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Diplomats, Foreign Government Officials and Members of the Military
13 MINUTE READ
March 30, 2022

A-1, A-2 and G-1 through G-4 visas may be issued to diplomats and other government officials for official travel to the United States. Generally, the type of visa required by a diplomat or other government official depends upon their purpose of travel to the United States. There are very specific requirements which must be met by applicants in order to qualify for A, G or NATO visas under U.S. immigration law.

A, G and NATO visa applicants are exempt from paying non-immigrant visa fees.

For questions regarding official visas and/or to schedule an appointment, please contact us at: osloofficial@state.gov

Diplomats and Government Officials (A-1 & A-2)

A Head of State or Government qualifies for an A-1 visa regardless of the purpose of his or her visit to the United States. The type of visa required by a diplomat or other government official depends on his or her purpose of stay in the United States.

To qualify for an A-1 or A-2 visa, a diplomat or other government official must be traveling to the United States on behalf of his or her national government to engage solely in official activities for that government. The duties or services to be performed must be of an inherently governmental character – it is not sufficient that a government holds interest or control in a given organization. Local government officials representing their state, province, borough, or other local political entity do not qualify for “A” visa status; they require B-1 or B-2 visas. Qualified A visa applicants traveling to the United States for assignments of less than 90 days will be issued visas annotated “TDY” (temporary duty).

Embassies and consulates generally do not require interviews for those applying for A-1 and A-2 visas, although a consular officer can request an interview.

Important note: Foreign officials who intend to travel to the United States on official business must obtain an A visa prior to their entry. They cannot travel on tourist visas, or visa free under the Visa Waiver Program (ESTA).

Employees of International Organizations (G)

To qualify for a G visa the individual concerned must be entering the United States in pursuance of official duties.

G-1 Members of a permanent mission of a recognized government to an international organization.

G-2 Representatives of a recognized government traveling to the United States temporarily to attend meetings of a designated international organization.

G-3 Representatives of non-recognized or non-member governments to an international organization.

G-4 Visas are issued to individual personnel who are proceeding to the United States to take up an appointment at a designated international organization.

G-1, G-2, and G-3 visa applications must be accompanied by a Note Verbale from the applicant’s national government. G-4 visa applications must be accompanied by an official request from the appropriate international organization (the G-4 note must be sent directly by cable to the consular section from the international organization.)

Family members accompanying a G visa holder take the same classification as the principal applicant.

NATO

Many armed forces personnel are exempt from passport and visa requirements if they are:

Attached to NATO Allied Headquarters in the United States and are traveling on official business; or

entering the United States under the NATO Status of Forces Agreement. When traveling in visa exempt status, such personnel generally enter the United States by military aircraft or naval vessel. Personnel traveling in visa exempt status must present their official military identification cards and NATO travel orders. We recommend that personnel traveling on a non-military aircraft or naval vessel apply for a visa.

The U.S. Embassy Oslo Visa Unit will assist in the visa process. Active-duty military members will apply for the NATO-2 visa, and civilians working directly for the military will apply for the NATO-4 visa.  An interview at the Embassy is not required and the visa application fee will be waived.

Family members that are traveling with or will join the principal applicant later must have a valid NATO visa to enter the U.S.

How to apply:

A NATO visa application accompanied by all necessary supporting documentation can be sent by mail:

United States Embassy
Att: Visa Unit v/Oslo Official
PO Box 4075 AMB
0244 OSLO

All NATO visa applications must include:

  • Confirmation page of the electronic application form DS-160 (containing a barcode);
  • A valid passport;
  • If available, any old passports containing visas to the United States (valid or expired);
  • One approx. 5 x 5 cm color photograph;
    – Taken in full-face view directly facing the camera
    – Photo must be taken with a plain white background
    – Photo cannot be older than 6 months
    – Photo must be printed on photo quality paper
    – Eye glasses are not allowed in visa photos
    – For full photo requirements, please visit this website
  • NATO travel orders
  • Purpose of travel:
  • Official training requiring an invitational travel order (ITO), or;
  • Meetings, conferences, workgroups, etc.

If you wish to schedule an appointment to deliver a NATO visa application in person at the U.S. Embassy in Oslo, please send an email to OsloOfficial@state.gov.

