H1B Visa Stamping Experience 2012 New Delhi

5 Tips from H1B Visa Stamping Experience 2012 – New Delhi – Process, Advice

by Guest Author · 29 comments

One of our readers, Tamana Singh attended H1B visa interview at New Delhi in late June 2012. She was kind enough to write up a very detailed article explaining process at US Consulate in New Delhi and some important advice for prospective H1B Seekers.  Thanks to Tamana for taking time write up and sharing with our readers. Congrats to her on getting H1B visa stamped !  You can share your visa stamping experience here

Background Information :

The whole process for H1B got completed fruitfully on XX June 2012 in New Delhi. My petition was filed on Nov 4th 2011 but took a lot of time due to RFE that got raised in March 2012.

Process at  US Consulate in New Delhi before  Visa Interview

My time slot was for 10:00 AM and I reached the US embassy at 9:30 AM. The applicants are supposed to wait outside in the open waiting for their time for the interview process. Things are very well planned at the embassy.
1) Small posters are pasted at the entry gate which mention the timing for which the applicants are supposed to get in. Announcement is also done for the same side by side. Therefore, you come to know of your turn/timing very easily. You stand in the queue for the entry. The personnel at the entry gate check your interview letter (provided by Visa department of the organization) and match with their own record, so one has to ensure that they try to go inside in their time slots only. Also keep your passport in your hand along with the interview appointment letter.

2) If you carry any mobile phones,electronic items etc. they are to be strictly deposited at the entry gate only since they are not allowed inside.

3) Then you move inside the premises of the embassy and find the support staff in front of you who will organize our documents in a proper order. Following is the order in which you should present the documents to them:

a) Visa fee HDFC receipts
b) DS-160 form submission page that clearly shows the barcode.
c) I-797B form original
d) Company letter

The support person will take out one slip from the HDFC fee receipt and will paste it on your passport front. The above mentioned documents will then be stapled with the passport and you will be directed to move to the token machine.

4) A person will get you a token from the token machine based on the type of Visa that an applicant comes for. It”s basically a slip with a number mentioned on it. This token will be stapled by this person on your DS-160 submission page that was stapled along with your passport. This token number will be referred to at all points in the whole process. There is a seating area near the token machine with display panels in front which shows the token numbers and counter numbers. the applicant has to wait until his/her token number is flashed on the display. After it gets displayed, note down the counter number and move towards the Visa area. Direction boards show you the path to go towards the Visa gate.

5) After you enter the Visa area, wait for your token number that gets displayed on the display panel there. Then move towards the counter number that is shown along with your token number. The personnel at the counter will take your documents(passport and the stapled docs). Mainly some kind of information is entered by the operator there. The operator may also ask 1-2 question. In my case, the lady asked for the current designation in my organization. You are then asked to move towards the area where fingerprints are taken.

6) At the fingerprint area, support person will direct you to the counter where fingerprints are taken. Give your docs to the personnel and the applicant is asked by the personnel at the counter to place their hands with four fingers at a time on the machine for each hand. Then prints are taken for thumbs of both the hands. The personnel will return the applicant’s docs and ask to wait in the waiting area.

7) Till now, the process is very fast but now the process will get a little slower since the interviews take a little time. There are screens on both sides of the waiting area, with counters in front where interviews are taken. Theses screens will again be displaying the token numbers and the corresponding counters where an applicant is supposed to go for the interview. Multiple token numbers are displayed against a counter so the applicants are supposed to stand in the queue for their counter before their turn.

8) Now the most important part: INTERVIEW :-)

H1B Visa Interview Questions at New Delhi by Visa Office ( VO)
The Visa counselor (who takes interview) will ask for your documents and will ask questions.
Following were the questions that were asked in my case:
a) Are you applying for H1-B??
b) Which company are you working for?
c) Who is your client?
d) Is it the first time you will be travelling to US?
e) What will you be doing for the client? – The applicant is supposed to speak about his/her role and responsibilities in US.

