The photo requirements for US visa vary depending on the visa type, it is important that you pick the right requirement.
Travel, USA

US Visa Photo Requirements

Last Updated on February 23, 2022 by Visa Journal

It depends on the type of US visa and the Embassy where you are applying from, which guides the photo requirement. It may be referring to physical as well as digital photos. If the Embassy says that you need to produce a physical one for a certain type of visa, you need to get it printed. Whereas, you can attach digital photos online while submitting your Form DS-160 or Form DS-260. The photo requirements for US visa vary depending on the visa type.

US Visa Picture Requirements

The US visa photos must adhere to the below rules.

  • Your American visa photo size should be 2×2 inches or 51×51 mm. The photo should be taken in such a manner so that 1 -1 3/8 inches or it should be at least 50% and 69% of the image’s total height from the bottom end of your chin to the top of your head.
  • It should be in color.
  • You should have taken the photo within the last 6 months.
  • There should be no shadows behind.
  • You have to get the photo with a white background.
  • You should face the camera while the photo is taken.
  • Have a neutral expression while the photo is being shot.
  • You should get the photo clicked with both eyes open.
  • You should not wear any uniform while getting the photo clicked. Moreover, religious clothing is allowed. However, you must ensure not to cover your head with any headdress unless it is for a religious purpose. Additionally, the headdress must not cover the face.
  • You should not get the photo clicked with any electronic device. If it is a hearing aid, it may be allowed.
  • If you have spectacles for medical reasons, then you can wear them. You cannot wear sunglasses or any sort of cosmetic glasses. Additionally, you need to get them certified by the doctor. If you must wear glasses, it should not be a frame that covers a large part of your face.

There may be times when the US Embassy may require you to submit digital photos. You need to keep abreast of those guidelines as well.

Digital Photo Requirements for US Visa

  • The digital photograph must be 1200×1200 pixels.
  • You should get the photo clicked in color, as sRGB color space.
  • You have to submit the photograph in JPEG.
  • Your file size should not be more than 240 kb.
  • If the photo is bigger than 240 kb, you have to get it compressed to a lower ratio like 20:1.

If you have a printed photograph that you can replicate into a digital one, then you can do the following.

  • The photo should be 2×2 inches or 51×51 mm. You can scan the said photo with the said dimensions.
  • You have to ensure that the resolution of the photo is 300 px per inch or 12 px per mm.

Visa photo requirements change with the type of visa you are applying for.

Non-immigrant Visa Photo Requirements

The above requirements are standard for the American visa photo size. There are other requirements that change with the kind of visa you are applying for. Some of the norms related to the Non-immigrant Visa are:

  • Those who submit DS-160 must submit a digital photograph along with the application. It should meet the requirements for digital photograph listed above.
  • Apart from the digital photograph, you may be required to submit a physical photo according to your requirements.

Immigrant Visa Photo Requirements

You should also be aware of this category of visa photo requirements. If you want to shift to the US permanently, then you have to submit two physical photos. The photo paper quality must match the norms laid down by the US Visa Picture Requirements above.

Norms For Diversity Visa

If you are applying through the lottery or Diversity route, you have to comply with the below-mentioned standards.

  • You should upload a digital photo.
  • The photograph must be in JPEG format.
  • You have to submit a photograph that has dimensions 600x 600 px.
  • Your photograph size must be 240 KB.
  • Scanning any existing physical photograph should be 300 px per inch or 12 px per mm.

If you are selected in the lottery program, you will have to submit more photographs.

How To Get the Best US Visa Photos?

The rules and regulations governing these photographs are so extensive and confusing. A layman may make mistakes and stand a chance to be refused for visa. It is always better to seek assistance from a consultant. A professional has better knowledge about the norms and can help you in submitting just the right photographs to the Embassy. Then your chances of getting accepted will be better. If you submit photographs having bad quality, the US Embassy can reject them. Then, you might need to go through the entire process again and again. This will also expand the processing time, and your visa will also be delayed. You should always get the photographs clicked by a professional store, which knows the norms. However, if you are taking the photographs yourself, you need to ensure that the camera you are using is high-quality and you must not make any changes with any photo-editing software.

Baby US Visa Norms

You may also need to get the photos of your baby for the US Visa. It can be challenging to get their photographs clicked in order. The baby must have eyes open while getting the photo clicked. You can lay down the baby on a white sheet or white cloth, but ensure that there are no shadows. You can also do the shoot in a car seat to get the photo in an upright manner.

Always do get current photographs only and according to photo requirements for US visa. This will enable you and your family to get the visa approved successfully.