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US Tourist Visa: B2 Visa for Nigerians

You may need Tourist Visas for short-term trips, or you might require support moving from Nigeria to the US. Whatever your situation is, our experienced immigration lawyers can carry you through the process with care.

Get in touch with IAS on +23413438882 or +44 (0) 3316300929 for more information about the B2 Visa for Nigerians or any other US Visa that you are interested in obtaining a visa.

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    Looking to Spend Some Time in the US on a Visitor Visa?

    We can help you to secure a B2 Visa, or any other US Tourist Visa, with our time-saving accredited advice. Our high success rate for US emigration from Nigeria speaks for itself. If you put your trust in us, you could join the list of Nigerian clients who have embarked on a low-stress journey to obtain lawful presence in the US.

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    Overview of US Tourist Visa for Nigeria

    The Tourist Visa in the United States is also known as the B2 Visa. It falls under the category of Visitor Visa along with the B1 Business Visa. Both of these visas are known as nonimmigrant visas.

    Individuals on the B2 Visa can visit the US temporarily with the intention of seeing loved ones, going on holiday or getting medical treatment. Unpaid participation in creative events (e.g., sports or music) and social events (hosted by social, fraternal or service organisations) is also permitted. B2 Visa holders may study a short recreational course in the US, provided that it is not related to higher education.

    Nigerian citizens whose travel purposes align with these requirements can enter the US with a B2 Visa (if they meet the general emigration criteria). Every tourist visiting the US will possess this visa, unless they have a Visa Waiver. This only applies to residents of a fixed list of countries.

    The general process for acquiring a B2 Visa from Nigeria is to submit Form DS-160, pay an application fee ($185) and schedule an interview with a US Embassy or Consulate in Nigeria.

    Successful Nigerian applicants could be entitled to spend up to 60 months in the US for short business or tourism trips.

    How to Apply for US Tourist Visa Online

    The first step to securing a US Tourist Visa is to fill out Form DS-160 with the relevant information. Applicants must provide:

    • Personal details
    • Contact information
    • Details of previous US travel
    • Family members’ personal details
    • Education history
    • Employment history
    • Photographic identification

    After submitting the US Tourist Visa application, applicants must print the confirmation page as this must be taken to the visa interview. Next, a Machine Readable Visa (MRV) fee of $185 must be paid.

    It is vital that applicants provide all of the required information and identification in Form DS-160. United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) cannot help applicants with this form.

    It takes around 3-5 weeks for B2 Visa applications to be processed. If an interview is included as part of this, there may be a longer waiting time due to limited availability for interviews, post-interview processing and any additional administration that is required.

    What are the Requirements for Photographic Identification in the B2 Visa Application?

    USCIS provides clear instructions on how to take a photograph that will be accepted. They state that all photographs must be:

    • Taken in front of a plain white or off-white background
    • Recent (within the last six months)
    • In line with size requirements (the head must be 50-60% of the total height of the image)
    • In colour
    • Full-face view (applicant is directly facing the camera)

    The applicant must:

    • Wear everyday clothing
    • Adopt a neutral facial expression with both eyes open

    The following will not be accepted:

    • Eyeglasses (unless approved for medical reasons)
    • Hats and head coverings that cast shadows on the face or obscure the hair/hairline (unless for religious purposes)
    • Headphones or wireless hands-free devices
    • Uniforms (except everyday religious clothing)

    Let our expert team be your guide on your journey to obtaining a B2 Tourist Visa from Nigeria!

    Scheduling Your Visa Interview

    Applicants under the age of 13 or over the age of 80 are usually not required to schedule an interview. If you are between these ages, it is very likely that you will be asked to schedule an interview.

    US Visa interviews for Nigerian citizens will take place at a United States Embassy or Consulate in Nigeria. Applicants can either attend the US Embassy (Abuja) or the US Consulate (Lagos) by booking an appointment directly with the institution.

    The average waiting time for each institution is available online. Currently, waiting times are 307 calendar days for Abuja and 409 days for Lagos.

    The cost of the B2 Visa interview is included in the MRV fee ($185) so no additional payments are required at this stage.

    It is possible to reschedule the initial appointment by calling the US Embassy or Consulate that the interview is booked with. This should only be done in exceptional circumstances as it puts applicants back at the bottom of the waiting list.

    Preparing for Your Visa Interview

    Before attending the interview, applicants must make sure they have all of the required documents. This includes:

    • Printed confirmation of Form DS-160
    • Application fee payment receipt
    • Interview appointment confirmation
    • Passport with at least six months validity
    • Printed photographic identification (if online photo upload failed)

    Individuals visiting the US for medical treatment are asked to bring:

    • Medical letter from US doctor or facility willing to treat the condition (with reference to duration and total cost of treatment)
    • Diagnosis from doctor in Nigeria (including details of condition and reason for US treatment)
    • Declaration by sponsors (financial proof of affordability e.g., income tax returns, savings or bank statements)

    Some applicants must also bring:

    • Travel itinerary
    • Proof of income/tax/business ownership/assets
    • Evidence of US immigration status (for self or relative)
    • Letter from employer with last three months’ wages
    • Proof of education (degrees, diplomas, recent school grades)
    • Court or criminal records

    All documents must be provided in English, which is not an issue for the majority of our Nigerian clients. However, any Nigerian national with a different first language must ensure their documents are translated into English by a certified translator.

    The information in the documents must match up with the details provided in Form DS-160. If not, the interviewer may reject the application on the day. To ensure all documents are accurate, speak to an IAS lawyer on +23413438882 or +44 (0) 3316300929 before attending the interview.

    Attending Your Visa Interview

    On the day of the B2 Visa interview, it is recommended to dress formally as this is standard protocol for interviews. Applicants should also consider arriving early to the interview to account for any travel delays. They will not be admitted until at most 30 minutes before the interview, but it is better to wait than to miss the appointment.

