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May 21, 2007
How to get a US Visa
- Maria Theresa S. Samante Email this article

Visa is one of the very important requirements in entering the United States. However, having a US visa does not automatically permit you to enter the country. Holding a visa means that U.S. consular officer at an American embassy or consulate has reviewed your application and you are eligible to enter the country for a certain purpose.


A US visa has two categories; immigrant and non-immigrant visa. People who want to live permanently in US are required to secure immigrant visa, while those who want to stay in US temporarily, for tourism, medical treatment, business, temporary work or study should have non-immigrant visa.


Securing a US visa

Applying for a visa would take you about several weeks or longer since there are lots of processes you need to undergo with; filing of application, interviews, name checking, etc. Here are some basic steps that would be helpful in applying US visa.


  1. Make an appointment to visit the US Embassy, through phone call, email or in person. Waiting for appointments may take you long, so make sure that you will ask for an appointment as soon as you know youíre going to travel in US.

  1. Ask the fees you need to pay and how to pay for it. Remember, fees are non refundable and must be paid before the appointment.

  1. Prepare all the necessary documents like; passport, application forms, documents to support the application detailing the employment, reason for travel and financial status.

  1. Submit your application together with the documents mentioned above. The process includes interview and collection and cross-checking of names in a highly sophisticated inter-agency database. The US Embassy will then review your application. If your name or a close variation indicates security concerns, the process will be delayed. Additional steps will vary from requests for additional interviews and information to official registration and fingerprinting. Find, thus reviewing of application may take several weeks.

  1. If you are a student applying for a visa to study in the U.S., talk to the U.S. academic institution or exchange program sponsoring you to obtain all the forms you will need to present with your application. You may be informed by the consular office before leaving your country if you will be subject to special clearance procedures. Some travelers may be directed to private workstations in the arrivals hall, where special registration, photos and electronic (ink-less) fingerprints will be taken. Additional interviews and verification processes will also be conducted.

For more information about visa application please visit  

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