Before you dive in to the process, let our immigration attorneys give you some advice and guidance on how to navigate the petition. We’ll ensure that the package is complete, the forms filled out correctly and the purpose of your visit explained carefully.
Tourist or visitor visas are nonimmigrant visas for those foreign nationals wishing to travel within the U.S. temporarily, either for pleasure, business or a combination thereof. To receive a tourist visa, the nonimmigrant has to show proof that the visit is for a specific purpose and that he or she fully intends to return home. It is easier for some nonimmigrants to obtain a tourist visa than others, depending on the country of origin.
Visas for business purposes are called B-1 visas. Tourism, pleasure or visiting visas are called B-2 visas. The applicable visa application form is the DS-160. You will also need to supply a photograph in a certain format. These forms can be found on the internet on the U.S. Consulate or Embassy website.
Applicants between the ages of 14 and 79 are scheduled for an interview at the office of the U.S. Embassy or Consulate in their country of origin before the visa is issued.
For the U.S. Embassy or consulate to issue you a B-1 visa, you need to explain the purpose of your visit:
You should have a plan in mind and a date by which you plan to exit the country. This can include an itinerary of the places or events you plan to visit with the estimated dates so that the visits can be done within the time allotted on the visa. Also, have a budget for the expenses of traveling within the U.S. and allow for unexpected expenses. Generally, it is safe to assume that it will be more expensive in some areas of the U.S. than others.
The immigration official will also not issue you a visa unless you can provide proof that you have a home or residence in your country of origin or have significant family ties or connections, and that you have permission to travel from your country and to return. You also need to show that you possess the financial means to travel to and from the U.S., or that someone else is willing and able to pay for your expenses.
You may not use the B-1 visa to sell products or engage in any business enterprise or work for a fee. You cannot provide consultations, attend trade conventions, or be a reporter for a foreign publication under a B-1 visa. You can, however, combine a B-1 visa with a B-2 visa if you want to engage in some kind of business activity.
Other uses of a B-1 visa include:
If you wish to come to the U.S. to treat a medical condition, you need to show the following:
Once your application has been received, you will receive notice for an interview unless you are exempted because of age (80 years of age or older).