    Upon admission, fingerprints will be electronically scanned and the B2 visa application will be reviewed. An consular officer will then ask questions pertaining to the application form and the trip to the United States. The total interview time is two to three hours.

    Some examples of specific questions are:

    • How long are you planning on staying in the US?
    • What is your annual income?
    • How many children do you have?
    • Do you own a car?
    • Where are you staying in the US?
    • What are your motivations for visiting this country?
    • Do you have family in the US?

    What to Do If Your Tourist Visa USA Application is Denied

    There is a misconception that applying for the B2 Visa is easy as it is a short-term visa that does not demand permanent residence in the US. This is a dangerous attitude to have as you approach the application process. Keep in mind that mistakes can be made at any point, and hypervigilance is key.

    In the event that an applicant has already been rejected by USCIS, they can make a new application by submitting Form DS-160 and scheduling a new interview. They will need strong evidence that their travel purpose is for tourism, that they have strong home ties in Nigeria and that they do not intend to stay in the US permanently.

    To get help understanding the reason for rejection and putting together a stronger application, contact us on +23413438882 or +44 (0) 3316300929. Re-applying is never enjoyable, but we can take away the majority of the stress and cultivate a low-pressure application process for you.

    Our team of immigration specialists have helped countless Nigerian travelers successfully secure their B2 visas.

    Entering the US with a Tourist Visa

    When a Nigerian resident becomes a B2 Visa holder, they are entitled to travel to a US airport (or another port-of-entry) and request to enter the US.

    US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) will speak to the tourist and make a decision on whether they are eligible to enter the country.

    Rejected tourists must return to Nigeria. If the denied entry is perceived as unfair, DHS can be contacted via the online Traveler Redress Inquiry Program form.

    Most B2 Visa holders will not end up in this situation if they have submitted a genuine application and maintained honesty and openness in the interview. The main reasons for denial are:

    • Not possessing the required documents
    • Planning to work in the US
    • Lying in the application or interview
    • Suspicious social media content
    • Having undeclared medical problems

    Tourists who are approved at the border will get an Arrival/Departure Record (Form I-94) or an admission stamp that they will keep as evidence they are permitted to spend time in the US.

    Extending Your Stay in the U.S. on a Tourist Visa

    Nigerian tourists in the US may want to extend their stay by submitting Form I-539 online at least 45 days before their B2 Visa expires. This is the application to extend or change nonimmigrant status. It costs $370.

    In this form, the applicant must provide detailed reasons for wanting to extend their stay. It must be demonstrated that the extension would not negatively impact the visa holder’s employment in Nigeria.

    There must be strong evidence that the visa holder would be able to afford life in the US with their B2 Visa extension. Applicants must show proof of affordability for daily expenses including accommodation and meals.

    In terms of travelling back to Nigeria, people who want a visa extension must show that they have already made travel plans from the US to Nigeria on or before the proposed date of extension. Examples of permissible evidence include letters from employers with travel confirmation and plane tickets.

    Filing Form I-539 past the recommended deadline is likely to result in denial of the visa extension. There are certain circumstances in which USCIS may be more lenient, including when the applicant:

    • Is still a bona fide nonimmigrant
    • Could not control the delay
    • Has not otherwise violated their immigration status
    • Is not in removal proceedings
    • Has not filed the form unreasonably late

    Changing Your Status While in the U.S. on a Tourist Visa

    Changes to B2 status are not common, but they can occur if the visa holder’s living situation changes while they are in the US. Examples include getting a job offer and getting married to a US citizen.

    In these scenarios, the Tourist Visa holder could change their immigration status without leaving the US. This is commonly known as Adjustment of Status (AOS) or change of status.

    AOS does not require the visa holder to apply for a new visa. Instead, the new visa must be secured the next time the individual leaves the US and returns. Instead of paying visa fees, AOS applicants must pay a $370 filing fee and an $85 biometrics fee. The total cost is $455.

    Changing immigration status for any reason other than employment requires applicants to submit Form I-539 (Application to Extend/Change Nonimmigrant Status) as discussed above.

    To switch to a Work Visa, the process is different. The applicant’s prospective employer must file Form I-129 (Petition for a Nonimmigrant Worker). USCIS must be satisfied that the applicant meets the criteria for AOS and that the prospective job role is acceptable according to the specific Work Visa that has been requested.

    Form I-129 can be filed for any type of Work Visa including E1 & E2 (Treaty Trader and Treaty Investor Visas), E3 (Australian Professional Specialty Visa), R1 (Nonimmigrant Religious Workers) and L1A & L1B (Indian Intracompany Transfers).

    It is important to note that applicants must wait to receive a decision from USCIS before they pursue new activities in the US. For example, they must not pursue employment until they have received confirmation of their change of status, and have obtained a visa that permits working.

    An alternative to pursuing AOS is to leave the US, re-apply for a suitable visa, and return with a new immigration status. This can be achieved via consular processing at a US Embassy or Consulate in Nigeria.

    Allow our team of legal experts to help you with the process of Canada Transit Visa application

    How Can IAS Help?

    Whether you are new to the B2 Visa or you want to apply for an extension, our wonderful immigration lawyers are ready to offer their insight and make the application process bearable.

    We have witnessed the devastation that comes with a visa denial, and it is not something we want for our Nigerian clients. We will do everything in our power to help you put together a strong application.

    Contact us on +44 (0) 3316300929 or call our Lagos office on 23413438882 to book an initial appointment or to enquire about our competitive packages for clients like you. With IAS, it couldn’t be easier to emigrate to the US from Nigeria.

    We offer immigration advice sessions as face to face appointments at our Lagos office, all of our UK offices, or via the phone.

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