How to Write a Visa Invitation Letter

Updated on January 5, 2024
At a Glance:
  • A visa invitation letter is a document written by a U.S. citizen to confirm their willingness to host and accommodate an international visitor during their stay.

  • It is required to show a temporary place of residence for the visitor’s visa application.

  • The letter should include specific information about the host and guest, such as names, addresses, dates of birth, relationship, trip purpose, and entry/exit dates.

  • It is recommended to include supporting documents like proof of subsistence means, ID/passport copies, and itinerary.

  • The letter is submitted by the guest along with other visa documents at the embassy or consulate.
  • –>

    As a person living in the United States with a green card, which signifies your citizenship, there may have been various moments when you desired to invite someone, likely from your home country, perhaps your parents or friends, to your residence. Such a visitor, however, needs the right visitor visa, or tourist visa, such as a B2, allowing them to legally stay in the country.

    In the visa application process, as advice to any visa applicant or would-be hosts, don’t overlook the importance of a visa invitation letter. On average, an invitation letter increases the chances of obtaining a visa by 27%. so, while a visa invitation letter isn’t mandatory for all visas, it’s very helpful for a B2 application.

    What Is a Visa Invitation Letter?

    To shed more light on the purpose and significance of a visa invitation letter, it’s a document a citizen or green card holder of the United States drafts, corroborating and pledging to accommodate an international visitor – a friend or family member – in their home. Hence, the visa can signify a temporary place of residence, providing an affirmation of the host’s readiness and ability to house their visitor for the duration of their stay.

    Who Needs A Visa Invitation Letter?

    If you’re planning to visit the U.S. to meet friends or family and need a tourist visa, an invitation letter can be beneficial. U.S. residents can provide this letter to bolster your visa application.

    For those with trip sponsors, a visa sponsorship letter can be sent, which can then be attached to your visa application when presented at the U.S. Consulate.

    How to Write a Visa Invitation Letter: Required Info

    A valid visa invitation letter should also contain certain details about the guest, including:

    • Full name
    • Address
    • Date of birth
    • Telephone number
    • Occupation
    • Home type (room/flat/rented home/owned home)
    • Status of the host in the host country (e.g. work visa, lawful citizen, or any other legal status)

    That being said, this letter should also include certain information about the guest, among which are:

    • Full name of the visitor, as is shown on their international passport
    • Visitor’s address and phone number
    • Date of birth
    • Relationship between guest and host
    • Trip purpose
    • Exact entry and exit date

    Many visa applications, especially for B-2 tourist visas, get rejected when hosts don’t compose the letter properly. The tone should reflect a genuine and close relationship with the visitor, making sure it doesn’t sound overly formal or official.

    Visa Invitation Letter Template

    Putting all of that together, you’ll get an invitation letter template that looks like this outline:

    Heading Information

    • Current Date
    • Recipient [Embassy]
    • Subject

    Introduction

    Host Information:

    • Name
    • Address
    • Immigrant/Citizenship Status:

    Visitor Information:

    • Name
    • Nationality
    • Current Address
    • Relationship

    Visit Details

    • Duration
    • Purpose
    • Planned Activities

    Financial and Accommodation Assurance

    • Occupation of Host
    • Annual Income
    • Living Arrangement
    • Financial Responsibility

    Commitments

    • Both the host and the visitor have taken days off for the visit
    • Assured return of [Name of Visitor] to [Insert Country] before visa expiration

    Closing

    • Request for favorable consideration of [Name of Visitor]’s visa application, ensuring all responsibilities and guaranteed return.

    Contact Details

    • Phone Number
    • Email
    • Signature

    Visa Invitation Letter Example

    Here is an example of a U.S. visa invitation letter template:

    Image shows an invitation letter for visa sample

    Visa Invitation Letter Sample

    Remember, the template is a starting point. Your letter can be customized as needed as long as it has all of the core components. For example your letter’s content could look like this:

    [Current Date]
    [Embassy of the Country]
    [Address of Embassy]
    Letter of Invitation for [Name of Visitor]: Passport No: [Passport Number]

    Dear Sir/Madam,

    My name is [Name of Host], and my place of residence is at [Address of Host], United States. I am sending this letter so that it may act as support for the visa application for [Name of Visitor]. He is a citizen of my native country, [Insert Country], living at [Visitor’s Address], whereas I am a lawful permanent citizen of the United States. We have been friends for five years, and I would like it that he could visit me between [entry date] and [exit date], during which time we can visit the country together.

