USA artist VISA fees set for a big increase: Who is affected and why?
This past week, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) released a document outlining proposed changes within the Citizenship and Immigration Services. Among these changes is a significant increase in USA artist VISA fees.
According to the proposal, “P visa” fees for artists and entertainers will go from $460 to $1615, while the “O visa” for extraordinary abilities in the arts increases from $460 to $1655. In addition, both visas will also include $600 surcharge for the asylum program.
Why the proposed increase in USA artist VISA fees?
For starters, let’s look at the economic factors at play. The U.S. has by far the largest entertainment sector of any country, so policy proposals like this are aiming to safeguard the economy in light of post-pandemic instability and forced diversification.
Revenue within international sectors such as Latin music and video content creation is at an all-time high, so the fee increase capitalizes on this surplus for the supposed benefit of the industry as a whole.
Unfortunately, as anyone familiar with the concept of inflation will know it’s rarely ever the smaller pieces of the pie like independent artists that benefit from changes like these. In fact, in many cases, they can remove future opportunities completely.
It’s always been difficult to qualify for U.S. artist visas as a touring musician or band, but these fee increases could put U.S. tours out of reach of many artists. Although they represent only a small percentage of the sector’s total revenue, these communities are likely to feel targeted.
Conversely, artists on labels and agencies with strong U.S. fan bases are largely unaffected. The tour agencies simply budget accordingly, raising the prices of tickets and merch when planning tours and the fans support their favourite artists as usual.
What are your thoughts on the proposed changes to USA artist VISA fees? Is this a new incentive to get signed to a label or is the U.S. becoming a no-fly zone? Please let us know in the comments below!
More about the USA artist VISA:
- The U.S. Federal Register
- Official document from the U.S. DHS
So that’s the end of a European ‘cracking the US’ market really. I suppose it’s slightly easier for the us up and comings to deal with less competition. But really, nobody goes to shows for ‘new’ artists anyway.
Saw a guy who gave free food to touring bands at his restaurant in Colorado. They saw 300+ small bands a year.
Lol. Touring isn’t the answer in 2023