The US Department of Homeland Security has announced its plans to raise fees for foreign artists touring America by 50% by the end of the year. The new fees, which apply to those with P and O visa types, will take effect on October 2nd. Filing fees for O visa (for “individuals with extraordinary ability or achievement”) will increase from $460 to $705 – a 53% increase – while P visas (for “internationally renowned performing groups and essential support personnel”) will rise by 51%, from $460 to $695. You can find more information at the Federal Register website.
In addition to the increased fees, the application process will also take longer, as The Quietus reports. The Premium Processing Service, a fast track service that costs over $1000, will take 15 business days rather than 15 calendar days.
David Martin, general manager of the Featured Artists Coalition, told NME: “The US visa system is already prohibitive for UK artists and this change will see even more of our globally renowned talent shut out. Not only will the US live circuit suffer with millions of American fans missing the chance to see their favourite British artists, artists will lose the opportunity to collaborate and exchange ideas with creators on the opposite side of the Atlantic.”
He added: “At a time when we should be celebrating and building on our shared history of cultural exchange, this development instead moves us further apart. There are no winners.”