Photo for U.S. visa - requirements & size

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Body-camera distance

The distance between the face and the camera should be about 40 cm. Ideally the photo should be taken by the other person.


Posture: Straight ahead

Place your face in front of the lens. Hold the camera at eye level and keep neutral face expression.



Stand facing the light source, for example an exposed window. The background will be cut out, don't worry about it.

U.S. visa - Digital photo requirements & size

U.S. Visa Digital Photo for Indian Citizens
Width: 2 in
Height: 2 in
301 dpi
Is it suitable for online submission?
Image definition parameters
Head height: 1.29 in
Bottom of the Photo to the Eye Line: 1.18 in
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More about United States Visa 2x2 Inches (51x51 MM) - Requirements

US Visa for Indian Citizens

The United States of America is one of the most chosen travelling destinations in India. Indian citizens go to the US to work, study, visit or spend time with their families. You can apply for an immigrant or nonimmigrant visa to the US. Requirements for them are different but in terms of desired photos are exactly the same.

Photo requirements for the United States Visa

Taking the right photo for U.S. Visa may be complex. Just, upload a selfie, and we will transform it into a professional photo for the United States visa!

Our Visa to the United States photo maker will make it meet all the requirements and verify its correctness.

Visa to the United States - photo rules

  • The width of the photo is 2 inches (Equivalents to 51 mm) and the height is 2 inches (51 mm)
  • Background should be white or off-white in colour. Our photo cropping tool will make it #ffffff, as suggested by official requirements.
  • The U.S. visa photo must be in colour
  • Natural facial expression
  • Normal clothing. Uniforms or extravagant outfit might cause a photograph rejection. Religious clothing, nevertheless, remains allowed
  • Glasses, jewellery and other items should not be worn
  • Mouth should be closed
  • One should directly face the camera with full face in view

Differences in visa photos size and requirements

Visa photos differ primarily in size. Some countries allow only a specific photo format, others offer several possibilities. An example of a strictly defined size of the photo is a U.S. visa, which must always have the size of 2 x 2 inches (51 x 51 mm). China, on the other hand, expects a 33 x 48 mm. Once you choose a specific visa photo, our u.s. visa photo verification tool will change your selfie so that it matches all the requirements.

We encourage you to visit U.S. embassy in New Delhi, or its website, before the journey to get familiar with the new information for tourists and immigrants.

There are many photography studios in New Delhi, Mumbai or Bangalore, but why bother if you can take a visa photo from home?

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Make US Visa photo at home - Which are US Visa photo requirements?

You need to visit a dedicated embassy website, download an applying form and take a picture in color. You will need two identical photos. There are some requirements you must meet so that your picture could be accepted. US visa photo specifications like dimensions, posture, background, face expression, eyeglasses and jewellery are very specific. We present them for you as a FAQ.

Are there US visa photo requirements the same for Indians and other nationalities?

Yes. There is the same specification for a US visa photo for India and other countries citizens.

When I should take my US visa photo?

Not earlier than six months before you apply for the visa. If your appearance has changed significantly during six months, you need to take a new picture. Change of hair style or beard is not a reason. Also children and teenagers under 16 years old change naturally during the growth process and they do not need to provide a new photo.

What if I have experienced a significant change of appearance during the last 6 months? Should I take a new picture for my US visa application?

Yes. If you made a gender transition, lost or gained a significant amount of weight, had a facial plastic surgery or experienced a permanent facial deformation you are obliged to provide a new photo. Also if you added or removed tattoos or piercing on your face area.

What is the required US visa photo size?

2 x 2 inches (51 mm x 51 mm) is the only acceptable size of picture.To be sure, that is correct, you may use a special online tool and adjust the size of your picture. Small framing is allowed but special corners - not.

What must be seen on the US visa photo?

That’s easy: your face, neck and upper part of your shoulders. What is important: your head must fill 50-69% and be centred in the picture. Eyes should be placed symmetrically on the line placed 28-35 mm from the bottom edge.

Incorrectly cropped pictures will not be accepted. If you don’t want to risk rejection of your application, use a cropping tool for a US visa photo.

