Home » Visas » USA » US Visa Stamping Experiences » H1B, H4 Experiences : Regular, Dropbox from April 23rd to May 24th, 2022

H1B, H4 Experiences : Regular, Dropbox from April 23rd to May 24th, 2022

Below are User experiences starting from April 23rd to May 24th, 2022 for H1B Visa and H4 Visa for both regular visa stamping and Dropbox. You can check US Visa Stamping Experiences for the entire collection


Experience 1: H1B+H4(Spouse+Kid) with In Person Interview at New Delhi

April 17(Biometric):
Reached VAC at 01.30 PM..Slot was scheduled at 03:30 PM.
Security allowed to enter inside at the same time. Waited almost 1 hour 15 minutes before joining queue of 03:30 PM.
Documents asked to carry by security:

  • Passports
  • DS160 Conf page
  • Appt conf page.
  • Kid photo.

They were allowing bags after security check.
After necessary verification entered inside. Documents checked and labeled passports at reception.
Then got in to cabin for biometrics and photo. VAC person asked name and date of birth of kid and asked pic of him after that he stamped DS160.
Process completed in 10-15 mins.

April 20(Consular interview) – NEW Delhi at 10:20 AM
Reached at 9:20 AM. Waited 40 minutes before joining queue of 10:20 AM. There is a counter where you can submit bags and phones. I carried only 1 phone which I submitted at the cost of Rs50 before joining queue.
Documents carried:

  1. DS160
  2. APPT CONF PAGE
  3. PASSPORTS.
  4. I797B
  5. End client letter
  6. Employment Verification letter
  7. Kids birth cerificate.
  8. Marriage certificate

Interview:
VO: Good Morning
WE: Good Morning officer.
VO: Your passport and I797
Me: Given
VO: You are two and carrying three passports..Your son age is 14Months correct?
Me: Yes
VO: ( Asked my wife) put your four fingers of left hand( Asked me) put your 4 right hand fingers
VO: What is your designation in XYZ company?
Me: XXX
VO: Who is your client?
Me: XXX
VO: What they do?
Me: Explained in 2-3 lines.
VO: Are they in to Healthcare?
Me: Yes, Officer
VO: Where will you join them?
Me: XXX city in XXX State
VO: What is your highest Qualification?
Me: Explained ( he said good)
VO: Universitiy?
Me: Answered
VO: What is your salary?
Me: Answered
( he checked something in his system)
VO: (to my wife)When did you married?
Wife: Answered
VO: You have only one kid? I Have 4.( He was smiling that time)
VO: Your visa approved.

We came outside and bought water bottle and chips from outside vendor. He asked 50 rupees for the same but as it was too hot outside and to see his condition, we have given it.
20 April: Administrative
21 April: Issued..


Experience 2: H1B with Dropbox at Mumbai

Visa status : expired in 2020
Employment : changed employer

VAC appointment time : 12.15 pm
Allowed entrance to premises : 11.50 am
Left the premises : 12.40 pm
Documents accepted : appointment confirmation, DS-160 confirmation, latest I-797 , employment verification letter.

Based on my prior experience at drop boxes (which of course was a few years ago, so not really a benchmark. But still) following are quick differences I noticed for anyone’s reference :

  1. They used to bar carrying mobile, wallet, any electronics. Now that seems to be relaxed. Not even metal detector out there ( maybe it used to be at the ten printing center and I am confusing it).
  2. They used to ask for original 797 for verification before accepting the photocopy. Not any more.
  3. Whenever you are for stamping with an expired stamp, they used to collect copy of prior 797 to validate maintenance of status. This is still in their documents required list. But they didn’t collect it from me this time. ( This one concerns me. I am worried I will get a 221 for submitting those later. )
  4. For collecting passport, they used to have another room / window in the same building. But now they have collections at the same place with 3 independent counter windows just for collections.

Overall experience : they are a lot less structured and organized, but a lot faster. Which I guess is a good thing considering how much backlog we have …

Anyway, that’s pretty much all I can think of right now.


