragos Rauta