Student Visa for USA

The USA is a front runner in numerous fields, a global trendsetter and land of umpteen opportunities. To begin your study abroad journey, here are the important things you should know about the requirements for getting your student visa for USA.

The USA Student Visa Requirements:

  1. Apply to a Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP) approved school.
  2. Pay the SEVIS I-901 fee, after which you will be issued a Form I-20 from the SEVP approved school.


Student visa process for USA

Type of USA Student Visa

  • F-1 Visa

F1 is the most common type of student visa for the USA. If you wish to engage in academic studies in the United States at an accredited college or University, you need F-1 permission. You will need an F-1 visa if your course lasts 18 hours or more for a week.

  • J1 Exchange Visitor Visa

The J1 visa is required for working professionals who wish to travel to the US on an exchange program. So the visa is named as an “Exchange Visitor Visa”. Through this visa, working professionals can apply for a ten-month vocational training course or fellowship. The educational institutions will notify the student to apply for their visas under the J1 category. Children or Spouses travelling along with J-1 Visa recipients will have to apply for a J-2 Visa

  • M-1 Vocational or Non-Academic Student Visa

The M1 student visa is reserved for vocational and technical educational institutions. Though the process for applying to the M-1 and F1 visa is similar, the difference is that the M1 visas have stringent timing rules as students cannot overstay their visit.


Documentation Checklist for USA Student Visa:

  1. Letter of admission from the institute.
  2. Financial supporting documents like loan approval document, if any.
  3. Academic certificates and test scores of TOEFL, SAT, GRE, GMAT, or LSAT.
  4. Two passport-sized photographs.
  5. Machine Readable Visa Fee which is currently at $160.
  6. Receipt of SEVIS fee payment, which is $200.
  7. Certificate of Eligibility for Nonimmigrant (F-1 Visa) Student Status-For Academic and Language Students, Form I-20.

Student visa process for USA

USA Student Visa Application Procedure & Cost

It is mandatory that you schedule an appointment for a USA student visa interview, in the country where you live, at the U.S Embassy or Consulate. Applying as soon as possible will be beneficial, as the waiting time may vary depending on the country, visa category and season.

F and M Student Visas can be issued 120 days prior to the start date for a course of study. However, you will be able to enter the country only 30 days before the start date.

F and M Student Visas may be issued anytime as long as you are currently pursuing a course of study in a SEVP approved institution and registered in the SEVIS. You can also enter the country at any time. The overall cost to apply and receive the U.S. Student Visa will range between 500 and 600$.

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