Experience 3: H1B with Dropbox at New Delhi

  • Dropbox appointment in New Delhi April14th 3:45 PM. I was there an hour before. I heard sometimes they allowed people ahead of their appointment scheduled, but that didn’t work for me. Although there is no harm in trying and also it will give you enough time to settle down and stay clam.
  • Make sure your passport size pictures are very clear meaning 70% with clear face and neck should be visible. I have seen people been sent out to get the good pictures and infact that did happen to my wife in HYD consulate. Nothing to worry, there is a service right in front of the consulate and they charge about 100rupees for 2 pictures.
  • Next important thing is, NOT to carry any laptop, or luggage to the vfs location. that would be my preference as I have seen people bringing in their laptops and handing it over to people standing outside, not knowing how much time it will take for them. But, there is also an locker option available right in front of the vfs office where you also have photo service, I haven’t taken this service because I did not carry anything.
  • Inside vfs phones, watches are allowed, but NO headsets, blue tooth devices, laptops etc. incase you brought them, you can avail the locker services i mentioned above. locker service at the time of my appointment was available, I cannot confidently say it available all days. I’m saying this because my cousin went to New Dehli in Feb and he did not see any such services.
  • April18th application got update with received status
  • April19 administrative processing
  • April20 Issued
  • April22 received an email from us travel docs saying my passport is delivered to HYD location.
  • Waiting for next email for the availability

Best wishes for everyone and see you all on the other side soon. Take care.


Experience 4: H1B with Dropbox, 221g, In Person Interview at Mumbai

First time H1B after F1. Working directly for a company no end client
April 5 : Submitted documents for Dropbox.
April 13: Status Refused
April 14: Passport ready for pick up
Cgi federal account showed an option to schedule interview on April 25. Interview scheduled.
April 16: Passport picked up with white 221g slip asking to schedule interview online.

April 25 : Interview
Questions asked:

  1. Do you have a client or work directly for the company
  2. Employment verification letter was asked
  3. Roles and responsibilities
  4. Date of joining the company
  5. When was Masters completed.

VO said visa is approved and provided a white slip with general guidelines for passport tracking

April 25: Status changed to Administrative processing
April 26: Visa issued and passport ready for pick up
April 27: Passport picked up.

This group was very helpful and wish all of you the best in this tedious process of 221g.


Experience 5: H1B+H4 with In Person Interview at Kolkata

H1 (Dropbox eligible)+ H4 (First Time). Even though i was eligible decided to go for interview since spouse never had experience of VO/Embassy etc.

1) received date for Feb ‘23
2) rescheduled to Aug ‘22
3)rescheduled to April ‘22

Went to Kolkata on same day when i had finger print ( allowed to take cellphone in switch off mode, no envelops or big carry begs or badges)

After 6 days had interview.

Reached 10 mins prior, (Enjoyed Tram, Handcart, Tea in Kolkata Style) 9:30 am slot.

Cellphone not allowed however across the road, small shop takes the beg or cellphone in 50 rs ( main business to capture ur mobile # and email, since next morning got a marketing call for forex and US money transfer… so be careful)

Security chked completed in 5 mins by chking appointment letter and passport.

Went to waiting area, again asked to produce appointment letter, passport, DS160… waited for 5 mins and entered in Interview Cabin (smallest consulate i have ever seen , 3 (only 2 active) windows for interview, 1 for bio metric verification, one for random process)

VO : GM
US: GM
VO: Passport + I797C
US: provided
VO: Welcome Back
Me: Smiled
VO: You have worked longest time for Company X
Me: Yes
VO: How long are you been working in Company Y
Me: anwesred
VO: what you do
Me: answered
VO: are you going to be continue as Manager
Me : answered
VO: DOB
Me :Answered
VO : Full Name
me: answered
V0: to my spouse, How long have u married
Spouse: answered
Vo: asked for certificate
Us: Provided
VO to H4: u work for company A and what u do
H4: answered
VO to H4: explain work in detail
H4: answered
VO: you have approved i140 from company X and Y
Me: Yes
VO: congratulations your visa has been approved and standard verbiage for rights and travel
US thank you

Waiting on passport in courier

And Now my company has travel freez … happy life so cant fly to US 😂


Experience 6: H1B with Dropbox at Kolkata

Appointment Details: 19th April, 12.15 PM Kolkata.
I visited Hyderabad VAC since its the closest location for me.
April 19th: Documents dropped off at 11.45AM. Had to go out and enter again to take xerox copy of EVL as they don’t accept original.The place with in the building also has instant passport photo facility incase they reject the ones we bring for Rs 250. Mine were accepted.

