Note: This is NOT a duplicate of this question

Difference: In both other questions, the posters traveled once to the US for the original purpose for which the B1 visa was obtained. Their question is about visiting again using the same visa. However, I've not traveled to the US yet, and I'm planning my visit. What I want to understand whether I can use this visa for a visit whose purpose is not the same as what was submitted along with the application.

Can I use a B1/B2 visa for tourism that was originally obtained for business purposes BEFORE I actually visit the US even once?

I had applied for a business visitor visa for a valid business reason but by the time I got it stamped, my plan changed. So I've not visited the US even once.

Can I now use this visa to visit as a tourist without having used that visa for its original intended purpose?

PS: I live in India.

  • 1
    I hope the users who marked this question will unmark it. I've edited the question to add emphasis to the part that shows how this is different.
    – jrharshath
    Sep 4, 2015 at 19:36
  • 2
    If it's not that question it's this one: travel.stackexchange.com/questions/1319/… I've read both questions and I don't see any difference. If you claim it's not a duplicate please indicate exactly why not.
    – Karlson
    Sep 5, 2015 at 2:16
  • Editing to clarify that difference.
    – jrharshath
    Sep 8, 2015 at 17:13
  • Dupe or not, the answer is the same. It doesn't matter whether the first time (or any other time) you use the B1/B2 is for the same purpose as that for which you initially applied. The US government recognizes that plans change. If asked about it, answer honestly. Sep 14, 2015 at 3:33
  • You say B1 in the title but B1/B2 visa in the body. Which visa do you have?
    – JoErNanO
    Sep 17, 2015 at 9:46

1 Answer 1


A B1/B2 visa allows you to travel for both tourism and business purposes:

Visitor visas are nonimmigrant visas for persons who want to enter the United States temporarily for business (visa category B-1), tourism, pleasure or visiting (visa category B-2), or a combination of both purposes (B-1/B-2).

Therefore, although your original plans might have changed, you should be allowed to visit the US as a tourist on that visa. Obviously, you'll have to explain your travel purposes when entering the US. Be honest about your change of plans and make sure you have all the necessary documentation to prove that you are not trying anything illegal.

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