One of the most admired tourist attractions in the world is the United States. According to official statistics, this nation receives over 70 million visitors annually. The majority fall in love intensely with the country and wish to go there to live out the fabled “American dream.” It would be best to get a visa first, regardless of whether your trip’s purpose is a brief stopover or permanent residence in this nation. Taking an accurate photo for the paper is a difficult part of this procedure. You must adhere to several conditions specified by the officials for your application to be accepted. This article will highlight each US visa photo requirement, including size, backdrop color, facial expression, etc. You will discover what is needed to obtain a normal visa, a non-immigrant visa, and more. The kind of US visa and the US Embassy from where you apply will determine whether physical or digital images are needed. Digital images can be uploaded online while you submit Form DS-160/ Form DS-260, however, physical photos must be printed and sent with the visa application. Let’s start now!
Photo Requirements for US Visa
Your photographs for the US visa must be:
- The US Visa photo size should be 2 x 2 inches (about 51 x 51 mm). The head has to be between 1 & 1 3/8 inches (about 22 mm & 35 mm) from the bottom of your chin to the top of your head, or between 50% & 69% of the photograph’s overall height.
- In color
- Taken little more than six months ago.
- No shadows.
- Have a background that is just white.
- You have to look into the camera for the picture.
- Maintain a neutral face.
- Open both of your eyes.
- No Uniforms are Allowed- Nevertheless, the attire they typically don daily. It is acceptable for a person to dress religiously every day. Unless a person is wearing a headdress for religious reasons, the hairline must be visible, and the head should not be covered. The headgear cannot hide the face.
- Except for medical needs, you must not use glasses. For instance, if the person just underwent eye surgery, a doctor’s declaration is required to support them. If glasses are needed, they should not conceal the eyes and should not cast shadows or any glare on the face.
Digital Photo Requirements
Should the US Embassy requests a digital photo, it must adhere to these specifications:
- The image must be 1200 x 1200 pixels wide & in square format.
- Also, the image has to be in color, preferably using sRGB color scheme.
- The photo should be in JPEG format.
- The photo’s file size must be 240 kilobytes (kB) or less.
- Your photo could be compressed to the ratio of less than/equal to 20:1 if it is larger than that.
If you have a physical image already that satisfies the standards for a physical image, you may scan it and create it as follows:
- The image must be 2 inches by 2 inches (51 mm by 51 mm).
- The scanned image must have a 300 pixels resolution per inch/12 pixels per millimeter.
Nonimmigrant Visa Photo Requirement
There are requirements for various sorts of visas in addition to the usual ones. The following are some criteria for US nonimmigrant visa photos:
- Form DS-160 may need to submit a digital photo that complies with the digital photo specifications.
- According to their standards, you should also provide one physical and digital photo.
Immigrant Visa Photo Requirement
You must submit two physical images on photo-quality paper that meet the standards for US visa photos if you seek a US immigrant visa to live there permanently.
Diversity Visa Photo Requirement
The photo must adhere to the following specifications if you are applying for a Diversity Visa (DV) through a lottery or program:
- You should provide a digital picture.
- JPEG format is required for the image.
- The image should be square & 600 by 600 pixels in size.
- The image should be 240 kilobytes (kB) in size.
Should you scan any existing image, it must adhere to the following specifications:
- The image must have a resolution of 300 pixels per inch (or 12 pixels per millimeter).
Bring extra images that meet the US visa photo standards if you are chosen for Diversity Visa Program.
Where to Take Photos for US Visa?
It is challenging to independently meet every US visa picture criteria because they are rather stringent. In order to shoot the images and send them to the US Embassy, it is preferable to use professional photo services.
Many expert businesses will take appropriate images of you, provide you with a digital copy, and deliver real photos. Although they are more expensive than taking shots of oneself, there is a higher likelihood that the Embassy will approve the pictures.
The US Embassy may reject images you send if they were taken using a low-quality camera, in which case you will need to submit them again. Your visa will take longer to get as a result of the prolonged processing time. So, submitting your images to a professional retailer is the ideal way to submit them.
If you decide to shoot the pictures yourself, you must ensure that the camera is of a good caliber, that all standards are met, and that you do not alter your look using software other than to get rid of the red-eye effect.
How to Get a Photo for US Visa in Case of a Toddler or Baby?
You must also provide images of your infant or young child if you are requesting a US visa. You may either try to shoot the shots yourself or hire a professional because it can be difficult to get newborns and toddlers to stay still for long. The following are the guidelines and recommendations for infant and toddler visa photos:
- The infant or toddler must be the only subject of the photograph.
- For the photograph, the baby’s eyes must be open.
- You can snap the picture when the baby is lying on a white sheet, but ensure no shadows on the child’s face.
- Baby can be placed in a car seat, but cover the seat using a white sheet to create a clear background.
What if my Appearance has transformed significantly in the past Months?
You should provide a new photo if your old one is no more than six months old, but your look has altered dramatically. If you have carried out the following, this would be required:
- Significant face plastic surgery was performed.
- Added or removed facial piercings or tattoos.
- A large quantity of weight was gained or lost.
- Changed from one gender to another
You will not need to submit new photos if you change your hair color or add a beard. Teenagers with a change in look due to a typical development process will also not require submitting fresh images. The images will be okay, provided you can tell who is in them. However, the US Embassy determines whether or not your images are appropriate.
Countries that can be visited with US Visa
Are you preparing to visit the US, and have you applied for a visa? Then, you have opened the doors to several intriguing new locations to add to the bucket list of places to visit. One of your passport’s most powerful stamps is the US visa. If you have a US visit visa, you can go to more than 30 countries without one! See the countries you can visit with US Visa,
- Mexico (180 days)
- Canada (up to 6 months)
- Belize (30 days)
- Chile (90 days)
- Guatemala (90 days)
- Honduras (90 days)
- El Salvador (90 days)
- Nicaragua (90 days)
- Costa Rica (30 days)
- Panama (30 days)
- Jamaica (30 days)
- Bahamas (30 days)
- Cuba (30 days)
- Dominican Republic (90 days)
- Sint Maarten (30 days)
- Antigua & Barbuda (30 days)
- Colombia (90 days)
- Peru (180 days)
- Kosovo (15 days)
- Turkey (30 days)
- Georgia (90 days)
- Albania (90 days)
- Macedonia (15 days)
- Montenegro (30 days)
- Serbia (90 days)
- Bosnia and Herzegovina (30 days)
- Saudi Arabia (90 days)
- United Arab Emirates (14 days)
- Qatar (30 days)
- Oman (30 days)
- Sao Tome and Principe (15 days)
- Taiwan (30 days)
- Philippines (7 days/14 days)
Do you thus have a specific location that is included in this list? Your trip itinerary will be less hectic if you have a current US visa because you will not need to worry about getting a different tourist visa to visit your target location. Make sure you make the most of your current US visa! Happy Voyage
Pankaj Rajpoot has extensive experience in the travel industry and has specialised in visa consulting. Along with being a keen writer, he has a wide range of interests and enjoys reading and travelling. He seeks inspiration by exploring new places, interacting with the local cultures, and nurturing his creative pursuits while doing so.