To enter the United States, you will need a passport, possibly a visa, and other documents and materials as determined by the United States Consulate of the country that issued your passport.

To find the website of the United States Consulate in your country, visit the USA Embassy website. When you click on the name of your region on either the map or the horizontal bar you will be taken to a list of embassies and consulates in that region. Finally click on the name of your country. The website is provided in the official language of the country as well as in English.

If you are residing in a country other than the country that issued your passport, check that U.S. Consulate website too. Make sure your documents are in order so that you can return. It is useful to do the following before you start applying:

  1. Read the rules for entering the United States.
  2. Verify the restrictions such as length of stay and total weight of luggage.
  3. Verify the list of documents you will need. Determine whether scanned copies are accepted.

To determine whether you need a visa, visit the United States Visa office website where information about the Visa Waiver Program can be found. Please note that even if you are eligible for a waiver you must have Electronic System for Travel Authorization which can be applied for online.

If you need an official Visa invitation Host invitation or ICPC invitation, follow the instructions given in the section below titled Invitations


If you do not have a passport, apply for one immediately. If you have a passport, it must meet the following conditions (otherwise, renew or replace it):

  1. Your passport has two empty visa pages.
  2. Your passport does not expire before January 1, 2018.
  3. Your passport should not cause suspicions of its authenticity and ownership.
  4. Your passport should not contain any marks, signs, inscriptions, or corrections. If any of these are present, they should be certified by authorities of the issuing country.
  5. Your passport should not have any torn pages.

ICPC and Host Invitation

Your ICPC Dashboard has PDFs of your ICPC Invitation and Host Invitation.  You can print them from there.

If the U.S. Consulate requires an ICPC invitation and/or Host invitation with an original signature rather than a scanned copy, please email with subject line “Original ICPC and Host Invitations”.   Lisa Donahoo at ICPC will arrange for them to be sent via Federal Express to you.

In your email request please include the name and exact mailing address, including contact phone number, of where these should be sent.  Please be aware that if one member of a team requests these invitations with original signature, they will be sent for all that team’s members to the requestor, who should then distribute them to the team.

If you have other visa-related questions, please contact Barb