Q: I have a four-month-old daughter and would love to take a trip to the United States with her. I already have a visitor's visa, and I have been told that she can travel with me on my visa because she is a baby. Is this true?"
A: Everyone who wishes to visit the United States for business and/or pleasure requires a tourist visa, even infants. This means that even if you are the parent of the child and have a valid visa, the child will need his or her own visa in the child's passport. The child will not be allowed to enter the US, or even board the plane, without a valid visa and passport.
Minor children, meaning those under 18 years old must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian for their non-immigrant visa interview. Even if the child will be travelling with another family member who is not the parent, or with a group for an event or school trip, he or she must have a parent or legal guardian there during the interview. If you are the biological parent of the child and wish to take the child with you to the US, you will need to make an appointment for the child by following the instructions on our website (http://kingston.usembassy.gov/how_to_apply2.html). You should also be sure to bring your own passport with the valid visa as well as the child's birth certificate to the visa interview.
If you are not the biological parent of a child wishing to travel to the US on a non-immigrant visa, you will need to bring court documents showing you have legal custody of the child, or adoption papers indicating you are the adoptive parent. Even if the child is living with you but you are not the legal guardian or adoptive parent, the mother or father of the child will need to appear for the visa interview. If a parent or legal guardian does not appear with a minor child for the non-immigrant visa interview, the Consular Officer will not be able to complete the interview process and you will have to reschedule for a time when the parent or legal guardian can accompany the child.
If you are a citizen of the Cayman Islands with a valid visitor visa and would like to apply for a visa for your child who is under age five, your child qualifies for the embassy's appearance waiver programme. You will need to follow the instructions to schedule an appointment and pay the fees for the visa, but you are then able to mail your child's documents to the embassy and you do not need to bring your child for an interview. The application packet must include the child's birth certificate and copy of a full-validity visitor visa of one of the parents.
For more information on scheduling a non-immigrant visa appointment, please visit our website at http://kingston.usembassy.gov/nonimmigrant_visas.html.
The Embassy staff in Kingston will answer questions you may have regarding the US Mission, including consular law, regulations and/or practice. In order to respect privacy, staff will not answer questions about specific visa applications. The embassy employs a visa appointment system, so it is only necessary for visa applicants to arrive 15 minutes before their scheduled appointment.
Send your questions to: email@example.com and we will send them to the embassy.