Visa in the USA – is it so scary?

Perhaps the most replicable tourist "myth" associated with the design of a visa in the USA. It is only worth writing in the search engine phrase "how to get a visa in the USA", How ignorable Google or Yandex will issue several dozen pages with reference to the agencies involved "Training tourist for interview", "Selecting an optimal type of visa and package of documents" and "consulting services in paperwork". The potential applicant inspire the idea that without the help of a specialist is simply impossible to correctly fill out a questionnaire, collect the necessary package of documents and answer the questions of the Embassy visa department.

Is it really? Of course not! The process of registration of a visa in the United States, if approaching the case without unnecessary fuss and panic, absolutely simple.

Types of visas in the USA

First of all, you need to clearly determine the purpose of your trip to the USA. If the purpose of the visit is tourism, visiting friends or relatives, short-term business visit, you will need a category of category B (B, B-1, B1 / B2). And if the US airports are only transit points, you need to request a Category C visual, even if you do not intend to leave the airport. Visa-free transit through the United States territory is prohibited.

American Visa type in

What is allowed and what is prohibited by the winner of a visa category B

  • Travel around the country, attend friends and relatives,
  • Participate in professional, business, scientific or educational meetings and conferences,
  • enter into contracts, hold business meetings,
  • Set real estate issues,
  • undergo medical examination / treatment,
  • take part in sports, cultural events (for example, amateur performances) if participation in them is not paid,
  • Passing short-term training in courses without reception and degrees (for example, a two-day culinary master class during vacation).

Visas winners category B are not entitled to the following activities in the US

  • Work in the USA (on a permanent or temporary basis),
  • traineeship,
  • Learn (meant training in universities, colleges, advanced training courses),
  • engage in journalistic activities, as well as professional activities related to cinema, television, media.

How to fill a visa form for an American visa

After you have determined with the type of visa, you can start filling the visa application: the form of the DS-160 on the website of the Consular Center of Electronic State Department of the State Department of the United States.

The general rules for filling the visa questionnaire can be obtained on the website of the information resource of the US diplomatic mission in Russia.

Before starting a questionnaire, do not forget to choose a visa application location. In Russia, their four: 1 – Visa Department of the US Embassy in Moscow, 2 – Visa Department of the US Consulate General in St. Petersburg, 3 – Visa Department of the US Consulate General in Yekaterinburg, 4 – Visa Department of US Consulates in Vladivostok.

Each new statement is automatically assigned a unique number using which you can enter your personal account. He will also need to pay for an interview.

For filling up the questionnaire takes 20 minutes. As the application is filling out, it is advisable to save it by pressing the button "Save" At the bottom of each page. If necessary, if the application has not yet been sent, it can be corrected.

It is important to remember that the questionnaire is filled exclusively in English. In the form of an online questionnaire there is a brief translation of most items into Russian.

If some of the items do not apply to your case or you do not own this information, check the column in the graph "Does Not Apply".

Explanations on some points of the questionnaire

  • In the column, the purpose of the visit (PURPOSE OF TRIP TO US) will choose the item according to the requested visa. If you find it difficult to translate names, click the icon (!) or focus on the letters denoting the type of visa in brackets, after the name, for example "Temp.Business Pleasure Visitor (B)", Next, choose a specific goal of the trip – usually it’s Business&Tourism (B1 / B2).
  • Visa in the USA - is it so scary
  • Points "Estimated trips" and "duration of stay" do not require accuracy and matching tickets. If you still do not have accurate deadlines at the time of filing the application, write the approximate. From the point of view of the immigration service, it is absolutely normal, moreover, the applicant is not recommended to buy tickets until the visa is received!
  • In the questionnaires section "Travel Companions Information" Indicate persons who travel together with the applicant, for example, a spouse (a), children. In this case, a separate questionnaire on who rides with the applicant is not required to fill. But to apply for a visa All persons listed in the questionnaire must be one and the same day. Otherwise the application is filled with each separately.
  • In chapter "Present Work / Education / Training Information" (information about work / education / learning) indicate the place of work / applicant’s study, profession. In graf "Briefly Describe Your Duties" It is necessary to give a brief summary about professional activities and official duties (for example, a surgeon doctor, a teacher of English, a student of the Faculty of History, and T.NS.).
  • When filling out the section "SECURITY AND BACKGROUD" Choose items "No", Of course, provided that during previous trips to the United States, you did not have problems with the law and your last name in the database of interpole. Often, those who had problems with the law on the territory of the Russian Federation (including redeemed conviction with the departure of punishment or conditional) the question arises: "Is this circumstance to indicate in the visa questionnaire and can US consulate workers "punch" applicant on the basis of the Ministry of Internal Affairs?" In fact, the consulate workers do not have the opportunity and legitimate grounds to check the presence of consentias of foreign citizens in the territory of a foreign state. Therefore, it is better not to advertise this fact, otherwise the refusal of a visa will follow in 90% of cases.

