Visiting America: Visa Requirements You Should Know About
If you are planning to explore the beauty of the United States, you need to obtain a visa before visiting America. Visa documents are available at the U.S. Embassy or Consulate in your home country. Thankfully, you can apply for the visas online.
When applying for a U.S. visa, you must meet all the requirements. In this guide, we’ll look at all the essential documents that you must submit during the application process to get your visa, whether nonimmigrant or immigrant visa.
Types of U.S. Visas
You can travel to the United States using a nonimmigrant visa (meant for temporary stay) or an immigrant visa (for permanent residence). If you are visiting the U.S. as a visitor, it’s essential to understand the different types of nonimmigrant visas.
In a nutshell, let’s look at the types of nonimmigrant visas.
- Work Visa: Work visa is available for foreigners who plan to move to the United States as permanent or temporary foreign workers. So, you need to specify the kind of work you are applying for during the visa application.
- Student Visa: The student visa (F1 Visa) is available for international students who plan to study in the United States on a full-time basis at an accredited academic institution in the U.S.
- Tourist Visa: If you are visiting America as a tourist, you’ll need to apply for the tourist visa (B-2 Visa). With this travel document, you can engage in things such as tourism and vacation. You can also participate in sports and social activities.
- Business Visa: This type of visa is available to all foreign investors planning to set up their businesses in the United States. With a business visa, you can consult U.S. business associates or attend business workshops or conferences.
Whether you are visiting America to work, study, tour, or start a business, there’s no doubt you’ll need the U.S. dollars. So, you need to exchange your home currency at a reputable company like Knightsbridge Foreign Exchange for the best rates.
America Tourist Visa Requirements
Different types of visas may have unique requirements, including the U.S. tourist visa. However, some provisions apply to all visas. Here are the general requirements you must fulfill when applying for a U.S. tourist visa.
1. Form DS-160
Every person visiting the United States must fill out Form DS-160 online. It’s an application form for non immigrant visas. When filling out the form, you must upload all the required supporting documents of your visa, such as:
- Invitation letter, written by a U.S. citizen or legal resident
- Travel itinerary showing what you are planning to do in the U.S.
- Previous U.S. visas if you’ve visited the country before
- Property documents to prove that you have strong ties in your home country
- Family documents, such as birth certificates and marriage certificates
2. Valid Passport
You must have an original valid passport, with not less than six months to the expiry date. The passport should have at least one blank page for visa affixation. You can apply for the passport in your home country
3. Passport Photograph
A passport photo is one of the essential documents for the visa application. Notably, it must fulfill all the U.S. visa photo requirements, including a photo size of 2 x 2 inches. You will upload the photo to the DS-160 form during the application.
4. Receipt for Payment of Application Fee
When applying for a non immigrant U.S. visa, you must pay an application fee of $160. You must pay for it fee first to schedule an interview. Note that the fee is non-refundable, and you’ll not get the money back if you cancel the appointment or fail in the interview.
Additional Requirements for other Types of Visas
Different types of visas may have additional requirements that visitors must fulfill to qualify for travel visas. Here are the additional documents for a student and work visa.
Other Requirements for Student Visa
- Acceptance letter from an accredited U.S. academic institution
- Proof of payment of SEVIS I-901 fee to the Department of Homeland Security. You should submit the receipt during the interview
- Financial proof from your sponsors supporting your education
Additional Requirements for Work Visa
Depending on the type of U.S. work visa, you might have to submit any of the following documents.
- Proof of qualifications, such as certifications and diplomas
- Evidence of professional degrees, such as bachelor, master, and doctorate
- Letter from the previous employer
- Job offer from your American employer
Whether you are visiting America from the U.K., Canada, or any other country, you must get a visa. Make sure that you meet all the requirements, depending on the type of U.S. visa you need. With all the essentials, proceed to apply for the visa online.