Domestic Employees of A, G, and NATO Visa Holders (A-3, G-5, or NATO-7)

Personal employees, attendants, domestic workers, or servants of individuals who hold a valid A-1 or A-2, G-1 through G-4, or NATO-1 through NATO-6 visa, need an A-3, G-5, or a NATO-7 visa. As part of the application process, an interview at the U.S. embassy or consulate is required. Proof that the applicant will receive a fair wage, sufficient to financially support himself, comparable to that being offered in the area of employment in the U.S. is required. In addition, the applicant needs to demonstrate that he/she will perform the contracted employment duties. The consular officer will determine eligibility for the A-3, G-5 and NATO-7 visa. Applicants for A-3, G-5 and NATO-7 visas are exempt from paying the visa application fee and must apply for their visa outside the United States.

Important note: Domestic helpers of diplomats (A3) and international organization employees (G5) must first be registered with the Department of State’s Office of Foreign Mission Management Information System (TOMIS) before applying for a visa. For details of TOMIS registration please contact the U.S. Department of State’s Office of Foreign Missions.

Diplomatic Passport Holders for Private Travel

Diplomatic passport holders accredited to their missions in Norway who are traveling to the United States for private travel may apply for a visitor visa (B-1 or B-2). Such applicants are required to schedule an appointment at the U.S. Embassy and appear in person for an interview with a consular officer.

A non-official visa appointment may be scheduled by e-mailing OsloOfficial@state.gov after submitting the electronic DS-160 application form. The email request should contain the DS-160 application number.

How To Apply

Applicants applying for A visas are exempt from paying visa fees. Diplomatic passport holders are exempt from paying visa fees for all types of visas.  Official passport holders are not charged for official visas, but are required to pay visa application and reciprocal issuance fees if applicable, for all non-official visas.

We encourage all Norwegian diplomatic and official visa applicants to submit their visa applications through the Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Diplomatic missions in Norway can submit visa applications on behalf of their diplomatic personnel and other government officials and their immediate families by messenger to the Embassy’s Diplomatic Visa Unit. The Embassy also accepts visa applications from domestic employees of all diplomatic passport holders accredited to their missions in Norway.

Any Diplomatic or Official visa application accompanied by all necessary supporting documentation can also be sent by registered mail service, or delivered to the Embassy of the United States by a recognized courier service. The mailing address for any Diplomatic and Official Visa applications is:

United States Embassy
Att: Visa Unit v/Oslo Official
PO Box 4075 AMB
0244 OSLO

If you wish to book an appointment to deliver an official or diplomatic visa application in person at the U.S. Embassy in Oslo, please send an email to OsloOfficial@state.gov.

All Diplomatic/Official visa applicants must provide:

Confirmation page of the electronic application form DS-160(containing a barcode);

A valid passport;

If available, any old passports containing visas to the United States (valid or expired);

One approx. 5 x 5 cm color photograph;
– Taken in full-face view directly facing the camera
– Photo must be taken with a plain white background
– Photo cannot be older than 6 months
– Photo must be printed on photo quality paper
– Eye glasses are not allowed in visa photos
– For full photo requirements, please visit this website

Diplomatic Note (Only the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Norway can provide this) / Verbal Note / Official Visa Request. In many cases the note is sent directly to Consular section by the appropriate protocol office. The Note should list the name of the official travelers and specify their date of birth, title or official status.  It should also specify the place of assignment or visit, purpose of travel, brief description of duties, travel date, anticipated length of stay or tour of duty in the United States and the names, relationships, and dates of birth of any dependents and other members of the household who will be accompanying or joining the principal applicant.

In addition:

Any immediate family members to A1 – A2, G1 – G4 visa holders should also provide:

A copy of the principal applicant’s visa

A-3 and G-5 visa applicants should also provide:

A copy of the employer’s diplomatic visa;

Employment contract signed by both employer and employee. Please see this website for an employment contract template. 

A-3 visa applicants must provide a Note Verbale listing the name of the employee, and the employer’s official title or status.  It should also specify the date of departure from Norway, and the purpose of the trip and length of stay in the United States; and

G-5 visa applicants must provide the original official request from the international organization, unless it has been sent directly to the Embassy.

If applicable: documents relating to any arrest and/or criminal conviction, medical ineligibility, or denial to enter/deportation from the United States.

Important note: domestic helpers of diplomats (A3) and international organization employees (G5) must first be registered with the Department of State’s Office of Foreign Mission Management Information System (TOMIS) before applying for a visa. For details of TOMIS registration please contact the U.S. Department of State’s Office of Foreign Missions.