Iran visit + USA visa waiver program (VWP)

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mpkz
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Iran visit + USA visa waiver program (VWP)

Post by mpkz »

This might be a terrible place to post this but if anyone has any info it would be appreciated:

I visited Iran in 2013 and plan to visit again this summer. In 2013, I was on an old passport. I'm from a Visa Waiver Program country, meaning that I can normally travel to the US by simply obtaining an ESTA online. Since 2013, I've traveled to the US 2 times, entering the country 3 times without any problems. Now new changes mean that to enter the US, I'm supposed to obtain a visa. However, unlike other people I've read about online, when I check my ESTA status, it shows that I am "free to travel to the US".

The question is: Should I bother getting a visa for the US? On one hand, I'll probably have to get it anyway after visiting Iran this summer. On the other hand, I could go through automated border control and pull the "I didn't hear about this policy, my ESTA status said I was fine" and put off getting a visa until someone explicitly tells me I need one. I should note that my Iran trip on the previous passport was by airplane and I had an internal flight within Iran, so a record exists somewhere outside of Iran's government's computers that I've been there.
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steven
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Re: Iran visit + USA visa waiver program (VWP)

Post by steven »

Hi mpkz,

I was hoping someone else would pick this one up as I have no clue about travel to the US. Did you get a reply somewhere else in the meantime?
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Crazydre
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Re: Iran visit + USA visa waiver program (VWP)

Post by Crazydre »

It's not registered in the ESTA system whether you've been to Iran so the ESTA isn't automatically revoked (unlike in the case of dual nationality which is to be declared on the ESTA). However, if you arrive at American passport control with a passport containing evidence of visiting Iran on or after 1 March 2011, or they can find out by scanning it, you will be deported with a 10-year entry ban.

""I didn't hear about this policy, my ESTA status said I was fine""

Even if that was true, it will mean nothing to the Americans.

Automated passport control still involves talking to an officer after the Kiosk, only the queue will be much shorter and they won't have to take your Fingerprints and photo (you do it yourself at the Kiosk)

If, as you say, they can track travel on your previous passport, you will Need to get a B2 visa
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mpkz
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Re: Iran visit + USA visa waiver program (VWP)

Post by mpkz »

Thanks, I figured I'd have to so I started my application. $160 + an interview :(

I looked over on another forum where one person was talking about hypothetically not getting a visa and was fine (the policy came into action before he had time to apply for a visa). But I figured that since employment in the US, or at least travel to the US as a part of my employment, is pretty likely in a few years, I'll waste everyone's time and get a visa.
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steven
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Re: Iran visit + USA visa waiver program (VWP)

Post by steven »

mpkz wrote: I'll waste everyone's time and get a visa.
That is what visas are for!
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Re: Iran visit + USA visa waiver program (VWP)

Post by bwv812 »

Just to add a little to this, I know someone who cycled to Iraqi Kurdistan in 2013, both entering and exiting via Turkey. He did this on a British passport. He got a new British passport since then, and was able to enter the USA via land (so no ESTA was filed) from Canada without problem (though he was quite worried). So it seems that the DHS doesn't have access to whatever records are kept at the land borders for Iraq and Turkey (pretty sure they scan passports at the Turkish border, if not the Iraqi one), as his passport wasn't flagged.
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steven
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Re: Iran visit + USA visa waiver program (VWP)

Post by steven »

Any Australian who has travelled to Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen in last FIVE YEARS unable to get visa waiver!

Not sure if this also applies to all other countries.

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Shot Bru
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Re: Iran visit + USA visa waiver program (VWP)

Post by Shot Bru »

I will be going to Iran in September on my Aussie passport.
I will also be going into the USA from Canada at the land border.
I was going to use my UK passport for this crossing into the US.
Is there anyway they would detect that I had visited Iran on my Oz passport??
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steven
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Re: Iran visit + USA visa waiver program (VWP)

Post by steven »

Reading the answers above, I would say they cannot figure it out if you come with a different passport.
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Sam_Supertramp
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Will I get in trouble visiting the USA?

Post by Sam_Supertramp »

Hey everyone,
I've been in Afghanistan lately and might even go for a second time soon. I've also been to Iran and will go to Pakistan soon.
Now I'm wondering If I can still apply for a tourist or student Visa for the USA?
I'm afraid that my visa application will be refused due to these visits, or maybe I even get refused at the airport?
I'm a german passport holder.
Thanks a lot for sharing your knowledge and experiences.
Stay awesome,
Sam
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