- What is the B2 Tourist Visitor Visa?
- What are the eligibility requirements for the B2 Visa?
- What documents are required for the B2 Visa for tourism?
- What documents are required for the B2 Visa for those seeking medical treatment?
- How to apply for the B2 Tourist Visitor Visa?
- What is the cost of the B2 Tourist Visitor Visa?
- How long does the processing of the B2 Tourist Visa applications take?
- How long is the B2 Visa valid for?
- What is the Visa Waiver Program?
- How can IAS help?
- Frequently Asked Questions
What is the B2 Tourist Visitor Visa?
The B2 Tourist Visitor Visa is one of the most popular US visas. It is intended for individuals who want to visit the US for tourism purposes or for medical treatment that is not available in their home country. You need to have the B2 Visa if you want to, for example, visit the US and travel around, visit a friend or family, or attend a cultural event.
Keep in mind that if your application for the B2 Visa is accepted, you will not be able to work or study in the US. You will also not be able to do business meetings. If you would like to come to the US for business purposes, you should apply for the B1 Business Visitor Visa instead.
What are the eligibility requirements for the B2 Visa?
All applicants from a foreign country who want to apply for the B2 Visa have to meet the following requirements:
- You are coming to the US for tourism or to receive medical treatment.
- You intend to stay in the US for a limited period of time and leave when your visa expires.
- You have enough funds to cover your expenses during your stay in the US
- You have ties in your home country that will make you go back to your home country after your visa expires.
You have to be able to provide evidence showing that you meet these criteria. If you are not sure whether you are eligible for the B2 Visa, contact our lawyers. They will assess your eligibility for it and will help you submit your application.
What documents are required for the B2 Visa for tourism?
To prove that you are eligible for the B2 Tourist Visitor Visa you have to include the following documents in your application:
- A valid passport that will not expire for at least 6 months after your stay
- Confirmation page showing that you submitted Form DS-160
- Receipt for the B2 Visa fee
- Passport size photograph
- Letter explaining why you want to come to the US
- Proof showing that you have enough money to support yourself during your visit.
- Proof showing that you have strong ties in your home country that will make you go back there after your visa expires.
- Evidence showing that you do not have a criminal record
- Confirmation showing that you scheduled your visa interview.
To receive assistance with putting together a portfolio of evidence, hire one of our immigration lawyers. Not including some of the required documents can lead to you being denied the B2 Visa. Hiring a lawyer can help you avoid that.
What documents are required for the B2 Visa for those seeking medical treatment?
If you want to come to the US on the B2 Visa to receive medical treatment that is not available in your home country, you have to also submit some additional supporting documents. These are:
- Letter from a doctor explaining what your condition is and what treatment they recommend.
- Proof showing that the treatment you want to receive is not available in your home country.
- Recommendation from a doctor stating that treatment in the US is recommended.
- Assessment of how much the treatment will cost.
When preparing your portfolio of evidence remember to also include the general required documents for the B2 Visa. To be able to receive the visa, you also have to be able to prove that you have enough funds to pay for your treatment in the US.
How to apply for the B2 Tourist Visitor Visa?
The first step of the application process for the B2 Visa is to file Form DS-160. You have to complete and submit it online. Once you do it, keep the confirmation page as you will have to bring it to your visa interview.
Then you have to pay the B2 Visa application fee of $160. This fee is non-refundable, which means that even if you do not receive the B2 Visa, you will not get the money back. Make sure to keep the receipt as you will have to include it in your portfolio of evidence. You have to pay the visa fee to be able to proceed with your application.
The next step is to schedule your interview at a US Embassy or Consulate in your home country. All visa applicants between the ages of 14 and 79 have to attend it. While waiting for your interview you can gather all the required documents. There is a lot of evidence you need to bring with you so hiring an immigration lawyer to help you put the portfolio of evidence together is advisable.
Finally, the last step of the application process is to attend the visa interview. The goal of the interview is to determine whether you meet the eligibility requirements for the visa and whether the information you included in your application is true.
What is the cost of the B2 Tourist Visitor Visa?
