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Frequently asked questions
  • General FAQs
  • Information for Performers, Entertainers and Atletes
  • Student, Exchange and Practical Training FAQs
  • Visa Fees
  • When will my visa be ready?

    When will my visa be ready?

    • Processing of applications normally takes 1-2 days from the date they are received. Longer processing time may also be required in the following situations: (1) in cases where the applicant has failed to submit all the required elements of an application; (2) in cases where the Embassy requires additional information from the applicant; and (3) in cases where the Embassy has to conduct additional administrative processing.

      We recommend prospective travelers submit their applications well in advance. Applicants should refrain from calling the Embassy merely to inquire about the status of their application until the full processing time has expired. We also strongly recommend that applicants not purchase airplane tickets or make nonrefundable travel arrangements until they have actually received their visa; visa applicants should never assume their application will be automatically approved.

  • Does a visa guarantee that I can enter the United States?

    Does a visa guarantee that I can enter the United States?

    • No, A valid visa permits you to apply for admission to the United States when you arrive at the airport (or other port of entry) in the United States. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) makes the final decision as to whether you may be admitted to the United States.
  • My visa is valid for 5 years; does that mean I can stay in the United States for 5 years?

    My visa is valid for 5 years; does that mean I can stay in the United States for 5 years?

    • No, DHS will decide at the airport on how long you may stay in the United States during any one visit. The visa's validity period represents the time period during which you may apply for admission to the United States as a visitor for business or pleasure.
  • Is there a possibility that I may need to pay an additional fee if the visa is issued?

    Is there a possibility that I may need to pay an additional fee if the visa is issued?

    • Yes, The United States charges visa issuance (reciprocity) fees to citizens of certain countries in addition to the application fee. This fee, if applicable, must be paid before a visa can be issued. The fee must be paid in cash (US$ or SRD) at the Consular Section. The reason for this is that those countries charge U.S. citizens additional fees. To determine whether your nationality is subject to an issuance (reciprocity) fee, please check the chart at http://travel.state.gov/visa/reciprocity/index.htm .
      Currently, Suriname is not one of the countries which charges visa issuance fees.
  • Can I get an Emergency Appointment?

    Can I get an Emergency Appointment?

    • Earlier appointments are accommodated on a case by case basis. While we will consider requests for earlier appointments on in extremely emergent circumstances, our caseload and staffing will also affect our decision.

      We are only able to expedite appointment dates in cases of an emergency (e.g. health conditions, death of next of kin, emergency business travel, students).

      If your travel regards one of the above-mentioned conditions, and all available interview dates are in conflict with your anticipated travel, please e-mail us at caparamar@state.gov :

      • 1. Confirmation page of your DS-160
      • 2. Appointment confirmation sheet (if no appointment has been made yet, please do so on any available interview date through our website: http://suriname/usembassy.gov Appointments should be made per individual).
      • 3. Information regarding the purpose of travel (e.g. invitation letter, letter of the business conference, I-20)

      You will be contacted by the Consular Section as soon as possible if found eligible for an emergency appointment. 

  • My citizenship is other than Suriname. Can I apply at the US Embassy in Paramaribo?

    My citizenship is other than Suriname. Can I apply at the US Embassy in Paramaribo?

    • U.S. Visa applicants should normally apply at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate at their own country of residence. If you are not a resident of Suriname, interviewing officers in Paramaribo may not have experience in evaluating circumstances in your country of residence. You may, therefore, have greater difficulty establishing your eligibility for a U.S. Visa in Paramaribo. Temporary visitors in Suriname are strongly encouraged to apply for U.S. visas in their country of residence.
  • I applied for a visa but my application was refused. Can I get my money back?

    I applied for a visa but my application was refused. Can I get my money back?

    • The application fee is for the processing cost and is therefore not refundable.
  • I just returned from the United States and discovered that I did not turn in my I-94 departure record before departure, what should I do?

