The U.S. B1 Business Visa: A Complete Guide for 2020

B1 Visa is a temporary, non-immigrant visa, allowing the holder to travel to the US for business and tourism purposes. Read on to learn more.

What is B1 Visa USA?

A B1 visa is a non-immigrant temporary resident visa granted to candidates aspiring to visit the United States for business purposes like:

  • Consult with business associates
  • Attend a scientific, educational, professional, or business convention or conference
  • Settle an estate
  • Negotiate a contract
  • Participating in short-term training
  • Transiting through the United States (conditional)
  • Deadheading (for air crewmen)

The major benefit of a B1 visa is that you (as a businessperson) can develop business associations with the US companies and visit Canada as and when it is necessary for your business. There is no cap to apply for this visa nor there is any rule as to how many times this visa is to be applied each year.

Eligibility to Apply for a B1 Visa

To Apply for a B1 Visa, you must be a business traveler. So, as a B1 visa applicant, 

  • Your main objective for entering the U.S. is to be involved in legitimate business practices.
  • You do not intend to settle in the U.S. In other words, you will only be staying for a certain period of time.
  • You possess sufficient funds for covering your travel, accommodation, and business expenses while you’re in the U.S.
  • You have a residence outside of the U.S. that you do not wish to abandon. Also, you do not intend to abandon other bonding ties that you have with your native country.
  • You have no other restrictions imposed on you for entering the U.S.

What are the Documents Required for Confirmation of the B1 Visa?

Every applicant aged between 14 and 79 is required to attend an interview at the U.S. embassy. You have to schedule an interview after you have completed the online application. To get your B1 visa approved, you will need the following documents (in their most authentic and trusted format) during your interview.

  • Form DS-160, confirmation page, and bar code
  • Your valid passport
  • The social media accounts you use currently
  • Interview confirmation letter
  • Valid passport
  • Form DS-160 confirmation page
  • Identity documents
  • Proof of income and funds
  • Visa application fee receipt
  • Visa interview appointment letter
  • Photos which comply with U.S. visa photo guidelines
  • A letter detailing the purpose of your visit
  • Bank statements
  • Documents detailing ties to your native country (properties, job contracts, lease, bonds)
  • Criminal or background check records
  • Documents detailing prior visits to the U.S. (if you have been to the U.S. before)
  • Payslips for the last three months (if you are employed)
  • A letter from your employer detailing the visit
  • Business card (if any)
  • Company’s financial documents (like financial records, tax papers, advertisement of the company, source of funds, etc.)

Similarly, if you want to visit the States to attend professional seminars, conferences, or any other related event, you must also submit the invitation letter, or any document related to the event (like a printed brochure, online/offline printed to prove your registration in the specified event).

How to Apply for B1 Visa from India?

The process to apply for a B1 Visa from India is simple and can be completed in a quick time, provided that you submit all documents within the earliest possible time.

  1. Fill Form DS-160
  2. Pay Visa Fees
  3. Book Visa Interview
  4. Arrange Required Documents
  5. Attend Interview and Submit Documents

DS-160 is a fully integrated online application created for the ease of applying for a non-immigrant visa. After the details are filled, this form will be submitted electronically to the Department of State.

How Much Does a B1 Visa cost?

You will be asked to pay a visa fee of $160. If you are hiring a US B-1 visa consultant in India to help you with the process, the service fee of the visa agent may be included.

B1 Business Visa Processing Time

The USCIS for processing your B1 visa application depends on the relationship your country has with the U.S. and seasonal workload. But you will be notified for every stage of the process via email.

How can Kansas Help you?

Kansas Overseas Careers is the best immigration consultant in India. Don’t take our word for it, we have the numbers to prove it. Our success rate is 98.23 %.

We are the best immigration agents because,

  • We are an authorized Immigration agent based in India
  • Dedicated Case Officer: We offer personal assistance and a single point of contact between the company and you, throughout the process
  • Decade-long Expertise: We have an experienced team with a proven track of success
  • Guided documentation: Right from evaluation to Visa application and documentation, followed by post-landing services.
  • Highlighting opportunities: Highlighting high-potential opportunities across global industries
  • Helping you succeed: Be it providing you interview training, French/English courses or working samples for resumes, cover letters or assisting with application forms, medical or police clearance certificates - we will always be there for you. 