If you want to apply for the B2 Tourist Visitor Visa, you will have to pay the application fee of $160. You might also have to pay additional fees associated with gathering all the documents and translating them if they were not issued in English. Depending on your home country’s relationship with the US, you might also have to pay your visa issuance fee.
During your visa interview you will be asked to show receipts confirming that you have paid all the necessary fees so do not forget to bring them.
How long does the processing of the B2 Tourist Visa applications take?
The processing time of applications for the B2 Tourist Visitor Visa varies depending on the workload of the US Embassy or Consulate where you are applying. There is no specific timeframe stating how long you will wait for your B2 Visa. Nevertheless, the waiting time for the B2 Visa tends to be quite short and most applicants receive the decision within several weeks.
Sometimes, especially if there are mistakes in your application and USCIS has to ask you to correct them, the processing of the B2 Visa can take a few months.
How long is the B2 Visa valid for?
If your application for the B2 Tourist Visitor Visa is successful, you will be able to come to the US and stay there for up to six months. The B2 Visa allows you to leave and reenter the US many times as long as your visa is valid. Nevertheless, the B2 Visa is a nonimmigrant visa, which means that after it expires, you have to leave the US and go back to your home country.
If your B2 Visa is about to expire and you would like to stay in the US longer, you might be able to extend your visa. To apply for the extension, you have to file Form I-539. The processing of your extension application can take a while so you should apply in advance before your current visa expires.
What is the Visa Waiver Program?
The Visa Waiver Program allows citizens of certain participating countries to travel to the US for tourism or business purposes without having to apply for a visa. Those who are eligible for the Visa Waiver Program can stay in the US for up to 90 days without a visa. There are currently 40 countries participating in the initiative. To find out whether your home country is one of them, get in touch with our immigration lawyers.
Those who want to come to the US under the Visa Waiver Program need to receive a valid Electronic Visa Update System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) prior to their travel. US Customs and Border Protection uses ESTA to determine whether those who want to come to the US under the Visa Waiver Program meet the eligibility requirements.
If your country participates in the program, you can enjoy all the benefits B2 Visa holders have without having to go through the visa application process. Nevertheless, you will not be able to study or work in the US.
How can IAS help?
Here at IAS, our lawyers have expert knowledge of the US immigration system and have helped many people successfully apply for US visas. If you hire one of our lawyers, the application process will be straightforward and stress-free. Our lawyers will help you complete and submit all the required forms and gather all the necessary supporting evidence.
Our lawyers will also explain to you what you are allowed to do on the B2 Tourist Visa to make sure you do not violate its conditions. If you are already in the US on the B2 Visa and you would like to extend it, our citizenship and immigration services can help.
Call us today on +1 844 290 6312 to find out more about how our lawyers can help.
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Yes, if you are in the US on the B2 Tourist Visa and you meet someone you want to spend the rest of your life with, you can get married. Nevertheless, coming to the US on the tourist visa with the primary purpose of getting married is considered fraud under US immigration law.
Keep in mind that if you get married while on the B2 Tourist Visa, you will not automatically be granted permanent residence. You will still be obliged to leave the US after your visa expires unless you apply for a marriage-based adjustment visa status.
The B2 Tourist Visitor Visa is intended for individuals who want to come to the US for tourism. The B2 Visa holders are not allowed to seek employment in the US. The same applies to those who come to the US under the Visa Waiver Program.
If you would like to come to the US to work, you have to apply for a different permit. Talk to our immigration lawyers and they will tell you what visa you should apply for.
Working in the US while on the B2 Tourist Visa means violating the conditions of one’s stay. If you get caught, your visa will most likely be revoked and you will have to leave the US immediately. Those who stay in the US without a valid visa might face deportation.
After the immigration officers find out you have been working on the B2 Visa, they will look into your case and you might be convicted of having committed immigration fraud. That can lead to you having troubles applying for any future US visas.
With hundreds of thousands of tourists visiting the US each year, the B2 Tourist Visa is one of the most popular US visas. Obtaining it is not too hard and the application process is relatively simple. Nevertheless, to be able to receive it you have to meet the eligibility requirements and you have to convince the immigration officer that you are coming to the US for tourism and that you intend to come back to your home country after your visa expires.