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US Visitor Visa

If you are an Indian and are planning to visit U.S.A temporarily would require a US visa. People entering the United States would require a US Visa depending on the purpose of their visit- such as for study purposes, tourism, crew service, temporary employment, etc.

If you are going as a tourist/ or to meet a relative or a friend/or for medical treatment/ or for work purposes, a US visitor visa is mandatory. B-1 US Visa is required for business travel and B-2 US Visitor Visa is required when travelling for tourism/medical treatment. Both the visas fall under the non-immigrant visa category. Usually, the validity of these visas is 3 months to 10 years.

US Visitor is not issued to people who want to stay for a longer duration or plan to go there for employment purposes. 

Everyone knows that the USA follows a stringent visa process. There are different steps that are involved and to get your US visitor visa it is essential to follow all the instructions carefully. To make it simpler for you here is a simple guide for US Visitor Visa for Indians.

Types of US Visitor Visa

If you are applying for the US Visitor Visa from India, you will need to get a nonimmigrant visa that permits you to stay temporarily that is mainly of two types:

B-1 Visa (for business travel)

With a valid B-1 business US Visa you can engage in the following activities:

  • Attending a conference or a convention
  • Consult with business associates
  • Settle an estate
  • Negotiate a contract

B-2 Visa (for tourism)

A valid B-2 tourist visa to the USA allows you to visit the country for the following purposes:

  • Take a tour of the country
  • Holiday or vacation
  • Seek medical treatment
  • Visit your family or friends
  • Participate in musical/social/sports events or contests (if only it is on amateur level and is not a paid activity)
  • Taking up a short recreational course ( not a degree course)

US visitor visa also entitles you to enter the USA for a combination of both business and tourism purposes on a valid B-1/B-2 US Visa.

US Visitor Visa Requirements

It is important for an applicant for the USA visitor visa to qualify under the provisions of the Immigration and Nationality Act. Individuals applying for the US visitor visa must not appear as an intending immigrant to. Also, make sure that you buy travel insurance for USA as it can be expensive to pay from your own pocket.

However, Indian applicants for the US Visitor visa must demonstrate:

  • that they have a residence in India that they do not mean to abandon
  • the purpose of the visit is tourism, business, or medical treatment only
  • that they wish to visit the U.S.A for a specific/limited duration

It can be a daunting task to apply for a visitor visa to the U.S.A.  So, we have put it in simple steps to help you get your US visitor visa from India:

  • You would need to complete the electronic DS-160 visa application, schedule your US visa interview, and the documents that you would need for your appointment.
  • The DS-160 form/Online Non-immigrant Visa Application form is for applicants who wish to travel temporarily to the US, and for K (fiancé (e)) visas.
  • You can submit the Form DS-160 online on the website of the Department of State.
  • The information that is mentioned on your DS-160 form is assessed by the Consular Officers to process your visa application that is followed by a personal interview and determines your eligibility for the US nonimmigrant visa.
  • The US Visitor Visa applicants need to submit a completed DS-160 form, Online Nonimmigrant Visa Application for all the non-immigrant visa categories, including the K visas applicants.

How to Apply For the US Visitor Visa?

Before you begin with the process of obtaining the US visitor visa, there are a few steps that you need to take.

Firstly you need to determine where you will apply for your US Visitor Visa in India. The information and the tops that you would need while filling your DS-160 visa application are listed below:

  • To ensure that you are able to complete your information make sure that you have uninterrupted access to the internet on your computer for 30 to 60 minutes.
  • If the internet is interrupted for more than 20 minutes, the session will expire. It would require you to start over again.
  • You each page will get saved automatically if the internet is uninterrupted.
  • So, on the top right-hand side of your application, you write down your US Visa Application ID number. You can use it to save your Visa Application and can have access to it later on.
  • The application should be filled in English Alphabets only ( except for names in few cases)
  • Keep a print out of the DS-160 barcode page that appears after you have successfully submitted your Visa application. You need to carry this when going for your US Visa appointment in India

You can visit the following US Consulates and the US Embassies located in India:

Consulate/Embassy Address Contacts
 U.S. Embassy New Delhi Panchsheel Marg, Shanti path, Chanakyapuri, New Delhi 110021
+91 11 2419 8000
 U.S. Consulate General Chennai
Gemini Flyover, Teynampet, Chennai, Tamil Nadu 600006
+91 44 2811 2000
 U.S. Consulate General Hyderabad Paigah Palace, 1-8-323, Chiran Fort Club Ln, Patigadda, Begumpet, Secunderabad, Telangana 500003 +91 40 4033 8300
U.S. Consulate General Kolkata

