On February 4, 2019, the U.S. Department of State released the fiscal year 2018 worldwide B visa refusal rates for individual countries. The visa refusal rate for Polish nationals for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2018 is 3.99 percent, a significant decrease from the fiscal year 2017 visa refusal rate of 5.92 percent. While this number has trended downward in recent years and continues to do so, for now it remains above the three percent requirement for entry into the Visa Waiver Program (VWP).
The requirements for inclusion in the VWP include a worldwide visa refusal rate in the temporary visitor category for the previous fiscal year of less than 3 percent, the implementation of certain security-related information-sharing agreements, cooperation on law-enforcement, and successful completion of a DHS-led security evaluation, among other requirements.
Ambassador Mosbacher has been clear in her commitment to working with the Polish government and other partners to help Poland meet all requirements for the Visa Waiver Program, saying “I will do everything I can to help Poland enter the Visa Waiver Program while I am the U.S. Ambassador to Poland. Travel between our two countries is extensive, strengthens the bonds of friendship between us, and provides important economic benefits to both the U.S. and Poland.”
The Visa Waiver Program is governed by strict legal requirements established by the U.S. Congress. The U.S. Embassy will continue working with the Polish government and other partners to help Poland meet the requirements for VWP in order to bolster our mutual border security, but also more broadly, to facilitate travel between our two countries and to make the experience of applying for a U.S. visa as smooth as possible.