Foreign National Work Visa Information

Foreign nationals can work in Alaska as long as they obtain proper authority to work legally. You will need to obtain a United States Work Visa before you can work in Alaska. Due to the complexities of applying for and managing H type visas, many Alaska employers do not hire foreign nationals under this program. However, we have been seeing an increase in the number of employers that are hiring foreign nationals working with J-1 Student Visas.

IMPORTANT – You will need to apply for a work visa through a sponsoring agency (see list) or go through the process of obtaining your work visa before you apply to employers on AlaskaJobFinder.

Please note, we are not experts at work visa issues and do not offer any support or assistance in this area. However, with the assistance of Alliance Abroad Group, we have put together the following information about obtaining work visas.

Overview of Work Visa Options:

Unless you are married to an American, have a green card, or are applying for political asylum, more than likely, you would need an employment-based temporary visa to work in the U.S.A. Click here for our Frequently Asked Questions Section (FAQ).

University Students
If you are a bonafide university student, and your country has diplomatic relations with the U.S., you may be eligible for sponsorship by qualified licensed exchange programs. These sponsors could bring you to the U.S. on a J-1 exchange visitor visa to participate in an exchange program called “Summer Work/Travel Program”. You must be 18 years old to participate and the maximum time you can work is 4 months.

Several visa sponsors will give students a discount for finding their own job. Click here, for visa sponsors for J visas. Please help by mentioning in your email to the sponsor you select. If you want to stay for more than 4 months, an H visa may be appropriate for you.

General Public

If you are not a university student, and your country has diplomatic relations with the U.S., you may be eligible to qualify for the H visa (temporary work). H-2 visa is used for seasonal workers in short supply in the U.S. H-2A visa is used for seasonal agricultural workers, while H-2B is non-agricultural. The H-2 jobs are usually for unskilled labor work (or manual labor) and last from 4 to 10 months. You may not change jobs on the H visa. has packing jobs in fisheries which would be H-2B jobs; we also have fish processing, a H-2A visa job. Picking cabbage in the Matanuska Valley would be a H-2A job. But your sponsoring organization would decide on the proper visa to fit the job. Click here, for a list of visa sponsors for H visas. More detailed information on the H visa is available on the website of the Consulate of the U.S. Embassy in your home country.

Overview of Eligibility

H-2B Visa Profile
J-1 Work and Travel Visa Profile
Any individual who meets job requirements and has favorable work references and good level of English. Preferred Age: 18-40. Must have current passport. Must be an active student in the university and good level of English. Must have current passport.
Employees on this visa are only permitted to work the job description that was petitioned by the host company. The employee is not authorized to work in any other capacity, including anything outside of the host company. An employee on a J-1 visa is permitted to work multiple jobs with permission from the local coordinator.
Applicants will have to choose from the designated positions that have been petitioned. A list of jobs for H-2B applicants will be provided to the overseas partner. J-1 applicants may apply for any existing and open position.
Visa is valid according to dates of job. * The visa holder is authorized to travel for a 10-day period both before and following the period of validity on the labor certification. The J-1 Visa is valid for a four month work period and 29 days for travel only during their holiday break from the university.


Visa Sponsors, Visa Program

Managers and other valuable visa-related resources:

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