Skip to ContentSkip to Footer

How Much Does a K-1 Visa Cost?

Posted on May 23, 2022
|
By Heather Beliles, M. Ed.

Are your trying to figure out how much does a K-1 visa cost? Couples who are applying for a K-1 visa for the foreign national fiancé(e) should anticipate a total cost of approximately $2,300. These costs include fees paid to the United States government, at either the USCIS field office, the USCIS website, or at the U.S. embassy or consulate offices. This includes other mandatory fees as well as common potential additional fees. This figure does not include other costs like passports, pictures, potential translation services, additional official copies, possible vaccination costs, travel expenses, and fees as they relate to children traveling to the United States with their K-1 parent.

The good news is, not all fees are to be paid at one time, as payment of any fees and other costs are typically due over the course of about a year.

Government Filing Fees for a K-1 Visa

Fees paid to the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) include:

  • Petition for Alien Fiancé(e)
    • Form I-129F: $535
  • Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status
    • Form I-485: $1,140
  • Biometrics appointment for foreign-born fiancé(e)
    • Form I-485: $85

Fees paid to the United States State Department include:

  • Online Nonimmigrant Visa Application form
    • Form DS-160: $265

The USCIS does adjust their fees from time-to-time, so it is advised the applicants confirm the final cost before filing. The most up-to-date fee information for all of their forms can be found on their website. Additionally,use this calculator to obtain more information about government-related appointment fee and form filing fees can be found on the USCIS Visas for Fiancé(e)s of U.S. Citizens website.

Details About Filing fees

As the U.S. citizen is sponsoring their foreign fiancé(e), they will be the person who files the Petition for Alien Fiancé(e), otherwise known as the K-1 visa petition, with the USCIS. The filing fee of $535 is to be paid at the time the petition is filed. If the foreign-born spouse happens to have a K-3 visa, there is no filing fee for him or her. Similarly, if the K-1 visa holder will be bringing his or her children to the United States with them, there is no filing fee for their children.

The fiancé(e) of the sponsoring U.S. citizen will apply for their permanent residency in the U.S., commonly called a green card. The foreign national file their Adjustment of Status application with the USCIS, that is if they plan on staying in the United States after the couple gets married. The fee of $1,140 is to be paid at the time the application is filed.

The foreign-born fiancé(e) will also be the one to schedule a biometrics appointment with the USCIS. During this appointment, their fingerprints, photograph and signature will be collected, for the purposes of having their identification confirmed. The fee of $85 is not due at the time of the appointment, as the foreign fiancé(e) would have already paid it at the time they applied for their green card.

Lastly, the foreign-born fiancé(e) will be the one to file their Nonimmigrant Visa Application. The fee for processing the application is $265 and is to be paid at the time the fiancé(e) submits their application.

A more exhaustive list of fees associated with the various types of visas, can be found on the U.S. Department of State website.

How can I pay K-1 Visa Filing Fees?

K-1 visa-related petition and application fees can be paid in person, at the respective USCIS or U.S. consulate or embassy location, or online. If the applicant prefers to pay their application fees online, the USCIS system guides the payer through the process of paying your fees with a credit, debit, or pre-paid card. When the applicant is ready to submit his or her form, the online system will redirect to the Department of Treasury site. This is a secure site, and the applicant will know it is the correct one because the address in the browser will display pay.gov It is the only website they use for processing fees.

Such filing fees can be paid with a personal check, cashier’s check, money order, bank account withdrawal, or with a debit or credit card. If the applicant elects to pay by check, it should be made payable to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

Alternately, if the applicant prefers to pay using their credit card, they must also complete Form G-1450 which authorizes credit card transactions. The USCIS and U.S. DOS accepts American Express, Discover, Visa, and MasterCard. If the credit card gets declined, the applicants’ petition, application or request will immediately be rejected. Unfortunately, they will not make another attempt to process the applicant’s credit card.

If the applicant lives abroad and wishes to pay their fees where they live, he or she can check with the International Immigration Offices on the USCIS website. Similarly, the applicant can also contact the U.S. embassy or consulate nearest them for directions on how to pay the K-1 visa-related application fees.

Common K-1 Visa Expenses

  • Passport(s) for the applicant(s)
  • Birth certificate copies of the K-1 visa applicant and their children
  • English translations of documents in a language other than English
  • Medical exams
  • Possible vaccinations
  • Photos (two that are 2in x 2in)
  • Mailing or postage costs
  • K-2 visas when applicable
  • Travel expenses

Digital and or physical copies of certain supporting documents are required throughout the application process. Such copies include the applicant’s (and their children, when applicable) passport and birth certificate. If the applicant requests an officer at any given government agency for documents or official copies, they should expect to pay additional fees.

Documents in a foreign language are required to be translated into English. Such translation services fees for something as simple as a birth certificate usually range between $20 and $40. For documents more than one page could be more.

Medical examinations typically cost about $200, but the costs can vary depending on the provider. The same is true for vaccinations, when required.

Identification verification is also a part of the application process, so applicants should account for the cost of two recent pictures, which are 2-inch-by-2-inch in size. Service fees for this type of photograph also varies.

Some applications and supporting documents will be required to be mailed to the respective government agencies so there will be postage charges, as well as costs for the mailing envelopes.

K-1 visa applicants will also need to consider costs for traveling to the U.S. embassy or consulate, as well as to the United States.

Additionally, there will be fees associated with K-2 visa applications. If children are accompanying the K-1 visa recipient, the fees will include additional embassy fees and medical examination costs.

Conclusion about How Much Does a K-1 visa Cost

The total K-1 visa costs approximately $2,300. This includes mandatory petition and application fees, biometrics appointment, medical examinations, as well as other common fees. This amount does not factor in other costs like passports or pictures for the applicant(s), any necessary translation services, other official copies as needed, probable vaccinations, travel expenses to interviews and to the United States, postage, or any fees for the children of K-1 visa applicants.

Payments for these types of applications and other requests are made at a USCIS field office, on the USCIS website, the U.S. Department of State website, or at a U.S. embassy or consulate office. While not all international USCIS offices outside of the United States accept all payment types, applicants can go to the USCIS forms website for instructions on how to pay – depending on where they currently reside.

Of course the children of a K-1 fiancé(e) visa holder are permitted to accompany their parent to the U.S., and are allowed to legally remain until their immigrant visa is granted. The two limitations are that the K-2 visa applicant must be under 21, and must also be unmarried. Such K-2 applicants will have a discounted rate on the I-485 form, with a fee in the amount of $750.

As the process typically takes about a year, K-1 visa applicants are not required to pay all the fees at once, nor in the beginning. Each petition, application, form, and request has its own time and place during the K-1 visa application process.
For additional tips, the USCIS has some tips for form filing on their website. Further resources for applicants looking for some tools to help manage their applications can be found here.

I live outside of the U.S., how do I file my application where I currently live?

It is important to remember not all forms of payment are accepted abroad. For more information on how to pay, according to where you are filing, go to the USCIS forms website.

I’m getting my K-1 visa, and I’m bringing my children with me. Do we have to pay a fee for their I-485 too?

Yes, children older than 14 must have their own Form I-485. If they are younger than 14, their fee for filing Form I-485 is $750.

Are there any other forms I need to file, but are free to file?

Yes, these forms are free to file:
Form I-864, Affidavit of Support,
Form I-693, Report of Medical Examination and Vaccination Record,
Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization,
Form I-131, Application for Travel Document

cross