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Interview Waiver Program
29 MINUTE READ
February 13, 2024

The Interview Waiver Program is Back!

The US Mission is now authorizing the renewal of American visas without interview through the Interview Waiver Program (IWP).  Applicants whose previous US visa expired within the last 24 months or will expire in the next 3 months may now qualify to renew their visa without an interview.  Qualified applicants can access the Interview Waiver Program using the regular visa application system at https://ais.usvisa-info.com  

Who Qualifies for the Interview Waiver Program? 

You may be eligible for a visa renewal without an interview if your application is for the following types of visas: 

  • Visitors (B1/B2) 
  • Students (F) 
  • Academic Exchange Visitors (M, J) 
  • Petition-Based Temporary Workers (H, L) 
  • Crew and Transit (C1/D combined only) 

In addition, you must meet ALL of the following criteria: 

  • Your last visa application must have been approved.
  • Your previous visa was issued in Cameroon. 
  • Your previous visa is the same classification as your current application. 
  • Your previous visa was a full validity, multiple entry visa. 
  • Your previous visa expired within the last 24 months or will expire in the next 3 months from the date of the application. 
  • You have all your passports covering the entire period since receiving your most recent visa, including the passport with the most recent visa. 
  • You have never been arrested or convicted of a crime or offense in the United States, even if you later received a waiver or pardon. 
  • You have never worked without authorization or remained beyond your permitted time in the United States. 

How to Apply: 

1.     Complete the DS-160 Application 

You can access the Interview Waiver Program using the regular visa application system.  If you meet the qualifications, you will be prompted to follow the program’s steps for submitting your application. 

2.    Send your Application to the US Embassy through DHL 

Send all passports covering the period since receiving the previous visa, including the passport with the most recent visa, through DHL in Yaoundé.  It is recommended that you submit your application at least one month prior to your anticipated date of travel to allow adequate time for processing.  Please note that the Interview Waiver Program is not an expedited service, but rather a service prioritizing convenience for qualified applications.    

If the Consular Section requires more information, they will contact you via email. 

3.    Pay the Visa Reciprocity Fee 

Once approved, you will be notified to come to the US Embassy Monday through Thursday from 1:00pm to 2:30pm to pay the visa reciprocity fee.  If you cannot make the payment yourself, you may designate another trusted individual to do so on your behalf.  The approved visa will NOT be printed until the reciprocity fee is paid.   

NOTE:  There are no additional fees associated with the Interview Waiver Process compared to the regular visa application system.  

Third parties unaffiliated with U.S. Embassy Yaoundé may seek to take advantage of various visa services to target visa applicants with fraudulent offers or claims.   Applicants should fill out their own forms and make their appointments themselves via the official website. 

4.    Pick Up at DHL 

When your passport is ready for pickup, you will be notified by the contact information your provided to pick up your passport at the DHL in Yaoundé.   

 

Applicant Responsibilities: 

Each applicant is responsible for faithfully adhering to the regulations outlined above.  Any visa request received through the Interview Waiver Program that does not meet ALL the requirements outlined above will be refused, the online fee will be forfeited, and the applicant will be required to start the visa application process from the beginning.  Depending on the case, an attempt to misuse the Interview Waiver Program could result in a derogatory notation being permanently placed in your visa record.  

Each applicant must individually meet the criteria; minors can apply without an interview only if they meet the eligibility criteria on their own. 

The Consular Section reserves the right at any time to require an in-person interview.   

 

Frequently Asked Questions: 

1.    Is there a separate website to submit my application for the Interview Waiver Program? 

No.  All US Visa applications in Cameroon must be submitted through our regular website.  If you meet the requirements, you will be prompted to participate in the Interview Waiver Program. 

2.    I meet almost all of the requirements for the Interview Waiver Program.  Can I still apply? 

No.  You must meet ALL of the requirements listed on the website in order to qualify for the program.  Applications that do not meet the requirements will be refused. 

3.    How can I tell if I remained in the United States beyond my permitted time? 

When you enter the United States, Customs and Border Protection will stamp your passport.  The date in the center is the date you entered.  On the line below, you will see the class of visa you used to enter.  Below that, where it says “until” will be a second date.  You are required to depart the United States prior to that second date.  Any travel after that date will be considered an overstay unless you have received a waiver from the Department of Homeland Security. 

4.    Can I drop my application off at any DHL? 

The US Embassy can only guarantee delivery for applications submitted through the DHL in Yaoundé.   

5.    Can someone drop off my application for me? 

Yes.  You can designate a trusted individual to submit your application on your behalf. 

6.    Does the Interview Waiver Program mean I no longer need to pay a reciprocity fee? 

The reciprocity fee payment is still required for all countries with a reciprocity fee listed on the Department of State’s website.  The Interview Waiver Program does not waive the reciprocity fee. 

7.    Can someone pay the reciprocity fee for me? 

Yes.  You can designate a trusted individual to pay the reciprocity fee on your behalf.  

8.    Does the Interview Waiver Program cost more than the regular visa process? 

No.  There are no additional fees associated with the Interview Waiver Process compared to the regular visa application system. 

9.    Does the US Embassy recommend any companies or individuals that can help me submit my application and/or reciprocity fee? 

No.  Be careful of third parties unaffiliated with the US Embassy who may seek to take advantage of various visa services to target you with fraudulent offers or claims.   

10.   Can I pay an expedite fee to receive my passport in less than a month? 

No.  There is no expedite process for the Interview Waiver Program.  While it is possible that processing times can be less than a month, we strongly recommend submitting your application at least a month in advance of your planned travel. 

11.   My last visa expired within the past 24 months.  I recently applied to renew it but was refused at the interview.   Do I still qualify for the Interview Waiver Program?

No.  Your most recent visa application must have been an approval to qualify for the Interview Waiver Program.