- During the summer (rainy season), the Consular Section receives a higher number of applications and wait times for interview appointments grow longer. Please apply for a visa well in advance of your date of travel.
- We cannot guarantee that you will be issued a visa. Do not make final travel plans or buy tickets until you have a visa.
- The time between visa issuance and expiration date is called visa validity. The validity is the length of time you are permitted to travel to a port-of-entry in the U.S. The visa expiration date shown on your visa does not reflect how long you are authorized to stay within the United States. Entry and the length of authorized stay within the United States are determined by the Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Officer at the port-of-entry each time you travel. For more information on visa expiration please click here.
- Unless canceled or revoked, a visa is valid until its expiration date. Therefore, a valid U.S. visa in an expired passport is still valid. If you have a valid visa in your expired passport, do not remove it from your expired passport. You may use your valid visa in your expired passport along with a new valid passport for travel and admission to the United States.
- For information about employment, review Students and Employmentand Form I-765 Work Authorization Instructions on the USCIS website.
- Students who are outside the United States, and who have not been attending classes for five (5) months or more, should apply for a new student visa to reenter the United States.
- Spouse and children
- Your spouse and unmarried, minor children who intend to reside with you during your study may apply for F-2 or M-2 visas. Although SEVIS fee payment is not required, your school must issue them an individual Form I-20, which is required to apply for their visas. You must provide a copy of your F-1 or M-1 visa and provide proof of relationship.
- Your minor children are permitted to attend school in the United States while accompanying you.
When you agree to participate in an Exchange Visitor Program and your program falls under certain conditions, you will be subject to the two-year home-country physical presence (foreign residence) requirement. This means you will be required to return to your home country for two years at the end of your exchange visitor program before you can do any of the following:
- Change statuswhile in the United States to the nonimmigrant categories of temporary worker (H) or intracompany transferee (L);
- Adjust statuswhile in the United States to immigrant visa/lawful permanent resident status (LPR);
- Receive an immigrant visa at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate; or
- Receive a temporary worker (H), intracompany transferee (L), or fiancé (K) visa at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate.
- For information about employment, review Exchange Visitorsand Employment Authorization on the USCIS website.
- Spouse and children
- Your spouse and unmarried, minor children may be able to apply for J-2 visas to accompany or join you at a later date to reside with you during your J program, if permitted on your exchange program category. While SEVIS fee payment is not required, your sponsor must issue them separate DS-2019 Forms, which are required when they apply for their visas, along with a copy of the primary visa holder’s J-1 visa and proof of relationship.
- Your minor children are permitted to attend school while in the United States on J-2 visas and are not required to obtain student (F) visas.