Documents dropped off:
Passport,ds160 confirmation page, latest and old i797 from same company(FTE), copy of EVL. Thats all, I tried giving them paystubs but they didn’t accept it.
April 19th: passport tracking page information changed to passport being delivered to embassy.
April 21st: Passport delivered to Kolkata Embassy.
April 21st: DS160 status changed application received.
April 22nd: DS160 status changed to Admin Processing. 23rd&24th was a weekend.
April 25th: Admin Processing
April 26th: Ds160 changed to Issued.
April 27th: Passport tracking page indicated that passport was received from embassy and is currently being delivered to final location(Hyderabad VAC).
April 29th: Passport tracking page changed to Ready for Pickup and also received an email from ustravel docs asking me to collect my passport from Hyd VAC.


Experience 7: H1B with Dropbox at New Delhi

Dropbox appointment on 21st Apr at Delhi consulate for H1

22nd Apr – Case created

22nd Apr – Application Received status

28th Apr – Administrative processing status

29th Apr (just before) – Issued status

Behind the scenes on 21 April at Delhi VAC center

Appointment at 1:30 PM on 21 April
Reached to center around 11:30 AM and went to photo studio near by for Photos,

Entered the VAC center by 12:05 PM and entered the line no one objected or checked the time of appointment just checked date of appointment only,

5 people before me in line,

When my turn came the person at counter asked the following documents

Passport
DS-160 confirmation page
Appointment confirmation
I-797A copy
Employment verification letter
Client letter
1 photo

Checked the details of ds-160 page whether it matches with passport and stamped on appointment confirmation and came out side by 12:20 PM


Experience 8: H1B+H4 with Dropbox at Chennai

April7 Thursday Dropped I797 copy and passport at Chennai VAC(I went straight to Chennai thinking it will speed up process compared to nearby Bangalore or Cochin dropbox options, but turned out to be taking exact sametime.No status updates until next Monday).
April 11 Monday Status changed as “Application recieved “
April 7&8 Chennai Consulate holiday for Good Friday and Pongal
April 11-15 No further change in this week, still “Application recieved “.
April 18 Monday, Just an update of date but status is again “Application recieved “
April 22 Friday, again update on date but still status is “Application recieved “. Tensed days as its already 3 weeks.
April 25 Monday 2pm status updated as ” Administrative processing”. Finally a ray of hope.
April 26 Tuesday noon 12.30 status updated as ” Issued”. Passport status was Preparing to dispatch and orgin scan by evening.I wasnt able to check the status of passport on Bluedart with the UID number on Tuesday.i have opted for Bluedart pick up at my home town.
April 27 Wednesday i thought i should get passport definitely today but i didn’t get it 🙃. I was able to track passport using UID as ref number in Bluedart website only from today.It was taking longer route of Bangalore Airport and was stuck there whole day. Tensed and frustrated as i was about to book my flight same day.
April 28th morning 8am i tracked through Bluedart, passport reached the near by Bluedart pickup point,i haven’t received any messages or mails for pickup.I went there and showed them ref numbers and ID and picked up passport by 8.30.Sigh of relief 😀.Only by evening i recieved the payment confirmation of 650 rs per Passport in emails and passport pickup confirmation from Bluedart, otherwise no mails or updates.Its my employer who booked my slot,something messed up there.
Altogether Chennai Consulate/VAC was taking longer(For me 14 business days and 19 days(not including 2 holidays) to process my case H1B+3H4 dropbox.And on top of that Bluedart was taking longer to deliver passport(Tuesday evening shipped from Chennai and received only Thursday).I believe with the load and timing currently on Chennai VAC,as we have option to drop in New delhi VAC which i believe is faster(Only based on responses here,i could be wrong) makes sense.


Experience 9: H1B+H4(Spouse+Kid) with In Person Interview at New Delhi

April 24(VAC)

  • Reached VAC at 10.45 AM slot was scheduled at 11:00 AM.
  • Doc Asked- Passports;DS160 Conf page ; Appt conf page and Kid photo.
  • The prior check on DS160 detail with passports in 1st queue , Now they allowed us to inside the VAC and did security check. Only phone is allowed. (need to switch off)
  • In next queue stickers/label on backside of passport and ds160.
  • Now got the tokens for final window, they asked some basic details name/dob/visa type etc. and did biometric.
  • Process is done now , it took overall 30 min for me.

