How To Apply For USA Visa

Generally, a citizen of a foreign country who wishesto enter the United States must first obtain a visa, either a nonimmigrant visa for temporary stay or an immigrant visa for permanent residence. Citizens of qualified countries may be also able to visit the U.S. without a visa under the Visa Waiver Program. If you do not qualify for the Visa Waiver Program or are traveling to study, work, or participate in an exchange program, you must apply for a nonimmigrant visa.

Applicants for U.S. visas are required to appear in person for a visa interview at the U.S. Embassy/Consulate. You must schedule an appointment for that interview, either online using this website or through the call center.

Supporting Documents

To schedule a nonimmigrant visa appointment, you must have the following information and documents available:

  • A passport valid for travel to the United States with a validity date at least six months beyond your intended period of stay in the United States (unless country-specific agreements provide exemptions). If more than one person is included in your passport, each person desiring a visa must submit an application.
  • Your visa application (MRV) fee payment receipt
  • Your DS-160 confirmation page
  • Your e-mail address
  • If applicable, required documents based on visa class (such as a petition approval for petition-based visas; more information about visa types and information about each can be found ).

Restrictions to Changing Appointments

Please be reminded that even though nonimmigrant visa fees are valid for one calendar year, options to schedule an appointment are limited. The U.S. Embassy in Manila schedules hundreds of thousands of nonimmigrant visa appointments each year and must accommodate requests both for new appointments and for those applicants who need to reschedule their appointments for whatever reason. Applicants are only allowed to reschedule three times (not including the initial appointment) without penalty. If the third rescheduling attempt is canceled, an applicant will only be allowed to reschedule a new date after a waiting period of 90 days. Please plan your visa application accordingly to avoid problems securing an interview appointment.

Out-of-District Applicants

Wait times for a visa appointment may be lower at neighboring embassies or consulates, or those to which it is easy for you to travel. Please check wait times at those embassies or consulates here before paying your visa fee, as you may be able to find an appointment sooner at another location. You may apply for a nonimmigrant visa in any country where you are present; you do not need to be a citizen or resident. However, no matter where you apply you must demonstrate that you meet all requirements specific to the visa you are trying to obtain, including demonstrating sufficient ties outside of the United States.

Please be aware that:

  • You must pay the nonimmigrant visa application fee in the country where you apply.

  • You may not be able to bring an interpreter if you do not speak English or the local language where you are applying.

  • If your visa class requires the submission of documents, you may be asked to provide certified translations into English or the local language.

  • There is no guarantee that a visa will be issued. If refused, there is no refund of the application fee.

  • Following your visa appointment, your application will be either issued or refused. If you do not establish eligibility for a visa, the consular officer may determine that the applicant should undergo further administrative processing to help establish your eligibility. There is no guarantee of the length of time it will take to complete that processing and return your passport.

  • Once submitted, the nonimmigrant visa application and the application fee cannot be transferred to another embassy or consulate.

  • Many embassies and consulates prioritize appointments for citizens and legal residents of the country in which they are located. There may be a longer appointment wait time for non-residents.

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