Many individuals ponder the question “how can I move to the USA?” without considering the financial implications. Immigration to the USA, like in any other country, can be a significant investment of time and money. Let’s explore the costs associated with immigrating to the USA.


The USA is one of the most popular countries in the world to immigrate to. However, becoming a U.S. permanent resident or a citizen is a long and costly process.

The total cost of acquiring citizenship in the USA ranges from $4,000 to $11,300, with most people spending between $6,000 and $8,000. This is a major expense, so financial preparation is crucial for the migration journey.


If you’re not ready for such a permanent and expensive commitment, you might want to consider the J-1 program, which offers a 12-month training period to experience the American workplace.

The program provides opportunities to work at some of the most luxurious hotels and Michelin-star restaurants in the USA.


If you’re interested in a career-changing experience, you can learn more about our programs here. Keep in mind that the costs of immigrating to the USA can vary, but the following are some of the most important. Let’s get started!

USCIS Form Filing Fees

USCIS = The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services. 

“This is a component of the United States Department of Homeland Security. When you apply to USCIS, there are various fees involved in the process. The filing fee depends on the form of the application for residence. Request for non-immigrant status is typically easier than an immigrant petition.”

Petition Fees

The fee for petitions varies depending on the type of application submitted, typically ranging from $300 to $600.

Attorney’s Fees

It’s not mandatory to hire a lawyer for immigration, but having one can expedite the process, especially with the frequent changes in immigration laws.


The standard legal fees for an immigration lawyer range from $3,000 to $4,000 for an H-1B visa, which allows U.S. employers to temporarily hire foreign employees in specialized occupations.

The fees can increase to $10,000 if you’re dealing with a deportation issue. Family-based petitions usually cost between $800 and $1,500.

Medical and Vaccination Costs

The US requires applicants to undergo a medical examination and receive vaccinations for certain diseases before they immigrate. You are required to be vaccinated for diseases such as mumps, measles, rubella, and polio. The average cost of these vaccines, plus a physical examination, will be about $1,000.

Naturalizing Application

You can become a naturalized citizen after being a permanent resident. As a resident, you have the right to vote and petition for your family.

The naturalization fee is currently between $640 and $725 for processing applications, with an additional $85 fee for biometric services. Applicants who are under 14 years of age or over 70 years of age do not have to pay the biometric fee.

Citizenship Test Prep Materials

Before taking a citizenship exam, it may be helpful to attend a training session. Program fees differ from one provider to another. Before making a commitment, be sure to research and select the best company! The USCIS has a directory of colleges and organizations offering training courses – some are paid programs and others are free.

Other Costs

If you have a negative immigration history or a criminal record, you may need to submit additional documents or seek legal assistance. You should also consider postage, transportation, and other incidental expenses from your home country.

Immigrating to the USA may seem difficult, but Placement International is here to help and guide you along the way! If you want to make your American Dream a reality, we recommend exploring various temporary options. One popular method is to apply for an F-1 visa.

This visa allows you to spend an extended period of time in the country, where you can study and participate in a paid internship for up to 2 years. This can potentially lead to visa sponsorship and make the entire citizenship process quicker and more affordable.