Nationwide Desire Exception (NIE) – Journey Update, September 13, 2021

Shante Abdo

Up to date 9/13/2021

Take note: If you are a U.S. Citizen or U.S. Lasting Resident (“Green Card” holder), the NIE information and facts under does NOT pertain to you.  If you are the legal wife or husband of a U.S. citizen or Eco-friendly Card holder, scroll down to “Family-Based Exemptions.”

Schengen Travel Limits Continue to be in Spot

Presidential Proclamation 10143, which suspended journey from the 26 Schengen Place nations around the world, like Greece,stays in drive.  These limitations implement irrespective if you have a legitimate U.S. visa, ESTA or have been thoroughly vaccinated.

In most instances, journey by non-U.S. citizens from Greece to the United States is only probable if you qualify and are approved for a National Desire Exception (NIE), are exempted by visa course, or qualify for a Loved ones Exemption.

The actuality that the governing administration of Greece lifted most travel limitations for tourists from the United States does not improve this coverage this was not a reciprocal decision.  Your COVID vaccination status also would make no difference.  We simply cannot forecast how extensive these constraints will remain in put.


Most vacation uses that fall underneath the B1/B2 visa class will probable not qualify for a National Fascination Exception, even if you have a legitimate visa or ESTA. This involves, but not confined to, tourism family vacation traveling to spouse and children or friends browsing a fiancée, fiancé, girlfriend, boyfriend, cohabitation lover attending a wedding or graduation ceremony browsing a expecting relative or child schedule enterprise conferences attending a expert meeting preserving a rental or expense residence and so forth.  We do not know when these restrictions will be lifted.

Countrywide Interest EXCEPTIONS (NIE) AND EXEMPTED Travelers

Although routine Non-Immigrant Visa (NIV) expert services continue to be suspended, U.S. Embassy Athens Consular Segment proceeds to provide crisis and mission critical visa companies to applicants exempted from COVID-19 connected Presidential Proclamations.  For far more information and facts on the Presidential Proclamations, see the internet site.

National Interest Exceptions tumble into the pursuing groups:

  • College students*,
  • Academics/scientists,
  • Public health gurus,
  • Governing administration officers*,
  • Crew members,
  • Crisis healthcare remedy,
  • Humanitarian causes,
  • Some others whose vacation is in the U.S. countrywide fascination for critical support to critical infrastructure, sizeable economic activity, or nationwide safety.

*Exempted vacationers: Students with valid F or M visas and a valid I-20 form, and Authorities officials and Diplomats touring with valid A or G visas do not call for NIEs. You might move forward with vacation.

Athletes should ask for an NIE from U.S. Customs and Border Safety (CBP). We are no for a longer time authorized to take into consideration sports activities-linked NIEs.

Requesting a National Desire Exception (NIE)

Present Hold out TIME: 5 Company Times Soon after RECEIPT OF A Comprehensive Ask for.

Be sure to Browse ALL Directions Down below Carefully Before Making use of. INCOMPLETE / INCORRECT REQUESTS WILL Hold off YOUR Scenario.

Action 1: Affirm YOUR Actual physical Existence. U.S. Embassy Athens will only consider NIE applicants who are bodily existing in Greece with lawful standing this sort of as Greek citizens and long-lasting or short term residents holding a valid Greek residency card. All other vacationers, you should speak to the closest U.S. Embassy or Consulate Typical in your nation of residence. If you qualify but are at the moment in the United States, make sure you wait until finally you return to Athens before publishing your NIE request.

