H1B Visa Stamping and Dropbox Experiences in India 2017

7 Short H1B, H4 Visa Stamping, Dropbox Experiences – March 2017

In Visa Experiences by Guest Author12 Comments

We have a few visa experiences submitted by our readers for March. Thanks to our readers : Raviganesh, M, Prachi, J, Omniscient, Mano, Karthick  for taking time to share their experience. You can share yours here.
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Visa Stamping Experience by Raviganesh at Chennai
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Background : I had my visa interview @ Chennai today and had my Biometrics done on 28th February. Overall the process was very easy. Please find below the details. For Bio Metrics I reached the VAC on time with the relevant documents. I went along with my wife but didn’t take my son with me.
After verifying our passports, appointment confirmation and DS160 confirmation we were let in. Few people before me had corrections to be done in DS-160. The corrections were spelling mistakes in name, worng type of visa category selected for dependants, incorrect birth place etc. So make sure the details given in DS-160 are without any mistakes.
Then we were handed individual tokens for bio metrics and were sent to different counters. Finger prints and photographs were taken. I had my son’s photograph which I gave it to them along with his passport.
They attach a barcoded sticker behind your passport which is checked at the consulate.

Overall process took just 15minutes and we were out in no time. There were lockers available at VAC for keeping your belongings like bags, helmets etc. But the consulate didn’t have any locker.
H1B Visa Interview Background  : Today (2nd March) was my interview scheduled at 11 AM. We were there 30 minutes earlier and we were asked to join the queue outside the building. After security checks we were let in. We just carried our documents and wallet nothing else. People with bags, mobile phones, Car keys etc. were asked to go out and leave them outside. They were depositing them in the nearby roadside shops as there were no lockers available. So it is better not to carry anything else apart from documents and passports.  Now we were asked to join a queue inside the building. First the passports were checked for the barcodes from VAC, then we were asked to go to the adjacent counter for checking finger prints. Then we were asked to join the final queue.  After 20minutes of standing we were assigned a counter. Our lucky number was 21 ;)..
Now comes the questions….

H1B Visa Interview Questions :  
Me: Good Morning!!
VO: Hi, Good Morning, How are you?
Me: Thank you. I am doing fine.
He then asked for our passports. I gave all our passports. He then scans all of them and was looking at his PC screen for a few seconds. I was pretending to be cool even though tensed inside, whereas my wife was terrified to the core and I can literally hear her heart beating so fast :D..
VO: So who is your employer?
Me: XXXXX
VO: Will you be working from a client place?
Me: Yes. And provided my client details
VO: What is your qualification?
Me: MBA from xx university
VO: What will be your salary?
Me: XXXX (as mentioned in the petition)
VO: Are you working? (to my wife)
She: She got tensed and replied “I am also MBA and then she smiled and said no Sir I am not working. The VO started laughing.
VO: OK mam no worries. I will grant your visas…
We: Thank you..
Good Luck for all others who are taking their visa interviews.
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Dropbox – Visa Stamping Experience by M in Bangalore  
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Background for H1B Dropbox : Here is my experience with dropbox. I had two I797. My VISA stamping expired on 5th May 2016. I had one extension until May 5th 2017. Since I was going for stamping, I got premium processing done to extend the I797 so that I don’t have to keep doing this. New one was valid from 6th May 2017 to 5th may 2020

– I797 1- 05/06/2016 to 05/06/2017
– I797 2- 05/06/2017 to 05/06/2020

This is one of the questions I have seen regarding multiple I797. The drobox person said, I only need one. But I insisted on submitting both for continuity and context. I think that helped as my visa stamping has two PED based on each I797.   I dropped it off at the Bangalore office and post was Chennai. This is something which the online places don’t clarify, but you can drop at any dropbox office and choose any consulate. Technically it should not matter. Minor detail is that I had got my previous visa stamped at Delhi. As long as it is the same country, it does not affect dropbox.

