Can International Students with F-1 Visa Sell on Amazon to Make Money

Amazon is an online store where people can sell all manner of things. There is hardly anything in the world that you cannot buy on Amazon. For this reason, many people sell there and make money. Amazon is open to all people.

Therefore, the problem with an F-1 visa international student selling on Amazon to make money is not with Amazon but with the United States government. If not, anybody can make money on Amazon.

However, the question is whether the United States government allows an international student who has an F-1 visa to own a space on Amazon and sell it to make money.

F-1 Visa Explained

The F-1 visa is an academic visa that the United States authorities issue to students who want to study in the United States. When the United States issues an F-1 visa to you, the authorities issuing that visa regard you as a full-time student. Before they issue you the visa, you must have been accepted into an academic institution where you have been enrolled in a course of study.

Remember that you are the one to apply for the visa. Before the authorities concerned will give you an F-1 visa, they will screen you and give you the conditions to fulfil before they can issue you the visa. One of such conditions is your ability to fund your study fully in the United States.

Also, remember that before you can apply for an F-1 visa, you must be living outside the United States. The authorities will also make sure that you have something in your home country to show that you are not coming to the United States to live permanently but to live temporarily and return home.

Therefore, to the United States authorities that issue an F-1 visa, your only reason for coming to the United States is to study and nothing more. If you do in the United States what you do in other countries, you would be an offender.  The next thing you may see is repatriation, if not outright arrest, a trial, and a jail term.

When you go for an F-1 visa, you will discover that all your fingers will be captured at the embassy. The moment these authorities approve your F-1 visa, they will add your name to the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS). In the United States, a body uses this information to track people and monitor them in the schools where they are registered.

Can International Students with F-1 Visa Sell on Amazon to Make Money?

From the foregoing, the simple answer to this question is no. Why is this so? This is so because the reasoning of the United States people is different from the reasoning of other people in other countries. Their interpretation of an F-1 visa is that it is non-immigrant and temporary. A visa is issued to international students who want to come to the United States to study, no more, no less.

To them, you have only come to the United States to participate in their education system. For this reason, they will not allow you to get money from there. They will see your selling on Amazon as doing business in the United States.

If you like, pay taxes to them. The interpretation of your visa contravenes their law. You are in the United States to study, not to do business. Therefore, pursue your education and do nothing more than that.

However, the school authorities of your school are human beings with understanding. If, for any reason, you need money to support your education, speak with the school authorities. Instead of outright having a store on Amazon where you sell to make money, you may engage in some casual jobs within the campus that will not be interpreted as a business.

Let us face facts: selling on Amazon to make money is a serious business. For you to sell on Amazon, you must have a store. Some people in the United States and outside the United States are doing just that and living fat doing so.

How then do you think that United States authorities will allow you to do such business in the United States when you tell them that your only reason for coming to the United States is to study? They will see you as a deceiver, and they will deal with you as such.

Therefore, if you have decided to study in the United States, be patient and face your studies. After your studies, you can decide to sell on Amazon and make the money you want to make if that is where your passion is.

Making Money in the United States as an International Student

As you can see, the United States authorities are very strict in interpreting their laws. They like following their laws to the letter. However, your purpose in going to the United States was indeed to study. Nevertheless, upon reaching there, your eyes are opened to see opportunities for making money, such as selling on Amazon.

The best thing to do is to allow yourself to finish your education. After your education and the expiration of your F-1 visa, you can now apply for an immigrant visa. At this time, if you are still interested in selling on Amazon, you can now register with Amazon and start selling whatever you wish.

Your opportunities are unlimited as an immigrant in the United States. You can do any business in the country without any harassment. You may even now see beyond selling on Amazon.

Your education, too, will now help you do whatever you want to do. The truth is that there are many money-making opportunities in the United States. Having left school, you can now practice what you have learned. You can find job opportunities in your area of study. Otherwise, you can engage in any other business of your choice.

At this time, your purpose for being in the United States is to make money and not study. You can now face your money-making ventures squarely. Nobody will have the time to track you down and monitor what you do. You are now a free man in the United States.

Anyone going to the United States must study them very well. One thing that I know about the United States is that they are very strict in the interpretation of their laws. Moreover, they do not reason like others do. Neither do they tolerate as others do. With this understanding, if you are going there for studies, face your studies and leave anything business-like alone.

On the other hand, if you are going there for business, be straightforward with them and let them know that you are coming there for business.


According to United States F-1 visa rules, an F-1 international student should not sell on Amazon and make money. Making money in the United States is different from studying in the United States. If you want to study in the United States, face your studies. If you want to make money, then change your status and be ready to make money. The United States authorities will not allow you to pursue the two things together.

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