Every year, millions of individuals join and exit the United States. It is a popular destination for tourism and immigration. However, you would most likely need a visa to enter the country if you are not a United States citizen.
How does the US visa system work? More precisely, your passport, a U.S. visa, is a stamp that you get on your travel document, ensuring that you can enter the United States. It does not necessarily mean that you can enter the U.S. with a U.S. visa since this is at the discretion of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the Inspectors of Customs and Borders Protection (CPB).
Read on to learn more about US Visa System. Here is the US visa system explained.
The US Visa System
In general, a resident of a foreign country who wishes to access the United States must first obtain a U.S. visa, which is placed on the traveler’s passport, a travel document provided by the country of nationality of the traveler.
Any foreign travelers may fly without a visa to the United States if they meet the visa-free fly criteria. This website’s Visa section is all about US Visa System for foreign nationals to travel to the U.S.
With a U.S. visa, you can go to the port of entry, airport, or land border crossing, and seek permission to enter the United States from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Customs and Border Protection (CBP) inspector. Although obtaining a visa does not guarantee entry to the United States, a consular officer is indicated in the U.S. For that particular reason, the Embassy or Consulate Abroad has decided that you are entitled to request admission. For a defined position and period, DHS / CBP inspectors, guardians of the country’s borders, are responsible for admitting travelers to the United States. When you are present in the United States, DHS also has responsibility for immigration matters. You can also opt for a US visa online appointment system.
U.S. immigration law determines the type of visa you must obtain and applies to your travel purpose. Two key types of US visa application system are available:
- Non-immigrant visas- For temporary travel to the United States.
- Immigrant visas- To remain permanently in the United States for travel.
The primary distinction between visas for non-immigrants and immigrants is the amount of time to remain in the U.S. by the visa holder. Non-immigrant visas are temporary, meaning they expire, and the holder of the visa must return immediately to their home country.
Otherwise known as Green Cards, immigrant visas are and are permanent. They can travel to the U.S. and stay there as long as they want without needing a deadline to return to their home country once the visa holder has an immigrant visa.
For academic and vocational purposes, there are F and M visas. You would have to get either F1 or M1 visas, depending on your school and your study field. There is a US visa point system.
The U.S. student visa categories are:
- Visa F1: Student visa
- Visa F2: Dependants of holders of F1 visas.
- M1: For vocational purposes
Owning a valid U.S. visa does not guarantee entry into the United States. Anyone who enters the country is responsible for border patrols at any U.S. point of entry.
You will first have to go through immigration and customs when you arrive in the United States, which will review your paperwork and history and decide whether to allow you admission to the United States. These officials can arrest and question you, and they have the right to prohibit you from entering the United States as well. They can even make plans to get you back to your country of origin.
There are different reasons why USCIS or the U.S. Embassy could reject your petition or US Visa System application. You may be disqualified, or you may have had a criminal record, so you may not be able to join the United States.
You have two choices if you do not get a visa: either appeal to the USCIS or the U.S. Embassy or apply for a new visa. As the U.S. Embassy would have a legitimate explanation as to why they rejected your visa and you may amend it when you reapply, it is generally given as an advise to apply for a new visa rather than appeal.
Learn more about the US visa appointment system. If you are issued a visa to the USA, you should verify if the information that fits the details in your passport and all the sample visa sections is right for you. You can contact the U.S. Embassy that has released it if it does not contain all the information.