Timeline for H1B Dropbox :
• Dropped off on 3rd March 2017, at the Bangalore facility
• March 6th: VISA status changed to Ready for processing
• March 6th: changed to admin processing
On March 6th, I got a call from the consulate. I missed the call and was not able to contact the consulate at all. I tried via the consulate number and the support call center. The support call center escalated, but no feedback
• On March 10th: the visa status changed to issued.
• March 14th: I picked up my passport from the dropbox
My only lesson was that the missed call from the consulate caused unnecessary panic, but had no bearing.
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Dropbox – Visa Stamping Experience by Prachi in Mumbai  
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This is the first time we tried the Dropbox in Mumbai.
The date we submitted documents was on 8 march 2017. Unfortunately in the CGI office in Bkc you are not allowed to take any bag or cell phone, so make sure you only carry required documents and have a backup person to hold your personal things.
We were asked only confirmation letter, Dropbox letter, 797 approval previous 2 , photos. We did carry all papers that are usually taken for interview as backup.
The visa was stamped on 10 March 2017. An email was sent to us that the passport is ready for collection on the same day. We collected the passport on 14 March.
It’s a very smooth process and we definitely recommend the Dropbox.
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Dropbox – Visa Stamping Experience by J in Hyderabad   
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Background : Dropbox experience in Hyderabad, h1b visa renewal/re-stamping
March 6 2017: Took the Passports, new i797, 2 pics(US specs), DS-160 confirmation, Dropbox confirmation letter to Hyderabad drobox location (Begumpet)
Lady at the door(security) inspects the documents and says
– I am missing the previous i797 (one which was used to stamp the previous h1b visa)
– My picture has shadow under my ears, so it can’t be accepted.

  • March 7 2017: Same docs as earlier, old i797(one used for previous stamping in 2013) and new pictures
  • March 8 2017: us travel docs status- Passport has been delivered to the post ds-160 status- Administrative Processing
  • March 8 2017: us travel docs status- Passport is still with US embassy/consulate ds-160 status- Administrative Processing
  • March 9 2017: us travel docs status- Passport is still with US embassy/consulate , ds-160 status- Administrative Processing, next update was on May15.
  • March 15 2017: us travel docs status- Passport is still with US embassy/consulate ds-160 status- Issued
  • March 16 2017: 10 am us travel docs status- Passport has been received from consular section and is being processed for delivery , ds-160 status- Issued , 1 pm (receive an email and a text), us travel docs status- Passport is ready for pickup , ds-160 status- Issued, 6 pm us travel docs status- Passport has been picked up, ds-160 status- Issued

During the waiting period of a week, i contacted UStraveldocs call center and they said I can request a dropbox expedite if it takes more than 10 business days (after its dropped off). I was asked to send an email to “[email protected]“, which i did not have to do
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Dropbox – Visa Stamping Experience by Omniscient in Mumbai   
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Here is my experience with the Dropbox waiver program in Mumbai(Originally from Mumbai)
Background – I am a full time employee working for the likes of Apple after doing my Masters at a reputed university out there
My first visa stamp had expired in 2016 and was eligible for Interview Waiver
Timeline:
On the side, my attorney firm had applied for I – 140 premium on Feb 28th
I arrived in India on 9th March – Thursday
Could have gone next day but decided to drop the docs next week

  • 13th March – BKC Facility was closed for Holi. Knew beforehand
  • 14th March – Went to document collection facility at BKC. Since I was dropping docs, did not need any appointment and just walked in. Submitted one 2 X 2 photo and a copy of latest I 797 along with my passport. Was a breeze. Was out within 30 minutes
  • 15th March – Checked status for my I – 140 and it was approved.
  • Checked on the 17th on both CEAC and US Visa Docs and the status was admin processing and your passport is still with the embassy
  • Checked on the 20th and it had the same status. Although I was fairly confident that there would no issues with my case, I did get a little anxious since it was almost a week since I had dropped it off. I started checking Trackitt and other sites on what steps I might need to take
  • Checked on 21st March late in the evening and CEAC changed it status to ISSUED and US Visa docs changed to ready for pickup late in the night
  • Went to the facility at 10 am on 22nd March and picked up my passport with the new stamp until 2019

Overall, it took exactly a week to get the visa stamped after dropping it off and was a pleasant experience.
I be flying back to America next week
I wanted to give back to the community and felt obligated to share this experience. Hope it helps others ! Good luck to everybody
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 Visa Stamping Experience by Mano in Hyderabad  
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Hi all, I would like to share my H1B stamping experience @ Hyderabad on Feb 24th. I have scheduled Finger prints on Feb 23rd. Documents I have carried for fingerprints are – DS160 confirmation, Passport (Not require any more documents).

