Things to Know About the USA Visa

A trip to the United States is a dream for many people. Many fulfill this dream and travel at least once in their lives as tourists. Travelers from Germany, Austria, and Switzerland who visit the United States for a short time do not necessarily need a visa. In this situation, ESTA is sufficient. This allows you to spend a maximum of 90 days in the United States. Other travelers who want to stay in the United States for a long time, or have employment there, still need a visa. This article will give you details of thetype of visa required for a visit to United States, application process, costs and amount of fees required for specific visa applications, reasons which can make your visa rejected among other details. It will help you when you are planning your first or next visit to the United States.

ESTA and Visa

ESTA is a digital entry permit to the United States. An ESTA application is only approved if you do not have more than 90 days in the United States, and this is mainly for business negotiations or supplier or customer visits.

A special visa is required if you want to stay in the country for more than 90 days, and this should not be for business or tourist visits. A visa is also necessary if you have a regular job there, or if you want to travel there by private plane or ship. Also, visas are required for persons of specific nationalities. However, a visa is not a guarantee that entry will also be granted.

Types of Visas

In the case of visas, a distinction is made between different categories. First and foremost, there are immigration and non-immigration visas. Non-immigrant visas are valid for a temporary stay in the United States and are given to those who want to visit the country for holiday purposes, study, or business trips. If you wish to move to the United States, you need your visa. This is only awarded according to strict criteria. This requires a health check, and you have to invest in a company in the United States or have a fixed employment relationship there. It is also possible to obtain this visa by marriage. Also, a so-called "green card lottery" is being carried out, in which an immigration visa can be won.

Non-immigrant Visas for the United States

In most cases, you will apply for a non-immigrant visa for the United States. But also for this, there are several options. A so-called B1 visa is required when you have a business trip to the United States. A B2 visa is given to tourists or people who visit their relatives in the United States. It is also applicable to those who want to participate in a musical or cultural event. These visas are valid for a maximum of 180 days. Also, there is a combination of both visas. However, you are not allowed to work in the United States with these visas, nor are you allowed to pay for activities. The exercise of voluntary activities is also not permitted.

Study and Work in the States

If you want to study or work in the United States, you also need a visa. There are eight different types of visas.

Special Visas

Also, there are twelve other types of visas that are tailored only to specific entry purposes:

The United States Visa Application

To apply for a visa to the United States, certain documents and forms are required. The visa application should be submitted several weeks before the United States trip. However, an ESTA application for short trips to the United States takes much less time and can be done electronically in a few minutes. For the visa application, you need two current photographs, a valid passport, proof of the financing of the Aufenthalt in the United States, and detailed information on the personal plans required during the United States stay. However, all questions during your visa application and interview must be answered conscientiously and truthfully.

Certain forms are available for the visa application. This includes the DS-160 form. The DS-160 form can be filled in online. Also, with the DS-160, all questions must, of course, be answered truthfully and carefully, as a later correction is no longer possible.

United States Visa Application

A visa to the U can be applied either online or directly at the consulates. In Germany, the office is located in Berlin, Düsseldorf, Frankfurt am Main, Hamburg, Leipzig, and Munich. In Austria, the United States embassy is situated in Vienna. In Switzerland, the consulship is in Zurich. Anyone who visits the embassy must enter the building before being subjected to an extensive security check. In the embassies, the interview for the application for the visa takes place after you submit your application.

The procedure for applying for a visa is usually carried out in six steps. First, you choose the appropriate visa category then fill out the DS-160 form. A fee must be paid for the application. The amount of this requirement depends on the type of visa for which it was applied. Then you are asked to make an appointment for the interview, for which you must provide the passport number and the DS-160 number. If everything is alright, the visa will be sent to the postal address for you to collect and then can start the trip to the United States.

Requirements for a Visa

To apply for a visa, several conditions must be fulfilled. Depending on the type of visa, these are different in individual points.

Visa Costs

The costs may vary depending on the type of visa applied for. However, payment of the fee is a prerequisite for receiving an interview appointment. Besides, the charge is non-refundable and will, therefore, not refunded in the event of an aborted application. The fees for each visa have been listed in staggered form since 2010 and are expressed in dollars. However, the fee can be paid in the local currency according to the current exchange rates. Visas for business travelers, tourists, an F-visa for students, permits for media representatives, and participants in exchange programs, as well as M-Visa, currently cost 160 United States dollars. An O-visa or a P-visa costs 190 United States dollars. Whoever applications for a K-visa for fiancée is 265 United States dollars. Specialized professionals and participants at in-house exchange programs pay 190 United States dollars for this. Trade travelers who need an e-visa must reckon with 205 United States dollars fee.

