Visa help

Here you can find help and information on how to apply for a visa to go to an iGEM 2015 Jamboree.
Certain countries require a visa for citizens to enter the United States. Please verify if you will require a visa to attend the Giant Jamboree.

iGEM Headquarters does not have any authority over consulate offices or the visa application process.
The only way to have the highest chance of successfully obtaining a visa is to apply early.
If you do not yet know who will be attending the Jamboree, err on the side of caution and have all members apply for a visa.

Students should apply for B-1 visas, not B-2. The B-1 visa is a business visa, which allows the visa holder to attend and present at a conference. Travel visas, such as the B-2, do not allow the visa holder to present at a conference.

Invitation letter system

You can get a customized invitation letter to use when applying for your visa by using the online invitation letter system.

    To obtain your visa invitation letter, follow these instructions:
  • Log-in to
  • Go to your User Information page
  • At the bottom of your account page you will see a box for Visas - Invitation Letters
  • Click on "edit" and enter your information
  • Save your edits
  • Download your invitation letter by clicking on "Download an invitation for the iGEM Giant Jamboree"


Make sure that you are on your team's Roster. If you are not already on the roster you must join the team and have the primary contact approve your request to join. Alternatively you can ask the primary contact to provide you with the team membership joining code.