Thanks to Karthick, Venkat and Anupam for taking time to share their H1B Visa stamping experiences with our readers. You can share yours here
H1B interview experience at Chennai Consulate by Karthick
Background : Firstly, I thank redbus2us and fellow members who were helping other members. I’ll make it short and crisp, my dates were 27th (OFC), 28th (PAI) October at Chennai Consulate.
OFC 4:00 PM- 27th October,2016
Document required for OFC :
1. DS160 confirmation
2. Appointment confirmation letter
3. Your current passport
The process is very simple, fast and smooth. Show the above documents and get biometrics done.
Note: Ensure there is no mismatch in DS160 and passport. If there is any, this is the last chance and right time to get it corrected. You ll find a counter for DS160 correction.
PAI – H1B : 09:30 AM- 28th October,2016
1. DS160 confirmation
2. Appointment confirmation letter
3. Your current passport
4. Original 1797B – Approval notice
5. All the educational documents (Keep it handy and in separate – rarely asked)
Process at Consulate for Visa Stamping :
==Do not carry any electronic items, purses and watches==
It is always advised to go as early as possible even if you slot time differs by more than an hour. My slot time was at 9:30 AM and I joined the queue at 9:15 AM (generally 15 mins prior to the slot time). By the time, I was moving slowly in the queue, i realized people with slot time of 11:00 AM and above were way ahead (They dont check the slot time as long as your date is for the current slot).
Keep your passport & appointment letter handy along with the DS160 which was stamped during biometrics last day. They will verify this before you are asked to proceed. Unlike the bio metrics, PAI would be little slower and hence this the right time for you to pray your beloved God and chant the mantras ‘Jai Shri ram’ 🙂
Once you enter the consulate campus, you ll be frisked. And hence I strongly recommend you not carry any electronic items, purses and watches. If so it would be confined and your entry would be delayed.
If above process is completed, you will be entering the official US consulate. You can take some pride if this your first time :P.
After entering the consulate, only your passport is sufficient and hence keep your I797B over the appointment letter and DS 160. Making the overall VOs experience in short, I had a strict VO where as the adjacent counters had jovial VOs and if you are in the queue, you can listen to them and relax your mind with their jovial conversations with the candidates. And also good time to prepare and answer yourself the questions others were asked.
Visa Interview Questions:
ME: Good Morning
VO: Good morning
VO : Passport Please
ME: Passed on the passport
VO: Who is your petitioner?
ME: Your employer name
VO: How long you work for the petitioner
ME: ‘X’ Years I work for my employer
VO: Who is your client
ME: Proposed client name
VO: Did you work for the client before and if so How long you?
ME: Yes. ‘Y’ Years I work for the Proposed client.
VO: Which city are you going?
ME: Proposed city
VO: Which state it is?
ME: State the Proposed city belong to.
VO: What is your qualification?
ME: Mention Equivalent qualification (I mentioned Bachelors of Engg.)
VO: What is your designation?
ME: Mention Equivalent designation
ME: Proposed Salary
VO: You Visa is approved.
Me: Sighs… Thank you !!
I advise the readers to go through the I-129 this have all the information including the Employer information such as Business type, no of employee in US, turn over etc.,
Keep the spirits high and positive. I wish you “ALL THE VERY BEST” & “ADVANCE CONGRATULATIONS” :).
H1B interview experience at Chennai, India by Venkat
Background : I had OFC appointment on 14th Nov, and the interview appointment on 15th Nov in Chennai.
OFC experience –
My appointment was at 3:45PM. I arrived at the OFC building at 3:40PM and was directly asked to go in. Thanks for the previous experiences shared, I didn’t have to wait in line even a minute. Below are the step by step process.
1) The security checks your appointment confirmation and validates the time and lets us in (or wait outside in line if you are early).
2) A couple of personnel first checks/validates DS-160, appointment confirmation and our passport.
3) After this, you enter the actual OFC office. First there is a security check, then a personnel stamps a bar-code on to your passport (this is what will be used during the OFC and in the consulate). Another personnel scans and validates the bar-code in your DS-160.
4) We are given a token number and asked to wait till our token number appears on the screen. We proceed to the corresponding counter.
