How to Attend a Conference in USA
The US Department of State, Bureau of Consular Affairs, has provided a graph on their website, which shows that out of the total number of visas issued in 2016, 6,965,466 were B1, B1/B2 and B2 visas. To attend a conference in the United States, you need to enter the country as a business visitor and the visa required is the B-1.
About the B-1 Visa
- Cost – The B-1 visa cost includes an application fee of US$160, and an issuance fee, which varies from nation to nation.
- Validity – The validity of a B-1 visa can vary, depending on the applicant’s nationality. It ranges from one month for the Democratic Republic of Congo to 5 years for a Pakistani national and 10 years for Indians, Brazilians, Japanese, Malaysians, Chinese and more. Take a look at this map to know the visa validity according to your nationality.
- Duration of stay – The initial duration for a business visitor visa is 3 months, which can be extended later. The extension is subject to no violation of the conditions of admission.
Qualifying for a B-1 Visa
Your intentions for entering the United States under a B-1 visa should not be contradictory to the purpose of the visa. An applicant must demonstrate that:
- He or she is entering the US for a short business activity
- They plan to remain for a specific duration
- They have enough funds to finance their stay in the United States
- They have social and economic ties abroad
- They have residence outside America and other such ties that will ensure their return to their country
Steps for Obtaining a B-1 Visa
Photograph for Business Visa –
- The photograph should be digital and in JPEG format.
- It can be a minimum of 600 pixels by 600 pixels and a maximum of 1200 pixels by 1200 pixels.
- The image should be in colour, with 24 bits per pixel.
- The files size of the image should be less than or equal to 240 kilobyte.
See the complete photograph requirements for US business visa.
It’s a great idea to get Travel/Medical insurance when traveling to USA. As medical cost (even for the common cold) can run into hundreds of dollars in the US, it is recommended that you get good medical insurance, before your trip. Good thing is that if you buy it online before your trip, it may be cheaper. Compare & find a good plan here.
Business Visa Application Form –
- The B-1 visa application is to be applied for via Form DS-160.
- After filling the form, you will be given a 10-digit code. Print this page out. This will be required to set up a visa interview appointment.
Payment of the Visa Fee –
- Create a profile on the US Visa service website to keep track of you payment.
- You can pay electronically via net banking or in cash at the designated bank branches in your country.
- The payment is good for a year and you must book an interview appointment within a year.
If you study the graph mentioned in the beginning of this article, you will notice that the number of B-1 visas issued have grown continuously. The United States is accepting more and more business travelers each year, and you too can be one of them. Just follow the application guidelines and present yourself as a responsible business tourist, and you will be there for your conference in no time!