I am a tech consultant based in India, working from home for a US (San Francisco) company and I need to visit them for 2 weeks for induction training and to meet other team members. Which visa should I be applying for? Will it be B-1/B-2 or something else?

Also, my visit is 100% sponsored by the client. So do I need to get any specific documents from the client?

1 Answer 1


A B-1 (or B-1/B-2) visa is the correct type for your situation.
This visa allows you to 'conduct business' in the USA, which includes things like:

  • Consulting with business associates
  • Negotiating a contract
  • Participating in short-term training

When applying for a visa, you should include documentation which shows some evidence of an ongoing business relationship between yourself and the US company (like contracts, invoices, etc), something like an invitation letter from the company detailing the purpose of your visit, what you will be doing, and that your expenses will be covered.
Ideally you should also be able to show that you have an operating business and other clients back home in India that you intend to return to.
Do not, under any circumstances, in any documentation you provide or during your visa interview, give the impression that you would be 'working' for the company in any role which looks anything like an employee of the company.

Before I moved over to the USA on an H-1B visa, I made a number of trips similar to yours using short-term B-1/B-2 visas. At that time I was running my own 'one-man-band' consulting business in South Africa, and after the first visa where I was fairly intensely scrutinized and only granted the exact 10 days I requested, I had no trouble with getting further visas and spending periods of between 2 weeks and 2 months in the USA over the course of around 10 years.

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