US business visa processing time

Applicants who are applying for business visas are advised to plan their itinerary according to the US business visa processing time.  This is because visas for business engagements are not issued on the same day that applications are submitted, and they may take some time. 

The average processing time for a business visa is 7-10 working days after the application is submitted, but you will have to wait for a further 2-3 business days for delivery.

However, some nationalities qualify for an interview waiver program, so they don’t need to appear for an interview at the embassy. All they need to do is send their documents by courier, and the visa application will be processed in absentia. If you are eligible for a visa waiver, you may get the visa in the next 21 working days from when the embassy receives your documents. Also, note that an additional 2-3 working days is required to apply for and receive the visa once it is ready.

Additional Notice

US embassies have a standard practice of notifying applicants if their visa request has been denied according to Section 221 (g) of the US Immigration & Nationality Act. 

If the embassy requires further documentation, the embassy will also send you a notification to inform you. If there is a need for more documents, the processing time may be extended by a few more days, pending the time they receive the additional documents.

No Guarantees

When it comes to visa issuance and application times, it is important to note that there are no guarantees as to the processing time. Many factors may impact how long the visa application will take, which may be beyond your control; that is why it is advisable to apply for the visa several months in advance to give the embassy ample time to process it so your travel plans will not be in jeopardy.

Who Collects The Visa and Passport?

Visas and passports are not issued to third parties but to the applicant in person at the embassy unless for applicants who are eligible for interview waivers who may request that their visas and passports be delivered to their homes or offices via a courier service. For the latter, you will have to pay a separate charge for the courier service, which is different from the visa application fee.

Tracking Your Application

After submitting your application, the embassy will commence processing immediately. If you use a courier service, the courier company will issue a tracking number that you can use to track the exact location of your documents online. You also have the freedom to choose how your passport and visa are delivered to you.

Why US Business Visa Processing Times May Take Longer Than Usual

There are several factors that may cause unnecessary delays to your application. Some of them include the following.

A backlog of applications: Some countries have more business visitors traveling to the US than others, leading to an unprocessed applications backlog. If you submit your visa during peak periods when the embassy is proceeding with a huge volume of applications, it may take longer for you to be treated.

Additional documents required: If the embassy requires additional documents to process your application, they will be put on hold until you submit them. This may take several days, weeks, or months depending on how quick you are able to get your application to them.

Policy Changes: If there is a business visa policy change by the US government, your application may be put on hold, or the embassy may notify you to submit new information and documents or a fresh application. However, do bear in mind that this rarely ever happens, and if it does, you will not be asked to pay another application fee.

Sanctions: In some cases, the US government may ban business visa applications from citizens from a particular country for one or more reasons. Until such a ban is lifted, applications submitted to the embassy in your country may not be treated.

Reasons For US Business Visa Application Rejection

There are reasons for US business visa rejections which is quite common. Here are some reasons why your application may be rejected at the scheduled interview and not passed through for processing.

Insufficient Evidence: The essence of visa interviews is to find out if there is sufficient evidence to issue the visa. Insufficient evidence is the number one reason why a business visa application may be rejected. If the consulate is not convinced that the applicant has every intention of returning home, the applicant may be denied the visa.

Insufficient Funds: Another strong reason a business visa application may be rejected is if the applicant cannot show proof of funds to cover their trip and whatever business investments they wish to make in the US. The embassy wants to be sure that your visit will not place any social burden on the government.

Invalid Documents: Invalid documents are also a common reason for visa application rejections. Make are that your documents are up to date.

The average US business visa processing time is 10 working days, but to avoid delays, submit your application several months ahead.

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    This article was published by VisaHQ, a world leader in visa processing. Since 2003, VisaHQ has 20 offices in 6 countries and has helped countless tourist, business travellers, diplomats, workers, and students obtain their visa. With a 4.41 star rating on, VisaHQ is committed to innovation, service, security, and simplicity in the visa application process.