U.S. Embassies Issue Record Breaking 5.2 Million Nonimmigrant Visas and 281,000+ Immigrant Visas Worldwide in FY 2024


On May 13, 2024, the State Department announced record breaking milestones including the issuance of a whopping 5.2 million nonimmigrant visas at U.S. Embassies and Consulates worldwide in the first half of fiscal year 2024 – more than any previous year over the same period.

In the past six months alone, 30 percent of U.S. Embassies and Consulates worldwide set all-time records for nonimmigrant visas issued.

In particular, travel and tourism has been a focal point for the State Department considering that international visitors contribute as much as $239 billion annually to the U.S. economy and support approximately 9.5 million jobs.

Some of the key highlights from the State Department’s announcement are as follows:

In the first half of fiscal year 2024:

  • Almost 4.1 million B visitor visas and border crossing cards were issued for tourists and temporary business travelers worldwide, with nearly two-thirds from Mexico, India, Brazil, the People’s Republic of China, Colombia, Argentina, the Dominican Republic and Ecuador.

By the middle of fiscal year 2024, the State Department issued:

  • Approximately 134,000 visas for exchange visitor program participants and 115,000 visas for students. International students contributed almost $38 billion to the U.S. economy in the year 2022 and made up more than 335,000 jobs
  • A record breaking 205,000 visas were issued for temporary or seasonal workers in agriculture and other sectors
  • Almost 160,000 nonimmigrant visas were issued to airline and shipping crew members to support global transportation and supply chains—the second-highest half-year issuance record in this category in history
  • Almost 25,000 employment-based immigrant visas—75 percent more than same period in fiscal year 2019

With respect to the processing of immigrant visas, in the first six months of fiscal year 2024, the State Department issued:

  • More than 281,000 immigrant visas
  • A quarter of U.S. embassies and consulates issued more immigrant visas by the middle of fiscal year 2024 than in any prior year of the past decade
  • Over 152,000 immigrant visas to family members of U.S. citizens in the Immediate Relative category – an all-time high for the fiscal half-year mark.

These historic milestones are an impressive comeback from the Coronavirus era which saw tremendous backlogs with no end in sight. The State Department is continuing to improve visa issuance by granting waivers of in-person interview appointments for eligible visa applicants. With such a positive outlook to cap off the end of the fiscal year, we are certainly excited to see what is to come when the new fiscal year begins in October.

To read the State Department press release, please click here.

Contact Us. If you would like to schedule a consultation, please text 619-569-1768 or call 619-819-9204.

Helpful Links


Need more immigration updates? We have created a new facebook group to address the impact of the new executive order and other changing developments related to COVID-19. Follow us there.

For other COVID 19 related immigration updates please visit our Immigration and COVID-19 Resource Center here.