Representatives of Foreign Media may apply for a nonimmigrant visa, if the individual:

  • Represents a foreign information media outlet (press, radio, film, or other foreign information media);
  • Is coming to the United States to engage solely in this profession; and
  • Has a home office in a foreign country.

Occupations under this category include reporters, film crews, editors, and similar occupations. Any spouse and children under the age of 21 may accompany or follow to join an I nonimmigrant.

Eligibility Criteria

The individual must demonstrate that s/he is a bona fide representative of foreign media whose activities are essential to the functions of the organization. The Consular Officer at the U.S. embassy will determine whether an activity is qualifying in order to obtain a nonimmigrant visa.

As a representative of foreign media, the individual cannot travel to the U.S. and engage in his/her profession without an I nonimmigrant visa, even if they are a citizen of a country that participates in the U.S. Visa Waiver Program (VWP). Individuals who attempt to travel to the U.S. without the appropriate visa, you may be denied admission by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) at the port of entry (airport, seaport, or land border).

Period of Stay

A U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officer at the port of entry will determine if the individual can be admitted to the United States. The officer will review and stamp Form I-94, Arrival/Departure Record, which will contain your authorized period of stay. Admission as an I nonimmigrant is generally authorized for the duration of status (i.e., D/S on Form I-94), and no application for extension of stay is required to be filed as long as the media representative continues working for the same employer in the same information medium. If Form I-94 indicates a specific end date for the authorized period of stay, and the individual wishes to stay beyond that specified end date, s/he must apply to extend or change his/her nonimmigrant Status.

Family of I Visa Holders

Any accompanying or following-to-join spouse and children under the age of 21 may be eligible to apply for an I nonimmigrant visa. Spouses and children are not eligible to work with an I snonimmigrant visa but can study in the United States.