    I just returned from the United States and discovered that I did not turn in my I-94 departure record before departure, what should I do?

    • If you departed by a commercial air or sea carrier (airlines or cruise ships), your departure from the U.S. can be independently verified, and it is not necessary to take any further action, although holding on to your outbound (from the U.S.) boarding pass - if you still have it - can help expedite your re-entry next time you come back to the United States.

      If you failed to turn in your I-94 Departure Record, please send it, along with any documentation that proves you left the United States to:

      DHS - CBP SBU 1084 South Laurel Road London, KY 40744

      Do not mail your Form I-94 Departure Record or supporting information to any U.S. Consulate or Embassy, to any other CBP office in the United States, or to any address other than the one above. Only at this location are we able to make the necessary corrections to CBP records to prevent inconvenience to you in the future. The London Kentucky office does not answer correspondence, so please do not ask for confirmation that your record has been updated.

      More information can be found at: U.S. Customs & Border Protection website .
  • My passport is not valid for six (6) months, can I travel?

    My passport is not valid for six (6) months, can I travel?

    • If you already have a valid U.S. visa in your passport, and the passport is valid for less than six months, we advise that you refer to the U.S. Customs and Border Protection: http://www.cbp.gov/

      Although citizens of Suriname should only have a passport valid for their intended period of stay, the Customs and Border Protection Officer has the sole jurisdiction to grant or deny admission to the United States.

      If you need to apply for a new visa to the United States, a passport must be valid for at least 6 months after your interview. Passports should have at least one blank page (without stamps) available to attach a visa. If your passport is still valid, but you have no available pages, you should obtain a new passport.

  • I have a visa; do I also need a return ticket?

    I have a visa; do I also need a return ticket?

    • If you hold a visa of any classification, including a B-1/B-2 visa, you are not required to hold a return ticket; you may enter the United States on a one-way ticket. All travelers should carry with them for presentation to U.S. officials, if required, evidence of funds sufficient for their visit and, with the exception of H and L visa holders, evidence that they have a residence abroad to which they intend returning at the end of their stay. Examples of such evidence include: traveler's checks; return tickets; proof of finances; letter from parents saying they will support you; proof of employment; evidence of enrollment at an academic institution.
  • Do I need any vaccinations?

    Do I need any vaccinations?

    • Vaccinations are no longer required for temporary travel to the United States. However, if you are intending to study or work, you should contact the school or prospective employer as they may have specific requirements.
  • What do I do about health insurance?

    What do I do about health insurance?

    • Visitors and temporary residents are required to pay their own medical costs. As a result it is advisable to take out health insurance. Those planning on remaining in the United States for any length of time or permanently may obtain health insurance after arrival there. Sometimes it is available through an employer, as many companies arrange group insurance for their employees.
  • I have a holiday home in the United States; how long can I remain there?

    I have a holiday home in the United States; how long can I remain there?

    • If you travel to the United States visa free under the Visa Waiver Program, you may remain for up to 90 days. This period cannot be extended. If you travel to the United States on a visitor (B-2) visa, the period of time you will be allowed will be determined at the port of entry by the U.S. Customs & Border Protection (CBP). Initially they can grant a stay of six months which can be extended for a further six months at their discretion. The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has sole jurisdiction over such matters.
  • Can I take my medicine to the United States?

    Can I take my medicine to the United States?

    • If you take medicines containing habit-forming drugs or narcotics (e.g. cough medicine, diuretics, heart drugs, tranquilizers, sleeping pills, depressants, stimulants, etc.) you should: have all drugs, medicine and similar products properly identified; carry only the quantity that might normally be used by an individual having a health problem requiring such drugs or medicine; have either a prescription or written statement from your personal physician that the medicine is being used under a doctor's direction and is necessary for your physical well-being while traveling.
  • Can I drive while in the United States?

    Can I drive while in the United States?

