United States Visa Requirements

Are you thinking about heading to the United States for a while but are having difficulty in figuring out what the visa requirements are? Here is a brief outline as to what is required in order to make it over there and not get turned away at the US immigration desk.

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If you are a UK citizen and are hoping to go to the United States for business, tourism or will be in transit, the visa process is quite simple. The UK is currently part of the Visa Waiver Program (VWP), which allows citizens travelling for these purposes to stay in the States for a maximum of 90 days without having to obtain a visa. It is important though that you have proof of an outbound journey on arrival with a departure date that precedes your 90 day stay expiring.

For those travelling for a different purpose other than the ones stated above, it is necessary to apply for a different type of non-immigrant visa. Once you know which visa classification you need, here are the general steps to receiving the non-immigrant visa:

  • 1.Fill out the DS-160 Online application form. Make sure to print the confirmation page.
  • 2. Schedule an appointment by phone or online after completing the application.
  • 3. Review the NIV Checklist and organize any additional documents you may need to submit.
  • 4. Arrive at U.S. Embassy with your confirmation page, appointment confirmation and any other required documents

On top of all of this there is of course a fee. The MRV application fee is $160, Petition based applications (H, L, O, P, Q, R) cost $190 and the E-1, E-2, and E-3 applications cost $270 each. You can only pay these fees by debit card at the time of your interview.

Depending on what conditions you are applying for an immigrant visa, the requirements will be different. For those looking to apply for an immigrant visa the process look like this:

  1. 1. Fill out an immigrant visa petition with the U.S. Citizenship and immigration service
  2. 2. The visa will be processed
  3. 3. There will be an interview and a medical examination.

Unfortunately it is very difficult for the embassy's to provide a time frame with how long it will take to process each visa, so make sure you give yourself enough time in advance to account for this. For a more comprehensive understanding of the visa requirements for the U.S. take a quick visit to the US Embassy's website.

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