A short term US visitor visa or tourist visa can either be self sponsored or you may seek sponsorship from any US resident (friends, relative) to sponsor your b1-b2 visa. Any foreign citizen can apply for a US Visa. However, a visa grant is subject to certain eligibility checks by the US consulate. Each visa applicant must attend a visa interview and may require to submit supporting documents case by case basis.
There are two major factors that affect your US visa grant.
- Overall eligibility: including purpose of your trip, clean personal security background, and intention to depart USA after the trip.
- Your financial health: evidence of sufficient funds to support your trip to USA.
While many applicants may pass the first eligibility check, failing on the test to provide enough evidence to demonstrate sufficient funds may go against you in your visa grant.
What documents are required to show sufficient funds?
Individuals with good financial standing can show:
- Passbooks, copies of last few bank statements, copies of last few tax returns, pay stubs/salary slips, copies of fixed deposits/savings certificates.
- Any other documents as evidence showing liquid cash and funds which you believe can help to show your financial ability to support your trip to USA.
Why are funds important for USA visitor visa?
Trip to US is expensive. The overall cost including return air tickets, lodging, boarding, medical expenses, domestic travel within the US, shopping, etc can be significant. Visa authorities want to make sure that visitors to USA have enough funds and will not become public charge or US govt liability due to lack of funds. Visitors must be able to take care of all expenses for themselves and family and must depart USA after the trip.
How much funds are enough to show for US visa purpose?
There is no official limit. Any amount that can justify the overall cost for your trip to US should be good enough. The more the better. You can estimate the cost for return travel tickets, lodging, boarding, medical, domestic travel, shopping, day to day expenses, which can easily be at least over USD 5,000 per person.
For those who do not have enough funds, a sponsorship may help. See more details: Sponsoring US visa.
Self sponsored US visa FAQ:
1. Is it necessary to have a sponsor for US Visitor visa?
No, it is not. Having a US-based sponsor may help to strengthen your case if you are not financially well off to support your US trip.
2. I am in US with my husband on visa / green card and my parents wants to visit me. They have sufficient funds. Do we still need to sponsor their trip?
No, you do not need to. If your parents or relatives have good financial standing and can provide evidence of funds, they need not have a sponsor. A letter of invitation may still be helpful.
3. My visa is rejected with a comment that I do not have enough funds, the reality is that I do have enough money to visit USA.
While you may be of the opinion that you have enough money, however that may not match with the visa officer's guidelines. Funds may not be enough considering your overall case, your travel plans, length of your trip, etc. Or you may not have provided enough and meaningful information about your financial situation.