How to Apply

Student Visa (F-1/M-1)

Before you can apply at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate for an F or M student visa, you must first apply to and be accepted by a SEVP approved school. Visit the Department of Homeland Security Study in the States school search page to search for SEVP-certified schools.

When you are accepted by the U.S. school you plan to attend, you will be enrolled in the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS). You must pay the SEVIS I-901 Fee. The U.S. school will provide you with a Certificate of Eligibility for Nonimmigrant (F-1/M-1) Student Status-For Academic and Language Students (Form I-20) to present to the consular officer when you attend your visa interview. If your spouse and/or children intend to reside with you in the United States while you study, they must obtain individual Form I-20s, but they do not pay the SEVIS fee.

Visit the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP) website to learn more about SEVIS and the SEVIS I-901 Fee

Exchange Visitor Visa (J-1)

Before you can apply at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate for a J-1 visa, you must first apply for and be accepted into an exchange visitor program through a designated sponsoring organization. Visit the Department of State J-1 Visa Exchange Visitor Program website to learn about program requirements, regulations, and more.

When you are accepted into the exchange visitor program you plan to participate in, you will be enrolled in the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS). Most J-1 Exchange Visitors must pay the SEVIS I-901 Fee. Certificate of Eligibility for Exchange Visitor Status, Form DS-2019.  After your program sponsor enters your information in the SEVIS system, a SEVIS-generated Certificate of Eligibility for Exchange Visitor Status (Form DS-2019) is provided to you. All exchange visitors, including their spouses and minor children, must be registered in the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS). Each person receives a separate Form DS-2019.

Visit the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP) website to learn more about SEVIS and the SEVIS I-901 Fee.

In addition to the Form DS 2019, participants in the J-1 Trainee and Intern categories require Form DS-7002 (based on Box 7 on Form DS-2019). Learn more about the Trainee and Intern programs.

If you are travelling on your Icelandic passport it must be valid for the duration of your stay int he United States.  If you are travelling on a passport from another country your passport must be valid for at least six months beyond your period of stay in the United States, unless exempt by country-specific agreements. If more than one person is included in your passport, each person who needs a visa must submit a separate application.

  • Completed Online Nonimmigrant Visa Application, Form DS-160

Please note that you must answer EVERY question on the application forms. If the answer to a question is “none,” please write “none”(Do not leave it blank). Incomplete/incorrect forms will be returned and will require you to schedule a new interview appointment. Each applicant needs his or her own DS-160 form, including minor children

Important! Many of our visa applicants are completing the DS-160 incorrectly, causing us to postpone their planned visa interview dates.

All Student Visa (F-1/M-1) and Exchange Visitor Visa (J-1) applicants should collect the following:

  • A valid passport
  • DS-160 confirmation page
  • A 5 x 5 cm (2 x 2 inch) color photo not older than 6 months – with a light or white background
  • The forms listed in Step 2
  • Student (F-1/M-1) visa applicants should also bring their Form I-20.
  • Exchange Visitor (J-1) visa applicants should also bring Form DS-2019, and Form DS-7002 if participating in the J-1 Trainee and Intern categories.
  • SEVIS Payment:  Proof of payment of SEVIS fee, which is required for anyone entering the United States on a student visa.  Check with your school administrator if you are unsure if you have paid the fee.  Payments can be made online at the U.S. Customs and Immigration Service website.  You need your I-20 or DS-2019 form in front of you to complete the payment process.
  • Children/Spouses:  Original or certified copy of your marriage certificate if your F2/J2/M2 spouse is applying.  Original or certified copy of birth certificate for each minor child applying.
  • Proof of Funds:  Original copies of loan papers (e.g., LIN) or bank statements which indicate a balance, scholarship letters, or other proof of how you will pay for your education in the United States.

Additional Documents – Student Visa Applicants:
Additional documents may be requested to establish if you are qualified. For example, additional requested documents may include evidence of your academic preparation, such as:

  • Transcripts, diplomas, degrees, or certificates from schools you attended; and
  • Standardized test scores required by your U.S. school;
  • Your intent to depart the United States upon completion of the course of study; and
  • How you will pay all educational, living and travel costs. Original copies of loan papers (e.g., LIN) or bank statements which indicate a balance, scholarship letters, or other proof of how you will pay for your education in the United States.
  • SEVIS Payment:  Proof of payment of SEVIS fee, which is required for anyone entering the United States on a student visa.  Check with your school administrator if you are unsure if you have paid the fee.  Payments can be made online at the U.S. Customs and Immigration Service website.  You need your I-20 or DS-2019 form in front of you to complete the payment process.
  • Children/Spouses:  Original or certified copy of your marriage certificate if your F2/J2/M2 spouse is applying.  Original or certified copy of birth certificate for each minor child applying.