5/1, Ho Chi Minh Sarani, Kankaria Estates, Park Street area, Kolkata, West Bengal 700071 +91 33 3984 2400
U.S. Consulate General Mumbai C49, G Block BKC, Bandra Kurla Complex, Bandra East, 400051
+91 22 2672 4000

Once you have completed your DS-160 form below are the steps that follow:

  • Take a printout of the DS-160 barcode page and keep it with you
  • Schedule your US visitor visa interview appointment ( Note that the U.S. Embassy or Consulate will not schedule your appointment)
  • Visit the nearest U.S. Embassy/Consulate or on to their to know about your interview dates and India-specific instructions
  • Now pay the US visitor visa application processing fee

Documents required for the US Visitor Visa for Indians

Below is the list of documents that you would require while filing your DS-160 US Visitor Visa application form:

  1. Your current Passport
  2. Your travel itinerary/travel arrangements
  3. Travel History- If you have visited the United States before, then you would need to provide the dates of your previous five visits. You would also need to provide your international travel history in the last five years. 
  4. Curriculum Vitae or Resume - You will be required to furnish details regarding your current and previous work and education history. 
  5. Other Information – However, some US Visitor Visa applicants would also need to provide additional information when filling the DS-160, depending on the purpose of their visit to the United States
  6. Medical Purposes: Proof of medical diagnosis from a local doctor describing the nature of your disease and that recommend treatment in the US. A letter from a doctor in the U.S.A who is ready to treat the specific ailment. The document needs the projected treatment duration and medical cost.

Below is an overview of the additional documents and information that some applicants will need to furnish while filling their DS-160 US Visa Application Form:

  • Students and Exchange Visitors (F, J, and M): For this, you will need to provide your Student and Exchange Visitor Information System ID (SEVIS ID) that is printed on your I-20 or DS-2019. Therefore, it is important to have this form while filling your DS-160. Along with this, you will need to furnish the address of your school/program where you are planning to go for study. You would need to provide this information on your I-20 or DS-2019 form. 
  • Temporary Workers Petition-based (H-1B, H-2, H-3, CW1, L, O, P, R, and E2C):  You would need a copy of your I-129 while completing your DS-160. 
  • Other Temporary Workers:  You would need to provide your employer’s information such as your employer’s address when filling your DS-160 form.

Below are the requirements for your DS-160 form application photo:

  • The photo should have been taken within six months of submitting your US Visitor visa application
  • Should be a colored photograph
  • Should have been taken in off-white or plain white background
  • Your head should take 50% to 69% of the total image height from the bottom of the chin to the top of the head
  • Your face should be directly facing the camera. Your expression should be neutral, with no shadow on your face and with both eyes open
  • Your head should not be covered unless it is for religious purposes
  • Photo should be without the eyeglasses

Note: Scanned photos, mobile phone photos, low-quality vending machine photos, and full-length photos are not accepted.

US Visitor Visa Fee for Indians

You need to pay the Visa fee before scheduling your US Visitor visa interview. You can go for a bank transfer or pay in cash at the designated bank branches throughout India.
Your visa is non-refundable and once paid you will get a confirmation or receipt that will allow you to schedule your interview at the U.S. Consulate or Embassy. But make sure that you book your Visa interview within a year of the Visa Payment.

Please note that your US Visitor Visa fee will vary depending on the type of US visa you are applying for:

Visa Type Fee (INR) Fee (USD)
Visitor Visa (B2 Visa / Tourist Visa) Rs. 11,040 (approx.) USD160

US Visitor Visa for Indians - FAQs 

Q1. How long does it take to complete the US Visitor Visa application?

Ans: It takes around 15 to 30 minutes to fill the application for US Visitor Visa for Indians.

Q2. What is a US Visitor Visa?

Ans: USA Visitor Visa is a tourist visa that allows you to travel to the United States of America. It is also called as the B-1 and B2 Visa. It is a type of non-immigrant visa that is issued to people travelling to the US for tourism, pleasure, or medical treatment.

Q3. Is it necessary to fill all the details on the DS-160 form?

Ans: It is mandatory to fill all the fields on the DS-160 form. If some field doesn’t apply to you, you can opt for 'Does Not Apply'. Your application will not be submitted if any field in the form is left blank. If left blank, it will display an error message and you will need to complete the field before submitting the application. In case you do not answer the questions that apply, your application form will be rejected.

Q4. What document do I need to provide if I need to visit a relative?

Ans: Bring photocopies of your relative's proof of status (e.g. Green Card, naturalization certificate, valid visa, etc.

Q5. Who can apply for a visitor visa to the USA?

Ans: You would need to apply for the US Visitor Visa if you are visiting for tourism, business, or medical purposes.

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