USA J1 Hospitality Internships


OVC is proud to be working hand in hand with our local and international partners to offer young South Africans the opportunity to work in the USA for 1 year on a hospitality internship program at leading resorts and hotels throughout the USA.

Now is the time to gather valuable international work experience in the field of Culinary, F&B and Rooms Division positions. The program training plans are put together on a rotational basis during the 12 months, so you will work within different departments and roles throughout the resorts to gain as much knowledge and experience in your field. On your return to South Africa, you would be able to include this international work experience and continue to climb the ladder within the industry locally!

Program Objectives:
- Practical hands-on training in your field of study or work experience
- Cultural Exchange – to learn about America and to share your SA culture with America
- Learn the American hospitality industry from a 4 or 5* resort and hotel in the USA and bring this knowledge back to SA
- 12 Month placement only – you will return to SA prior the end of 12 months
- Earn money to pay back your program fee while working!


Status : Program Open
Embassy : Open
Vaccination Required : No
PCR Required to Enter : No

Typical Internship Position Information:

- Culinary/ Food and Beverage/ Front Office and Rotational positions available to choose from.
- Minimum of 32 working hours per week guaranteed.
- Stipends ranging from $7.00 - $25. Tips included for service positions.
- Shared housing close to work (Ranges from company housing to self-arranged options).
- 2 or more interns will share a room while on the program. Apartments are charged per person for the room.
- Transport, food and personal items are paid with your stipend each month.
- A deferred payment plan for your program fee is available.
- Take time off and travel the USA
- Gain international experience.
- Cultural immersion
- Emergency medical insurance included
- 24/7 Program Support

NOTE - This program is not a money-making opportunity and should not be seen as an opportunity to send money back home. You will earn enough money to pay the above expenses each month and possibly save a little extra money at times, should you budget well.


1. Must be a current full-time student at a post-secondary ministerially recognized institute outside the USA, doing any hospitality, tourism, culinary course or similar course. Only full time, in-classroom studies are recognized.

2. Must have completed studies as mentioned in point 1 and if applicants have no valid work experience or less than 1 years work experience, they must enter the US within 12 months of the date printed on their qualification.

3. Applicants who have graduated more than 12 months ago, must show at least 12 months’ work experience in their field of study. Experience can be from practical or real-life work experience.

4. No qualifications – no problem. Applicants must be able to document at least 5 years of work experience outside the United States in a specific occupation (hospitality related).

Start/Finish Dates

All year round

Visa Info

12 Month J1 intern/trainee visa program.

Repeat participation is allowed under the following conditions:
- In all cases, repeat participation should address the development of more advanced skills or a different field of expertise.
- Interns may repeat as interns if they are still a student or recent graduate.
- Trainees may repeat after a 2-year period of residency outside the USA.
- Interns who wish to be trainees may do so after a 2-year period of residency outside the USA.


Admin fee R9950
Program fee $2400 - Please see Program Deferment plan for finance assistance.
Other fees R315 Collect for free from DUR/JNB/CPT/PTA DHL office. Pay the fee for delivery to your home.
Visa fees $185 Visa & $220 SEVIS
Travel Insurance Included
Airfare (approx) Approx. R10 000 – R20 000 (One way to accommodate 13 months in the US)
Recommended Spending Money Minimum $1000 - $1500 including initial housing and expenses


- Get together all application documents and submit to your OVC office.
- Application is sent to the Program Manager for review.
- Once approved by the Program Manager, applicant must pay the application fee.
- Await interview - you might not be placed on your first interview. We will continue to interview you with employers until placed.
- Once placed, pay Visa and SEVIS fee.
- Once placed, applicants will also work hand-in-hand with OVC to secure and source housing. Rental deposit, 1st 2-4 weeks rent and application fees are payable up front before departure. Housing is basic and interns may require to take some bedding or personal items or purchase on arrival. Utilities are not included in rent. Average rent ranges from $125 to $200 per week, depending on location.
- Once placed, a finance agreement is signed at OVC for repayment of program fee, during your time in the USA.
- OVC takes care of all your travel arrangements.
- Applicant will have a final preparation meeting with OVC to ensure that you are ready to fly.

More Info

Program Fee Deferred Payment Plan
OVC offers applicants the option to pay $800 of the $2400 placement fee in SA, and pay the balance once in the USA ($1600 over a period of 8 months while working in the USA)

Mandatory Spending Money
Applicants must take $1000 - $1500 to America for the fees listed above (rent, deposit, spending and other items)

EXAMPLE MONTHLY EARNINGS & DEDUCTIONS: (Based on 32 hours - on average one works 40 hours per week over the year)
Minimum wages - $16 per hour x 32 hours/week = $512 x 4 weeks - $2048 per month
Housing rent $300 - $600 per month
Program fee repayment (8 months only max) - $200  (On Program deferment plan costing)
Tax approximately 10-15% - $205 - $305

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