The U.S. Consulate in Sydney advised all Aussies seeking visa to work in the U.S. that its operation will not be affected by the controversial U.S. government shutdown.
The U.S. Consulate in Sydney processes visa applications for Aussies planning to work in the U.S.
Aussies commonly work in the U.S. especially during summer in the country (winter in the U.S.). They usually work as ski instructors in Utah and Colorado.
In an interview with AAP, Dave McGuire, spokesman for the consulate explained that consular services are important services, hence they are going to be continued.
"For the time being, essential services are going to continue and consular services are certainly considered essential. It obviously varies from country to country but here in Australia, we would continue with our staffing as it is," Mr McGuire explained.
He added that passports will still be returned within five working days.
However, for those Aussies who will pursue their travel plans to U.S., it will be smart to get a picture of what will likely happen as soon as they arrive in the U.S.
As a result of the U.S. government shutdown, about 800,000 government employees will be furloughed without pay. This would mean that any problem encountered, travel complaints included, which need intervention of the government, its employees will not be available to serve the public.
According to an interview by the Courier Mail with Kristie Greco, spokesperson for the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), there were about 2,500 safety airline employees who were furloughed.
Only air traffic controllers and technicians, as well as the Federal Highway Administration workers and federal bus and truck inspectors remained working to keep airports open for the travellers. These employees are paid on user fees so they can keep on working.
On the other hand, for those Aussies who were planning to go to the U.S. for leisure purposes, there are national parks and monuments closed due to the U.S. government shutdown.
The Smithsonian museums and zoo in Washington will be closed.
People are prohibited from strolling the Grand Canyon National Park, the Statue of Liberty in New York, the loop road at Acadia National Park in Maine, Skyline Drive in Virginia, Independence National Historic Park in Philadelphia, home of Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell.
The only accessible tourist spots will be the Appalachian Trail, Great Smokies and other parks with highways running through them.
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