What is the P Visa for Entertainers and Athletes?

The P visa is available to athletes that would like to enter the U.S. to perform at an athletic event, as well as nationally-recognized entertainment companies.

Last updated on May 16th, 2019

The P-1 Visa is one of several temporary work visas. It is available for athletes that would like to enter the United States to perform at an athletic event or for nationally recognized entertainment companies.

Unlike the O-1 visa, P-1 visas may be issued to individuals or groups.

To apply for a P-1 visa, your U.S. sponsor must file Form I-129, Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker on your behalf.

Do I Qualify for a P-1 Visa?

The answer depends on whether you are applying as an athlete or entertainer.


To be eligible for a P-1 Athlete Visa, you or your team must be internationally well-known in your sport.

Evidence of your reputation must include a contract with a U.S. sports team/league/event and at least two of the following:

  • Evidence that you or your team participated in a previous season of a major U.S. sports league
  • Evidence that you participated on a national team during an international competition
  • Evidence that you participated in a U.S. college competition
  • A written statement from a recognized member or official of the an U.S. sports league that explains how you or your team is well-known internationally
  • A written statement from a sports media official or a well-known experts that explains how you or your team are well-known internationally
  • Evidence that you or your team is highly ranked
  • Evidence that you or your teams received a significant honor or award in your sport


P-1 Entertainer visas are only available for groups. In order to qualify, you must show that your group received a well-known international award or prize or at least three of the following:

  • Your group has starred or will star in a well-known production or event
  • Published material that recognizes the achievements of your group
  • Performance with a well-known organization in your field
  • Recognition by a well-known organization, critic, or expert of your field
  • Evidence that your group has a major commercial success
  • Your group receives a high salary

How Long Does a P-1 Visa Last?

The P-1 Visa is typically valid for either 1 year or the amount of time needed to complete your event, whichever comes first. Athletes, however, may be allowed to stay in the U.S. for up to five years.

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