NON-IMMIGRANT VISAS FOR EXHIBITORS

TOURIST/BUSINESS (B1/B2) VISAS

The vast majority of nonimmigrant visa applications received at the U.S. Embassy in Manila are for tourism or business travel.

B-1 visas are for business, including such things as a need to consult with business associates, negotiate a contract, buy goods or materials, settle an estate, appear in a court trial, and participate in business or professional conventions or conferences; or, where an applicant will be traveling to the United States on behalf of a foreign employer for training or meetings. The individual may not receive payment (except for incidental expenses) from a United States source while on a B-1 visa.

B-2 visas are issued for general pleasure/tourist travel, such as touring, visits to friends and relatives, visits for rest or medical treatment, social or fraternal conventions and conferences, and amateur/unpaid participants in cultural or sports events.

In most instances, consuls will issue a combined B-1/B-2 visa, recognizing that most business travel will also include tourist activities.

Application Procedures

Embassy of the United States in Manila Nonimmigrant Visa instructions page

Each application MUST include:

  • A receipt proving payment of the visa application fee. Instructions for payment
  • A valid passport, the passport with the qualifying visa, and all intervening passports. Instructions for necessary documents
  • An application form (DS 156 with Manila Supplement) completed and signed.
  • A photograph 1.5" x 1.5" (37mm x 37mm) against a white background with your signature on the reverse side. Instructions for photo
  • When you are ready to submit your Drop-Box application, call 1-909-101-0000 to arrange for Courier Drop Box Service.

What to Bring to an Interview

For tourist/visitor visas (B1 or B2) the following documents (which must be originals) are usually considered most helpful:

Demonstrating Financial Ability

  • Bank statements or passbooks showing account activity for at least three months prior to your interview
  • Bank Certifications of Accounts showing current balances
  • Credit Card Statements going back three months or more
  • Income Tax returns from the prior year, including bank receipt of payment and Community Tax Certificate
  • Business Persons should bring a Department of Trade and Industries certificate and records showing business activity (e.g. invoices, payments, payroll records)
  • Land Titles
Demonstrating Ties

Applicants must be able to demonstrate to the interviewing officer that they have ties - economic, social, or other - that will cause them to return to the Philippines following their visit to the United States.

What is meant by "Ties to the Philippines?"

"Ties" are aspects of your life that bind you to your place of residence, including family relationships, property, employment and possessions. In the case of younger applicants who may not have had an opportunity to establish such ties, interviewing officers may look at educational status, grades, the situation of the parents, and an applicant's long-range plans and prospects in the Philippines.

Demonstrating Purpose of Trip

If the purpose of the travel is for:

Business – a letter from the U.S. organization indicating the purpose of the trip, the intended length of stay, and the firm’s intent to defray costs, if applicable. Applicants traveling on business for a Philippine-based employer should present a letter from the employer outlining the travel and business plans, including dates of travel.

Pleasure – documents concerning purpose and length of the trip and ability to cover the costs of the trip.

If You Are Issued a Visa

If the consular officer decides to issue you a nonimmigrant visa, you will be given a colored tag for each visa application that has been approved. Take this tag to the courier service desk in the Pavilion outside Gate 4, where you will need to arrange for the delivery of your passport and visa. The current delivery fee is 85 pesos for delivery anywhere in the Philippines.

You should allow 5-7 business days for the delivery of your visa. If you need it issued earlier, inform the officer at the time of the interview. The officer will determine whether earlier issuance is possible.

Spouses/Children (20 and under) of B1/B2 Visa Holders

Children under 20 and spouses of current B1/B2 visa holders who have previously traveled to the United States may submit their applications through the courier drop box. Applications must include relevant marriage and/or birth certificates on security paper from the Philippine National Statistics Office (NSO). In the case of a child, both parents' passports must also be presented. Single parents must provide evidence of their status, or should provide a certificate for Minor Travel Abroad issued by the Department of Social Welfare (DSW).

Please Note: Applicants who have previously received nonimmigrant visas - including children - do not need to include the passport of a parent/spouse if applying through the drop box.

First-Time Drop Box Applicants

Applicants who are using the drop box on the basis of prior travel by a parent or spouse must include the following documents:

Children (under age 20) must include passports of both parents, regardless of whether or not both have been issued a visa and a birth certificate on security paper issued by the National Statistics Office.

Spouses must attach the passport of their spouse together with a marriage certificate issued on security paper by the National Statistics Office.

First-time applicants must also include evidence of the principal's social and economic ties to a country outside of the United States. Acceptable bank documents include passbooks and periodic statements showing account activity. Certifications of bank balances are acceptable only for time deposits.

Information Inquiries

You may make direct inquiries to the Nonimmigrant Visas Section:

By Telephone:

Telephone inquiries for nonimmigrant visas from within the Philippines may be made by calling 1-909-101-0000. This is a toll call costing 18 pesos per minute. This number is currently accessible only on PLDT telephones with NDD access.

Public inquiries from outside the Philippines are answered between 7:30 AM - 12:00 Noon and between 1:00 PM - 4:30 PM business days on [63] (2) 523-1145.

Fax:

The fax number of the Nonimmigrant Visa Branch is (632) 523-1215. This number is intended primarily for receipt of supporting information for visa applications when requested by a consular officer. Please limit your inquiries to one page, including cover.

DO NOT SEND DOCUMENTS prior to an interview.


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Nonimmigrant Visa Application
FORM DS-156

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Supplemental Nonimmigrant Visa Application
FORM DS-157
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