A tourist visa for the United States, also known as the “B” visa, falls under the category of non-immigrant visas. This is issued by the US to foreign citizens who wish to enter the country for a temporary period.
Under the B category of visas, there are two broad subcategories, the B1(for business purposes) and B2 (for medical treatment or pleasure). So, if you are looking to visit the US for a family vacation or seek medical help, read on to know about the complete process of applying for a B2 tourist visa.
Step #1: Fill the Online Form
The first step is to fill the DS 160 form, which is the online form to apply for non-immigrant visas. Make sure to carefully read all the guidelines before filling the form. All the information entered should be accurate, since you cannot make changes after form submission.
Step #2: Pay the Application Fee
After successful completion of the DS 160 form, you are required to pay $160, in Indian rupees, to schedule your visa appointment. Payment can be made either online or in cash at any Axis Bank or CITI Bank branch.
Don’t forget to get insurance.
It is recommended that you get travel insurance when traveling to USA, as medical expense (even for common flu) can run into hundreds of dollars! Here are some of the best insurance for US visitors.
Note: The application fee is nonrefundable. If you face any payment related errors, do not pay the fee a second time. Drop an email at the support center for further investigation.
Step #3: Book Your Visa Appointment
Now, you will need to go online again, login to your profile and on the dashboard, click on Schedule Appointment in the menu on the left. The scheduling process will get started. You need to schedule two appointments, one for the interview at the US Embassy or Consulate, and the other for the Visa Application Center (VAC).
Firstly, you must schedule your appointment at a Visa Application Center for your biometric readings and to submit your photo. Keep in mind that the appointment at the Visa Application Center must be scheduled at least one day before the visa interview at the embassy.
Secondly, schedule your interview appointment at the embassy. There are 3 important things you will need for this:
- Your passport number
- Date of payment of application fee
- Ten-digit barcode number you received on the DS 160 confirmation page
Step #4: Visit the VAC and Embassy with Proper Documents
For your first appointment, at the Visa Application Center, you are required to bring:
- A passport that is valid for travelling to the US, with validity of at least 6 months after the period of scheduled stay.
- The DS 160 confirmation page.
- The appointment confirmation page.
- One photo, according to the United States visa specifications.
For you’re the appointment at the Embassy for the visa interview, you are required to bring:
- A hard copy of the appointment letter.
- The DS-160 confirmation page.
- Your current passport and all old ones (if any).
- Additional documents related to the visa type.
The process of applying for a B2 visa is the same as that for the B1 visa. In addition, make sure you arrive on time for your visa interview and answer all questions honestly and confidently.