NEWS

Fingerprint checks for visits to US

As of Monday, Greeks wishing to visit the United States will have to undergo fingerprinting and be photographed, under new measures announced on Wednesday by the US Embassy in Athens. An embassy statement said the measures were intended to «enhance security and reduce opportunities for fraud,» and would apply to people visiting America on «almost all» types of visas. The program will also affect travelers from visa waiver countries who wish to enter the US on a visa – for example on a student visa. Visitors will have two fingers scanned and their photograph taken by immigration officials at 115 US airports and 14 seaports, the embassy said, in a process that «will take only a few seconds.» It said this will prevent «legitimate travelers» from being mistaken for terrorists. Greeks currently have to pay a non-refundable visa application fee of $100 (80 euros), which is good for one year following payment. As of Monday, the embassy will accept non-immigrant visa applications only by appointment (tel 210.720.2442).