Almost all visitors going to the United States, as tourists require a valid tourist visa which is a B2 visa or an ESTA.
A B2 visa is a non-immigrant visa that permits tourists only temporary visit to the United States. B2 visa holders can undertake city tours, can go sightseeing, call upon family and friends or, if needed, receive medical treatment in the US.
Tourists from participating VWP (Visa Waiver Program) countries are required to acquire an ESTA before departing for their trip.
B2 Visa Requirements
A B2 visa can only be procured abroad. The applicants must verify the purpose of their trip. The purpose of the trip can only be for pleasure, tourism or medical treatment.
Applicants must prove they intend to return to their home country at the end of their stay. B2 visa applicants may also be required to show that they have sufficient funds to support themselves during their stay. They may also be obliged to meet certain health and character requirements.
B2 Visa Entitlements
A B2 visa normally allows the holder to remain in the US for a maximum of six (6) months. In certain cases, some B2 visa holders may be allowed to stay up to one year.
A B2 visa holder may be permitted to undertake short-term study course during his stay, but will not be allowed to undertake long-term study course nor will he be entitled to take up employment.
However, in some particular circumstances, a B2 visa holder is allowed to change his visa status during his stay itself to engage in employment or to undertake a full-time study course.