Note – Carry 2×2 photo for below 14;
**Locker facility is available just opposite to VAC, they also do corrections in ds160 and click photos (if required).

April 26(Consular interview) –

NEW Delhi at 09:00 AM, Reached at 8:15 AM and security allows us to join the queue. Two rounds of security check and verified passport/fingerprints before VO interview.

Documents carried: All necessary and supporting documents.

Interview:

VO: Good Morning.
WE: Good Morning sir.

VO: Your passport please.
Me: Given, all passports.

VO: Can you please pass I797.
Me: given.

VO: What is your Client Name ?
Me: Mention the client name.

VO: What is your Roles and responsibilities?
Me: Answered In 3-4 lines.

VO: put your four fingers of left hand on scanner.

VO: (to my wife)When did you get married?
Wife: Answered.

VO: (to my wife)Are you working?
Wife: Answered.

VO: ( Asked to my wife) put your four fingers of left hand on scanner.

VO: (to my wife) done.

VO: He smiles and said , I want to give this I797 doc to this little boy (my son). My son taken from him and smiled and thanked him.

VO: Your visa is approved and will receive within a week time.

Status –

26 April: Administrative
28 April: Issued.
30 April : Received the passport at home.

Overall time taken 1 hr.

Note – Please do not bring anything except your documents and water bottle. Phone can be submitted to the locker facility.
**Toys which has electronic circuits/light or digital watch is not allowed.


Experience 10: H1B with In Person Interview at Hyderabad

May 2nd: Interviewer Male
VO: Good Morning, How are you
Me: I am Good Thanks, How are you
VO: Do you have worked in any other country
Me: Yes for almost one year
VO: who is your petitioner
Me: told
VO: who is your client
Me: told
VO: have you ever been to USA
Me: No
VO: do you have another petitioner
Me: VO confused me here, I said no I do have only one petitioner
VO: can you please pass me your I797 form
Me: passed the doc
VO: what’s your highest degree
Me: told
VO: what kind of work you do
Me: told
VO: what is your role
Me: told
VO: your client address
Me: told

Now heard the Golden words

Today I see many people got 221(g) just because they stammered, stopped while giving answers, no confidence while speaking.
In the year 2015, My F1 visa got rejected 3 times, clearly I know for the above reasons.

But this time I was confident enough to speak. And finally got.

Friends be confident, don’t change the answers, smile 😊👌😎
Good luck 🍀🤞to all


Experience 11: H1B+H4 with In Person Interview at New Delhi

Biometrics:

  • Reached Delhi VAC at 1:50PM on April-27 for my 2:30PM appointment.
  • You can carry bags inside VAC with mobile phones switched off.
  • There will be security check after we enter VAC. Please keep your ds160 confirmation, appointment confirmation and passport ready.
  • Then they will verify your details if the ds160 and passport are matching.
  • Once all the documents are good, you will enter the building where they will paste the ds160 sticker behind the passport.
  • Then you will be sent to the cabin to take your fingerprints and photographs(they will ask your name, dob for verification)

Consular Interview on April 28:

  • Reached embassy at 7:45AM for 9:30AM appointment. They let me stand in the queue by 8:30AM.
  • Only documents are allowed inside. Mobile phones and bags should be kept outside embassy at the cloak room(mind that there will be a queue for this so be early)
  • Once you enter the embassy they will make you seated in the hall with rows of chairs. You can relax a bit there.
  • Then they will send you inside the building where the consular staffs are present.
  • They will verify your i797 and passport. Then again you will be sent to queue.
  • Here is where the interviews are happening in front of you. They will make you seated again. Be calm and prepared.
  • After sometime, you will be sent to the booth.

Questions to me:
VO: Good morning
Me: Good morning Sir

VO: Give me your passport and I-797B
Me: Provided the documents

VO: Who is your petitioner and where is it located
Me: Answered

VO: What’s your job and what you do
Me: Answered my roles and responsibilities

VO:(Turned to my spouse) How long you have been married.
My Wife: Answered

VO: Is it love marriage or arranged marriages
My Wife: Answered

VO: Are you currently working
My Wife: Answered

VO :(Turned to me) place your four fingers and said your Visa is approved and it will be processed in a week.

Almost took around 1 hour 30mins for this whole process.

Received passport today(4th May 2022) via premium delivery at my home Address in Tamil Nadu.