Other Fees

Also, specific visa applications incur additional fees. When applying for an L-Blanket visa, for example, the so-called Fraud Prevention and Detection fee of 500 United States dollars is paid. The Sevis fee is to be paid when applying for F, J or M visas and differs depending on the type of visa. When applying for an immigration visa, USCIS fees are also subject to varying amounts of pay. USCIS is the United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

Accepted Payment Methods

There are several ways to pay the fee. The online bank transfer, the payment by debit or credit card, instant transfer, and cash deposit with any bank. The payment by credit card or debit card is required in Germany and Austria, but in Switzerland, it is not possible. The choice of the selected deposit method also influences the speed with which one can then receive an appointment for the necessary interview at the consulate. If you use a debit card, you will receive a corresponding date. The same applies to payment by immediate transfer. Who pays the fee with the help of an online bank transfer and who the cut-off deadline at 3 p.m. can be completed with the appointment on the next working day from 1 p.m. This also applies to cash deposits made at a bank. The payment document, which is always marked with a reference number, has a validity of one year. Within this time, the interview date should also take place.

The Immigration Visa

The application for an immigration visa, on the other hand, is much more extensive. An immigration visa, also known as green card, gives the traveler the right to live and work in the USA permanently. However, this green card is only issued according to stringent guidelines. Immigration to the United States is distinguished based on the job, family reunification, and the Green Card Lottery. However, the immigration visa cannot be applied for in a consulate, but can only be applied for in the case of United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

In many cases, however, the process for the application formalities takes several years. If you want to work permanently in the United States, you must have relatively high qualifications. Family reunification requires relatives in the United States or a citizen. In the lottery carried out every year, you can win a green card. This card is also valid for life. The prerequisites for this, however, are a certain level of education as well as the appropriate country of birth.

Requirements for an Immigration Visa

Ground, before applying for an immigration visa, a petition must be submitted by the United States Immigration Department to be approved. A relative must submit the request in the United States or an employer in the United States.

After that, an objection is to be paid in the amount of united States 220 dollars. Before granting an immigration visa, you must always take a thorough undergoing a health examination. This examination can only be carried out by a specialist who has been embassy has been authorized. Then again, it is necessary to carry out an interview.

Usability of Entry Documents

A visa or ESTA is also valid for multiple entries to the United States. In the case of an ESTA license, for more than two years, several times for up to three months to enter the USA. However, for the entire duration of stay in the country, the possession of an electronic passport must be a prerequisite. These passports have their chip on which the most important personal data is stored. If you are in the United States without a visa, you also need a valid return ticket. Neither ESTA nor an entry visa guarantees entry to the United States. This depends primarily on customs officials. They can also conduct an interview with the arrivals on arrival. In doing so, they must answer questions about the motives for their journey. Besides, the authorities may carry out investigations into explosives, weapons, and drugs.

Rejection of a Visa Application

In some cases, a visa application may be rejected by the competent authorities or the consulate. This is usually the case where the applicant does not meet certain conditions. The most common reasons for refusal are incomplete or incorrect information in the application, which application for a visa unsuitable for residence, lack of financial resources to stay, or personal backgrounds, such as criminal offenses or membership in a terrorist organization. In addition, an application may also be rejected if you have been already expelled from the United States or worked there illegally. A Nicht-Einwanderungsvisa may also be refused if the return intention of the traveler is not clearly expressed. This can be if you only booked an out-flight, but no return flight has.

If an application is rejected for any reason, an informal letter will be sent with reference to the clause that prevents entry. The refusal will result in an entry ban and exclusion from ESTA.

What To Do if the Visa is Rejected?

In this case, the question arises as to what resources are available in order to be able to enter the United States. If the consular officer rejects the request during the interview, it is possible to ask the reason for the ablation politely. If the reasons for the refusal can be corrected on the part of the applicant, a new application can be submitted later. However, you have to go through the entire application process and the costs again.

A further possibility is offered by the so-called waiver application. This exempts the applicant from some grounds for exclusion but is not for all reasons applicable. However, the refusal of a visa takes place only in rare cases and here usually from formal en Reasons. Therefore, an application should be prepared thoroughly and conscientiously in order to avoid unpleasant surprises.

The Lifetime Visa

The lifetime visa for a stay in the United States of America has been granted once. However, this visa is no longer accepted. Since 1 April 2004, entry is no longer possible with the help of this previously issued permit. Anyone wishing to enter with this visa will not be referred to the country by the customs authorities. If you are facing this problem, however, you can obtain an ESTA approval. This currently costs 29 United States dollars, and you get it within a few days.


Before you enter the United States, you should plan your trip. In the case of the visa application, the authorities will also ask specific questions about the planned stay provided. These can then be answered quickly and safely. Besides, you should bring all the necessary documents for the interview. Missing urkunden and documents can delay or even nullify the application. It should also be possible to describe the financial situation in an entirely plausible way. Essential for this is bank statements or a corresponding proof of income. For employees, the documents of the company for which one works in the States also represent an indispensable prerequisite.

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