Additional Documents – Exchange Visitor Visa Applicants:
Additional documents may be requested to establish if you are qualified. For example, additional requested documents may include evidence of:

  • The purpose of your trip;
  • Your intent to depart the United States after your trip; and/or
  • Your ability to pay all costs of the trip.

To schedule an appointment for a non-immigrant visa (NIV) interview, please consult the Embassy’s online NIV Appointment System. Please have your DS-160 Online Nonimmigrant Visa Application Form Confirmation Number handy. It is located on your DS-160 confirmation page, in bold print.

New Students – F-1 and M-1 student visas can be issued up to 120 days in advance of your course of study start date. However, you will not be allowed to enter the United States in F-1 or M-1 status earlier than 30 days before your start date.

Continuing Students – May renew their visas at any time, as long as they have maintained student status and their SEVIS records are current. Continuing students may enter the United States at any time before their classes start.

Exchange VisitorsExchange visitors beginning new programs may not enter the United States more than 30 days before their program start date.

Please submit your documents when you come to your visa interview including your completed DS-160 confirmation sheet, forms listed in Step 2, a 5 x 5 cm (2 x 2 inch) color photo not older than 6 months, and a valid passport.

Each applicant needs his or her own DS-160 form, including minor children.

On the day of your interview, please pay for Student (F-1 /M-1) and Exchange Visitor (J-1) visas. the following visa application fee: $160

PAYABLE IN CASH ONLY with U.S. Dollars or Icelandic Kronur

Credit cards and debit cards are not accepted for the visa fee.  Please note that this fee is non-refundable application fee and will not be returned to you if your application is denied.

NOTE: U.S. government sponsored exchange visitor (J visa) applicants and their dependents are not required to pay application processing fees if participating in a Department of State, a U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), or a Federally funded educational and cultural exchange program which has a program serial number beginning with G-1, G-2, G-3, or G-7 printed on Form DS-2019, Certificate of Eligibility for Exchange Visitor Status. U.S. government sponsored exchange visitor (J visa) applicants and their dependents are also not required to pay applicable issuance fees.

IMPORTANT NOTICE REGARDING ELECTRONIC DEVICES:

The US Embassy does not permit laptops or large electrical/electronic devices to be brought into the consular waiting room.  Please do not bring your electronic devices to your visa interview or any other appointment you have with the Consular Section.  The Embassy provides no storage for your electronic devices and customers coming to their appointment with a prohibited item(s) will not be permitted to enter the Embassy.

 The following small personal electronic devices may be brought into the consular waiting room, so long as they comply with all other Embassy procedural security requirements:

 Cellphones

Smart phones

iPods and MP3 players

iPads and other small tablet devices (large tablets and Tablet/computer combos are not permitted.

Handheld gaming devices

Smartwatches

During your visa interview, a consular officer will determine whether you are qualified to receive a visa, and if so, which visa category is appropriate based on your purpose of travel. You will need to establish that you meet the requirements under U.S. law to receive the category of visa for which you are applying.

Ink-free, digital fingerprint scans will be taken as part of your application process.

YOU SHOULD NOT BUY NON-REFUNDABLE PLANE TICKETS UNTIL YOU HAVE RECEIVED YOUR VISA. PROCESSING DELAYS OCCASIONALLY OCCUR AND THE EMBASSY CANNOT GUARANTEE NEXT DAY VISA ISSUANCE.

If your visa is approved, you may also have to pay a country specific visa reciprocity fee.

There is no reciprocity fee for Icelandic passport holders.

If your visa is approved on a Tuesday you can pick up your passport the following Thursday. If your visa is approved on a Thursday you can pick up your passport the following Tuesday. Except on holidays.

YOU SHOULD NOT BUY NON-REFUNDABLE PLANE TICKETS UNTIL YOU HAVE RECEIVED YOUR VISA.

PROCESSING DELAYS OCCASIONALLY OCCUR.