A Guide To The United States Digital Nomad Visa

Not only is the United States a global leader and economic superpower, but it is brimming with natural beauty, has an interesting history, and is full of networking and work opportunities. As such, in theory, this is the perfect place for remote workers to settle, isn’t it?

But before getting excited over the prospect of living out your very own American dream, the question to ask is, of course, is this even a possibility? Let’s take a look.

Can I Live In The USA As A Digital Nomad?

The United States beckons eager remote workers with its diverse offerings. From vibrant urban centres to breathtaking natural vistas, there is something for everyone. Well, in theory, there is something for everyone. In reality, for foreign nationals, the American dream for foreign nationals hinges on obtaining the appropriate visa.

Unfortunately, to begin with the bad news first, the US does not currently offer a specific digital nomad visa. However, all is not lost; avenues exist for remote workers yearning to live out their American, and indeed nomadic, dream.

But before delving into the array of visa options for digital nomads, let’s explore why the US might be the ideal launchpad for your remote work journey.

Is The USA Good For Remote Workers?

The US is probably assumed by most to be a good spot for remote workers, but let’s delve a little deeper into why this might be.

Firstly, the US offers immense diversity, offering remote workers a huge array of choices in where they opt to set up shop. From New York and San Francisco to Chicago and Seattle, there is something to suit every taste. Moreover, the country’s well-connected airports enable seamless travel between states, allowing remote workers to explore iconic landmarks such as the Grand Canyon, Yosemite National Park, and the Statue of Liberty.

Besides this, the US boasts a host of amenities tailored to entice digital nomads. While its infrastructure surprisingly may not always rank at the top globally, it still offers cutting-edge technology, speedy internet speeds, and efficient transport systems. Urban hubs teem with vibrant dining spots, cafes, and bars, providing ideal settings for networking and socialising.

Furthermore, the US abounds with coworking spaces like Common Desk Coworking Space, Serendipity Labs Coworking Spaces, and COhatch Coworking Space, catering specifically to the needs of remote workers.

The cost of living varies significantly across different regions; for instance, New York presents notably higher living expenses compared to other areas. However, the extensive options available ensure that remote workers can find accommodations to suit their budgets and preferences.

Finally, the US’s rich history and multicultural environment foster a vibrant cultural tapestry, promising an engaging and enriching experience for visitors. Here, one can anticipate forming connections with like-minded individuals, participating in diverse groups and communities, and immersing oneself in the nation’s dynamic cultural landscape.

United States Remote Work Options

As noted, the US does not offer a visa tailored specifically for digital nomads. But fear not! While numerous countries don’t provide dedicated visas for digital nomads, many offer permits that serve a similar purpose. Fortunately, the US falls into this category.

According to Citizen Remote, here are the top visa options for digital nomads:

H-1B Visa

The H-1B visa enables US employers to hire foreign workers for specialised occupations, potentially opening avenues for digital nomads with the necessary specialised knowledge, bachelor’s degrees, or equivalent work experience to be employed domestically.

In short, this is a work visa allowing nomads to be legally employed under a US company. Valid for 3 years and extendable to 6 years, it offers an attractive option for nomads seeking an extended stay abroad.

B-1 Business Visa

The B-1 Business Visa, distinct from the B-1 Tourism Visa, offers a temporary extension option for foreign nationals seeking a short stay in the US.

Under this visa category, nomads cannot engage in employment with a US-based company and must maintain registration for remote work outside the States. This visa is also limited to nomads working in specific fields such as research or lecturing.

Visa Waiver Program

The Visa Waiver Program is a little different, but can still work for nomad needs. This program allows foreign nationals from specific countries to travel to the US for tourism or business purposes for a total of 90 days or less without obtaining a visa, making it perfect for any remote worker looking for a more fleeting stay in the States.