What is a visitor visa?
B visas (or visitor visas) are for foreign nationals who wish to visit the United States. Those visiting for business purposes are categorized as B-1. Those visiting for tourism are categorized as B-2.
Visitor visas allow for stays in the United States of up to 6 months. With a B1 visa, you can perform activities related to your employment in the United States. This could include, but is not limited to:
If you have a B2 visa in the United States, you may engage in tourism. This could include, but is not limited to:
If you are not a permanent resident or do not have a valid visa, you may need to apply for a B visa. Keep in mind that some individuals are eligible for the Visa Waiver Program (VWP). This program is managed through ESTA (Electronic System for Travel Authorization).
You are not eligible for a B visa if you are coming to the US to: study, work, be part of a paid performance, as a crew member on a ship or aircraft, for work in foreign press or other information media, or as a permanent resident of the United States.
Who is eligible for a visitor visa?
To be granted a visitor visa, you must show evidence that:
1.You have a valid reason to visit the United States. To obtain a visitor visa, you must support your reasons for coming to the United States. Again, some of the acceptable reasons for the B1 include: completing business transactions, consulting with associates, conducting research, attending conferences, negotiating contracts, and observing American business practices.
For the B2 visa, some acceptable reasons include: visiting tourist attractions in the United States, visiting friends or family, receiving medical treatment, participating in social events, participating in amateur competitions, or enrolling in a course of study, not for credit.
2.You have sufficient funds to cover the duration of your stay. In order to be approved for a B visa, you must demonstrate that you have the financial ability to cover your entire stay. If you cannot pay independently, you can provide evidence that your Employer or relative will support you.
3.You will return to your home country following the visa's expiration. In order to be approved for a B visa, you must prove that you have a residence abroad. You must show that you will return following the completion of the activity for which you are seeking a visitor visa. Be prepared to explain your itinerary and discuss your plans to return home in your consular interview.
Visitor Visa Process
Getting a visitor visa is a multistep process. The process may vary depending on the individual US embassy or consulate. An immigration lawyer can help you through this process.
Here is a general outline of the process followed by a more detailed explanation:
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