There are certain formalities to be followed to obtain an entry to the United States. And the foremost one is visa application. The procedures may vary a bit depending on the visa type. But if you are applying for a visit visa to the USA, then you must follow these steps to obtain it the right way. One thing important to remember is that securing a visa will not guarantee you admission to the city. It will depend on the immigration officer at the port of entry or airport to allow you or not.
What is the difference between a B1 visa and a B2 visa?
The B1 visa is for individuals who require travelling to the United States for various business-related activities such as going to any work conference, attending business meetings, settling an estate, negotiating contracts, or appearing for professional exams & getting licensed. It is specifically for business purposes & does not allow formal employment or even long-term work within the U.S. In March 2023, however, U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services announced that the visa holders of B1 or B2 can apply for jobs within the U.S. & attend interviews.
The B2/tourist visa is in fact for tourism, vacations, or to visit friends & family. This also allows for definite medical treatments & taking part in contests or social events like music/sports competitions, sans being paid. In most cases, a B1/B2 visa is issued together, enabling the holder to travel for both business and pleasure.
B1 And B2 Visa Requirements
A B1/B2 visitor visa permits you to travel to the U.S. for diverse purposes, like pleasure or business. To meet the criteria for a B1 or B2 visa, you have to show that your stay within the U.S. will be concise.
You are also required to confirm that you aim to return to your home country following the visit, & that you have a habitat outside the U.S. that you will not discard permanently. Meeting these criteria helps set up that you will obey the terms of a B1/B2 visa.
Can You Change Status from B1/B2?
The B1 & B2 visas do not grant permanent resident status —these visas are temporary— however, you can change your status from B1/B2 visa to a different visa category while in the United States, if you suit certain conditions. This necessitates applying the change of status to U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS).
While considering changing your visa status in the US, keep these chief points in mind:
The new visa you want should align with your purpose for staying in the country. For example, applying for student visa should you plan to work or study visa if an employer sponsors you.
Present your application before your current visa expires, as revealed on the I-94 form. The USCIS advocates applying at least 45 days prior to the expiration.
Not all visa holders can change status. For instance, people who entered under Visa Waiver Program typically cannot, excluding through marriage to any U.S. citizen.
If you violated the terms of the current visa, like working devoid of authorization on B1/B2 visa, you are typically ineligible to change the status.
Even if you meet the requirements, the ultimate decision rests with USCIS.
If you tied the knot lately to a US citizen/permanent resident (they hold green card), you can also request for marriage green card. It permits you in staying the U.S. & reside with your spouse. You have the option of applying for green card while you stay in the country still through the “adjustment of status” (AOS) process, or you may present an application from the home country with consular processing.
Duration to Get a B1/B2 Visa
The typical wait time (processing duration) for a B1/B2 visa interview appointment is now two months. To verify the wait time for the embassy or consulate you plan to visit, input your city where it says “Appointment Wait Time.” Keep in mind that if you’re requesting an interview in a country that is not your homeland; the wait times might be longer.
Find out how to get a visit visa to USA for a wonderful and hassle-free holiday.
Know the exact visa type you need to apply
Foreign nationals wanting to visit the United States have to apply for a nonimmigrant visa. It is issued to people who want to travel for business, tourism, study, and employment purpose or want to stay in the U.S. for a maximum period of six months. If you plan to explore the tourist places in U.S., then you have to apply for a B-2 visa. This is a common type of visa for all tourists, including of the UAE, whose countries are not listed with the Visa Waiver Program. However, you need to show that you meet all the requirements laid down by the U.S. Immigration and Nationality Act (INA).
Filling the application form online is the first step towards getting a U.S. visa. However, you have to be very particular when completing the form since a small mistake can land your application in trouble and become the reason for rejection. Though you can download and complete the e-form, it is advised to seek help of an experienced and reliable U.S. visa service provider in Dubai. They can correct, evaluate, and guide you in completing the form without any mistakes and handle further procedures for you with a nominal fee.
Schedule a visa appointment
Scheduling an appointment for a visa interview is necessary for all applicants. This is the second step in the visit application process. The interview is simple and only basic questions would be asked by the consular officer to confirm the purpose of your visit and ensure you return from the United States once the authorized stay is over. For applicants below and over certain ages, there is no requirement for an interview. However, the consular officer has the right to call them for an interview if he feels the need to interview the applicants.
Note: There will be some waiting time depending on the type of visa applied, location, and season. The visa service provider will help you in booking an appointment with the Consulate where you are a permanent resident, and teach you how to answer the interview questions.
Pay the visit visa application fee
The visa fee needs to be paid at the time of applying for the visa. Remember, paying the application fee doesn’t mean that your application will be approved. Further, it is non-refundable even when your application is rejected. In case your application is approved, you will have to pay a few dollars extra as the visa issuance fee.
Collect required documents
Collect and compile all the needed papers in a systematic order and arrange them in a file. You will need the following documents:
- Passport: You will need a valid passport to travel to the USA. It should have a minimum validity of six months from the last date of your authorized stay in the United States
- Two printouts of DS-160 confirmation page
- Original receipt of the visa application fee (if it needs to be paid before the interview)
- One photograph of 2×2 inches in size, including a digital photograph
- Documents proving your purpose for a visit
- Your intention to come back to your country after completing the authorized stay. You can show your permanent residence status, family ties, property owned, and employment details
- Ability to incur all the travelling expenses on your own, or details of the person, agency, or company sponsoring your trip
Attend the visa interview
The interview is necessary to verify whether you have met all the requirements of a visit visa to US mandatory by US laws. You will be asked to scan your fingerprint on a scanner for a digital record. In case anything is missing or additional documents are required, the consular officer will inform you and keep your application on hold. If you have come cleared through all the process, your passport and visa will reach you at your residential address after the administrative procedure is over.
If you follow these steps keenly, you are sure to get a visit visa to the USA. However, no matter how closely you pay attention to meeting the visa requirements, you are bound to miss one thing or another, which in turn can prolong the securing of the visa. Therefore, take the help of a professional visa consultant in Dubai who can handle all the formalities on your behalf of and guarantee visa approval.
Also read -> Tips to Crack US Visa Interview in Dubai