This page provides basic information about visiting. It does not cover every situation. For the official regulations, see Program Statement P5267.08, Visiting Regulations.
Each Federal prison has set up certain days and times, called "visiting hours," for family and friends to visit inmates. There are more than 117 prisons, and visiting hours may vary depending on location and other factors. Some prisons have different types of inmates with different visiting needs. Some have more space and other facilities available for visiting than others.
All institutions have visiting hours on Saturdays, Sundays, and holidays; and most have them at other times during the week. Individual prisons can set up evening hours.
The inmate you plan to visit should tell you what the hours are for that prison. If you have any question about a particular prison's hours, call that prison or use our online Facility Locator tool to find the visiting hours for the prison.
By law, an inmate gets at least four hours of visiting time per month. Usually, the prison can provide more. The Warden can decide to restrict the length of visits or the number of people who can visit at once, to avoid overcrowding in the visiting room. Sometimes the prison may have to limit visiting per inmate to one day on a weekend, because it is the most popular time to visit.
Prisons try to allow for families' special circumstances, such as the distance you have to travel or health problems. Staff can help with directions, including how to get there by public transportation when available; but there is no Government payment or reimbursement for transportation. Again, call the prison before you travel for a visit.