Prepare a perfect biometric photo with guaranteed acceptance
US visas are official travel documents that allow foreign nationals to travel to the United States. The US Embassy in London is responsible for issuing US visas in the UK, but US border officers have the final say on whether or not a visa will be honoured.
The United States is home to exceptionally varied geographic, lingual and cultural landscapes, making it a popular destination for tourists, as well as migrants. In order to enjoy this, though, a non-US citizen needs to obtain a visa. The US visa system is exceptionally strict, as millions try to migrate there every year.
The United States offers nearly 200 different types of visas, which are divided into two main categories, based around length of stay: immigrant visas and nonimmigrant visas. Before you come to apply for a USA visa, you will need to do some research to determine which best fits your travel plans. While the vast majority of people need a visa to travel to the US, there are some exceptions, laid out by US foreign policy.
Citizens of 39 countries are permitted to reside in US territory without a visa for 90 days or less. If you are a citizen of a country that qualifies for the Visa Waiver program, such as the United Kingdom, you won’t need to apply for a short-term visa, for example a tourist visa, to enter the United States. Should you need to stay in the country for more than 90 days, you need to apply for a US visa from the embassy in London. If you’re already in the US, you will still need to renew your visa if it's about to expire.
The visa application procedures will differ depending on which you need to apply for. However, there are some general steps you will need to follow.
First, you need to schedule a visa appointment with the US embassy in London.
The next step in making your US Visa application is to fill out a form (DS-160 if you need a nonimmigrant visa, DS-260 if you need an immigrant visa). It will require you to fill out some personal data, including a biometric photo and a check of your criminal record. You need to pay close attention to the US visa photo specification, given how strict the rules on document photos are in the US.
Finally, you need to make your visa fee payment. The total fees will depend on which type of visa you need.
If you want to travel to the US, you’re going to need a US visa - a document which grants you access to a given country, which you can apply for through the relevant embassy. Visa applicants will need to upload a digital US visa photo or submit two identical photos on photo quality paper, which will be used for facial recognition. This photo must therefore fulfil a number of stringent criteria, relating to its size, your clothing, your facial expression, etc. if it is to be accepted.
The US visa photo requirements dictate that your US visa photo should be 5 cm x 5 cm in size - with the height of the head, measured from your chin to your crown, working out as 25 mm - 35 mm. The face should be central and your eyes should be around 25 mm - 35 mm from the bottom of the photo. If you're using a digital USA visa photo, the image must measure between 600 x 600 pixels and 1200 x 1200 pixels.
Religious and medical headwear will be accepted in US visa photos, provided they don’t create shadows that obscure your face. You are not allowed to wear hats, or any other form of head covering, for your photo.
Glasses are not permitted in the US visa photo - unless they cannot be removed for medical reasons e.g. recent surgery. You should try to provide evidence, e.g. a letter from your physician, of this requirement.
It is recommended that you wear plain clothing that you would wear daily. Uniforms should not be worn in the US visa photo, apart from religious clothing if worn regularly.
In the USA visa photo guidelines, it says your face should be in full view and directly facing the camera. You must have a neutral expression - so no smiling or frowning - and your eyes need to be open with your mouth closed.
Your US visa application may get rejected and therefore take more time if all of the requirements for the biometric photo are not met. To avoid this, ensure that you have followed all of the standard criteria, outlined on the State Department’s official website, in your US visa photo. Here are some of the most common mistakes to avoid when taking your new photo:
When you come to apply for your US visa, you will need to provide a biometric passport photo to verify your application and your visa. The UK Passport Office publishes detailed information regarding the criteria your visa photo needs to meet. There are many options available for taking photos:
When you need to take your US visa photo, all of these requirements can make your US visa application seem like a complicated process. Fortunately, we can help! Passport Photo Online makes the process easy for you: just take a new photo, or choose an existing photo, and upload it. We will then check that all of the requirements are met and help you make any changes. Using AI software, the app alters your photo until it is guaranteed to be accepted by the US authorities.
Our background editing feature can change your photo’s background to a plain white or off-white one, fitting the US visa photo requirements. Also, we can automatically resize and crop your image to fit the required dimensions. I
Passport Photo Online app is available in both the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store, allowing you to use it to take your biometric photo on any smartphone or device. Take your photo for the US visa from anywhere, even from your own home and our app can ensure it will pass the government checks. Simply go to our website or download the visa photo app now and get your US visa photo online, with no hassle!
Photo requirements are based on: travel.state.gov
Last update: 28/09/2022
No, visa photos are a required part of the application process.
An American visa photo needs to be 51 x 51 mm in size. Digital files need to have a resolution between 600 x 600 pixels and 1200 x 1200 pixels, with a file size of 240kB or lower.
London has got plenty of shops where you can get your US visa photo taken. Branches of Snappy Snaps and Timpson will offer visa photos, as well as a myriad of independent shops. However, if you are unable to get into the city, or can’t find the time to get to one of these places, consider using Passport Photo Online, it’s available from wherever you are!
You can go to a professional photo studio or photo booth, but if you don't want to waste time and money you can also stay at home to take your photo , with help from Passport Photo Online’s US visa photo tool. Take a new picture, using the guidelines, upload it to the site and let our AI do the rest: In mere seconds, we will get you your US visa photo guaranteed to be accepted.
The US visa photo should be 5 cm x 5 cm. The height of the head from the chin to the crown needs to be within 25 mm and 35 mm.
Yes, there are. It should be a neutral colour, white or off-white, otherwise, you risk your photo being rejected.
There aren't any requirements about your clothing's colours in a US visa photo. You can simply wear clothes that are worn daily, although it is better if they are plain. Religious clothing that you wear regularly is accepted too. Other uniforms are to be avoided.
No, you can't: your expression needs to remain neutral, with your mouth closed and your eyes open. . Neither smiling, nor frowning are accepted.
You can wear only small earrings that don't cover any part of your face. However, we suggest you take off any larger items of jewellery while taking the photo - if there’s any glare or reflections in your photo, it will be rejected.
Generally, eyeglasses are not accepted in a US visa photo, however, you can wear them for medical reasons. In this case, you need to justify it with a letter signed by a medical professional.
You will be allowed to wear a hijab in your visa photo as long as it doesn’t obscure your face.
You can take your visa photo with a beard, as long as it doesn’t cover your face entirely.
When taking a photo of a baby or young child, you still need to ensure that the photo is taken against a white background, with no one else in the photo and, wherever possible, with the child facing the camera with their eyes open. The State Department will, however, accept photos of a very young baby with their eyes closed.
A US visa photo needs to measure 51 x 51 mm if on paper and between 600 x 600 pixels and 1200 x 1200 pixels, if digital. The background needs to be white or off-white in colour and must be uniform, with no shadows.