Background Info
: Briefly about my earlier H1b experience –
I was there in US on L2 and worked on EAD in 2011. Back to India in 2013 Aug due to L1 extension denied for my husband. I applied for H1B in 2013 and it got approved on the same day i am travelling back to India ( I have got my approval email when I am waiting for my flight )i am back to India and got stamped but I didn’t get a chance to go back due to some personal things (didn’t use my H1b). Through new employer I have applied for extension on the same petition in 2016 March, on Dec 2016 i updated it to premium and got my approval with in 3 days.

H1B Interview Questions : Interview on 24th, below are the questions asked.
1) Which company do you work for?
VO didn’t like the name of the company (gave very hard facial expressions )and searched about it.
2) How good you know about this company?
3) How much salary you offered?
4) What is your highest Education?
5) Did you get a chance to visit this company?
In my case answer for this question is ‘YES’.
6) which place you are travelling?

Suggestions – As everyone in this site says be confident in your answer and have eye to eye contact with VO. Always have a good knowledge about your sponsoring company and client.
Thanks to Redbus for giving us a platform to discuss about visa related experiences.
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Visa Stamping Experience by Karthick
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VO: Hi, Good Morning.
Me: Hello, Good, thanks. How are you?
VO: Great.
VO: Who is your petitioner?
Me: Answered
VO: Who is your client?
Me: Answered
VO: What is your pay?
Me: Answered
VO: Where are you going?
Me: Answered
VO: Have you given the white pamphlet (That is it I knew I got it)
Me: Said yes
Dependent Wife:
No Question
Dependent daughter:
VO : Hi
Daughter : No response
VO: Your Visa approved.
Me: Thanks you so much sir.

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Comments ( 12 )

  1. Madhav

    Hi Team,
    I am joined in a small start up consultancy, one and half year back. They had a branch in USA too. As a part of joining offer, they applied H1B visa last year by showing some internal project and after a RFE, visa got stamped three months back for two and half years. But they didnt send me to USA yet and no much response from the management and asked me to wait for a while. Any idea, why they didnt send me yet and when they will send me to USA. Will it be a problem while entering USA, with gap in VISA stamping. Please suggest any alternative like H1b transfer possible for me without entering USA

  2. Madhav

    Hi Team,
    I am joined in a small start up consultancy, one and half year back. They had a branch in USA too. As a part of joining offer, they applied H1B visa last year by showing some internal project and after a RFE, visa got stamped three months back for two and half years. But they didnt send me to USA yet and no much response from the management and asked me to wait for a while. Any idea, why they didnt send me yet and when they will send me to USA. Will it be a problem while entering USA, with gap in VISA stamping. Please suggest any alternative like H1b transfer possible for me without entering USA.

  3. Aakanksha

    Hi All, I submitted my passport at the US embassy for H1B stamping in Delhi on the 24th March. The status so far shows “Your passport is still at the US Embassy/ Consulate”. When I call the helpline, it says “Your documents are at the Consular Post”. I am not sure what could be the reason for this hold up. At the time of the interview the VO said “Your visa is approved, we will let you know when to pick it up”
    Has anyone ever had this problem before? Can anyone help? How do I know if my visa goes into admin process?

    1. administrator
      Saurabh

      Aakanksha,

      It is possible that they put the stamping under administrative processing even though they told that the visa has been approved. Nothing you can do except to wait patiently.

  4. Shan

    Hello All,

    H1B Interview Questions : Interview on 27th Chennai US consulate , below are the questions asked.
    1) Who is your employer ?
    2) How much salary you offered?
    3) which place you are traveling?
    4) Who is your client?
    5) What is your pay?
    6) Do you have a client letter ?
    NO, but i got the agreement made between my employer and the client and gave them a copy.
    7) Have you given the white pamphlet
    Dependent Wife:
    Since how long you are married ?
    VO: Your Visa approved.
    Me: Thanks you so much

  5. Srikanth

    Hi. Could someone guide/educate me w.r.t Visa Renewal Process.

    1. is Visa Renewal and Visa Extension process are same?
    2. Prior when i need to process for Visa Renewal.
    3. In Visa Renewal – Is there any Acceptance and Denial Procedures will be followed?

    My Visa going to expire on September 29th 2017 and If I’m not going to travel by then , employer suggested for Visa Renewal.

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