Experience 12: H1B with Dropbox at Mumbai

Note: Initially I had some mistakes in my old DS160 after a couple of days when checking my DS160 again I corrected them. So make sure to revise your DS160 even after you submit it .

FACILITIES AT MUMBAI VAC :

On the same floor of the document submission there is another room for DS160 correction ,taking photographs and printing xerox copies. So even if you realize an error in DS160 at the day of appointment you still hold the chance of getting your DS160 corrected and submitting the right one

DS160 Mistakes:

In the Home Address section I had submitted my US address instead of India’s address

Changed the Primary Occupation to Engineering from Computer Science since I work as a Data Scientist

APPROVAL TIMELINE:20th April: Submitted Documents

21st April: Case created and status : Application Received

22nd April: Application Received

23rd and 24th April : No change in status since weekend

25th April : status : Application Received

26th April : Case updated with status Application Received

27th April and 28th April : Status : Application Received

29th April : Case updated with status Application Received

30th April and 1st May : Weekend

2nd May : Status changed to Administrative Processing

3rd May : Administrative Processing due to Holiday

4th May : Issued and same day collected Passport from Mumbai VAC

DOCUMENTS SUBMITTED:

2 passport size photos ( Got it clicked from a local studio in Mumbai)

Employment Verification Letter

Submitted the New DS160 Confirmation

Submitted the appointment Confirmation which has the NEW DS160 Confirmation Number linked

Passport

Photocopy of I197A

THINGS TO CARRY WHEN PICKING UP PASSPORT:

Photocopy of AADHAR CARD/PAND CARD

The stamped appointment confirmation which you get after submitting the documents

Keep in handy the passport pick up email from usatravel docs


Experience 13: H1B with Dropbox, 221g, In Person Interview at Kolkata

07/04 – Dropbox appointment
08/04 – Application received
11/04 – Refused.
12/04 : Got called from embassy to come for in person interview.
19/4 Visa Interview at Kolkata.
Slot time was 10 AM but reached at 9:00 AM.
Security checking was completed and allow to go inside at 9:30 AM.
There is paid shop near embassy to keep your luggage. They charged 50 to 100 rs for hour.
After entering in embassy, they checked my documents. Asked to join in queue.
One officer given me passport and all documents submitted on Dropbox appointment.
Joined Interview queue.
VO : Good Morning.
Me: Good Morning.
VO: What is your employer Name?
Me: Answered
VO: What is your Client Name?
Me: Answered
VO: Show your Client Letter.
Me: Given
VO: Is there any third party vendor?
Me: Answered.
VO reviewed all documents for few mins. Entered comments and said that golden words” Visa Approved”
Received passport after 5 days.
Hope this experience will help.


Experience 14: H1B+H4 with Dropbox at Benguluru

Process at Bangalore for Chennai consulate

Be there around 1 hr early to your appointment and don’t take any laptop or powerbank, backpack is fine though. Go through security and on the first floor for US visa appointments go to counter number 15 to collect your token. Your token number will be called in approx. one hour based on the number of applicants.

Documents to produce-

◦ Latest passport with existing visa for each applicant
◦ Appointment confirmation and DS 160 confirmation
◦ Current and previous i797 photocopies of principal applicant only
◦ One Photo per person as per specification
◦ Marriage certificate photocopy if applying for H4
◦ Employment letter

Finally pay Rs. 650 in cash per person if you choose priority option to get your passport delivered to your home. I’ll recommend this otherwise you need to follow the same process to collect your passports again.

Point to note: just one person can provide all documentation. No verification or authorization documents required.


Experience 15: H4 with In Person Interview at Chennai

VAC Appointment: May 9th at 8:30AM

We were let in at 7:50AM. We were told to hold appointment confirmation, DS160 confirmation and passport in hand.

At the counter, they asked me for my name, date of birth and told me to read the instructions pasted on the table. No other document was asked.

Came out of the office around 8:20AM.

Consular Appointment: May 11th at 11:30AM

Stood in the outside queue at 10:30AM. We went it at 10:45AM.

First, there was security check.

Then went to the building where interviews happen. Was sent to counter 27 first. The lady said that there was some issue with my passport scanning and I need to go to counter 20 and come back. Counter 20 work was done within 2 mins. Came back to counter 27. Lady was friendly and happy-looking.

