With the exception of a Head of State or Government who qualifies for an A-1 visa regardless of the purpose of the visit to the United States, the type of visa required by a diplomat or other government official depends upon the reason for entering the United States.
Diplomats and other foreign government officials traveling to the United States to engage solely in official duties or activities on behalf of their national government must obtain A-1 or A-2 visas prior to entering the United States; they cannot travel using visitor visas or under the Visa Waiver Program (VWP).
Government officials traveling to the United States to perform non-governmental functions of a commercial nature or traveling as tourists require the appropriate H, L or B visa, or if qualified, travel visa free under the Visa Waiver Program; they do not qualify for diplomatic or official visas.
Spouses, Partners and Children:
Immediate family members are defined as the spouse and unmarried sons and daughters of any age who are members of the household. They are eligible for a derivative visa. Individuals who do not qualify as immediate family members may be eligible to apply for B-1/B-2 visas. B-1/B-2 visa applicants are required to pay the MRV application fee, and reciprocal issuance fees, if applicable.
Visa Processing and Issuance Fees:
Diplomatic passport holders are exempt from paying visa fees for all types of visas. Regular and official passport holders are not charged visa application fees for official visas, but are required to pay visa application and reciprocal issuance fees, if applicable, for all non-official visas.