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Nonimmigrant Visas

The categories of nonimmigrant visas read like alphabet soup and are notated by a letter-number combination as appearing on the I-94 Arrival-Departure Card.

A Diplomats and foreign government officials
B Visitors for business or pleasure (B-1/B-2 information)
C Transit visa
D Crewmen
E Treaty Traders and Investors (E-1 & E-2 information)
F Students (academic) (F-1 information)
H Temporary Workers
I Representatives of foreign media
J Exchange Program students, scholars, trainees, teachers, research assistants, medical graduates, etc. (J-1 information)
K Fiancees of U.S. citizens
L Intracompany transferees (L-1 information)
M Students (vocational) (M-1 information)
N Parents or children of an alien accorded Special Immigrant status
O Individuals with extraordinary ability in the arts, sciences, business, athletics, movies, or television
P Athletes and entertainers - highly qualified individuals / groups as well as accompanying group members
Q Participants in international cultural programs
R Religious workers
S Individuals coming to the U.S. to testify in a criminal proceeding
TN Canadians and Mexicans entering under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA)

Q - Participants in international cultural programs

The Q-1 international cultural exchange program provides practical training, employment and the sharing of the history, culture, and traditions of the participant's home country in the United States. This visa enables individuals to participate in exchange visitor programs in the United States.

The applicant should apply for a Q-1 Visa at the US Embassy or Consulate with jurisdiction over his/her place of permanent residence. While s/he may apply at any U.S. consular office abroad, it is advisable to apply within his/her jurisdiction. Participants in the Q exchange program must have the designated sponsoring organization file Form I-129, Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker, with the USCIS. The USCIS will then inform the sponsor on Form I-797 when the petition is approved.

The following documents are required for the Q-1 Visa:

  • A filled-in visa application Form DS-160.
  • One recent photograph 1 & 1/2 inches square (37mm x 37mm) of each applicant, with the entire face visible. The picture should be taken before a light background and without head covering.
  • A passport, valid for travel to the United States for at least six months longer than his/her intended visit.
  • A completed form, I-797.
  • S/he must also demonstrate the that s/he has binding ties to his/her home country which s/he has no intention of abandoning, and that s/he is coming to the United States for a temporary period of time

NOTE: Immigration law changes frequently. The resources and information provided on this web site are intended to help you understand basic issues involved in the immigration process, and are offered only for general informational and educational purposes. This information is not offered as, nor does it constitute legal advice or legal opinions. Although we strive to keep this information current, we neither promise nor guarantee that the information is the latest available, or that it applies to your specific situation. You should not act or rely upon the information in these pages without seeking the advice of an attorney.

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