Stage 2: Send an electronic mail to AthensNIE@point with the topic line “NIE dd-mmm-yyyy SURNAME,” replacing the letters with the day, month, and year of your meant journey day. For instance, “NIE 25-DEC-2021 SMITH″ if you are traveling on December 25, 2021, and your surname is Smith.  Your e-mail Must comprise all the adhering to:

    • A scanned copy of each traveler’s visa or ESTA authorization
    • A scanned duplicate of every single traveler’s passport photo webpage
    • Reason of travel, and any supporting files that clearly clearly show how you qualify for an NIE
    • A copy of your flight itinerary, or proposed journey dates
    • Evidence of Greek residency, if you are not a Greek citizen (passport holder)
  • You should deliver the following facts in the body of your electronic mail:
    • Surname:
    • Initial title:
    • Date of Start:
    • Spot of Delivery:
    • Nationality:
    • Gender:
    • Visa Course / ESTA (valid right up until day):
    • Reason of Journey:

Please note: the traveler need to send out all attachments and facts needed in one particular e mail.  Important: If you are implementing for an NIE on behalf of a different traveler who is 18 yrs of age or more mature the traveler ought to be copied on all NIE correspondence thanks to privacy laws outlined below section 222(f) of the Immigration and Nationality Act.

Step 3:  Be sure to allow up to 5 enterprise days for Consular Officers to assessment your files and qualifications.  U.S. Consular Area Athens is processing hundreds of NIE requests for every working day with minimal assets.  We take pleasure in your tolerance for the duration of this process.  You should do not ship a number of programs or requests for updates, as this only further more slows down processing.

Action 4: If your NIE is approved, you will be notified by email.  Do not try to check in to your flight on-line or travel ahead of you obtain e-mail notification of your NIE acceptance.  The NIE will be issued electronically and seen to related authorities organizations and airways.

NIE VALIDITY Extended TO 1 12 months, Numerous ENTRIES

Effective July 5, 2021, all NIEs are legitimate for 12 months and multiple entries, for the same intent of travel.  This is retroactive for NIEs issued on or just after July 5, 2020.  There is no even more action or documents expected from the Embassy and you could carry on with vacation. Your goal of travel need to be the exact as for the originally-issued NIE.
VISA Applicants

If you are a visa applicant with an approaching scheduled appointment at U.S. Consulate Athens, or were not too long ago issued a visa right here, please do NOT implement for an NIE.  Your NIE will be issued instantly when the visa is authorized.

Travelers with out Valid Visas

If you believe that you tumble into any of the previously mentioned classes but need a visa, remember to abide by the assistance delivered at You are responsible for completing your own visa application, paying out the ideal payment and scheduling an appointment.

Household-Primarily based EXEMPTIONS

Specified tourists are exempt from COVID vacation constraints like:

    • Lawfully married spouses of U.S. Citizens (USC)
    • Legally married spouses of Lawful Lasting Citizens (LPRs, also recognised as “Green Card” holders)
    • Under-21, single youngster of a USC or LPR
    • Parent or guardian of an underneath-21, single USC or LPR
    • Beneath-21 single sibling of an below-21 unmarried USC or LPR.

Unmarried associates, cohabitation agreements, fiancées, fiancés, boyfriends, girlfriends, grownup young children, mom and dad, grandparents and other extended family members do not qualify for family exemptions.

Required Paperwork: If you qualify for Household Exemptions, you do not require an NIE. You need to nevertheless have a valid ESTA or U.S. Visa, furthermore documentation that proves your relationship to the U.S. Citizen or LPR relative this kind of as marriage certificate, beginning certificates, adoption decrees, and so forth.

If you are a citizen of a state that demands a U.S. visa, you should to apply for a visa, pay the visa rate, and plan an appointment for a B2 visa. Just after scheduling an appointment, you can go back again to that web-site and ask for an expedited appointment, with an rationalization of your Loved ones Exemption status.

Necessary COVID Tests and Quarantine Necessities

All airline travellers to the United States ages two a long time and more mature have to supply a detrimental COVID-19 viral exam taken inside of 3 calendar times of journey – even if you have currently been thoroughly vaccinated. Alternatively, vacationers could provide documentation from a accredited health care supplier of possessing recovered from COVID-19 in the 90 times previous travel.  Check the CDC site for added facts and Often Requested Issues.  The CDC Command and Avoidance screening requirement also involves tests and self-quarantine rules you have to comply with just after your arrival in the United States.

Admission to the United States continues to be matter to a dedication by Customs and Border Safety (CBP) at the U.S. Port of Entry. Obtaining a legitimate visa or ESTA approval alongside with an NIE is not a ensure of admission.


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