The International Plant and Animal Genome conference welcomes visitors from over 60 countries each year. Below are resources we have compiled to help make your travel and meeting experience as convenient as possible.
Advance travel planning and early visa application are important, since visa applications are now subject to a greater degree of scrutiny than in the past. Applying for a visa can be a lengthy process. We recommend that you start early and do not wait for your abstract acceptance. You should begin the application process four (4) to five (5) months before the PAG. We cannot stress enough, how important it is to start this process early.
Requirements vary by passport-issuing country and citizenship (not just residency). Please remember that the visa decision is made by the U.S. Embassy (consular/visa section) in the country in which the person wishing to travel to the PAG meeting, is traveling FROM. (i.e., is currently working). For example, a citizen of Freedonia working in a lab in the United Kingdom needs to go to the U.S. Embassy in London. For the most current requirements and those specific to your situation, please check with your local U.S. consulate or embassy or the U.S. Department of State Visa Services Information. Please see links at the right for more information.
If you are initially rejected request a copy of the reason for the rejection in writing, and obtain the name and title of the person in charge of the visa process at that embassy. Please send this information with a request for further assistance to Hans Cheng, and we may be able help you.
The Organizing Committee is offering assistance should you need a Letter of Invitation to facilitate the visa application process. Please note that you are required to pre-register for the PAG meeting before we can send your letter.
We have changed our policy regarding Letters of Invitation, and letters of invitation will be sent via EMAIL ONLY. A hard copy of the letter will not be mailed to you. According to the U.S. State Department, an electronic letter should be acceptable for visa purposes. In the rare case where the U.S. Embassy to which you are submitting your visa insists on having a hard copy letter, we can mail a hard copy of the letter.
In your emailed request for a Letter of Invitation, you MUST include the following information.
Please send your request for a Letter of Invitation at least four (4) months prior to the meeting — six (6) months is preferred — to Hans Cheng.
Some, but not all visa applicants must have an interview. For people from some countries, such as Mexico, one must schedule an interview with their local U.S. Embassy or Consulate.
It is advised that you provide the following information at your interview:
Some consulates may have backlogs in scheduling visa interviews so applicants should first contact the consulate to find out how long the wait is for an interview. More information is available at Visa Wait Times - for Interview Appointments and Processing.