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I need to get a US B-1 type (business visit) visa for an upcoming visit. If I were back home (in Israel/Palestine) - I would not have any choices to make, just perform the procedure vis-a-vis the US embassy and it's done (after a while). Went well enough last time.

Now I'm expatriated in the Netherlands. So,

  • Can I get a visa only from the embassy in Tel Aviv, or also from the embassy here in the Netherlands? Or perhaps even at the US consulate in Amsterdam?
  • If both back home and in the Netherlands are possibilitie4s - is there a benefit (e.g. in terms of processing time) of doing it at the Tel Aviv embassy rather than in the Netherlands?
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In general, it's best to apply at the consulate in whose jurisdiction you reside. The US embassy in Tel Aviv, for example, is likely to be unfamiliar with the circumstances of Dutch residents, so they will have a harder time evaluating your application than will the consulate in Amsterdam. However, the US does not require applicants to apply in their place of residence, so you may indeed apply in Tel Aviv if it will be more convenient for you.

My source for this is the State Department's page on visitor visas:

You must schedule an appointment for your visa interview, generally, at the U.S. Embassy or Consulate in the country where you live. You may schedule your interview at any U.S. Embassy or Consulate, but be aware that it may be difficult to qualify for a visa outside of your place of permanent residence.

The US embassy does not appear to process visas, so if you want to apply in the Netherlands, you must apply at the consulate general in Amsterdam.

Source: the embassy/consulate lookup on the State Department's visa page does not accept "the Hague," and does not return any results when the user types hague or haag.

So, to answer your questions:

Can I get a visa only from the embassy in Tel Aviv?

No, you are not required to go to Tel Aviv; in fact, it is recommended that you apply in Amsterdam.

or also from the embassy here in the Netherlands?

No, the embassy does not process visa applications. Go to the consulate general in Amsterdam instead.

Or perhaps even at the US consulate in Amsterdam?

Indeed. This is the recommended place for your application.

If both back home and in the Netherlands are possibilities - is there a benefit (e.g. in terms of processing time) of doing it at the Tel Aviv embassy rather than in the Netherlands?

As mentioned above, staff in Tel Aviv may have a harder time establishing your eligibility for a visa than staff in Amsterdam. This suggests that a refusal is more likely if you apply in Tel Aviv.

As to processing times, as of October 2017 Amsterdam should be much quicker than Tel Aviv. The Tel Aviv embassy currently shows 24 calendar days for visitor visas, while the consulate general in Amsterdam shows 9 days.

(For other visa categories, Tel Aviv shows 2 days, while Amsterdam shows 9 days.)

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