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Press Release

AIT Begins Telephone Visa Appointment System

Starting March 17, 2003, the American Institute in Taiwan will require all applicants for nonimmigrant visas to make an appointment through the telephone appointment system. Certain applications may continue to be submitted through a travel agent.

In order to enhance the worldwide U.S. visa issuance process, effective March 17, AIT will require all visa applications to be completed in English.

Designed for walk-in visa applications at AIT's Taipei branch, the visa appointment system will mean less time standing in line. It will also provide for smoother handling of visa applications and passports.

The visa appointment system beganw ill started operation on March 3, 2003;, and starting March 17, AIT will require all visa applicants to have an appointment in order to enter AIT and apply for a visa.

There are three telephone numbers for visa appointments. An automated line at 0204-58898, which can handle as many as 240 calls simultaneously. The cost to use the Automated automated appointment service is NT$8 per minute. Instructions on how to make an automated appointment will be given in English or Chinese as selected by the applicant.

Applicants that prefer to speak to a live operator may call 0204-58989 for nonimmigrant visa appointments. The cost for this line is NT$15 per minute.

Immigrant and nonimmigrant visa applicants who have been refused a visa within the previous 12 months and wish to make an appointment should call 0204-58987. This isere will be a live operator which who will assist you in making the necessary appointment. The cost for this line is also NT$15 per minute.

The AIT caller-pay visa information system will continue as normal providing information about immigrant and nonimmigrant visas at 0204-58858. The rate remains unchanged at NT$8 per minute.

This new visa appointment system is managed and designed by Call-Call Telecom Corporation and provided through Chunghwa Telecom. The service is available to Chunghwa Telecom landlines and mobile phone users. Callers will be charged on their telephone bills.

Although this system is new to Taiwan, it is already in use in most large US visa-issuing authorities throughout the world as a way of providing quick and convenient service to visa applicants.


The American Institute in Taiwan uses a new telephone visa application appointment system to schedule walk-in visa applications in its Taipei branch to reduce the time visa applicants stand in lines.

1. Annually, over 200,000 people apply for non-immigrant visas at AIT.

2. Each year AIT processes over 9,000 immigrant visas applications.

3. The system has been availablewill be available since beginning March 3. Starting from March 17, each applicant must have an appointment to enter the AIT building.

4. All applicants appearing for interviews are required to show their appointment confirmation numbers to AIT security personnel.

5. Call/Call Corporation, through a contract with AIT, answers over 36,000 requests for visa information each year for nonimmigrant visa and immigrant visa applicants.

6. The new visa appointment system, also through Call/Call, will be able to handle up to 240 simultaneous requests for visa interview appointments.

7. It is estimated that it will cost each caller approximately 8NT per minute to make an appointment on the automated line. The automated line is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

8. Live Operators will be available for 15NT per minute. Live Operators will be available 8AM to 8PM, Monday to Friday except holidays.

9. Estimated processing time for a nonimmigrant visa will be three to six days.

10. Nonimmigrant Visas will continue to be delivered by courier service.

11. Applicants will be able to make appointments for the next working day and as far as 30 days in advance from the day that they call.

12. The appointment system is a domestic network designed to be used only on Chunghwa Telecom cell phones and landlines within Taiwan.

13. Emergency cases may continue to appear at AIT's information window.

14. Starting March 17, AIT will require that all visa applications be completed in English.