    • Those taking up temporary residence must obtain driving licenses from the appropriate State Authority upon their arrival at their destination. The Embassy does not have any information concerning the laws of the various States on requirements for issuance of driving licenses.
      For more information about obtaining a U.S. driving license, please see http://www.dmv-department-of-motor-vehicles.com/ .
  • How long is a visa good for?

    How long is a visa good for?

    • You may use your visa to travel to the United States until the date it expires under "expiration" or "expiry" on the right side of the visa.
  • I have a visa in my old passport. Can I just transfer it over?

    I have a visa in my old passport. Can I just transfer it over?

    • It is not possible to transfer a visa from one passport to another without making a new visa application. Please note that the Embassy no longer issues visas valid "indefinitely". If you are issued a new visa it will have a maximum validity of five years.

      If you obtain a new passport, and your valid visa is in your old passport, you can travel with both passports and there is no need to apply for a new visa.
      Note: If, when canceling your old passport, the passport authority has clipped the corners of the passport, and, in so doing, has damaged the visa in any way, that visa is no longer valid and cannot be used for travel to the United States.

  • My passport containing a valid visa has expired. I've obtained a new passport; do I need a new visa?

    My passport containing a valid visa has expired. I've obtained a new passport; do I need a new visa?

    • If the passport in which your visa has been endorsed has expired, the visa in the old passport still can be used, provided that you also carry a valid passport of the same nationality. Note: If, when canceling your old passport, the passport authority has clipped the corners of the passport, and, in so doing, has damaged the visa in any way, that visa is no longer valid and cannot be used for travel to the United States.
  • My passport will expire soon; do I need to get a new passport or visa?

    My passport will expire soon; do I need to get a new passport or visa?

    • Visa regulations state that a passport must be valid for at least six months beyond the date of the holder's departure from the United States.

  • How long can I stay in the United States?

    How long can I stay in the United States?

    • If you travel to the United States visa free under the Visa Waiver Program, you may remain for up to 90 days. This period cannot be extended. If you travel to the United States on a visitor (B-2) visa, the period of time you will be allowed will be determined by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) at the port of entry. Initially they can grant a stay of six months which can be extended for a further six months at their discretion. The U.S. Customs & Border Protection has sole jurisdiction over such matters.

  • I'm a professional tennis player/golfer/race car driver. What type of visa do I require?

    I'm a professional tennis player/golfer/race car driver. What type of visa do I require?

    • If you are competing in a tournament or sporting event for which you will receive no salary or payment from a U.S source other than prize money you will require a B-1 visa. If your proposed activities are not exactly as described, you will require an O or P visa.
  • I'm a racecar mechanic/engineer accompanying a professional racing team to the United States. What type of visa do I require?

    I'm a racecar mechanic/engineer accompanying a professional racing team to the United States. What type of visa do I require?

    • Provided you are customarily employed and paid by the racing team, you are a normal and necessary component of the entourage and both you and the team will receive no payment from a U.S. source other than prize money, you will require a B-1 visa. If the racecar driver is applying for an O or P visa, you should apply for the O-2 or P-1 visa to accompany him or her.
  • We are a professional football/soccer team traveling to the United States to play a match. What type of visa do we require?

    We are a professional football/soccer team traveling to the United States to play a match. What type of visa do we require?

    • Provided the income of the team and salary of the players is principally accrued in a foreign country, you will require B-1 visas.
  • I'm a professional football/soccer player who has been signed up by a U.S. football team to play a match/for a season. What type of visa do I require?

    I'm a professional football/soccer player who has been signed up by a U.S. football team to play a match/for a season. What type of visa do I require?

    • You will require an O or P visa.
  • We are a choir who has been invited to perform in the United States. What type of visa do we require?

    We are a choir who has been invited to perform in the United States. What type of visa do we require?