    As an IT specialist, my income is a total of [insert sum] per year – which means that I am in the ability to financially support him with accommodations and any necessities. He will be staying with me at the address I stated above, during which I will be fully responsible for him. Both of us have taken days off during this time, which means that I will be able to give him my full attention.

    I own an apartment that has an extra room in it, which I will give to [Name of Visitor], during their stay. During his time here, we plan on visiting [Insert main attractions that you plan on visiting] – and once his stay has come to an end, [Name of Visitor] will be returning to his home country.

    [Name of Visitor] will present to you this letter, along with the supporting documentation necessary to obtain his visa. We hope that you would kindly consider this request, as I assure you that he will return before the expiration of his stay.

    With Respect,
    [Name of Host]
    [Address of Host]
    [Phone Number of Host]
    [Signature of Host]

    Visa Invitation Letter Requirements

    Hosting U.S residents or citizens should consider writing the visa invitation letter themselves using online resources and formats. They can take advantage of publicly available knowledge or advice concerning visa-related matters. However, if uncertain, they should reach out to an immigration attorney or a visa specialist.

    • They have to be a lawful permanent resident or a citizen of the country which the applicant is trying to visit
    • They must have a registered living space (a house or a flat)
    • They must be a friend, girlfriend/boyfriend, or relative/member of the family of the person applying for a visa
    • They must have enough room in their home for the person opting for the visa

    Writing a visa invitation letter can seem daunting, but it becomes much easier once you understand its purpose and the needed content. Each embassy may have its own specific form for the letter, but if they don’t, there’s certain information that must be included, from both host and guest.

    Supporting Documents

    As mentioned, while it may not be necessary for every embassy to submit the visa invitation letter (therefore, will not require any documents), it would still be quite thoughtful if you include the following:

    • Evidence of subsistence means (in the eventuality that the host will support the guest financially)
    • A copy of the host’s ID or passport
    • Proof or flat/homeownership or a rental contract
    • An itinerary of the places that you are planning to go to or visit during their stay
    • Proof of days off from work (not mandatory, but if you have proof, it will work in your favor)

    Where to Submit a Visa Invitation Letter

    Once the letter has been written, it will have to be submitted by the guest planning to visit at the consulate or embassy – along with the other documents for the visa. The host is required to scan it and forward it to their guest, who will proceed to submit it along with the supporting documents, including the Form I-134. This will be done at the time of their appointment.

    Read More

    Final Thoughts

    Writing a visa invitation letter is not that difficult, provided you know what details are necessary to add. After all, the purpose of this letter is to prove that the visitor has a place to stay at, and will not cause any troubles while in the U.S. The more reliable you seem, the more trustworthy they will also appear in the eyes of the immigration agent.

    Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

    Do I need a letter of invitation for a visa application?

    A letter of invitation is not always mandatory but can be beneficial for certain visa applications. It helps establish the purpose of your visit and provides additional documentation for your trip.

    Who can provide a visa invitation letter?

    A visa invitation letter can be written by a U.S. citizen or legal permanent resident. They should know the visa applicant personally and be willing to vouch for their visit’s purpose and duration.

    Which U.S. visa categories require an invitation letter?

    Not all U.S. visa types mandate an invitation letter. However, certain visa categories, like the B-2 tourist visa, often benefit from having one. It’s always best to consult the specific visa requirements to determine if an invitation letter is advantageous for your application.

    Is it necessary for all visa applicants to have an invitation letter?

    No, not every visa applicant needs an invitation letter. The requirement varies based on the visa category and individual circumstances. Some applicants might benefit from including one to strengthen their application, while for others, it might not be pertinent.

    JOIN OUR NEWSLETTER
    I agree to have my personal information transfered to MailChimp ( more information )
    Join over 100,000 visitors who are receiving our newsletter and learn more about finance, immigration, and more!
    We hate spam. Your email address will not be sold or shared with anyone else.

    Frank Gogol

    I’m a firm believer that information is the key to financial freedom. On the Stilt Blog, I write about the complex topics — like finance, immigration, and technology — to help immigrants make the most of their lives in the U.S. Our content and brand have been featured in Forbes, TechCrunch, VentureBeat, and more.