After you have selected the US visa that you want to apply for, you should check the requirements and also start gathering the documents that are required for that visa.
In this article, I will be emphasizing on the requirements for U.S visa.
What is a U.S. Visa?
A citizen of a foreign country who seeks to enter the United States generally must first obtain a U.S. visa, which is placed in the traveler’s passport, a travel document issued by the traveler’s country of citizenship.
Certain international travelers may be qualified to travel to the United States without a visa if they meet the requirements for visa-free travel.
The Visa section of this website is all about U.S. visas for foreign citizens to travel to the United States.
Note: U.S. citizens don’t need a U.S. visa for travel, but when planning travel abroad may need a visa issued by the embassy of the country they wish to visit.
In this situation, when planning to travel abroad, learn about visa requirements of the country, see country information in the International Travel Section of this website.
The first step you have to take in order to start your US visa application is to figure out under what kind of visa you are permitted to enter the United States.
After you have selected the US visa that you want to apply for, you should check the requirements and start gathering the documents that are required for that visa.
Standard US Visa Document Requirements
There are some documents that the embassy or consulate of the US requires from every applicant no matter what kind of visa they wish to obtain.
Be careful to have all these documents when you hand in your visa application.
The documents required for US visa application are the following:
- An original Nigerian passport that has two blank pages for visa and entry stamps and is valid for at least six months beyond your return date.
- Previous passports for travel history.
- Barcoded DS-160 form confirmation page.
- Appointment confirmation page.
- Two color photos that meet the US Visa photo requirements.
- Application fee payment receipt.
- Proof of funds i.e. bank statements, pay slips, proof of assets and investments, etc.
- Supporting documents such as invitation letters, letter of employment, provisional flight bookings and travel itinerary, etc.
How to Apply for a US Visa?
1. Photographs that meet the US Visa photo requirements should be obtained before beginning the application process. You will need to upload a digital photograph with your application.
2. Complete the DS-160 form and submit the visa application online through the US Department of State website. Print out the bar-coded confirmation page.
3. Pay the non-refundable processing fee online or over the counter at a bank. You will need to take the receipt with your interview.
4. Schedule an appointment online or through a Call Centre (234) 1 440 6218. You will need the following documents when making your appointment:
- Your passport number.
- Your fee payment receipt purchase date.
- The 10-digit barcode number from your DS-160 confirmation page.
5. Gather your documents and any supporting documents that may help your application.
6. Attend your US Visa Application appointment at the US Embassy in Abuja or US Consulate General in Lagos. You will need to bring the following documents with you to the interview:
- Your current and previous passports
- Appointment confirmation letter
- Barcoded DS-160 confirmation page
- Receipt of the visa application fee
- A color photograph that meets the photo requirements
7. If your visa is approved, your passport with the visa will be delivered to the pick-up location you specified when you scheduled your appointment or couriered to your chosen address.
Things you Need to do When Applying for a US visa
1. Travel for Medical Treatment
- If you are applying for a visa to enter the US for health and medical purposes, then the consular officer will require these extra documents from you:
- Medical Diagnosis from a local doctor explaining the reason you need treatment in the US, and why you can’t receive that in your home country.
- Letter from a medical facility in the US confirming they are capable of treating your ailment. The letter should include the costs of the procedures.
- Proof of means of subsistence to cover the expenses – like transportation, and also medical and living expenses.
2. Study Visas
If you are applying for a US student and exchange visa, then the consular officer will require from you to submit proof you have been admitted at a US educational institution.
This educational institution has to be under the Student Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP). You will also have to pay SEVIS I-901 fee aside of the normal visa fee and submit proof of payment during the interview.
3. Work Visas
Depending on the US work visa type you apply for, you might have to submit some of the following document:
- Proof you meet the qualifications (diplomas and certifications)
- Proof of professional degree (Bachelor, Master, Doctorate)
- Job offer by a US employer
- Resume or CV
- Letter from previous employers
- State License (if applicable)
- Proof that you have extraordinary abilities
- Additional Fees, etc.
This is a brief guide on how to apply for a U.S visa. I hope it helps.
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