    • If you are all amateurs and you will be performing in a social and/or charitable context, you will require B-2 visas, or if eligible, may travel visa-free under the visa waiver program. However, if you will be performing to a paying audience, you require P visas. If you are professional musicians, or the group includes a mixture of profession and amateur musicians, you will require P visas.
  • We are a professional theater group performing at an international festival in the U.S. What type of visa do we require?

    We are a professional theater group performing at an international festival in the U.S. What type of visa do we require?

    • Unless the company is participating in a cultural program sponsored by the sending country; or participating in a competition for which there is no remuneration other than a prize (monetary or otherwise) and expenses, O or P visas are required.
  • We are musicians who are recording in the United States. What type of visa do we require?

    We are musicians who are recording in the United States. What type of visa do we require?

    • A B-1 visa, or visa free travel is appropriate if you will utilize recording facilities for recording purposes only; the recording will be distributed and sold only outside the United States; and, there will be no public performances.

      Student, Exchange and Practical Training FAQs

  • I am a student and need a visa urgently.

    I am a student and need a visa urgently.

  • Can I enter the United States on my student (F-1) or (M-1) visa, or exchange visitor (J-1) visa before school/ the exchange program begins?

    Can I enter the United States on my student (F-1) or (M-1) visa, or exchange visitor (J-1) visa before school/ the exchange program begins?

    • U.S. Department of Homeland Security regulations state that holders of F, M and J Nonimmigrant visas will not be admitted to the United States until a date 30 days or less prior to the beginning of your program date, or start date, as given on your form I-20 (for F or M visas) or DS-2019 (for J visas). Please consider that date carefully when making your travel plans to the United States.
  • Can I take a holiday after I have completed my studies/exchange program?

    Can I take a holiday after I have completed my studies/exchange program?

    • If you have an F-1 visa you may remain in the United States for up to 60 days at the end of your studies; if you have an M-1 visa you may remain for up to 30 days, or in total one year from your date of admission, whichever is shorter. Holders of J-1 visas may remain for up to 30 days. If you wish to remain longer, you will be required to apply for an adjustment of status from F-1/M-1/J-1 to B-2 with the Department of Homeland Security having jurisdiction over your place of residence.
  • I have not yet received my I-20 or DS-2019 form, but my classes begin in just a few days. It doesn't look like I will receive the I-20/DS-2019 form prior to my scheduled departure from Suriname. What should I do?

    I have not yet received my I-20 or DS-2019 form, but my classes begin in just a few days. It doesn't look like I will receive the I-20/DS-2019 form prior to my scheduled departure from Suriname. What should I do?

    • Please note that students may no longer begin studies at a U.S. school while awaiting adjudication of a change of status application. Students who have not yet received their I-20 or DS-2019 form simply have to wait until they have received all their documents from their school, along with a letter from the school stating that the student may start classes late, then apply for a regular F-1, M-1, or J-1 visa. Once you apply, we will make every effort to get you the visa in time for you to make your scheduled start of classes.

  • Why is the Department of State increasing the basic nonimmigrant visa application fee to $160 from its current $140?

    Why is the Department of State increasing the basic nonimmigrant visa application fee to $160 from its current $140?

    • We are required by law to recover the cost of processing nonimmigrant visas through the collection of visa application processing fees, also called Machine-Readable Visa (MRV) fees.  The cost-of-service model is updated annually to determine direct and indirect costs to the U.S. government when providing all consular services, such as nonimmigrant visa processing.  This update was completed in December 2011 using an activity-based cost model, which is standard for estimating the cost of government services. 

      The activity-based cost model takes into account all costs to the U.S. government, including a major cost driver:  visa workload volume.  Items that impact the model include an increase in the number of visas processed or new regulations requiring additional security screenings.  The model also includes costs of major Department initiatives, particularly those related to meeting the increase in demand for nonimmigrant visas.

