How to immigrate to USA from South Africa

How to immigrate to USA from South Africa

The idea of immigrating broad is enticing to a lot of people living in South Africa. Often, the decision to move abroad is associated with the search for better opportunities. Even so, the process of how to immigrate to USA from South Africa can be overwhelming to some individuals. Those emigrating from South Africa should seek to understand the immigration process from South Africa to facilitate a smooth process. 

work in America
Image:, @workpermitcom
Source: UGC

As is the basic requirement in many countries, any person moving to the U.S. from South Africa should have a visa. The visa is usually attached to one’s passport. There are different visas that one can acquire when immigrating to the U.S. The papers one should get mainly depend on the purpose of travel. Visas vary on the eligibility requirements. Here are a few things you would want to know about how to immigrate to USA from South Africa.

How to immigrate to USA from South Africa

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Let us have a look at some of the ways that one can use to immigrate to the U.S.

Family-based immigration South Africa

Individuals who have a relative or relatives in the U.S. can become permanent citizens as well. However, the relative in the U.S. must sponsor the immigrant during their time of stay in the U.S. When applying for the visa, the relative should provide evidence of the relationship with the applicant and also show proof of sustainable income.

Fiancé(e) Visa

A person who has a fiancee in the US is eligible for a unique kind of visa. This document allows the person to travel and marry their spouse. The two people should, however, marry within three months after getting into the U.S. The application of this visa takes a few months and involves two steps. First, the party who is already a U.S. citizen should file an -129F visa petition. Once the petition is approved, the beneficiary gets the approved petition.

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The next step is for the applicant to get the necessary documents for the visa application. Once the applicant has the required documents, the consulate prepares an interview. The couple needs to report their marriage details to the USCIS offices for the beneficiary to obtain the green card. One should remain in the country until the process is complete, and then they get permanent residence.

For this type of application to work, both parties should be free legally to get married when applying. The intended marriage should also meet the relevant U.S. state marriage law requirements. Also, the two parties need to have met physically within the last couple of years.


USA visa South Africa
Source: UGC

The visa you require to become a US citizen on an employment basis is known as EB-3 visa. In this type of visa application, the applicant needs to have a reliable employer based in the U.S. This means that one must have made a job application and passed. After that, the job applicant must meet the eligibility requirements. If the application is successful, the visa status changes. The application is also required to provide other documents such as a medical report.

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Individuals who have specialized knowledge in different work fields can get an L-1 visa to enable them to work in the United States. Often, companies use this type of permit to transfer their workers who can offer specialized knowledge. Once an individual gets this visa, their spouse and minor children get L-2 visas to help with their moving.

READ ALSO: Great migration: Why are so many skilled South Africans moving abroad?


Individuals who have interests in investing in the United States are eligible for the EB-5 visa. One must provide evidence of financial commitment in that they will create employment opportunities for U.S citizens. The advantage of this permit is that you can live anywhere, not just in the area of your business location.

When making an immigrant visa application, an applicant can opt to seek the help of an attorney. However, the attorney must be US-licensed. The attorney executes the G-28 form, of which a copy should accompany the applicant’s petition. Also, the attorney offers help in filling the different forms. During interviews, the attorney accompanies the applicant but does not take part in the interview.

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Although emigration from South Africa to the USA involves numerous steps, it is not hard if you meet the requirements. You can opt to apply through a consular officer, consulate, or through the US embassy. You will receive the help you may require on how to immigrate to USA from South Africa.

How much does it cost to immigrate to USA?

emigration from South Africa
Image: twitter@visajourney
Source: UGC

The fees will depend on the kind of visa. USA visa South Africa applications based on employment usually cost around $405, while applications based on relative applications cost $230. When filing for a fiancé(e) visa, the petitioner pays $340 to file the petition. Before the interview with the consulate, one pays $350 as the fee for applying.

The other cases cost about $220. It is essential to note that the charges are per person and are inclusive of the security surcharge, which is about $74. One may incur extra costs to cater to the medical examination and getting other necessary documents.

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Can South Africans work in America?

It is possible for South Africans to work in the U.S provided that they have met the legal terms. For instance, one must make a job request while in South Africa and undergo an interview. Once one passes the interview and is sure of a job position in the U.S. they can go ahead and make the application. In this case, employers play a significant role in the application process.

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What do I need to immigrate to America?

emigration from South Africa
Source: UGC

The applicant should assess whether they meet the requirements for moving. Besides, one needs to have money that can cater for the costs that they will incur throughout the process. It is also advisable for one to have cash that can sustain the immigrant for some months after they get to the U.S.

What is the easiest way to immigrate to USA?

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There are different ways that one can immigrate to the U.S. There is no definite answer as to the easiest way for one to move. The easiest way to move to the U.S. is the one that meets all the eligibility requirements.

READ ALSO: Great migration: Why are so many skilled South Africans moving abroad?

Are you thinking of how to immigrate to USA from South Africa? Do you have a thousand questions spinning around your head and you are not sure where you should start? With the information above, nothing can stand between you and your dream if you wish to live and work in America. Thousands have done it before, and so shall you. Good luck!

DISCLAIMER: This article is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional advice or help and should not be relied on to make decisions of any kind. Any action you take upon the information presented in this article is strictly at your own risk and responsibility!

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Source: Briefly News

Peris Walubengo avatar

Peris Walubengo (Lifestyle writer) Peris Walubengo is a content creator with 5 years of experience writing articles, researching, editing, and proofreading. She has a Bachelor of Commerce & IT from the University of Nairobi and joined in November 2019. The writer completed a Google News Initiate Course. She covers bios, marketing & finance, tech, fashion & beauty, recipes, movies & gaming reviews, culture & travel. You can email her at