Information for International Registrants

ASHA invites and welcomes audiologists and speech-language pathologists from every part of the world to attend and participate in the ASHA Convention. We hope the information below will assist in providing you the necessary information needed to facilitate your participation.

Attendees are not required to present sessions in order to attend the ASHA Convention. Please allow ample time for visa processing, as the application process can take several months in some countries. You must be a paid meeting registrant to obtain a letter of invitation.

Requests for Letters of Invitation

Customized letters of invitation can be issued only to confirmed registrants, defined as those who have completed the online registration process (or mailed or faxed the paper form), have paid the meeting registration fees, and received a confirmation e-mail message.

The confirmation page in the online registration system will have a link located in the left menu to automatically generate a customized Visa letter.

For security purposes, letters of invitation cannot be sent if you have not registered for the ASHA Convention. For nonmembers, we may ask for additional information such as a letter of employment or a letter of reference from a verified ASHA member. If you have questions, please contact us by e-mail at

Procedures for International Visitors

U.S. Visa Links

Visa Waiver Program (VWP)

Some foreign meeting participants may not need visas if they are citizens of any of the countries on the Visa Waiver Program. ALL citizens of the Visa Waiver Program are required to have machine-readable passports (MRPs) in order to travel to the United States without a visa. Without an MRP, you will be required to apply for a visa. All foreign visitors (including Visa Waiver Program travelers) will be fingerprinted and photographed upon arrival in the United States. 

Please note: Exemption from visa requirements does not mean that you are guaranteed entry into the United States.

Passport and ETSA Registration

All visitors traveling to the United States must present a valid passport. It is suggested (and, in some cases, may be required) that your passport have at least 6 months left before it expires from the date that you will be traveling abroad. Before entering the United States, all foreign visitors are responsible for ensuring that they have with them all required documents, whether they are traveling through to another country or returning to their country of origin.

Visitors traveling to the United States from all foreign countries (including the Visa Waiver Program countries) are required to register their personal details online at least 3 days in advance of travel. Individuals traveling on valid visas are not required to apply. The U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) is an automated system used to determine the eligibility of visitors to travel to the United States (there is a $14 fee per application). It collects the same information as the paper I-94W form usually completed en route to the United States. ESTA applications may be submitted at any time prior to travel. An ESTA authorization generally will be valid for up to 2 years. DHS recommends that travelers submit an ESTA application as soon as they begin travel plans.

Citizens of Canada, Mexico, and Bermuda

Currently, Canadian citizens need proof of both their identity and citizenship in order to apply for entry into the United States. Citizens of Canada traveling to the United States do not require a non-immigrant visa, except under unique circumstances. Citizens and permanent residents of Mexico generally must have a passport and a non-immigrant visa or Border Crossing Card (also known as a "Laser Visa"). A visa and passport are not required of a Mexican national who (a) is in possession of a Form DSP-150, a B-1/B-2 Visa, and a Border Crossing Card, containing a machine-readable biometric identifier, issued by the U.S. State Department and (b) is applying for admission as a temporary visitor for business or pleasure from contiguous territory. If the traveler is not coming from the Western Hemisphere, a passport is required.

Citizens of the British Overseas Territories of Bermuda do not require a visa unless they have a criminal ineligibility or have previously violated the terms of their immigration status in the United States. Currently, citizens of Bermuda need proof of both their identity and citizenship in order to apply for entry into the United States.

Visa Information

ASHA Convention attendees are encouraged to apply for visas as early as possible—at least 6 months before the visa is needed. Please check with your local  U.S. consulate or embassy to find out the earliest date that you can apply for a visa.Registration refunds are not issued for denied visas. As part of security procedures, applications for visas are sent to the U.S. State Department for a security review.

Here are some important points to keep in mind to assist you with the visa application process:

  • Register early: Register for ASHA Convention as soon as possible so your customized letter of invitation can be generated.
  • Apply for your visa 4–6 months in advance of traveling. You should provide your entire trip itinerary, including travel to any countries other than the United States, at the time of visa application.
  • If completion of travel plans is contingent upon early approval of the visa application, specify this at the time of the application.  
  • If you will be presenting a session at the ASHA Convention, provide proof that you are a presenting author (e.g., show documentation from ASHA such as your Call for Papers acceptance notification, and/or that you are listed as a presenting author on the presentation in the Program Planner). Notifications of acceptance/nonacceptance for presentation proposals submitted to the Call for Papers will be sent by July 21.
  • Bring your English-language resume or curriculum vitae with a list of published articles and research topics to the U.S. consulate/embassy interview.
  • Provide evidence that you are intending to return to your country of residence. This includes such information as
    • family ties in current country of residence;
    • property ownership;
    • bank account; and/or
    • an employment contract or statement from an employer showing that your position will continue after the dates of the meeting.

Requirements vary by passport-issuing country and by citizenship (not merely residency). Some consulates may have backlogs in scheduling visa interviews, so applicants should first contact their local consulate to determine what the wait times are for visa interviews. View the current list of visa interview and processing wait times by country.

Visa Problems

If you have not received approval for your application at least 2 weeks prior to the start date of the ASHA Convention, you should complete the Visa Questionnaire. Eligibility requirements are listed before you begin. Please note that individuals who have applied for dependent visas (e.g., F2 and J2) should not complete this questionnaire.

For more information, refer to these additional U.S. Visa Policy Resources.

Be Prepared for Your Interview

Make sure you have all the necessary documentation with you at your interview. You will need the following:

  • A valid passport.
  • Appropriate visa application forms.
  • Your entire trip itinerary, including travel to any countries other than the United States, at the time of your visa application.
  • Documents detailing employment status, reason for travel, and financial status. It is recommended that you provide an official letter of invitation from ASHA and proof of advance registration for the ASHA Convention.
  • Proof of previous visits to the United States.
  • Proof of professional scientific and/or educational status (students should provide a university transcript).
  • Proof of payment of visa fees.
  • Any additional documents required by your local embassy or consulate. 


    E-mail us at if you need more information or further assistance.