Visa Waiver Program (ESTA), B-1 and B-2 Visitors

Overview
Orange Page Divider

Visa Waiver Program (ESTA)

Citizens of certain countries are eligible to enter the United States as either business visitors (WB-Waiver Business) or tourists (WT - Waiver Tourism) without obtaining a visa. The eligibility criteria for admission are identical to those seeking admission based on a B-1/B-2 visa. 

Orange Page Divider

University Policy

  1. Compliance with U.S. immigration regulations requires that the nature of the activities in the United States be considered and not simply the duration of the proposed visit.
     
  2. As per Columbia University policy, those admitted to the U.S. as B-1 or B-2 or through the Visa Waiver Program are not eligible for a University ID Card or UNI, Visiting Scholar/Scientist Designation, or Academic Appointment.
     
  3. The decision regarding visa type should not be made by the proposed visitor, even though they consider it “easier” to enter as a Business Visitor/Tourist rather than apply for another type of visa. 
Orange Page Divider

Visitor for Business (B-1)/WB (ESTA)

Acceptable activities and criteria

Acceptable activities include:

Additional criteria

Inappropriate Activities

Orange Page Divider

Visitor for Tourism (B-2)/WT (ESTA)

Acceptable activities and criteria 

Orange Page Divider

Honoraria and Visitor Status (B or ESTA)

Payment of honoraria is very limited. Consult Accounts Payable before confirming the terms of any proposed entry as a business visitor or tourist.