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J1 Visa 2015

Frequently Asked Questions:

Q: Do I have to be a student to go?
A: YES the program is only open to Full-time 3rd Level students that are returning to Ireland after they have completed their summer work in the USA.

Q: Who can go on the J1 Programme?
A: If you are a full-time student in College or University, the J-1 Summer Work Experience & Travel programme is the programme for you. The J-1 visa allows you to enter the U.S.A and work for up to 4 months and then travel for a further 30 days after this (only during your university summer break).
To be eligible you must:

  • You must be aged between 18-28 years.
  • You must be attending a full-time day course (minimum 2 yrs duration).
  • Your course must potentially lead to a degree or higher qualification.
You must be returning to Ireland after your summer work under the J1 visa in the USA is completed. Please note, final year students are eligible for J1!

Q: Can I apply for the J1 without a Passport?
A: Yes you can but you need to provide Go4Less with a photocopy of the Passport that you will travel to the US with, as soon as possible, in order for Go4Less to process your J1 Visa. You need to have a valid Passport so Go4Less can order your Work Permit and for you to attend your US Embassy Interview.

Q. How long does my Passport need to be valid for?
A:If travelling on an Irish Passport then your passport must be valid for the length of time that you are in the US. If you are travelling on a non-Irish Passport then please contact Go4Less for more information.

Q: Can I extend my visa after it's expiry date?
A: No. It is NOT possible to extend your visa. You are only able to work during the legal program dates as indicated on the Certificate of Eligibility for Exchange Visitors DS-2019 visa form, which is supplied to you by Go4Less/INTRAX WORK TRAVEL.

Q: Do I have to take the Go4Less insurance policy?
A: Yes. The fees you pay to Go4Less include at least a 4 month Go4Less insurance policy. It is an excellent policy as it is specifically designed with young travellers in mind. There is no free health service in the US and all medical care must be paid for. Medical care is very expensive in the USA, so we want to ensure that you are adequately covered. If you have a pre-existing condition please call the office for advice as you may require additional cover. When you receive the insurance policy leaflet, be sure to read the policy carefully so you know what is covered and what is not.

Q: Where will I live?
A: You will need to organise accommodation in the USA. Our website puts you in touch with places that you can rent from and also employers that do have employee housing, if you get in early!

Q: I may have to take repeat exams in August/September. How will this affect my trip to the USA?
A: Every year there are a number of people who receive the bad news that they have to repeat an exam. Having repeats doesn't have to mean the end of the summer, but if you have to go home early, we help change your flight (for a fee not covered by insurance) but we will book your return ticket back out to the USA, which will be reimbursed to you by the insurance company. Remember we can take our Exam Failure Insurance for just a €49 supplement.
Note: this cover must be taken out before you sit your first exam.

Q: Is there someone I can speak to about the program to find out what to expect?
A: Yes. In addition to being on campuses around the country, we will also be holding J1 talks. Register for a talk and we will contact you by SMS to advise you when the next talk is taking place. Talks last less than 1 hour and even though optional, we strongly recommend you attend one. If you are unsure about what is involved, what you would do, or if you just want to find out more before applying, then attend!

Q: What is the average price for accommodation?
A: The majority of participants said that their rent was $50-$100 per week. Although rents can certainly be higher, many also found cheaper accommodation. If you are thinking about living in a large city (New York, Boston, Chicago, LA, San Francisco, Miami, Washington DC, etc) or posh resorts such as Nantucket, Martha's Vineyard, the Hamptons in NY, then you can expect to pay quite a bit in rent.

Q: What Job can I not work on while on my J1?
A: The US State department have advised that you cannot work in the following jobs:

  • In positions that could bring notoriety or disrepute to the Exchange Visitor Program;
  • In sales positions that require participants to purchase inventory that they must sell in order to support themselves;
  • In domestic help positions in private homes (e.g., child care, elder care, gardener, chauffeur);
  • As pedicab or rolling chair drivers or operators;
  • As operators or drivers of vehicles or vessels for which drivers' licenses are required regardless of whether they carry passengers or not;
  • In positions related to clinical care that involves patient contact;
  • In any position in the adult entertainment industry (including, but not limited to jobs with escort services, adult book/video stores, and strip clubs);
  • In positions requiring work hours that fall predominantly between 10:00 pm and 6:00 am;
  • In positions declared hazardous to youth by the Secretary of Labor at Subpart E of 29 CFR part 570;
  • In positions that require sustained physical contact with other people and/or adherence to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's Universal Blood and Body Fluid Precautions guidelines (e.g., body piercing, tattooing, massage, manicure);
  • In positions that are substantially commission-based and thus do not guarantee that participants will be paid minimum wage in accordance with federal and state standards;
  • In positions involved in gaming and gambling that include direct participation in wagering and/or betting;
  • In positions in chemical pest control, warehousing, catalogue/online order distribution centers;
  • In positions with traveling fairs or itinerant concessionaires;
  • In jobs that do not allow participants to work alongside U.S. citizens and interact regularly with U.S. citizens and to experience U.S. culture during the workday portion of their Summer Work Travel programs;
  • With employers that fill non-seasonal or non-temporary job openings with exchange visitors with staggered vacation schedules;
  • In positions that require licensing;
  • In positions for which there is another specific J visa category (e.g., Camp Counselor, Trainee, Intern);
  • In positions with staffing agencies, unless the placements meet the following three criteria:
    • Participants must be employees of and paid by the staffing agencies
    • Staffing agencies must provide full-time, primary, on-site supervision of the participants
    • Staffing agencies must effectively control the work sites, e.g., have hands-on management responsibility for the participants
  • After November 1, 2012, in positions in the North American Industry Classification System's (NAICS) Goods-Producing Industries occupational categories industry sectors 11, 21, 23, 31-33 numbers (set forth at

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