As US Consulates in India are not yet open due to COVID-19 for regular visa processing, the only way to get US visa stamping is to get an expedite appointment. Expedited appointments are available only for special situations like medical needs, funeral/death, ESTA Denied, Students or exchange visitors with urgent need or urgent business travel.
If you are looking for step by step guide for Emergency Appointment, read COMPLETE guide to applying Emergency Appointment in India
Two of our readers (anonymous for privacy reasons) were successful in getting emergency appointment and were kind enough to take time to share their experience for everyone benefit. Thanks a lot to them for sharing the experience with community. We really appreciate it ! You can email your experience as well to email@example.com
Emergency US Visa Appointment for H4 Visa – Chennai, India
Background: H4 visa holder is in India along with child, who is US Citizen.
H1B visa spouse in US. Applying for H4 visa renewal. Not eligible for Dropbox Stamping.
Filled out DS-160, Booked Appointment before Consulates were closed
I already filled DS-160, paid the US visa fees and booked my appointment. I had biometrics appointment on April 21st and April 22nd was supposed to be my visa interview. Due to COVID-19, my visa interview got cancelled.
Contacting US Consulate in Chennai using email and phone.
Starting from May month I would keep on trying to reach the US consulate by email and through phone call, but no luck. Then comes the Trump H1B travel ban issue, I knew reaching embassy in this situation will be a big failure, I was helpless.
Below are the email and phone numbers used to send my request and make calls.
- Email Address of Chennai Consulate: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Phone Number: 044 2811 2000
After a month, got the clarification on Executive order from Trump that there are some exceptions in travel ban for H4 visa holders and my condition will come under that exception. From next day again I started emailing (every three days I will email them) to embassy requesting for appointment, even that time no luck for me. Usually I would call on Monday and Friday. Literally, I would have called then a dozen times or more. I would get reply, saying “my request has been denied, please reach us once the embassy start there normal process”.
Tracker for EA Requests : You can check US Visa Emergency Appointment Tracker to understand average processing times based on user contributed data. You can add your case for community benefit too.
Emergency Appointment Response within 48 hours
Usually, the consulate would respond to emails within 48 hours saying that your request is denied. Below is a screenshot of the denial request from consulate for expedite appointment in India.
Emergency Appointment Request – Baby Vaccination
Finally, on July 30th again I emailed US consulate in Chennai requesting for appointment, reason I mentioned vaccination for my baby who is 10 months old (US citizen). In that email I attached my baby vaccine sheet and I got a letter from her doctor, saying “she is my patient, she missed her 6th and 9th month vaccine, her next due is next month”. Below is the sample vaccination letter that I used. This is my true reason too, not made up.
Expedite Appointment Approval Email – Interview Slots Open
On Aug 3rd I got reply from embassy saying my request has been approved and please reschedule your appointment. Below is the email I got from US Consulate in Chennai. It clearly tells that my emergency appointment validity is only until Aug 6, 2020.
After the email, I quickly logged in into my account in USTravelDocs and I saw the slots. The first interview availability was on August 10th, so I booked that appointment.
Important Note – Attaching Proofs of Medical Reason
Every time when I emailed the embassy or called them, I gave the same Medical reason. I did not know why they didn’t approve before. Now, that I look back and think, I was not submitting any proofs in the past emails. So, I suggest you submit any medical reason proof. Also, do not try to make up reason, it has to genuine as they would be verification. If you fabricate any documents, you can be barred from entering US for life.
H4 Visa Expedite Visa Appointment Process, Stamping – Delhi, India
Background : H4 holder in India along with Child. H1B spouse in US. We were requesting for visa stamping based on the vaccination requirement for our baby.
It is important you have the relevant documentation like doctor letter beforehand for providing proofs as needed.
How to get Doctor letter for US Visa Emergency Appointment
You must have check list for all vaccines for the baby. See what all are pending from that list from the day you were in India. Call you doctor and tell them you haven’t visited Indian doctor as the situation is not good. They will give you a letter or note with list of vaccines due.
Important : While requesting emergency approval mention clearly that Vaccines are highly recommended for Kids immunity.
Steps to Apply for Expedite Appointment from New Delhi
Below are the steps followed by me to get the Emergency appointment
- Send out an email to NivND@state.gov regarding your situation. make sure you provide valid reasons
- Vaccine due for kids ( this can be considered for expedite approval)
- Family Separation ( mention depression problems or health condition is not good for spouse due to separation). Wait for their reply, usually takes 1-2 business days.
- They will forward email to Hyderabad Consulate & email@example.com. Support team will create a case for your request and update their comments.
- If they consider its valid request then you get an email from firstname.lastname@example.org to raise expedite request, they provide link.
- Click on link which navigates to US Visa Travel docs website, there you can choose emergency request link. When you open the form, it looks like below, you choose the Medical Needs.
- Select Medical reasons for emergency request and provide documentation if available. In my case, I called doctor office and requested them to provide a letter or doctor note for vaccines due. I uploaded this document in expedite request and click submit.
- After 8 PM EST you will receive notification for approval or rejection from US consulate. If approved the will ask you to reschedule appointment before 6 days of approval. Approved cases will have new dates in appointment selection, and I believe only New Delhi & Chennai locations are operating.
H4 Visa Interview, Biometrics with Emergency Appointment
- Both Biometric and Visa interview will be done at same place (no need to visit VFS locations for Biometric).
- Collect all required documents & supporting documents, there is no queue and they call by name.
- Interview was very smooth they ask about spouse details, address etc. Visa officer will ask you to collect passport next day.
Did any of you apply for emergency appointment ? How was your process? Do share your experiences in comments for community benefit.
The general process for US emergency visa appointment for India is described on the ustraveldocs India expedite appointment details page.