B-2 - Visitor for Pleasure
The visitor for pleasure (tourist) visa allows foreign visitors to enter the United States for a temporary visit for pleasure or tourism purposes. The visa may be issued in either single entry or multiple entry formats. The visa may also be issued for a limited time frame or on an indefinite basis.
No Sponsor Required
Any foreign person may file an application for a tourist visa without the necessity of a United States sponsor.
Ease of Application
The application itself is filed directly at the United States consulate abroad and typically a decision is made on an immediate or short term basis.
Change of Status
While present in the United States, should the visitor's intentions change as a result of post-admission circumstances, it is possible to seek a change of status to other non-immigrant classifications.
The visa is issued by placement within a valid passport.
The foreign national must satisfy the consular officer that he will return abroad upon the completion of his temporary visit for pleasure and will not engage in unauthorized employment in the United States.
The visa will only be issued to applicants who can demonstrate the financial resources that would accommodate round trip travel to and from the United States as well as payment of all living expenses during the temporary visit.
The B-2 visa allows the temporary visitor to enter the United States for an initial stay of no more than six months.
The B-2 visitor is expected to maintain his residence abroad. Many Border Patrol agents interpret this to mean that the visitor should, over the long course, average no more than six months per year in the United States. While it is possible to obtain a six month extension, and then depart the country and re-apply for admission immediately, the inspecting Immigration officer may deny admission for failure to maintain sufficient presence abroad.
No employment is authorized in the United States while present on a B-2 visitor's visa.
Family Not Included
Each family member must apply for and receive his own B-2 visa in order to enter the United States.