How To Apply For B-1 Visa

By Tiara

A business traveller’s visa is usually a B-2 tourist visa, which requires only that you have enough money to return home if your trip does not work out. A more professional version of this is often referred to as a Business Traveler VISA or BTV. This type of visa allows you to enter and leave the country for shorter amounts of time than a B-2 visa, but still, gives you access to all of the things a tourist would enjoy while in the United States.

Business travellers are typically hired by an organization to promote sales through promotional activities such as attending events or giving presentations. Therefore, most people who get a B-1 visa are engaged in marketing strategies so their employer can spread the word about their product or service. Others may be given special permission to visit a conference taking place within our borders to contribute to its success.

While both types of visas allow you to spend up to 90 days in America, some require you to exit and reenter the country when travelling back home. This is important to know before you apply! The length of stay and timing requirements depending on what kind of visa you receive. Make sure to check out the regulations directly from the federal government before applying.

Prepare your application

how to apply for b-1 visa

Before you even begin applying for a visa, you have to make sure that you are prepared! This means making sure that everything is ready and that you have all of your documents organized and in order.

Make sure to check out our tips here on how to organize all of your documents. Once this is done, you can proceed with reviewing applications and gathering evidence to back up your case.

Remember, when gathering supporting documents it should be from early on as possible! The more time before the interview date you have, the better because you will have more chances to find them!

Applications take around two weeks to process so try to be well-organized one week ahead of schedule.

Find a sponsor

how to apply for b-1 visa

Finding an appropriate employer that can help you apply for your visa is the next step in applying for the B-1 tourist visa. They must be willing to play a significant role in helping you travel while also paying adequate taxes.

Most major airports have at least one hotel or restaurant that offers visa services. Since they are already providing service to other travellers, it seems logical that they would offer similar services to others travelling from their country.

By being familiar with the process of obtaining a visa, these businesses develop a habit of coming back so that they do not need to spend time educating people about visas. By offering visa services, they gain exposure which helps them promote their business.

This is not only good for their reputation but also means more money for them if many people use their services. So whether through advertising or word of mouth, there are always opportunities to find helpful resources.

Intermediaries such as professional tour operators or airlines that are popular in the area may also know of trustworthy sources for visa services.

Apply for the visa

After you are ready, you can begin applying for your B-1 tourist visa. There are several ways to apply depending on where you live and how much-advanced preparation you have done.

Some countries require that you apply in person at an embassy or consulate. In others, you can apply online via their website. Some even allow you to do both!

Most countries only accept applications from residents of the country so if you will not be staying in America as a resident, then you must apply through an American Embassy or Consulate. This way, you know your documents are being reviewed by citizens who are trained in immigration law and procedures.

Your passport should be valid for at least six months after your stay in the United States. Many people choose to extend it because there is a lot that happens during this time frame (and some places still ask about previous visits). We recommend just doing it unless you have a reason why it does not matter. Make sure to check out our article: What To Do If Your Passport Runs Out.

Provide your passport and visa to your sponsor

how to apply for b-1 visa

Now that you have found someone who can help with your business, it is time to start looking into how to apply for a B-1 visa! As mentioned before, finding an appropriate employer to act as a sponsoring organization or “buddy” of yours will play a big part in ensuring that your trip goes smoothly.

Make sure to do some research on potential employers by searching through their website and social media pages, talking to current employees, and reading reviews. You want to make sure that this person has a good reputation and will take care of you while you are there!

After you have found your perfect match, talk to them about why they would be a great fit to host you during your stay. They should at least mention what kind of business they run and if they are eligible to work in the country you will be visiting.

Get your visa before you leave for the country you will be visiting

how to apply for b-1 visa

After confirming that you have enough money to stay in the destination for your normal length of time and that you have appropriate documentation to prove this, you can now apply for a business visitor (B-1) visa.

This type of visa is only good for 90 days and you must use it within that period. You do not need to spend any significant amount of time outside of the country to enjoy yourself so long as you are staying at a reasonable cost.

After your visa has been accepted, you can then travel to the airport and check into a hotel or condo close by where your meeting takes place.

Know your embassy's address in case you want to send your passport

how to apply for b-1 visa

If you are looking to visit the United States as an educational student, then you need to know how to apply for a Student Visitor visa. This type of visa is known as a B-1 or F-1 visa and it allows you to enter America for up to one year to attend an accredited school.

You will have to show proof that you’ll be attending an academy full-time, along with confirmation that there is enough money to support yourself while studying. You also must confirm that you can return home at the end of the trip if necessary.

The process for applying for this visa starts some months before your departure so it’s worth getting into early! There are several ways to do this, so find out which ones work best for you.

Plan your trip accordingly

how to apply for b-1 visa

If you are already travelling, it is not too late to apply for the visa! You can do so at any U.S. Embassy or Consulate in Canada or anywhere else abroad where you will be staying.

It’s important to remember that even if you have a valid passport, you must re-enter the United States within one year of the initial entry with this visa. This means that you cannot visit America every few months unless you have an extension!

Another thing to consider is whether or not you should include “return” on your I-94 forms while applying for the visa. Because part of what makes a tourist visa special is that you may stay in the country longer than just for vacation purposes. For example, you could live and work here for several years.

If you decide to remain in the US beyond the expiration date of your visa, certain conditions are depending on why you left and when you plan to return. Make sure to check out our article here for more information about working while on a nonimmigrant visa.

Visit the embassy when the visa is about to expire

how to apply for b-1 visa

It’s perfectly normal to feel anxious or nervous before you visit an unfamiliar place, but there are ways to handle your nerves.

You can be completely honest with yourself and what you expect from this trip, but also acknowledge that no one else will have the same experience. This could mean thinking of some things as trivial (for example, having fun by trying new foods) or important (finding connections with people you meet).

And if something happens that you aren’t expecting? You can always stay in the country or return home! No one has ever stayed in a foreign country because they wanted to leave.

So instead of feeling stressed out, use that stress to motivate you to do well while you're here. Plus, being more aware of how you respond to situations helps you control your emotions. If you start to get too worked up, take a break and try to relax before coming back.