How to seek National Interest Exception (NIE) for US travel



Successful travelers tell you how to make the case for NIE.

Traveling during Covid times can be a challenging task on its own. But added restrictions placed by many nations on visitors from certain Covid affected countries, has made the process even more complicated, especially when one needs to travel in case of an emergency.

Currently, US restrictions on the entry of travelers who have spent the previous 14 days in India, have led to a lot of travel chaos especially for those who are on work visas and had traveled to India for personal reasons.

The only option available for those who do not fall into an exception category is to apply for an NIE or National Interest Exception based on certain criteria. Many travelers have reported success in taking this route.

But the most important discussion now in immigration groups is – how to prepare the letter for NIE. Here are the essential details that your letter should cover.

While there are no guarantees on one getting the permission to travel, one must approach the authorities in good faith that they will consider the circumstances if they are urgent enough.

Important details

To begin with, you should include in your letter all the crucial details that are essential when you file any application. These details include:

Full name:

Date of Birth

Country of Citizenship:

Passport Number:

Visa category:

Visa number:

NIE category that you are applying under:

Reason for seeking exception:

According to those who have applied for an exception, the most important criterion remains your reason for seeking this exception. Since there can be unique situations faced by each individual, there is no set format.

It is suggested that you explain your situation in the most clear and concise way. You must also specify why travel at this stage is crucial in your circumstances.

Be clear about your personal or professional issue, but do not go into unnecessary details. Those who submitted the application with favorable results have shared that they wrote their reasons in up to two short paragraphs.

If your industry falls under those categories listed under the NIE exception, be very sure to mention it as this essentially means you do stand a very strong chance to get the permission.

You must also specify why your work cannot be carried out remotely during the period and why it is essential that you are physically in the United States.

If your visa category restricts you from working away from your location for long do mention this and how it can jeopardize your professional and immigration status.

If it is a personal reason do mention if you are facing family separation and any hardship that you or your family may be facing.

If there are certain health reasons for which you should be in the US or if any family member requires your assistance be sure to mention that.

Most importantly do not suppress any vital information or push your case with unnecessary details. Be as truthful as you can be and maintain a positive approach.

Documents required

You must attach a copy of your valid visa as well as your passport.

Documents required to travel

If you get an email that allows you to travel, the next question that arises is – what documents you should travel with.

The simple answer is – the usual documents for travel to the US along with a copy of the email you receive from the consulate.

The consulate does not issue any special letter or document so showing an email at the immigration desk should suffice.


Beat US travel ban with quarantine holiday in exotic lands! (June 12, 2021)

Can NIE help you fly from India beating Covid travel ban? (June 9, 2021)

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