To legally enter the United States, most travelers will require a U.S. visa. Also known as a US visum in Germany, there are certain eligibility requirements that must be met before a traveler is given permission to enter the U.S. There is currently much confusion about traveling to the U.S. U.S. President Trump issued a travel ban prohibiting citizens of seven countries from entering the U.S. for a designation period of time even if these people already have approved visas for the United States.
This travel ban has been temporarily overturned by the U.S. Federal courts and travelers with approved visas are once again allowed to enter the U.S. Until this situation is clarified, it will most likely be difficult for anyone to obtain a new travel visa unless they are citizens of the countries who participate in the Visa Waiver Program.
This VWP is a program where 38 countries have reached an agreement with the United States to allow their citizens to travel to the U.S. for up to 90 days without a visa. The travel can be for almost any reason, but the most common reasons are tourism and business. Some travelers also use the VWP to transit through the U.S. on the way to other countries such as Mexico, Canada, and the Caribbean Islands.
If a traveler is not from one of the 38 VWP countries, they must get an approved visa before they may enter the United States. They will apply for the visa at the U.S. diplomatic mission in their country, usually the U.S. Embassy. There are also visa exceptions for citizens of Canada, the Bahamas, the Compact of Free Association, British Overseas Territories, the Cayman Islands, the British Virgin Islands, and the Turks and Caicos Islands.
The U.S. has almost 200 categories of visas, but the two most common are the immigrant and non-immigrant visas. Immigrant visas are for those who want to make the United States their home. The nonimmigrant visa is for those who are just visiting or in the U.S. for business or education. Some individuals apply for an employment visa which allows them to work within the United States. They must have a company or organization sponsoring their visa application and provide proof that they have eligible employment.
Even if a US visum is approved, the visitor must still ask and gain permission to enter the country at the border. This is usually done at the port of entry.
Find out more about the USA ESTA Visa on this post.