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U.S. Department of State

Diplomacy in Action

Foreign Press Center Media Credential Application Guidelines (Washington, DC)


The Foreign Press Centers (FPC) issue press credentials to foreign media with a primary audience/circulation located outside the United States.  These credentials grant access to FPC events, facilities and services in Washington, DC and New York, NY; and are widely recognized by government and other organizations convening media events.

Validity of the FPC credential is in accordance with the terms of the applicant's visa status, duration of eligibility to work in the United States, and/or reciprocity with the employing media agency's home country.  Validity will not exceed a term of three years, but credentials are renewable at the end of that period for members of the foreign media on continuing assignment in the United States. 

To apply for an FPC credential from the Washington Foreign Press Center (FPC), please submit the following documents via email to the Washington FPC Media Relations Officer responsible for your geographic region. Application packages must be submitted via email.

PLEASE NOTE: FPC Credentials do not guarantee admission to any specific media event, and journalists are encouraged to check specific instructions from hosting organizations and on notices of press availabilities. 

IMPORTANT: Walk-ins will NOT be accepted.


1.  Please provide the following information (copy and paste into the body of your email).  All information should be in English:

- Surname/Family name
- First name
- Middle name, if any

- Country of Media Organization
- Name of Media Organization
- Job Title
- Type of Media (magazine, newspaper, TV, radio, online, news agency, other)
- Audience size of Media Organization
- U.S. Office Address
- Office Phone
- Mobile Phone
- E-mail address
- Twitter handle(s)
- Media Organization website address
- Name of employee you are replacing, if any

2.  One recent passport-size color photo in .jpg format (Note: Photo must be no older than six months).  The photo must have a white background;

3.  A .pdf or .jpg format copy of the biodata/photo page of your passport and a .pdf or .jpg format copy of documentation showing that you are legally authorized to work in the United States.  Qualifying documents include:

--  a valid "I" journalist visa.  Bearers of other temporary worker visa categories may qualify under certain circumstances.  The copy of any visa should include the entry stamp from the DHS officer.  The stamp should indicate how long the applicant is authorized to remain in the United States;

--  a valid U.S. passport or other evidence of U.S. citizenship;

--  a U.S. legal permanent resident "green" card; or

--  a valid Employment Authorization Document (EAD) or temporary authorization pending EAD issuance.  FPC reserves the right to request additional documentation attached to any work authorizations.


1.  An original letter, scanned in .jpg or .pdf format, from the director of the media organization for which you work, written in English on the organization's letterhead and dated no more than 30 days prior to your application, confirming your assignment to the United States.  The letter should include your title/position and the duration of your assignment.  This letter cannot be signed by the applicant; and

2.  Three articles, images, or other media produced by the applicant and run by the foreign news organization within the last sixty days.  FPC may, at its sole discretion, waive this requirement for new staff hired in the United States.

[FPC reserves the right to request additional documentation, including a copy of an employment contract.]



Freelancers will be granted credentials based on their ability to demonstrate both that their primary employment is as a journalist and that the majority of their material is placed with media with a primary audience outside the United States.  Freelance credentials have a maximum validity of twelve months, with the option to renew provided the conditions noted in this section are met.

1.  An original letter, scanned in .jpg or.pdf format, from the director of a media organization for which you work regularly, written in English on the organization's letterhead and dated no more than 30 days prior to your application, confirming you have placed work with that organization in the past year and that they will continue to accept material from you.  Freelancers are encouraged to provide this same information for as many of the media placing their content as possible; and

2.  Proof of placement for three articles, images, or other media run by foreign news organizations within the last sixty days.  This proof may be in the form of paid invoices or clippings/links that specifically identify the applicant as the producer of the content.


FPC will consider applications for credentials by bloggers and independent journalists on a case-by-case basis.  Applicants will be expected to demonstrate both that their primary content is news and that their primary audience is overseas.  Documentation of content-sharing agreements with established media and/or references from government media relations offices may be submitted in support of the application, but FPC reserves the right to grant credentials at its sole discretion.


FPC Credential Pick-Up (Washington, DC only):  If approved, you will be contacted by the Washington FPC once your FPC credential is ready for pick-up to schedule an appointment to meet with the Media Relations Officer responsible for your geographic region.

IMPORTANT: Average processing time for a Washington FPC credential is THREE business days from the date on which all required application materials are received by the Media Relations Officer.

FPC Credential Renewals
The procedure for renewing an FPC credential is the same as applying for a new one.

Please Note: If at any time you change media organizations, please immediately notify the Media Relations Officer responsible for your geographic region in order to obtain a new credential.  If a journalist on a non-immigrant visa changes outlets or status, he/she should file a form I-539 with USCIS (  Notification of approval is in the form of an I-797, which should be presented with the renewal application.


FPC Credential Revocations:  Credentials are the property of the U.S. Department of State, and members are obliged to return credentials to the FPC immediately if they expire, the member has ceased working as a journalist or the member is notified that his or her credential has been revoked.

FPC credentials are subject to revocation under the following circumstances:

1.  FPC determines that the member has provided false information regarding his or her employment, eligibility for employment, or visa status;

2. FPC determines that the member has used his or her credential to misrepresent him- or herself in a non-journalistic context, or for some other unlawful purpose; or

3. The member fails to comply with FPC rules regarding the conduct of events, such as physical placement or unsafe use of equipment; or physically disrupts events convened by the FPC or other USG agencies to which the member was admitted using the credential. 


Reporting, editorial opinion, or content of questions will never be grounds for revocation or credentials.