5 Tips and Advice for H1B Visa Interview

Following are a few tips for the interview:
1) Dress well. It doesn’t mean that one has to wear suits or something. Males are expected to wear nice formals (shirt/trouser etc.) and females are expected to wear suits/business formals etc.
2) Don’t get distracted by the interviews that are taking place at the other counters while you are in queue of your counter.
3) Stay cool, calm and appear confident. There is nothing to worry about.
4) Give to the point answers for the questions asked. Don’t unnecessarily start elaborating things on your own.
5) Stay CONFIDENT. The only thing the Visa counselor looks for is your confidence level along with the information that you provide to him/her. This is the most important part in the whole interview.

H1B interview is very simple, trust me. Just remember the information that you provided in your documents for your application and always be honest. The Visa counselors are very well trained and if an applicant gets stuck anywhere, the applicant is definitely grilled.

One more thing, even if you don’t know answer to any question, don’t stand speechless there. Reply that you are not having that information or provide with some relevant information but with full confidence.

Base on your interview, the Visa counselor will let you know the outcome. If you are through, the counselor will say that your Visa is being approved, will take back the documents (passport and stapled docs) and you will get it in X days through courier. Say thanks and come out of the Visa area, Don’t start talking to other people there.

If unluckily, you are not through, the counselor will say that your visa is not getting approved and will return your docs then and there. Don’t start requesting again and come out of the Visa area, Don’t start talking to other people there. There is always another day and this is not an end to things.

If an applicant is confident enough and doesn’t commit a blunder (like telling the wrong hierarchy/supervisor in US, work location etc.), he/she is definitely going to get the Visa.

I wish very good luck to all the applicants and hope that my experience will be helpful to all.

Thanks
Tamana Singh

You can share your visa stamping experience here


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{ 29 comments… read them below or add one }

PleaseAdvise August 23, 2013 at 10:22 pm

Hi Saurabh,

I am currently working on a L1 visa which is valid until Jan 2014. A different company has applied for my H1 B visa in a COS (consular processing mode). My new employer who has filed H1B for me is asking me to join in Dec 2013. So my concern is if my L to H COS (consular processing) gets approved before Oct 1 Can I still continue to work with my current company on L1 visa beyond Oct 1 and join the new employer on H1B (after visa stamping by travelling outside USA if required) OR I will have to join new employer on H1B on Oct 1 which will be the valid start date for my H1.

My main concern is will my stay in US on L1 visa be illegal after Oct 1 (H1 start) OR since my H1 COS is filed in consular processing mode my H1 visa wont be effective until I get it stamped by travelling outside US before I wish to join new employer in Dec 2013.

Please advise. Any inputs / guidance / directions in this case would be appreciated.

Thanks

Reply

Ashu August 23, 2013 at 10:12 pm

Hi Saurabh,

I have similar scenario like Raja.

Got H1B from Company A and got Stamped as well from Chennai in Dec 2012. The company A got closed so joined Company B. Now Company B file a cap-exempt petition.

Do I have to again go for stamping or visa waiver will work for me ?

If yes, then can I go to US on B1(As I would have to travel by end of August 2013) and then can it be possible to get I-90 converted to H1b or any other way that does not require me to travel back to India for H1B stamping ?

Thanks
Ashok

Reply

Raja August 1, 2013 at 7:46 am

Hi,

I got my H1 Visa approved, at this moment I have only case number and receipt notice nothing else with me, I have decided to move out of my current company A and decided to join Company B.

I am sure this decision is right, as I have no projects in Company A available and with company B good chance of getting new projects and all.

Can I use this approval with company B or else can I go ahead for cap-exempt Visa stamped from Company B?

Any earlier response could be best.

Saurabh any of your insight could also be good.

Reply

Saurabh August 5, 2013 at 8:40 am

Raja,
B will have to file a cap-exempt petition for you and submit A’s receipt number as proof of having made through the cap. USCIS will review the case and approve B’s petition. Once approved, you can appear for stamping (I assume you don’t have A’s visa stamp) and then enter US to work for B.

Reply

Laxmikant Bhat January 30, 2013 at 3:14 am

Sir/Madam,

I am working in a reputed IT company in Noida. I am approved for issue of H1B visa through this IT company, but now I am waiting for stamping since last two months, i have not yet got the stamping dates of US Embassy in New Delhi. Kindly advice, why this delay.

Reply

Saurabh January 30, 2013 at 1:44 pm

Laxmikant Bhat,
Are you saying that no dates are showing up for Delhi when you look at the interview scheduling website?

