F-1 visa is given to people who enter the United States for studies. This includes undergraduate and graduate studies in colleges, universities, and other educational facilities. Before you can apply for an F-1 student visa, you must first apply to and be accepted by a U.S. school that you are planning to attend.
When you are accepted by the U.S. school you plan to attend, you will be enrolled in the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS). The U.S. school will provide you with a Form I-20 to present to the consular officer when you attend your visa interview.
How to Apply
Complete the Online Visa Application
- Online Non immigrant Visa Application, Form DS-160
- Photo –You will upload your photo while completing the online Form DS-160.
Schedule an Interview
You may schedule your interview at any U.S. Embassy or Consulate in your home country, but be aware that it may be difficult to qualify for a visa outside of your place of permanent residence.
New Students – Even though you might get visa earlier than 30 day s before you will not be allowed to enter the United States in F-1 or M-1 status earlier than 30 days before your start date.
Can I renew my visa? International students can renew their visas at any time, as long as they have maintained their status and their SEVIS records are current.
Prepare for Your Interview
- Application Fee of $160
- Required Documentation: make sure you have a valid Passport, Visa Application, Form DS-160 confirmation page, Application fee payment receipt, Passport size photo, and Form I-20
- Academic documents: Transcripts, diplomas, degrees, or certificates from schools you attended, Standardized test scores required by the U.S. school you applied to, your intent to go back to the home country after completion of your course of study, and financial documents to show whether you can afford school tuition, living costs, and other expenses during school period.
What you should know before your trip:
Once you have all the necessary document and your visa, it is important to find a safe place to stay, get visitor health insurance, get a bank account, and anything else you might need while you are abroad.
Click here for more information about F-1 visa, requirements, important documents, and application forms.