F-1 Student Visa (U.S. Student Visa)
The F-1 Visa (Academic Student) allows an
individual to enter the United States as a full-time student at an
accredited college, university, or other academic institution. A
student must be enrolled in a program or course of study that
culminates in a degree, diploma, or certificate and the school must
be authorized by the U.S. government to accept international
Steps for Applying for an U.S. Student Visa
The visa application process commences with the
receipt of an I-20. The I-20 confirms a students’ acceptance and
enrollment at the university.
The visa process is long and looks difficult, but
your personal counselor at IDP will assist and guide you every step
of the way.
Step 1: Pay SEVIS Fee (Student and Exchange
Visitor Information System)
SEVIS is the internet based part of the Student and
Exchange Visitor Program that is developed by the U.S. Department
of Homeland Security (DHS) and the Department of State (DOS).
SEVIS maintains current and accurate information of
all F, M, J visitors and their dependents. Schools (universities,
colleges, institutions) transmit mandatory information via SEVIS to
all the relevant U.S. government bodies.
You cannot apply for your F-1 visa until you pay
the SEVIS Fee.
Fee payable: USD 200
Payment option: Credit card at
Step 2: Pay Visa Fee at HDFC Bank
You are required to pay the Visa Application fee at
the approved HDFC Bank. The visa fee is also known as the MRV
(Machine Readable Visa) Fee.
Fee payable:USD 140 + VFS INR
- Demand Draft
- HDFC bank cheque
The Visa Fee Receipt will have a barcode sticker
with the identical number and must be kept safely. The barcode
number will be activated in two working days from the date of
Step 3: Complete the Visa Application Form
The visa application form for your F-1 visa is
completed online through the VFS website. The form that needs to be
- DS -160
You also need to upload a recent (within the past
six months) passport size photograph of size 50mm X 50mm (2" x 2")
with a white background.
You should print the confirmation page with a
barcode at the end of the visa application form.
Step 4: Book Visa Interview Appointment
Once the barcode number on your visa fee (MRV Fee)
receipt is activated, you can use this to login to the VFS website
and book your appointment at the U.S. Embassy.
Step 5: Attend you Visa Interview
On the day of your visa interview, report to the
appropriate gate at the U.S. Embassy, 30 minutes before your
appointed time. You will need to carry all the mandatory documents
as per the checklist given by your IDP counselor.
F-1 Visa (Student Visa)
- Passport (at least 6 months validity required)
- Photograph (recent photograph)
- VFS interview appointment letter
- DS-160 (Confirmation page with barcode)
- HDFC visa application fee receipts
- SEVIS receipt
- Scholarship letter
- Financial Documents
- Academic Documents
- Test Scores
- Work experience certificates
- Other relevant certificates
Step 6: Return of Passport by Courier
The visa officer at the U.S. Embassy will retain
your passport after the interview. Once a decision is made on your
application the U.S. Embassy will deliver your passport to VFS, who
will then courier the same to you within seven working days to the
address provided in the visa application form.
Remember your personal IDP Counselor will help you
from start to finish providing assistance in organizing documents,
completing the forms and preparing you for the interview with the
visa officer at the U.S. Embassy.