P-1 Visa Explained

P-1 Visa

P-1 Visa (Internationally Recognized Athletes/Entertainers)

The P-1 entertainment visa is a non-immigrant visa that allows athletes, artists, and entertainers from other countries to visit the United States for a single event, competition, or performance. Individuals that compete at an internationally recognized level are covered by the P-1 Visa category.

  • P1A visa – is the visa for internationally recognized athletes or athletic team

  • P1B visa – is the visa for individuals or members of an internationally recognized entertainment group

Types of P1 Visas

There are two sorts of P1 Visas available, depending on your position and reason for visiting the United States. P-1A and P-1B visas are the two types.

The former is for persons who desire to travel to the United States to compete in a sports event. This means they are either professional athletes, individuals whose achievements are recognized internationally, or athletes who are members of a team or group whose achievements are also recognized internationally. You can also get this form of P1 Visa if you're a coach.

P-1B Visas, on the other hand, are for those who desire to visit the United States as part of an entertainment group. This organization must have international recognition. Furthermore, it must have been doing so for some time. Before applying for this visa, the majority of the members must have been a part of the group for at least one year.

What are the Requirements for a P1 Visa?

To be eligible for a P-1 visa, you must meet the following requirements.

  • The applicant must be a well-known athlete or entertainer competing in an international competition.

  • The applicant must show proof of valid contracts with a major sports league or organization in the United States.

  • The P-1 visa petitioner must also provide proof of at least one of the following:

  • Prior season participation in a major American sports league;

  • participation in international games with a national team;

  • A written declaration by a respected specialist or the sports media;

  • Significant participation in a previous major league season in the United States.

What are the Advantages of a P1 Visa?

The P Visa  holder can: 

  • Travel without limitations.

  • Participate in part-time study.

  • Apply for adjustment of status and legally seek permanent residency in the United States.

  • Enter the United States and perform for money or prizes.

  • Apply for visas for essential support personnel and dependents who will accompany you.

  • A person may be allowed to stay in the United States for up to five years, with extensions up to ten years altogether.

What are the Limitations of a P1 Visa?

  • The USCIS will only approve P-1 visa petitions after consulting with the relevant US sports league or organization.

  • P-1 visa dependents are not allowed to work in the United States throughout their stay. Dependents who wish to work in the United States must apply for a work visa.

  • P-1 entertainers (but not sportsmen) must perform in groups rather than individually.

Who Is Eligible for a P1 Visa?

Professional athletes, particularly those who have achieved international recognition, are eligible for a P1 Visa. You can apply as an individual or as a group. This visa is also available to coaches and support staff of the athletic holder.


Members of entertainment groups who have been in a year-long relationship with the other team members are also eligible.

How to Apply for a P1 Visa?

All P1 Visa applicants must provide a standard set of documentation to assess whether or not they are qualified for the visa. A contract with a team or sports league in the United States is required. A contract offered in an individual sport can also be used. You will also require at least two of the following documents:

  • Proof that you will take part in a big US sporting event

  • Proof of the team's or athlete's high position, particularly if the sport has an international ranking system.

  • Evidence that you will play for a national team at an international level.

  • Proof that you or the team you're on has won an award or gotten a notable recognition in the sport.

  • Proof of participation in a previous competition for a US university or college.

  • A written statement from an expert or a member of the sports media demonstrating that you and your team are internationally known.

You'll need separate evidence to confirm your eligibility for this Visa if you're a part of an entertainment group. You will be requested to provide a statement that lists all members of the group or team, as well as the dates they were employed. There must also be documentation that the group has been in existence for at least one year. Not to mention, you'll need proof of any nominations or awards the group has received in this category.

You will also require at least three of the following documents:

  • Trade journals, testimonials, newspapers, publications, and other sources of evidence that the organization or team will continue their work.

  • Proof that in compared to other teams in the same business, the group requests a high premium for their services.

  • Newspapers, periodicals, and other sources of proof of the group's international recognition.

  • Evidence of the team's success in previous events, such as receipts, video sales, or anything else of the type.

  • Proof of anyone in the group receiving particular recognition or awards from government agencies, groups, experts, or critics.

How Much Does a P1 Visa Cost?

A US sponsor or company must file a Form I-129 to USCIS before the athlete can apply for the P1 Visa. There is a $460 cost for each petition. The P Visa application fee is approximately $190. If you wish to proceed with the rest of the application, you must pay this cost.

However, depending on your country's relationship with the United States, additional fees may apply.

P1 Visa Processing Time?

The applicant will have to wait 3 to 6 months after submitting the visa application. Premium processing is available in some cases, and you can obtain it more faster, but you will have to pay for it. After 15 days, you will receive a response. However, the charge is more than $1,225.

Are there any alternatives to a P1 Visa?

If you are not a professional athlete and are not qualified for a P1 Visa, you can apply for an H-2B Visa. If you don't have enough achievements for a P1 visa, the H-2B visa will suffice. In addition, while P1 Visas are not available for amateur athletes, a B-2 Visa will allow them to go to the United States for amateur tournaments.

Is it Possible for a P1 Visa Holder to Apply for a Green Card?

The ability to transition from a P1 Visa to a Green Card is contingent on the circumstances. Because the P1 Visa is only for temporary stay, it would normally be quite difficult. When you apply for a P Visa, you are essentially agreeing to return at the end of the term.


However, if you marry and start a family in the United States, you can apply for a Green Card for permanent residence. It's also conceivable if you switch to an H-1B visa status.


Being a high-performing athlete with exceptional talents will also help you get a Green Card. You'll be able to apply for either an EB-1 or EB-2 Green Card.

How Can we Support You?

We will give a variety of foreign student resources and visa services to assist you in learning everything you need to know about studying in the United States, including exploring university options, degree options, and preparing for visa interviews.


I hope this information was useful. Complex immigration processing can be incredibly complicated and stressful for everyone. Before filing this application, you should seek legal advice from an experienced attorney.

Immigrationservice.com can assist you and will be there for you every step of the journey. Please contact us via phone or email.