The U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) recently announced that, beginning Nov. 29, 2016, all Chinese passport holders who carry a 10-year visa B-1 (business visitor) and/or B-2 (tourist visa) must have a valid Electronic Visa Update System (EVUS) enrollment when traveling to the United States. Chinese passport holders who currently hold a 10-year B-1/B-2 visa will not be allowed to travel to the United States unless they have a valid EVUS enrollment. For Chinese passport holders who have multiple flights to reach the United States, EVUS enrollment will be verified upon their check-in for the first flight. The cost to enroll in EVUS is 8 USD. EVUS enrollment is valid for two years or until the Chinese traveler obtains a new passport or visa, whichever is earlier.
Our team previously discussed EVUS in February 2016. For additional background, EVUS is a secure online system for nationals of China using a 10-year business or tourism visitor visa to enter the United States. Enrollment in EVUS is a new requirement that is part of a relatively recent agreement between China and the United States to issue visitor visas with a 10-year validity based on a reciprocal basis. According to CBP Commissioner R. Gil Kerlikowske, EVUS is intended to “enhance both national security and the longevity of the joint agreement with China to issue 10-year visas.” Additional background information about EVUS can be found on the CBP’s website. It is expected that additional countries will have a similar requirement in the future, although CBP has not listed any additional countries at this time.