Reply

Sheshu January 14, 2013 at 9:06 am

Hi,

I have a couple of questions regarding my CPT and H1B stamping. I finished my masters at a good university (accredited) in 2010 and started my OPT from October 2010. I am working as a full-time time employee since then. Currently I am working in an american based company as a permanent employee. Unfortunately I missed my H1B visa application last year because of quota filling so fast. My employer is applying for H1B this year.

Since my OPT is ending in March 2013, I enrolled at a university in Virginia (University Of North America –> Non-Accredited) from January 5, 2013 and got CPT from first day. I would want to stay in CPT and work for my employer till the start date of H1B.

Just so you you, my work place is in Dallas, Texas and my University is in Virginia. The classes are during the weekend. So I fly every week from Dallas to Virginia. I have the boarding passes too.

Will there be any problem in my situation when I go for H1B stamping?
Did you come across any people who are in my situation and went to H1B stamping recently. What were their experiences?

Reply

Saurabh January 16, 2013 at 3:20 pm

Sheshu,
Someone has responded to your question in the Q&A blog.

Reply

Sheshu January 16, 2013 at 3:41 pm

Saurabh,

Could you please point me at the right place in Q&A Blog. There are too many questions to look for there.

Please Help!

Thanks!

Reply

Saurabh January 17, 2013 at 9:28 pm

Sheshu,
You posted the same question in Q&A blog. You can access it by logging in and looking at the questions posted by you. I am not able to search for it at the moment.

Reply

Ashish January 13, 2013 at 11:32 pm

Hello Saurabh,

I appeared for H1b visa on 7th Jan along with my wife and son for H4 visa.
My visa was approved and collected the passports on 10th Jan.

For myself and wife Visa was correct. However to my surprise, VISA on my son passport was incorrect. they stamped B1/B2 instead of H4.

I immediately checked with VFS and submitted the passport with all required documents for correction. However since then i have not update.

Request to please suggest how much time visa correction takes and is there any way I can track the status. VFS guys says my son passport is with Embassy and they can not tell the time.

Please help.

Regards,
Ashish

Reply

Saurabh January 16, 2013 at 3:15 pm

Ashish,
I don’t know how much time it will take. Did you try to contact them to know the timeframe? Maybe scheduling another visa stamping would work faster? As its for the kid, you can avail the dropbox facility and not appear for in-person interview (although you will have to pay the fees again if you go this route).

Reply

Abhishek February 27, 2013 at 11:41 pm

Hi Ashish,

Can you let me know how much time it took for you to get the passport back after correction? I am in the same situation as yours.

Thanks,
Abhishek

Reply

Amit Sehgal August 1, 2013 at 7:08 am

Hi,

I am in the same position. I am very worried and stressed. I went for H1B Stamping. H1B was approved by the visa officer. However, I received my passport with B1 stamped on it instead of H1B. Sent the passport back fr correction. Howmuch time will it take.

Reply

James November 19, 2012 at 4:21 pm

Hello Saurabh,

I need some information about H1B visa stamping.

I came to US in 2006 as student for Masters, but It took me to complete 4 years because of some bridge cources. In 2009-10 I was in OPT and then CPT. My got my H1B while i was CPT and worked for a desi company, then i got Full time Job, from same client where I was working as consultant. Please advice me that, it will be any problem to get visa stamping.

Thanks,
James

Reply

Saurabh December 7, 2012 at 3:55 pm

James,
If you have maintained legal status all along and have all necessary H-1 documents, then it should be fine. Are you working in EC or EVC model? Make sure to carry client/project related documents.

Reply

Sambhav October 15, 2012 at 9:14 am

Hey Saurabh,

Is this the right place to ask this. But I am trying to get Visa dates in BNov in delhi none of the dates are open I am checking the website everyday from last 2 weeks. I have already booked the tickets not sure what to do. It’s Oct mid. Any suggestions.

Sam

Reply

Saurabh October 16, 2012 at 10:47 pm

Sam,
Usually dates open up 1-2 weeks in advance. What’s the earliest date available at the moment?