After all statements are filled, it is necessary to attach a photo in electronic form in accordance with the instructions of the system, and then send the filled form by clicking the appropriate button. After that, the system will form a confirmation of filling out the form DS-160 with the photo of the applicant and the barcode, which contains basic information. This confirmation should be printed and take with you to the consulate.

But before that, do not forget to pay for the visa collection! Without payment, which can be made using a bank card or cash in Russian Post Offices, it is impossible to sign up for an interview. Consular fee for visas category B and C is $ 160.

Information on the rules of payment for collecting through post offices can be obtained on the website of the information resource of the information resource of the US diplomatic mission in Russia. Also on this site there is a direct link to pay for a collection with a bank card. Assign the date of interviews in the consulate also necessary through the website of the information resource of the diplomatic mission.

Interview in the visa department

  • Visa Executives are guided "Immigration and Citizenship Act", or rather, by section 214 (b), according to which each applicant, contacting the American visa category B1 / B2, is considered as a potential immigrant. During the interview, the consulate officer must make sure that there are no immigration intentions in the interviewee.
  • The applicant in turn should remember the rule: "My tongue is my enemy". The applicant must be ready to clearly answer all the questions of the employee of the visa department, as well as to confirm the purpose of his visit and its financial consistency, but not to give more information than this requires the situation, and not to say that the employee of the visa department can be interpreted wrong.

What to take with you to the consulate

Gathering for an interview, remember that with me the Consulate Building, you can only take a transparent folder with documents. Mobile Phones, Keys, Bags, Packages, Food, Water Bottles and T.NS. Pour forbidden. In the buildings of consulates there are no places for storing personal belongings.

To the US Embassy is prohibited from carrying unnecessary items

  • Acting passport ,
  • Confirmation of the filing of the electronic form DS 160 and payment payment
  • photo 5×5 on white or bright monophonic background, without corners, oval, face clearly in the center of the frame.
  • Old passport, if there are visas of Schengen countries, Canada, USA.
  • Help from the place of work, posting from a bank account,
  • Property Documents,
  • Invitation from business partners,
  • Letter from friends or relatives inviting the applicant to visit and a copy of their ID,
  • Hotel reservation (enough printouts from the Internet),
  • Approximate route or stay plan.

All these documents do not require notarization and translation into English. Invitations can be sent by email. As a rule, listed above "Additional" Documents An employee of the visa department does not require if it is satisfied by the applicant’s responses during the interview. However, it is desirable to have them with them – in case, if something in your answers a visa officer will seem doubtful.

What you need to take not to get a refusal during the interview

  • The purpose of the visit to the United States (must comply with the questioned in the questionnaire),
  • How much time is planning to spend in the USA,
  • Rod classes in the country of permanent residence,
  • Are there any relatives / friends in the USA,
  • Are there children / spouse (a).

Answer questions clearly, not nervous (excessive excitement gives a trembling voice, constant movement of hands, excessive mimic or "strained" smile). Do not show an excessive initiative, respond only on the merits, without unnecessary details.

