Everybody knows the U.S. is the best place to engage in business. And the best way to temporarily visit the U.S. to deal with your business venture is under B-1 status. This merit-based visa allows access to a variety of business and economic ventures in the U.S. Individuals eligible for this visa range from board members and athletes to musicians, entertainers and servants of non-immigrants.
You may apply for a B-1 visa at the American Embassy or Consulate in your region or nation. We recommend you do not apply at a U.S. Consular Office outside of your permanent residence, since that process is more difficult. You can apply at the Consular Office of the Embassy or Consulate General nearest your residence, or use one of the following options:
- Authorized travel agencies: Travel agencies approved by the U.S. Embassy in your region or nation may submit visa applications for you.
- The VIP Business Program: Your enterprise can register with the VIP Business Program if it repeatedly sends employees to the U.S. Your appearance may be waived, if your application was submitted by an approved business.
- By drop box: Individuals who travel extensively, or have recently received a validated visa, may use the drop box in the embassy or consulate. Applications at drop boxes should be completed before traveling.
You may still need to apply in person. Further, there may be delays in this process due to cross-checking information at the Washington, D.C. database.
To apply for a B-1 Visa, you must provide the following documents:
- A filled-in visa application Form OF-156. Separate applications for each person are required.
- A passport, valid for travel to the United States for at least six months longer than your intended visit.
- Two recent photographs 1 & 1/2 inches square (37mm x 37mm) of each applicant, with the entire face visible. The picture should be taken before a light background and without head covering.
You may also be asked to provide the following documents:
- Evidence backing up the purpose of your trip. You may show a letter sent by the company explaining the purpose and length of the trip.
- Specific and realistic plans describing why you wish to visit the U.S. A copy of a tour itinerary is usually acceptable.
- Information about the company, like a company brochure or catalog.
- Demonstration of non-immigrant intent. A good example of this is round-trip air tickets.
- A letter which states that either the firm intends to pay for all cost, or that you have other funds for this trip.