F-1 Visa Steps

F-1 Visa

What are the F-1 visa application process and steps?

While there are many steps you need to take prior to applying for your F-1 Visa, below outlines the process of applying for an F-1 visa, assuming you have taken all the steps needed prior to applying.

DS-160 Form

DS-160 is a form that must be submitted to the U.S. embassy or consulate and serves as the Visa application. You must fill out Form DS-160, Online Nonimmigrant Visa Application if you are applying for most non-immigrant visas such as F-1. You will be required to upload a photo that meets the Photograph Requirements. Upon completing the DS-160 form online, you must print the confirmation and present it at your interview.

Pay Required Fees

To schedule a visa appointment a fee must be paid. As of January 2020, the fee is $160.00. Always check the embassy or consulate’s website as fees may increase. All application fees are non-refundable regardless of if your visa is approved or denied.

Schedule your visa Interview

Once you complete the form DS-160, schedule an interview at a US Embassy or Consulate in your country of residence.


When you receive your I-20, You will be assigned a SEVIS number. You must pay a SEVIS fee by completing a 1901 form online at the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) website. Fees must be paid at least 3 days prior to your interview. SEVIS Payment is only valid for one year
The SEVIS fee for F-1 Visa is $350.00
Once you have completed the form and have made the payment, you must print the receipt and present it at your interview

Gather Required Documents

There are certain needed documents that you MUST present at the time of your interview. Make sure to gather those documents and have them ready in addition to all supporting documents.

Attend the Interview

The only person that can approve or deny your visa is a consular officer. During the F1 visa interview, a consular officer can determine whether you are qualified to receive a visa. You must prove that you meet the requirements under U.S. law to receive the visa.

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