Questions:

Which visa are you applying for?

Were you on any other US visa previously?

Have you travelled to US before? Is this your first time traveling to the US?

When are you planning to travel to the US?

How long will you stay in the US?

What is your qualification?

When are you graduating?

When did you get married? Please pass your marriage certificate.

Where did the marriage happen?

Do you wish to show the invitation card and the marriage photos?

How did you two meet? Was it an arranged marriage?

When did you start talking?

Where is your husband now?

When exactly was the marriage and when did he go to the US after that?

How many people were there in the marriage?

Why were there so few people in the marriage?

Where will you be staying once you go to the US?

Where is your husband working?

Which location?

What will you be doing after going to the US?

What’s his designation and salary?

Do you know what he works on?

Your visa is approved, welcome to United States.

Came out of the embassy at 11:15AM

This group was very helpful in getting the interview slot and understanding the questions. Thanks to redbus2us too.


Experience 16: H1B (Self+Spouse) with Dropbox at Hyderabad

Me and my husband both are on h1. We all scheduled our dropbox appointments on April 28th.

My H1b stamping timeline:

1. Dropped off documents around 1:30PM (My initial appointment was scheduled at 12:15 but I forgot my old passport which has old visa, so I was told to comeback back with old passport before 3:00PM) on April 28th

2. Status changed to application received on May 2nd.

3. Last updated date changed to May 16th but status remained same as application received.

4. Status changed to administrative processing on May 17th.

5. Status changed to issued on May 18th.

Documents collected:

1. Old and New passports.

2. Previous and current i797(previous i797 was taken as there is employer change).

3. Ds 160 confirmation.

4. Employment verification letter.

5. 2 photos.

Husbands H1b stamping timeline:

1. Dropped off documents around 11:15AM on April 28th.(initial appointment was scheduled at 11:45AM but they let us all go early).

2. Status changed to application received on April 29th.

3. Status changed to administrative processing on May 13th.

4. Status change to issued on May 16th.

Documents collected:

1. Only new/current valid passport(since his last visa stamp is on new passport).

2. Current i797(no employer change).

3. Ds160 confirmation.

4. Employment verification letter.

5. 2 photos.


Experience 17: H1B with Dropbox, 221g, In Person Interview at Kolkata

9th May : h1b Dropbox
12th may : status changed to refused
12th may : got a call from Kolkata consulate to attend in person interview and gave me a slot on 17th may
17th may : attended interview
17th may : status changed to admin processing

Me: good morning , how are you
Vo: didn’t reply … arrogant Asian young man
Vo: do you have end client
Me : yes
Vo: give me letter
Me : I don’t have .. it’s against their policy to give out letters
Vo : without that we can’t give you visa
Me : I have vendor letter which states that client cannot give letter
I have email xerox
I have id xerox
Vo: do you have agreement between vendor and client
Me : yes , handed over to him
Vo: slightly checked and typed something in system
Vo : what’s your highest degree
Me : answered
Vo: when did you pass out
Me : answered
Vo: when was fist h1 approved
Me: answered
Vo: do you have first h1b copy
Me: handed over the xerox .. but he did not look at it and returned back
Vo: whats your salary
Me : answered
Vo: tell ne your job duties
Me: answered
Vo : then closed counter and took my employment letter at back and then returned in 1 min
Typed something and told visa approved have a nice day


Experience 18: H1B with Dropbox at Bengaluru

Location: Bengaluru
Address: gopalan mall, ground floor
Time allotted: 11.45 am

I was there at 10.00 am just in case. Security check will be done and we will be allowed insid.

US visa counter is in 1st floor.

Once u go there, irrespective of your time slot u will be given token. Collect token and wait.

We were told that we can go out and come after 2 hours. So I just went out and came back at 1.00

My token number came at 2.00.

Documents collection was smooth
Just take all the things mentioned in the list.
They want all photo copies.

In case u don’t have photocopy don’t worry. In ground floor photocopy center is functioning.

Will update later with the passport receival. I opted for premium delivery.