Reply

Akhil October 18, 2012 at 12:24 am

I am in a similar situation as Sambhav and when I checked yesterday there were 2-3 dates available for October but nothing for November.
Even they say that you can check the dates limited number of times, after which you will get error page on Visa appointment page, is that true?

Reply

Gaurav October 18, 2012 at 11:04 am

HEy Akhil,

Yes I was trying to reload the page everyday because i was waiting for some docs from my employer, i got a warning message that, schedule it this time u have been watching this page for long time,

Reply

Akhil October 18, 2012 at 9:28 pm

Hey guys,
If someone finds that the dates for November are opened, please update here.

Gaurav,
Did you try going to the page again and were you blocked by some error or something?

Reply

Gaurav October 19, 2012 at 4:32 am

I acted on the last warning given by the site, something like “this is your last chance to view this page, Please make appointment now “

Reply

Abhishek Jain November 21, 2012 at 11:43 pm

Hi Akhil,

I am facing the same issue for December mid. I could not find dates available between Dec 10th to 2nd Jan 2013 at any of the consulate except Chennai. All consulates are showing dates for January 2013. Does it mean that all the dates at all the consulate for above duration is gone?
When you checked for dates and it dint show you the dates for November, did it show you some dates available in December?
I am totally confused whether dates are selectively opened for availability or they are gone.

JaySingh September 18, 2012 at 2:52 pm

Hi Sourabh,

I am currently in US on H1B VISA, My current VISA is valid till 10-Mar-2013 I need to visit India next year and would return back on 1- Feb-2013. At that time there would be 37 days remaining in my current VISA expiry. My extension is still not initiated. Please suggest the possible options while port of entry.

- If extension is not filed would there be any issues in re-entry to US with 37 days left in VISA expiry ( I would be travelling with dependents\family)
- Should I initiate the extension before leaving for India
- Should I initiate the extension after entering to US
Please suggest and help on the best options.

Thanks,
Jay

Reply

JaySingh September 18, 2012 at 2:53 pm

My Apologies on incorrect spelling Saurabh.

Thanks,
Jay

Reply

Sivasun July 24, 2012 at 3:58 am

Hi Saurabh,
Previous visa details :

2008 – L1B -approved based on – Company A – Client A
2008 to 2011-stayed in USA – Company A – Client B – (since project requirements closed
with client A, worked all my stay with Client B)
2011 – came to India n applied for fresh L1B – Company A – Client B -
-VO asked abt change in client – replied with project closure reason.
– initially was issued a 221G in july ’11 asking for client documentation and later after
submission of all documents.. rejected in november’11 saying “Not Clearly
Approvable”.
2012 – applied for H1B – Company A- Client B
Question: Since I am applying for the same position for which I was denied a L1B , is there any possibility of rejection at petition processing stage or at visa approval stage ? Can the client-change during my initial USA visit still come to haunt me? Note, I have always been with Company A all these years.

Thank you so much

Reply

Saurabh August 1, 2012 at 8:39 am

Sivasun,
It it not possible to say w/ 100% surety if it will impact or not. If the reason for rejection was your work not approvable for L-1, then it will not cause the issue. L-1 and H-1 have different job requirements and it is possible a position not approvable for L-1 may be approvable for H-1.

Reply

Ben June 30, 2012 at 11:45 pm

Saurabh,

A consultancy from US sponsored me H1 and I got the petition approved, which is valid until September 30, 2014. I went for visa stamping in March 2012, but was given 221g. The consultancy was delaying in providing the required documents. During the mean time, the company I work in India was ready to sponsor L1 (blanket) and they refused to sponsor H1. Now, I have two questions:

1. Can I go for L1 interview when my previous H1 visa processing is suspended (because I was given 221g)? Will it have any impact in the interview or interview process?

2. Because I have H1 approval from the consultancy, can I change my job since I have approved H1 with COS in future (before September 30, 2014) or is there any condition like the petition expires in a year from approval if not used?

Reply

Saurabh July 21, 2012 at 11:57 pm

Ben,
1. Two things can happen – they can either ignore your pending H-1 case, or they can ask you to withdraw H-1 visa processing before proceeding w/ L-1. I have seen instances of both happening, and don’t know which one will happen in your case.
2. You can use this petition for future cap-exempt petition. It can be used even after remaining dormant for more than a year.

Reply

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