Tag Archives: tourist visa

B1 Visa & B2 Visa Information and Guidelines

The B1 visa is issued for the Business travelers to the United States and the B2 Visa is issued to visitors who intend to spend some time in the United States just for pleasure. Normally these two types of visas are issued simultaneously.

What that would mean for you is in case you are already holding a B1 visa and you wish to travel to the United States simply for pleasure for maximum of three months then in this case you need not apply for a fresh Visa, the old one should be good enough for you.

But please note there are a bunch of dos’ and don’ts associated with both the types of Visas. I would briefly touch upon them in the under mentioned manner.

For a B1 visa traveler:

1. The person would be eligible to conduct negotiations.
2. He might solicit investment of different types or might try to enhance sales of products and articles of a different country.
3. Discuss and plan the above mentioned with interested parties even create legal agreements related to the same.
4. Attend participate or hold meetings.
5. He would be permitted to interview people for the purpose of hiring.
6. He would have all freedom under the sun to conduct any kind of business related research.

The under mentioned are what may be termed as don’ts, and to do them the person would need a working Visa.

1. No would be permitted to run any sort of business.
2. Any activity of gainful nature would not be permitted.
3. No payments may be received from any organization with in the geographic boundaries of United States would be permitted.
4. The individual would not be permitted to take part in any sort of sporting event as. However the person may be a spectator for the same.

People who would want to enter the United States as a visitor would be issued a Visa for a period of not more than six months; however extensions on the same are permissible to a maximum of another six months while in the United States.

Guest Author
Tushar Mathur

ESTA Summary – Visa Waiver Traveler Information

ESTA is a web-based data collection system, initially launched by the Department of Homeland Security in August 2008, which determines the preliminary eligibility of visitors to travel “visa-free”, under the VWP, prior to traveling to the United States.

According to recent DHS data, more than 1.2 million ESTA applications have been received, and over 98% of applicants have been approved. DHS further states that will take a ‘reasonable approach’ to travelers who have not obtained an approved travel authorization via ESTA, and will continue an aggressive advertising and outreach campaign throughout 2009.

Travelers without an approved ESTA are advised, however, that they may be denied boarding, experience delayed processing, or be denied admission at a U.S. port of entry.

The citizens or nationals of the following countries are currently eligible to travel to the United States under the VWP: Andorra, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brunei, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Japan, the Republic of Korea, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Monaco, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Portugal, San Marino, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom.

Eight of these countries joined the VWP in 2008, and their citizens and nationals have been required to comply with an ESTA since their designation as VWP participants: the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, the Republic of Korea, Latvia, Lithuania, Slovakia and Malta.

There has been some degree of confusion as to when and how ESTA applies. In brief, ESTA only applies to foreign nationals (Non-U.S. citizens) who are eligible to travel to the United States under the terms and conditions of the Visa Waiver Program, without a Visa or Green Card, or other government-issued permission.

Any person who needs a visa or has a visa already does not need to complete the ESTA process prior to traveling to the United States. Essentially anyone who would complete a WHITE I-94 card at arrival in the U.S., does not participate in ESTA. On the flip side, anyone who would normally complete a GREEN I-94W card at arrival in the U.S. MUST now complete ESTA.

While the ESTA is geared to eventually phasing out paper I-94W cards altogether, it is CBP’s current advice and recommendation to complete BOTH, the ESTA online, AND the paper I-94W card for inspection. It is further recommended that the ESTA-traveler bring a paper printout of their ESTA application response in order to maintain a record of their ESTA application number.

The ESTA application Web site has been made available in several languages and helps to guide VWP travelers through the application process.

Guest Author

Steven A. Culbreath, Esq