C1 visas are issued by the US government for immediate and continuous movement inside the USA. Immediate and continuous transit implies that you will have to stop in the US as part of your route to your final destination and will not be granted any additional rights.
Requirements for C VISA:
To apply for transit visas in the United States you must submit the following documents:
- Completed DS-160 application form. You can fill out the form yourself or with the help of VisaExpress.
- Your passport has at least one blank page for you to attach your visa to.
- t should be valid for at least six months beyond your intended stay in the United States unless you are a citizen of these countries. Then you will only need a passport that is valid during your period of stay in the United States.
- A photo. It should comply with the requirements established by the US authorities.
- Proof of payment of the transit visa fee.
- Social media details. A list of the social media you use and your name
of your account in each, phone number, email and social media history for the previous five years.
- Proof that you are allowed to enter the country of your final destination.
- Ticket or itinerary to the final destination.
- A letter stating the purpose of the visit to the final destination.
- Proof that you are financially able to cover your expenses during transit.
- Proof that you will return to your home or another country after your stay in the United States. This could be a property deed, an apartment rental agreement, or other evidence.
If you are HIV positive, you will need a letter from your doctor explaining your health status and the risks associated with your condition, as well as proof of medical health insurance.
If you have been arrested previously in the United States, you must submit a letter explaining the crime, the reasons for the arrest, and evidence showing whether or not you have been convicted.
Supporting documents are just one of many factors that a consular officer will consider during the interview. Consular officers review each application individually and consider professional, social, cultural and other factors when making their decision. Consular officers can review your specific intentions, your family situation, and your long-term plans and prospects in your country of residence. Each case is reviewed individually and given every consideration required by law.
While supporting documents can help you during the interview, consular officials rely primarily on the interview to determine your eligibility for a visa. In other words, the use of supporting materials is optional and not crucial. The supporting documents required for a C1/D application for seafarers are the Seaman Book, the contract of employment on the ships and the expedition commander’s clearance certificate.
Procedures for requesting C1 visas:
- Fill out the online DS-160 form at https://ceac.state.gov/genniv/, print the confirmation page, and bring it with you to the interview.
- Register for a user account at https://usvisa-info.com;
- Online payment of the non-refundable MRV charge;
- Schedule an appointment for a consular interview.
Show up for the interview appointment and bring all relevant documentation with you:
- DS-160 form confirmation page
- Valid passport
- One passport-sized photo for each visa applicant, including newborns (see the “Photo Requirements” webpage)
- A copy of your itinerary/reservation showing your need to transit the United States
- Documentation demonstrating social, economic, and family ties with Italy.
These documents may include: original residence permit for foreigners, residence certificate, family status, marriage certificate, property sale or rental contract, employment contract, latest pay slips, tax returns, bank statement, etc…
If approved, the visa is issued within a week. The passport will then be returned to DHL based on the option selected via your online account (home delivery or collection at a designated DHL location).
If the visa is denied, your passport will be returned to you at the end of the interview, together with a letter explaining the reasons for the visa refusal.
US transit visa processing time:
From the moment you submit your application, expect to wait at least 5 business days to receive a response on the status of your visa. The Embassy will let you know if you have been granted or denied a US transit visa. This is just an estimate of the average time, so if it takes longer, don’t assume your visa has been denied.
Processing times for any US visa depend on the caseload of the US embassy you are applying from. If there are more requests, it will take longer. However, because the American transit visa is such a short duration, processing times are faster than other visas.
Since you only need the C1 visa at the US airport, you can provide information on which airport you will be at and on which date. If you submit a request and it is granted, the U.S. Embassy may send the documents to that airport along with the visa and will be waiting for you when you transit the United States.
What are the restrictions of the C1 visa?
Because the US transit visa is different from other nonimmigrant visas in that you are not allowed to stay in the United States, there are several restrictions on what you can do while in the United States. With a US C1 visa you are not allowed to do the following:
- You are staying in the United States longer than the indicated time.
- Travel or study in the United States.
- Become employed in the United States.
- Extend C1 visa.
- Change or change your C1 visa status.
- Apply for a Green Card with a C1 visa.
- Have dependents on a single transit visa.
- Dependents cannot travel, work, or study in the United States.
How long can I stay in the United States on a transit visa?
Since transit does not take much time, the validity of the C visa is also short. All types of American transit visas (C1 visa, C2 visa, or C3 visa) are valid for a maximum period of 29 days or until the date of departure from the United States indicated on your ticket, whichever comes first.
This means that if you enter the United States on September 1st, you must leave by September 29th. However, if you have a ticket to your final destination on September 20, you will need to leave the United States on September 20.
Can I bring my dependents with me on a transit visa?
There are no dependent visas for the C1 visa. This means that everyone transiting the United States, including spouses and children, must have a transit visa.
For example, if a foreign government official is transiting the United States with their family, the family members must also have individual C visas.