Until 2003, this visa exemption was granted not only to citizens of these countries and territories, but also to permanent residents of Bermuda and Canada, citizens of the Commonwealth of Nations or Ireland. In 2003, the Immigration and Nature Service announced that it would end the visa exemption for non-citizen permanent residents of Bermuda and Canada; From now on, Canadian and bermuded permanent residents, who were citizens of a visa waiver program, would be eligible for visa exemption in the United States under this program, while citizens of other countries would be required to have a valid entry visa to the United States.  Revised visa refusal rates for B visas were as follows: restrictions on the use of the visa waiver program have no impact on this class of travel, unless there is a law or regulation that provides for it separately. For example, a Canadian citizen who briefly survived a previous visit to the United States (less than 180 days) will still not need a visa for future visits, while a VWP national who holds is no longer eligible for VWP for life and requires a visa for future visits. In order to qualify for an exemption from the VWP visa requirement, a traveller applying to enter the United States must be a citizen of a country designated by the U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security in agreement with the Secretary of State. Permanent residents of a given country who are not citizens of a particular country are not entitled to visa exemption. The criteria for designation as a country in the program are defined in Section 217 (c) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (Title 8.C No. 1187).
 The criteria emphasize passport security and a very low refusal rate for non-immigrants, which does not exceed 3% in accordance with Section 217 (c) (2) (A) of the Immigration and Nationality Act, and which consistently complies with U.S. immigration law. While Cayman Islands residents, if they are British overseas territories, can automatically register as fully British citizens under Section 4 (A) of the British Overseas Territories Act 2002 and then enter the United States under the Visa Waiver Program, they can also travel visa-free with their Cayman passports.