Which is the required background’s color on the US visa photo?

White or off-white is the most recommended. The important thing is that the background must be plain, free of shadows, patterns and any other objects.

If you haven’t got a possibility to arrange it, you may be interested in using a tool which erases unsuitable background and changes it into required white.

What is the best lightening for the US visa photo?

The picture should not be too clear or too obscure and the tone of your skin must be natural and accurate. Our tips are:

  • take a picture standing frontally to the window, 
  • take 2 metres of distance (selfie is excluded)
  • use a tripod or ask somebody to help
  • check if both sides of your face are symmetrically illuminated.

Can I take an angled or profile photo to my US visa?

No. Desired head position in the US visa picture is very concrete.The picture must be taken in front with eyes staring towards the camera, not down, not up.

Relax your face muscles, open your eyes and close your mouths. Light smile is allowed, but a neutral face expression is highly recommended.

Can I wear glasses and hands-free tools on the US visa photo?

Even if you wear glasses everyday, they must be taken off for the US visa photo. Sunglasses are forbidden too. If you wear a hearing device, you may leave it in the picture. But wireless headphones or hands-free devices are not allowed.

There are some cases when glasses cannot be removed for medical reasons but you must provide the embassy or consulate with a medical statement signed by a medical professional or health practitioner.For example, you had recent ocular surgery and the eyeglasses are necessary to protect your eyes, it’s the case. 

But remember that your eyes must be recognizable. It means that the frames of the glasses must not cover your eyes, and the picture must be free of glare on eyeglasses, shadows or reflection on your face.

Am I allowed to wear traditional Indian clothes in the US photo?

Clothing is not very important. You can wear your normal clothes, traditional Indian clothes or casual style, only uniforms and camouflage patterns are not allowed. You can wear religious clothing if you provide the embassy or consulate with a signed statement. Colors and patterns other than camouflage do not matter.

Should I take off my jewellery and piercing for a US visa photo?

Not necessarily. Jewellery and piercing on the US visa photo are allowed. they are acceptable if they don’t obscure your face.

Can I wear a head covering in the US visa photo?

There are many types of head covering in India and you may ask yourself: Am I allowed to wear my pagri or my ghoonghat (ghunghat, ghunghta, ghumta, orhni, laaj, chunari, jhund) when I take a picture for a US visa? How are US visa photo requirements for India?

So, you may wear an India head/hear covering on the US visa photo only if they do not obscure your face below the hairline and you prove that they are a part of recognized, traditional religious attire. You must submit a signed document that you wear the given item for religious reasons. Items covering most of the face, like f.ex. niquabs, are not allowed. Headbands or massive, decorative hair accessories may obscure your face and are not recommended.

May I use filters and Photoshop in the US visa photo? 

No. You are not allowed to use any graphic program to retouche your US visa picture. If you want to free the background of shadows and change it into white, you can use a tool for the US visa photo in

Instead of filtres, you can wear make-up, this is allowed.

Where to take an US visa photo near me?

You can do it in a professional photographic studio or photo booth but as well at your home. Taking a picture for the US visa by smartphone or digital camera is absolutely allowed.

So, if you don’t have time or for any other reason do not want to go to a place where a professional photographer serves you, the solution can be an on-line photo editor which resizes, adjusts background, crops and checks your US visa photo.

Go on the website, upload your picture following instructions and be sure it will be accepted by the embassy or consulate! We guarantee it to you!

How to make and check a photo for the US visa on-line?

If you live in India, US visa photo size and other requirements are the same, so why not to try

The picture you prepare with this tool has the warranty of acceptance by a given institution. You can order a digital version which we will send on your email address or we will print it for you and deliver wherever you wish. If you decide for a digital version, you can print your photo in a printing store in your neighbourhood.

As you can see, you may have your US visa photo done, cropped and checked in a moment. You can save your money and time using our photo online service here Our online US visa photo tool is ready for you!

Last update: 02/06/23

About the document

Get your the United States visa photo online You don't have to worry about the visa photo's size or requirements, we will take care of it. Our photo cropping tool will transform your selfie into a professional the United States visa photo!

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