Visitor Visa: What is the Difference Between B-1 and B-2 visas?

July 1, 2014 Patty Johnson-Vazquez

Visitor visas are one of the most popular forms of legal travel authorization. The difference between B-1 and B-2 visas is important when determining which you should apply for.

It all comes down to what you plan on doing while you’re in the United States.

The B-1 Business Visitor Visa

If you’re coming to the United States to perform any kind of business-related activities, the B-1 visa is the right choice.

Some of the most common business activities include:

  • Negotiating or signing contracts
  • Purchasing business supplies
  • Attending a business meeting, exhibit or convention
  • Settling an estate
  • Taking an exam held in the United States
  • Performing professional services
  • Competing in a non-professional sporting event
  • Conducting independent research

 difference between b-1 and b-2 visas CTA

The B-2 Tourist Visitor Visa

If you’re coming to the United States for personal activities, apply for the B-2 visitor visa.

This may include coming to the United States to:

  • Visit family or friends
  • Go to a wedding, reunion or ceremony
  • Get medical treatment
  • Visit tourist attractions
  • Take a short recreational class (like a two-day cooking class)

Now that you know what visa is right for your trip, simply apply. Need help? Follow this link to learn more about non-employment-based immigration services for individuals.



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