You can expect a one-stop solution for all your visa needs from profile evaluation, documentation, application drafting to post-visa services with Kansas.

Other FAQs:

How Long Is the B1 Visa Valid?

The B1 visa is initially valid for six months. But this can be extended.

B1 Visa Extension

To extend your B1 visa, you need to get a letter from your employer or the company with the reason for the extension and the time frame. 

When to apply for a B1 visa?

You can apply for the B1 Visa under the following circumstances:

  • When you are required to consult your business associates in the United States.
  • When you have to meet a company or business to negotiate a contract, or sign a deal.
  • When you have to participate in any short-term training program that is related to your business.
  • When you have to settle estates.
  • When you have to attend conferences, seminars, business events, professional meetings, etc.
  • When you have to visit the United States for your business research, planning, or development.

Besides these, you can apply for a B1 visa when you have to:

  • Solicit sales and investment in the US,
  • Interview or hire staff,
  • Represent a business (as speaker or lecturer),
  • Visit US factories or labs for your business purpose,
  • Shop for your business,
  • Attend board or annual meeting,
  • Perform services on behalf of a foreign national employer such as trainer,
  • In cases of litigating etc.

Is it Necessary to Hold a B1 Visa for Traveling to Canada?

No, it’s not. Although if you’re on a visit to the USA holding a B1 visa and wish to travel to Canada as well, you will need the necessary documents. Moreover, there will be a time limit on that.

But, a B1 visa is not essential for spending a vacation in Canada or migrating there. 

With a required Canadian visa, identity proofs and a valid passport, you can enter Canada and stay there for the agreed time.

What you must know about the US B1 visa

  • Business visa (B-1) is meant for business related purposes only. You can not get involved in study or work on a B1 visa.
  • Stay on B1 is given at the port of entry in the USA. Length of stay can be extended if you must apply for a visa extension. Such extensions are subject to approval .
  • You may not be liable to pay any taxes on your business allowances if any.
  • You may drive, rent an apartment and open a bank account on a business visa. (Rules may vary state to state).

What you must know about the US B1 visa

  • Business visa (B-1) is meant for business related purposes only. You can not get involved in study or work on a B1 visa.
  • Stay on B1 is given at the port of entry in the USA. Length of stay can be extended if you must apply for a visa extension. Such extensions are subject to approval .
  • You may not be liable to pay any taxes on your business allowances if any.
  • You may drive, rent an apartment and open a bank account on a business visa. (Rules may vary state to state).

What is the difference between B1 and B2 Visa?

While both the visas as temporary visas and non-immigrant visas, B1 and B2 visas are used for different purposes. The B1 visa is used to visit the US only for business purposes and the B2 visa must be applied for pleasure (tourism) purposes. This is more a generic visitor visa.

Can I work in the US with a B1 Visa?

No. You cannot work in the US with a B1 Visa. For doing so, you will have to apply for a separate H1B non-immigrant visa after proving your eligibility. You will also have a US company file a non-immigrant worker petition (Form I-129) for you as a beneficiary.

How can I convert my B1 Visa to a Work Visa?

You can apply for a change of status “COS” from a B1 visa to an H1B non-immigrant worker which indicates your intention for an extension of stay. This must be done before your B1 visa expires. Also, you need to meet several conditions of the application. To get complete details, speak to our US worker visa consultant in India.

Do I have to attend a visa interview for a B1 Visa?

Yes. You are required to attend a visa interview with the consulate for B1 Visa.

Can I take my family to the US on a B1 Visa?

Generally, a B1 visa is used for business purposes only. You are allowed to take your family while doing so but will need to apply for a separate visa (dependent tourist visa).

Can I use a B1 visa for tourism?

This may not be possible as the visa application condition demands your purpose of visit, wherein you will have to prove that you are visiting the US for business purposes only.

Can I start a business on B1 Visa?

You may sign up for a stake in a US-based company while on this visa but there are several restrictions when it comes to gaining business set-up authorization. B1 visa in real sense is only valid until you are not making any money out of it.

How long can I stay in the US with a B1 Visa?

You will be allowed to stay in the US with a B1 visa for 6 months.

Topics: Visit Visa, USA

K Nagaraju
K Nagaraju

Nagaraj is a veteran in processing Canada visas. He proves as the best professional to handle all PR visa process.



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