Information About Specific Types of U.S. Visas

Information About Specific Types of U.S. Visas

Tourist Visas

Applicants for tourist visas must demonstrate that they are planning to travel as tourists, that they have sufficient funds to complete the trip, and that they intend to return home afterwards. Persons who plan to visit relatives or friends in the U.S. are generally considered tourists as well. In addition to the general visa requirements, applicants for tourist visas must establish their purpose of travel. Invitations are no longer required.

Business Visas

Applicants for business visas must demonstrate that they plan to travel to the U.S. on bona fide business. This is often done by providing an invitation from a U.S. company as well as documents which establish an ongoing or proposed business relationship between that company and you country. Applicants may also be asked to demonstrate the U.S. company’s existence and activity.

Applicants who own their own companies or businesses in  your country should be prepared to demonstrate that their company exists and is operating. Legal ownership of a “paper company” does not guarantee one a visa. Tax documents, bank records, customs declarations, invoices, bills of lading, advertising brochures, etc., can be useful in demonstrating business activity.

Business visas are also available to persons who plan to travel to the U.S. to attend business meetings, seminars, trade shows, etc.

Exchange Visitor Visas

Exchange Visitor (“J”) visas are available for persons traveling to the U.S. on approved student, work, or cultural exchange programs. Applicants must meet the requirements of the particular program which he or she has been offered and receive an approved form DS-2019 (former IAP-66) from the Program Administrator before applying for a visa.

The original DS-2019 must accompany the visa application. It will be attached to the passport together with the visa sticker. The DS-2019 is a part of the Exchange Visitor Visa and should be retained in the passport for the duration of the visitor’s stay in the U.S.

Temporary Employment Visas (or Temporary Work Permits)

There are many types of visas available for temporary workers in the U.S. They include trainees, intercompany transferees, artistic or athletic performers, etc. These types of visas may only be issued based on a petition filed by a prospective employer in the U.S. and approved by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS). Therefore, individuals who wish to obtain one of these visas should request that their future employer in the U.S. contact his or her regional office of INS to file a petition. Once approved, that petition is sent to the beneficiary who then may apply for his or her visa.

Fiance (or Fiancee) Visas

Fiance visas are issued to the engaged persons who are planning to travel to the US to marry a US citizen and then reside there permanently.

An American citizen who wishes to obtain a visa for a fiancée who resides in your country  should contact his or her local DHS office and file the Petition for Alien Fiancé(e), Form I-129F. Note: An American citizen cannot file this petition at an embassy, consulate or U.S. Immigration office abroad.

If the USCIS approves the petition, it sends the petition to National Visa Center for processing, prior to sending it to the U.S. Embassy . The Embassy will then provide an intended spouse with information on further visa requirements, such as medical examination, police clearance, and photographs