If there are difficulties in the process of interviewing with an understanding of the English language, you must immediately say about it. In the consulate there are Russian-speaking employees who can translate questions and your answers. At the same time, the applicants whose goal is to study, be sure to speak English. In this case, ignorance of the language can be a reason for doubting the goal of the trip, and, therefore, for refusing visa.

Provide an employee of the consulate passport, a questionnaire, an old passport (if there are US visas, Great Britain, Schengen countries). Provide the remaining documents only if you are asked about this, in no case show the initiative yourself!

The most typical applicants’ errors

  • The place of a brief response to a given question the applicant tells a long history with an abundance of parts – from the point of view of a consulate officer, such a style of behavior is characteristic of people who have learned the definite text and trying "revive and personalize" his.
  • Applicant "confused in testimony" – For example, telling about the purpose of the visit, mixes different types: "I’m going to tourism to visit relatives, but I need a transit visa, because in three days I will fly to Colombia"
  • The applicant is too truthful. It is not worth telling a visa officer about the presence of dependents (if the applicant needs to contain someone, it is possible, it goes to the United States to work in order to correct the financial situation of the family), about the former convictions.
  • The applicant had previously problems with the law in the United States and hid it (in most cases, it is about illegal work or excess of stay in the USA) – in this case, the failure is guaranteed 100%, since any offenses are recorded in a common database to which there is access All US consular agencies.

Obtaining a passport with a visa

At the end of the interview, the employee of the consular department informs the applicant, approved his visa or not. In the case of a positive response, the passport with a finished visa will be delivered to the owner by the courier service Pony Express. Any address convenient to you can specify when recording for an interview. Also as a place of receipt, you can choose one of the Pony Express offices. Delivery time depends on the place of residence of the applicant: if this is the same city in which the US consulate is located, delivery is carried out within 2-3 days from the date of the interview. If the applicant lives in another city, the passport will be delivered in 7-9 days.

Visa duration and re-appeal to the US visa

The validity period of the visas category is 3 years. At the same time, the visa owner can enter the US even on the last day of its action. The specific date of stay in the country is determined by an immigration officer when passing by a foreigner of border control. As a rule, the allowed stay is 3 or 6 months.

  • The applicant has previously passed the fingerprints in the US consulate;
  • From the moment of expiration of the previous visa, no more than 47 months passed – for visas of categories B1 / B2 (tourist), I (visa for journalists), or C1 / D (visas for crew members). For visas of other categories, no more than 11 months must pass;
  • The applicant claims a visa of the same category that was previously issued;
  • There is no mark on the previous visa "Clearance Received";
  • The application is submitted to US consulates in Russia.

To obtain a new visa, the applicant must fill out a DS-160 questionnaire and pay for the visa collection. The fee is paid in the same way as in the case when the interview is required. The following should be followed by the instructions set out on the website of the information resource of the US diplomatic mission in Russia regarding submission of an application without interviewing. The package of documents must be brought to the Pony Express office, which in turn will deliver them to the consulate. For applicants requested a category B visa, it is enough to provide a passport with the previous US visa, confirmation of the DS-160 form and the photo of the specified sample. Optionally, you can provide documents confirming the purpose of the trip, for example, a hotel reservation or a letter from relatives. Consideration of such applications and delivery of a passport with a finished visa takes us as a rule, about 7-10 days.

Failure to American Visa

If you clearly follow the instructions given above regarding the preparation of the application and behavior in the consulate, in most cases the desired American visa will be in your passport.

However, if the consulate officer issued a negative verdict, the applicant has the right to re-submit documents for a visa at any time, even the day after the interview. At the same time, it is necessary to carefully analyze the reason for the refusal, to collect additional evidence of the purpose of the visit in accordance with the type of visa, and then fill out the questionnaire and pay the collection.

It makes no sense to file statements re-only in cases where the applicant has previously worked illegally or committed a serious offense in the US.

Consulate officer is obliged to suspect the tourist immigration intentions

Detailed instructions on how to collect a package of documents, it is correct to be photographed and submit a statement, read in the material "Visas in the USA".

Reviews and advice of tourists who have already had experience in obtaining a visa in the United States, published in the section "Personal experience".

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