Photo Requirements for U.S. Visas
All applicants for a U.S. Visa have to upload a digital photo with their DS-160 online application form.
To insure that your photo fulfills our requirements, please read the requirements below. If we determine that the photo does not meet the requirements, we will ask for a new photo. We recommend bringing a paper photo on photographic paper to the visa interview, even if you uploaded a digital photo.
The following minimum requirements must be met or your application will not be processed. Please see the paragraphs below for more details.
- The photographs must not be older than six months.
- The photographs must measure roughly 5 cm x 5 cm.
- The photographs of the applicant’s head must be between 2.5 cm and 3.5 cm when measured vertically.
- The photographs must be in color and taken against a white background.
- The applicant must face the camera directly, preferably with both ears visible.
The photograph must be an unmounted full face photo. A “full face“ photo is one in which the applicant is facing the camera directly. The applicant should not be looking down or to either side, and the face should cover about 50 percent of the area of the photo. Although variations in hair styles and in head coverings make it difficult to rigorously define the term “face,“ in general, the head of the applicant, including both face and hair, should be shown from crown of the head to tip of chin on top and bottom and from hair line side-to-side.
The photograph should measure 2 inches square (roughly 5 cm) with the head centered in the frame. The head (measured from the top of the hair to the bottom of the chin) should measure between 1 inch to 1 3/8 inches (25 mm to 35 mm) with the eye level between 1 1/8 inch to 1 3/8 inches (28 mm and 35 mm) from the bottom of the photo.
Photos must be in color and taken against a white background. Photos should be printed without borders.
Head coverings and hats are only acceptable if they are worn for religious beliefs, and even then, may not obscure any portion of the face of the applicant. Sunglasses or other accessories detracting from the face as defined above are not acceptable unless required for medical reasons (an eye patch, for example). A photograph depicting a person wearing a traditional facemask or veil that does not permit adequate identification is not acceptable. Photos of military, airline or other personnel wearing hats are not acceptable. Photographs of applicants wearing tribal, national costume or other headgear not specifically religious in nature are not acceptable.