Experience 19: H1B+H4 with Dropbox at Kochin

DropBox Location Kochin, VAC : Chennai, Date: April 18 2022, Visa Issue Date: May 10 2022
I assume no one is interested in Travel experience as now a days coming to India is same as before (Just that I had to fill Air Suvidha and show vaccine card at the airport)

  • Mine was change of status from L1 to H1 (But I had H1 before L1, so I was cap exempt)
  • I chose my home location as passport pick up. The system allowed me to pick the zip code, so I thought blue dart is servicable in that location. (This is significant information. Will discuss later)
  • Reached Kochin before half an hour of the appointment. No baggage checks, just asked not to use the phone
  • Ample parking
  • plan to be there for 1 hour at least
  • Dropping the document took hardly 2 minutes
  • The status in the CEAC was application received. CGI site said passport is with us embassy
  • on Apr 21, the status date changed, but no status change.
  • the status started sand in CGI website till it went to Admin processing on May 9
  • CGI site said “Document delivery information:” from around April 25 or so.
  • no point in containing US embassy or raising request.
  • on May 10 the status changed to Issued for both myself and my wife
  • On 10 evening, got an email from us docs that passport cannot be delivered to my location as Blue Dart is not servicable and asked me to pick it up and the passport was delivered to VFS Chennai. (8 hours train to Chennai)
  • they dont deliver to near by pick up location as I provided me home address before.
  • 2 options were: I go myself and collect it, or provide authorisation to some one from Chennai. But the Authorization had to be signed original. They won’t accept scanned copy.
  • I went in person. But took Authorization from my wife.
  • no appointment needed in Chennai VFS for passport pick up. Process was smooth.

Documents submitted for drop box other than obvious passport, confirmation, copies of i797 etc (I had to give all the previous copies of i797 from 2007 onwards. May be because I had a break in h1B or my last privious expired visa was L1)
No client letter, just employment verification letter. (the letter was just a one liner from HR saying that I am employed with the company from ” Start Date”
I had to submit my old passport which had the last stamped visa along with New passport.
Note: my old passport with the expired visa was damaged (Water damage). Visa was smudged. I was worried whether that will cause any issues, but fortunately got my visa issues with no issues.

Hope this helps.


Experience 20: H1B with In Person Interview at New Delhi

Had booked slots in March.

VAC appointment was on 1 May and was smooth, was in and out within 45 min. Needed the passport, appointment confirmation and DS160 confirmation page.

Consular appointment was on 10 May at 9.40AM, reached at 8.30 and was allowed in.

VO: Hi, good morning.
Me: Good morning
VO: Passport and I797
Me: Passed over
VO: What does your company do?
Me: Started explaining but was interrupted within 2 sentences.
VO: In-house or end client?
Me: End client, mentioned name
VO: Where will you be working out of?
Me: Answered
VO: Highest level of education?
Me: Answered
VO: Visa is approved.

The interview was over in under a minute. The entire process took around 50 minutes. No supporting documents such as employment verification letter or client letter were requested.

11 May: Admin processing
12 May: Issued
13 May: Passport delivered at my home address.


Experience 21: H1B with Dropbox at Hyderabad

Reached the consultate by 2pm for a 3:15 appointment. The security guard sent me inside the consulate at 2:15pm. There were 12 counters inside.
Another security guard inside asked my original location of appointment and I replied Delhi. He directed me to a counter. Waited for 15 mins there as there are 2 folks ahead of me. Now it’s my turn.
The VO asked a bunch of docs and I submitted them. Everything was done in couple of mins. And I left the consulate before 3 pm. The process was super simple.

Below are the documents they asked.

Appointment confirmation
DS 160 confirmation
2 passport size photos
Original passports
Current i797
Employment Verification letter

Dropped: May 9th at Hyd for Delhi loc
May 9th: No status
May 11th: Administrative Processing
May 13th: Issued
May 18th: Ready for pickup
May 19th: Picked up!


Experience 22: H4 with In Person Interview at Chennai

VAC Appointment : May 11th @ 8.30AM

They allow me @ 7.50
They told us to hold Appointment conformation, DS160 and passport in handy .

At the counter, they asked me for my name, date of birth and told me to read the instructions pasted on the table. No other document was asked.

Came out of the office around 8:20AM.
Consular Appointment: May 16th at 12:00AM

Stood in the outside queue at 10:30AM. We went at 11AM.

First, there was security check.

Then went to the building where interviews happen. And waiting for 30 mins in queue. I was sent to the counter 23 . The lady was Friendly and happy looking too.

Questions :

Where is your husband ?

Pass me your spouse stamped visa ?

When did you get married ?

