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How to Apply

How to Apply

The U.S. Embassy recently introduced a new visa fee payment and appointment system.  Please carefully follow the instructions below. 

If you paid your visa fee before July 20, 2014, you cannot use the process below.  Please go to our Legacy Payments page for more information about how you can schedule a visa interview.

Please note that with the exception of applicants for official visas, all applicants, including children under age 14, must appear for interview.

  • Step One: Complete the Online Application

    Step One: Complete the Online Application

    • Complete the online visa application using our online visa application form.  Please note that you will need to have a digital passport photo available to upload to your application in order to complete it.

      If you have any questions about which visa classification you should choose, please see our Visa Wizard
  • Step Two: Print the Confirmation Page

    Step Two: Print the Confirmation Page

    • Print out the confirmation page that appears once you have completed the application.

  • Step Three: Create an Interview Appointment Account

    Step Three: Create an Interview Appointment Account

    • Create an account at our online appointment system page.  Make sure to select Rwanda.  The appointment system is available in English, French, and Kinyarwanda.  You will be asked to provide the confirmation ID number from your confirmation page and your purpose of travel, as shown on the confirmation page. 

  • Step Four: Pay the Visa Interview Fee

    Step Four: Pay the Visa Interview Fee

    • Print a deposit slip using our online appointment system page.  Take the deposit slip to any Ecobank location in Rwanda to pay the visa interview fee.  Please remember to keep your receipt. It has a 12-digit PIN and allows us to look in the system to check the status of your payment.
      If you are applying for an F-1, M-1, or J-1 visa, pay the appropriate SEVIS fee.

  • Step Five: Schedule your Visa Interview

    Step Five: Schedule your Visa Interview

    • You will receive an email within 2 days after you pay your visa interview fee at Ecobank  that contains information on how to schedule a visa interview appointment

      **If you have trouble scheduling your appointment, we recommend opening the appointment in a different browser.  For example, you are trying to access your appointment using 'Internet Explorer' and it does not work. Try opening another browser such as 'Google Chrome' and see if you are able to access the appointment system.**

  • Step Six: Prepare for your Visa Interview

    Step Six: Prepare for your Visa Interview

    • Bring the following items to your visa interview:

      • Visa application confirmation page;
      • Ecobank deposit slip/receipt;
      • Passport valid for at least six months beyond the intended stay in the United States;
      • Passports containing all previous U.S. visas, even if expired;
      • Appointment confirmation sheet;
      • And all required supporting documents for your visa type (see below).

      For Visitors (B-1/B-2): 

      Applicants must demonstrate that they are properly classifiable as visitors under U.S. law by:

      Evidence which shows the purpose of the trip, intent to depart the United States, and arrangements made to cover the costs of the trip may be provided. It is impossible to specify the exact form the documentation should take as applicants' circumstances vary greatly.

      Those applicants who do not have sufficient funds to support themselves while in the U.S. must present convincing evidence that an interested person will provide support.

      Depending on individual circumstances, applicants may provide other documentation substantiating the trip's purpose and specifying the nature of binding obligations, such as family ties or employment, which would compel their return abroad.

      For student visas (F-1/M-1):

      Applicants for student visas must submit the following documents in addition to those listed above:

      • An original I-20 form issued by the educational institution;
      • Proof of funds available to pay for one year of studies and travel;
      • Evidence of academic preparation and English language skills that can include but are not limited to school diplomas, transcripts of grades, certificates of exams taken, and/or TOEFL exam score;
      • Proof of payment of the Student and Exchange Visitor System (SEVIS) fee.  (Find additional information on paying the SEVIS fee at the SEVIS fee payment site. You MUST pay the SEVIS fee before arriving for the interview.)
      • For more information on studying in the U.S. please visit the Education U.S.A. Website.

      For Interns / Trainees (J-1):

      • Applicants must present Forms DS-2019 and 7002, issued by the sponsoring organization.

      For Medical treatment:

      • Please bring documents showing that a physician in the U.S. has agreed to treat you, cost of treatment, and means of payment.
  • Step Seven: On the Day of Your Visa Interview

    Step Seven: On the Day of Your Visa Interview

    • Arrive no more than five minutes before your scheduled interview.  You cannot enter the U.S. Embassy before your appointment time.  Please note that your mobile phone and any other electronic devices will be held by security at the entrance to the U.S. Embassy.

      Diplomats and Officials

      We have a special process to assist visa applicants with service and diplomatic passports, as well as applicants traveling on the behalf of an international organization (such as the World Bank, IMF, or the United Nations).  Please see our application process for diplomats and official.

  • Expedited Appointments

    Expedited Appointments

    • Expedited appointments are available in very limited cases.  You may qualify for an expedited visa appointment ONLY if you have emergency travel or if you are applying for a student visa (F, J, or M visa classifications).  Emergency travel is defined as travel to attend a funeral or receive emergency medical attention.  In very limited cases, we will expedite travel for urgent and unexpected business.  We cannot grant expedited visa appointments for any other reason.

      To request an expedited appointment, complete steps one through six above.  Once you have scheduled a visa appointment for any date, the Expedite Request link will appear on the Summary page of the appointment system.   Select the option  and request an expedited appointment.  The message must include the requesting person’s full name, date and destination of the intended travel, reason for travel, and must explain the reasons why an expedited appointment is required. 

      We will review your request and, if possible, will expedite the appointment to a date that will fit your travel needs.  There is no guarantee the applicant will receive an expedited appointment.  If you have not completed steps one through six above or your reason for travel does not qualify for an expedited appointment, you will not receive a reply.

  • Questions


    • If you have questions about the non-immigrant visa application process, please call our help center at +250 735 709 838 and
      +250 735 523 842 or +1 703 439 2376.
      Assistance is available in English and French. 


  • Fraud Warning

    Please be informed that submission of fake documents or misrepresentation of facts in any way could render you permanently ineligible for a Non-immigrant visa to the United States of America.

  • Having trouble applying? Contact Us!

    If you are having trouble making an appointment or paying your application fee, please call our help center: 

    In Rwanda: +250 735 709 838
                     +250 735 523 842  
    Outside Rwanda: +1 703 439 2376

    Assistance is available in English and French.