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May Day Holiday Closures 1 May 13

Posted by Jonathan V. Phillips in Embassy Consulate Closure, traveler advise.
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May Day has long been a traditional holiday in Europe, but the current May Day holiday, International Workers’ Day, has its roots in the not-so-distant past. The Second International, an organization of socialist and worker parties from around the world, met in Paris in 1889 and declared May 1st International Workers’ Day. The holiday commemorates the workers’ fight for an eight hour work day and the memory of the “martyrs” of the 1886 Haymarket Square massacre in Chicago, in which dozens of unarmed people were killed at the hands of the Chicago Police during a labor demonstration. This event in Chicago galvanized worker parties around the world and reinforced the concept of an international struggle shared by all workers.

Today International Workers’ Day is one of the largest secular holidays celebrated around the world. This holiday is officially observed by dozens of countries, including China, Russia and the former Soviet nations, the majority of European Union nations such as France and Germany, India, Singapore, South Korea, Vietnam, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Brazil and Venezuela, and is unofficially observed on every populated continent.

The second week of May holds another major international holiday, Victory Day. Victory Day is a holiday that celebrates the victory over fascist Germany by the Allied forces in 1945. The day marks the unconditional surrender of the German Third Reich to the Allies on May 8, but because Moscow is so far East it was already May 9. The holiday is celebrated by Europeans from London to Moscow. France and the United Kingdom celebrate the holiday on May 8, while Belgium and the Netherlands observe Victory Day on May 5. For Russia and the former Soviet nations of Armenia, Belarus, Estonia, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Ukraine and Uzbekistan, the May 9 Victory Day is a particularly important holiday, as the Soviet Union endured enormous losses during World War II. The Soviet Red Army incurred over 8 million deaths, and the nation as a whole had over 13 million civilian deaths. The effects of the conflict are evident even today; statistics show that every family in the Soviet Union lost a member in the conflict. Victory Day is celebrated with commencements at cemeteries, military parades, and is a unifying holiday for all citizens of the former Soviet Union. All of their consulates will be closed on Monday, May 9 in honor of the holiday.

Brazil Visa Processing Normalized 15 November 12

Posted by Jonathan V. Phillips in Visa News.
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Brazil Visa Processing Normalized

Two weeks after the first announcement that Brazilian consulates were having technical difficulties, visa processing has resumed at all consulates.  The Chicago Consulate was the last to resume processing, but they have begun to accept visa applications again as of today.

At all consulates except for Miami, the visa processing times have reverted to their typical speed.  The Miami Consulate is still maintaining the lengthy processing time of 45 business days that was instituted shortly before the other consulates announced the technical problems.  At this time, the Miami Consulate has not given any indication that they will be speeding up processing times in the near future.

Even at normal processing speeds, acquiring a Brazilian visa can take a significant amount of time. (Please see below for a chart of current processing times.)  G3 recommends that travelers plan ahead and apply for their visas well in advance of their trip.  Brazil visas are valid for 10 years, and may be used for the first time at any time during that 10 year period.  For travelers with urgent departures, Emergency Processing is available through G3; email Brazil@g3visas.com for more information.

Consulate Jurisdiction Processing Time
Atlanta AL,GA, SC,MS, TN 15 business days
Boston ME, MA, NH, VT 12 business days
Chicago IA, IL, IN, MI, MN, MO, NE, ND, SD, WI 13 business days
DC DC, KY, OH, MD, NC, VA, WV 12 business days
Hartford CT, RI 15 business days
Houston AR, CO, KS, LA, NM, OK, TX 7 business days
LA AZ, HI, ID, MT, NV, UT, WY, Southern CA 22 business days
Miami FL, PR, USVI 45 business days
NYC DE, NJ, NY, PA, Bermuda 6 business days
San Francisco AK, OR, WA, Central and Northern CA 17+ business days

Applicants for visas to Brazil can register their requests directly through the G3 website on our Brazil page.

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Embassy Closure List week of Oct 8 8 October 12

Posted by Jonathan V. Phillips in Embassy Consulate Closure.
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This week Columbus Day is observed. This is an official Federal Holiday, closing banks and Federal institutions such as the State Department’s Passport Office and the Office of Authentications. As with  most US Federal Holidays the Russian Embassy is open and this counts as a processing day for applications already in process. However, their ILS acceptance facilities are closed, so new Russian applications will be submitted today. Also the Chinese Embassy is closed but it’s consulates in LA and San Francisco are open for processing and accepting new visa applications today.

8  October, Monday: Columbus Day – US Passport Offices closed, many embassies and consulates closed including:

Algeria
Bangladesh
Brazil
Cambodia
China – All consulates except LA and SF.
Egypt
India – only the Travisa office in SF, all others are open.
Laos
Malaysia
Nigeria
Myanmar
Kazakhstan
Philippines
Russia – ILS offices closed, but consulates open
Thailand
Saudi Arabia
Turkey
Vietnam
Venezuela closed for Day of Indigenous Resistance


9 October, Tuesday
Uganda closed for Independence Day

10 October, Wednesday
Kenya closed for Moi Day
Taiwan closed for National Day (Double Tenth)

12 October, Friday,  
Equatorial Guinea closed for Independence Day
Laos closed for Day of Liberation

Remember when consular office are closed there are no visa processed
or new applications accepted on that day. When an embassy or
consulate is closed, that day does count as a processing day and
applications currently in for process will have the visa processing
extended to include the non processing closure day. Please account
for extra time if you are applying for a visa to a country whose office closed because of holiday.
If you have any questions on how long your visa request will take
for a particular country please feel free to contact our
professional staff
 for more information.