      The $160 fee also includes the unrecovered costs of processing Border Crossing Cards for certain Mexican citizen minors.  By law, the fees for Border Crossing Cards for minors are frozen at $13 (not including other statutory surcharges).  However, the cost of processing these applications is much greater

       

      Visa Category

      New  Fee (effective April 13, 2012)
      (US Dollars)

       New  Fee
        (SRD)

      Tourist and other non-petition-based visas

      US$160

      Equivalent to $160

      Petition-based visas (H, L, O, P, Q and R visas)

      US$190

      Equivalent to $190

      Fiancée K visas

      US$240

      Equivalent to $240

      Treaty Trader / Investor (E visa)

      US$270

      Equivalent to $270

       

  • When do the new processing fees go into effect?

    When do the new processing fees go into effect?

    • The new fees will be implemented on April 13, 2012, which is 15 days after the interim final rule was published.

  • Why is the Department establishing new, higher fees for certain types of nonimmigrant visas, while at the same time decreasing the fees for E and K visas?

    Why is the Department establishing new, higher fees for certain types of nonimmigrant visas, while at the same time decreasing the fees for E and K visas?

    • The December 2011 cost-of-service model update shows that certain categories of nonimmigrant visas cost more to process than other categories of nonimmigrant visas.  The new fees reflect the costs of each visa service.

  • Will this fee increase discourage people from traveling to the United States?

    Will this fee increase discourage people from traveling to the United States?

    • The proposed fees accurately reflect the processing costs incurred and regulations require full cost recovery through fees. Past increases in nonimmigrant visa fees did not negatively impact the number of applications received worldwide. The Department is aware that this fee increase may suppress the demand for nonimmigrant visas in some countries. However, the cost is still small compared to the cost of round-trip airfare from most countries to the United States. Most visas issued worldwide are tourist visas with a validity of ten years, meaning the bearer can apply for admission to the United States any time during that ten-year period.
  • Will other countries respond by increasing the visa fees they charge American citizens?

    Will other countries respond by increasing the visa fees they charge American citizens?

    • While some countries may increase visa fees, we expect many will not because, under the principle of reciprocity, we will be able to offset the nonimmigrant fees increase with a simultaneous reduction in reciprocity fees. For some countries, the combined total of nonimmigrant visa fees and reciprocal issuance fees will remain the same.
  • How does this MRV processing fee differ from reciprocal issuance fees?

    How does this MRV processing fee differ from reciprocal issuance fees?

    • The MRV processing fee is paid by all visa applicants, worldwide, with certain limited exceptions, for example, those pertaining to government officials. It must be paid in advance, whether or not the visa is granted.

  • My valid US Visa got stolen. Can I get one transferred to my New Passport for the remaining validity period?

    My valid US Visa got stolen. Can I get one transferred to my New Passport for the remaining validity period?

    • No. We do not transfer visas. If your visa has been stolen, it is no longer valid and you will have to reapply for one, following our regular procedures as given in the link below.

      How to apply

      An original translated police report of a stolen passport will be required on the day of your visa interview.

Notice: New Electronic I-94 Process

  • A new electronic I-94 process at air and sea ports of entry was fully implemented by May 25, 2013. Under the new CBP process, a CBP officer will provide each admitted nonimmigrant traveler with an admission stamp on their passport. CBP will no longer issue a paper Form I-94 upon entry to U.S., with some exceptions. Learn more on the CBP website.

Location & Public Hours

  • U.S. Embassy Paramaribo
    Dr. Sophie Redmondstraat 129
    Paramaribo Suriname

    Public Hours

    Non-Immigrant Visas : Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays
    Immigrant Visas
    No immigrant visas are processed at Embassy Paramaribo.  Immigrant visas for Suriname are processed at Embassy Georgetown.
    American Citizens Services : Tuesdays and Thursdays (other than Holidays) from 14:00 until 15:45, by appointment only

    Consular Section is able to respond to phone-calls every day of the week from 2:30pm - 4pm

    Consular email address

    caparamar@state.gov