5) Here, the personnel gets the token and our passport, takes our photo and ten prints us and Voila! we are done.
Tips: To avoid waiting in queue for long time, be at the OFC 0-15 mins before your appointment. It doesn’t matter even if you are late, you are still allowed to enter.
Phones are allowed inside the OFC. You will be asked to switch it off though.
You have to carry only your passport, DS-160 and appointment confirmation. All other documents are redundant.
Consulate H1B interview experience – Chennai :
My appointment was at 11AM, I arrived at the consulate at 11:10AM. Again, no waiting, I was let in.
1) You go through a security check similar to the one at the airports and asked to proceed.
2) Inside the consulate, there was a queue. I had to wait for about 10mins to get to the initial verification counter. At the counter they verify your appointment time and the bar-code that was stamped on your visa the previous day at OFC.
3) Then you proceed to validate your fingerprints.
4) Once done, you wait in line for your turn for the interview. It took about 5mins for my turn.
5) You are asked to wait behind a yellow line while another person is being interviewed.
6) Below is the Interview I had.
VO: Hi, Good Morning. How are you today?
Me: I’m doing good, thank you. How about you?
VO: I’m doing very good., thank you.
I handed over my passport.
VO: Which Organization do you work for?
VO: How long have you worked for XYZ
Me: YY years and MM months
VO: Have you visited US before on B1/B2?
Me: Yes, I was in US for 7 days in 2015.
VO: Your Visa has been approved. Please go through this pamphlet (handing me the rights and protection pamphlet), it explains your rights as a nonimmigrant visa holder.
You have to good day.
Me: Thank You. Good day to you, too.
Tips: The guy being interviewed before me was trying to different visa category(which I found out only at the very end). The process he went through got me nervous. After his visa was rejected, I got a negative impression of the VO.
Try not to get nervous based on the questions being posted to or the result of the the one in front of you. Also, try to avoid the conversations happening in the counters/windows around you (its hard), it only gets you more nervous.
After the visa for the one in front of me was rejected, the VO took 2-3 minutes to update something in her computer. Since she didn’t say next, I waited behind the line all along. Your initial impression makes a lot of difference. Be confident, and smile.
In Chennai, once you come out of the consulate, there are a lot of autowalas bugging you to get in to their auto and you don’t have a choice given that you don’t have your mobile. If you stay a bit far, my advise would be to walk for a while and catch an auto or even take a bus, go to the next stop and catch an auto from there. The ones outside the consulate will loot you.
H1B interview experience at Kolkata Consulate by Anupam
Background : I recently appeared for H1b VISA interview in Kolkata Consulate (Nov 14) and thought of sharing my experiences to Community. First of all thanks to other Redbus2us and other peers who posted their experiences. My Case was H1B extension and as I changed my company in US from an Indian MNC to American Consulting firm, I was little worried about my interview.
I will not detail about how to reach Consulate Office or what happens outside of the Building. I think they are usual process and may not be much help to folks. Rather I will concentrate on interview part. After standing in the final window Q for nearly 45 mins, I was waiting for my turn. VO waived her hand and I reached near to Window. It was me who wished her good morning at first and she returned a smile and said “Very good morning” .
H1B Visa Interview Questions at Kolkata Consulate
VO: Your PP and Petition Please.
Me: Handed over to her.
VO: Requested for a minute to pull up the information.
VO: So why you want to have this VISA.
Me: Explained that I am working in US and came for a vacation. If it is approved, I want to travel back.
VO: She listen carefully and asked where I am traveling.
Me: Informed the details and also informed my client name.
My client is renowned Auto Major and thus everyones knows its name. I understood once VO heard the name she was confident about my case.
VO: When you joined the new employer & who is your previous employer. What is your total experience.
VO: Asked about my wife and daughter and confirmed if my daughter is US Citizen.
Then we talked about how bad winter is in Michigan and we laughed on some jokes. She then informed your visa is approved and will be ready in couple of days. She wished me good luck and Happy Cold as well.
I noticed couple of cases got rejected in front of me and really the folks were not able to answer properly. As every one says the key is to be confident. If you have a genuine case, and if you are confident , there should not be any reason why your visa got rejected. It is also important to make clear eye contact which is another form of confidence.
All The Best !