Dec 04, 2012

Taiwan: US Visa Waiver Program Works Successfully

More than a month after Taiwan`s inclusion in the US Visa Waiver Program it is working well and received positive responses from travel and airline industries.

Below is an article published by FOCUS TAIWAN:


Taiwan's participation in the U.S. Visa Waiver Program (VWP) has so far been implemented "very successfully," a Taiwanese official said Tuesday, more than a month after Taiwan's inclusion in the program.

The implementation has been going very smoothly, despite some Taiwanese nationals being denied access at U.S. borders after obtaining an electronic travel authorization, said Bruce Linghu, director-general of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs' Department of North American Affairs.

A few travelers were denied entry because they lied about having been previously denied a U.S. visa, while others were rejected because they had wanted to travel to the U.S. for purposes other than tourism and business, he said at a news briefing.

To avoid such cases, Linghu urged the public to be honest when applying for online travel authorization, a requirement for visiting the U.S. under its visa waiver program.

After Taiwan's Nov. 1 entry into the VWP, Taiwanese business travelers and tourists who hold e-passports no longer need to obtain a U.S. visa but instead simply need travel authorization obtainable online, which allows for multiple stays of up to 90 days over a two-year period.

Some 99 percent of Taiwanese applicants has had their applications approved, Linghu said.

He added that the visa waiver program has also received positive response from travel and airline industries.

In a reciprocal arrangement, American nationals are now able to visit Taiwan without a visa for up to 90 days instead of the previous maximum of 30 days, which is expected to boost bilateral business exchanges, according to the ministry.