Your visa is approved
Come out of the embassy @ 11.45 Am

18th i got my stamped passport

Thank you all😊


Experience 23: H1B with Dropbox at Chennai

Booked Appointment through regular process (No Agent)

19th April 2022 – 2:45 PM Appointed was scheduled for Chennai VAC
• As per new rule you are allowed to drop document at nearest VAC irrespective of appointment location
• So I decided to go Mumbai VAC which is nearest my home town and I reached 1 PM to Mumbai VAC on 19th April
• At Gate security guard checked appointment letter and allowed go in early. I asked if I need take my spouse for DropBox and security guard said no it’s not required. I can confirm here only one person can drop for all family documents. spouse or kids not required for Dropbox.
• After waiting in line for 10 mins and I been called at window. Lady at my window took 30 min to review my document and accept (Generally it wont take more than 10 mins but it seems the lady on my window was new, next window lady finished 4 application while mine was reviewed. She told me it taking time because my appointment was at different location)
• Document they requested : Old and New passport, Employee verification letter and latest I797 ( for H4 : latest 797 for both). But FYI, I was carrying all document listed in appointment checklist and other internet visa sites.

20th April 2022 – On CEAC tracker site – No record found with my DS 160 number

21st April 2022 – On CEAC tracker – Case Created and Status updated as “Application Received”. (https://ceac.state.gov/ceacstattracker/status.aspx)

22nd to 25th – No updates

26th April – Just “updated date” changed with same status as “Application Received”.

27th April to 5 May – no updates

6th May – Just “updated date” changed with same status as “Application Received”.

7th to 9th May – No updates

10th May : Status changed to “Administrative Processing”

11th May – Status changed “Issued”
On CEAC tracker portal this is last status update, I thought passport dispatched will be updated on this CAEC tracker but it was updated on cgifederal appointment booking site.
I only realized this after two days.

12TH May – Passport Picked from US consulate ( this status was update on cgifederal appointment booking site – https://cgifederal.secure.force.com/?country=India&language=English)

14th May – Passport delivered to selected Blue Dart location for pickup
• There is no notification to MY mobile phone which cause me two days to figure out passport ready for pickup until I checked my email.
• I got to know passport ready on 18th through email and Email had Blue Dart tracking number. Blue Dart did not called me, even they were holding passport for 4 days.

19th May – Finally Passport picked up at selected Blue Dart Location

Best of luck .!


Experience 24: H1B with In Person Interview at New Delhi

OFC – Sunday, May 15th at 3.00 pm
Interview – Tuesday, May 17th at 10.00 am

OFC appointment –
It was pretty straight forward. I reached at 2.40 pm and joined a long queue. I completed my 10 print by 3.30 pm.

In-person interview –
I reached embassy at 8.30 am, they let me join the queue at 9 am which was outside the embassy itself. You cannot carry even your bag or any sharp objects, so please plan accordingly. After the security check, they let me into the embassy where my documents were verified initially by an officer and after a brief wait in the lobby I joined another queue for my final interview

VO was a lady, she is probably in her early 30s
Me – Good Morning mam
VO – Good morning, please pass me your passport and 797
Me – Gave my documents, along with my petition papers
VO – Are you a direct employee or do you have a client?
Me – I work for a client
VO – What is the name of your client?
Me – Told
VO – she kept typing for about 2 mins and then she took my passport and asked me to place my right hand four fingers on the scanners
Me – Thank you mam, have a nice day

This whole process took about an hour, I was out by 9.50 am itself. And I came to India after almost 9 years.


Experience 25: H4 with In Person Interview at Hyderabad

May: 15th VAC at 4 PM.

Reached early around 3 and stand in the line they allowed me in 3:45
Verified passport , appointment confirmation and ds-160 and took the finger print and photo.

May 20th 8 Am consulate

Went to consulate early by 7 Am

Arround 7:45 security allowed inside.
No mobiles allowed to inside.
After seccurity check they will send some people into counters.

VO:Good morning!
Me: Good morning, How are you!
VO:I am good ,Can i have your passport , Spouse Passport copy
Me: Handed over
VO: Marriage Certificate and Marriage Album
Me: Handed over
Vo:Where you will be staying in US
Me:Answered.
Vo: Marriage Date.
Me: Answered

May 19: Case created.
May 23: Issued.

Waiting for the passport for delivery.


   

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