Following H1B Stamping in Delhi 2013 is shared by Vishal along with port of Entry Experience at Boston.
What I don’t like about the new process is now you need 2 appointments on 2 separate days.
I was thinking that if you have your fingerprints on file you won’t need biometric appointment, but I was obviously wrong. You need a biometrics appointment as they don’t accept photos provided by you anymore, they fingerprint you and take your photo for the visa.
The good thing is now you don’t pay for the courier fee if you are picking up your visa yourself. I got the fingerprinting done on 2/6/2013. No bags allowed, cell phones are OK.
I went for H1B renewal interview at the New Delhi US Consulate on 2/7/2013.
I have changed employers but both my old employer and new employer are American startups and I am a full time employee so there is no vendor involved (obviously no client letter, no project letter, no timesheets etc).
Info: Delhi Consulate has safe deposit for cellphones.
The VO had rejected 3-4 B1 candidates ahead of me and I felt a little nervous. I felt better when he approved a H1 and a H4. (I know that as they have different tokens for different visas for example H1 tokens were A).
H1B Stamping in Delhi Interview
Me: Good morning officer.
VO: Good morning, how are you?
Me: I am good, yourself?
VO: Not bad.
VO: Where is located.
Me: Lincoln Mass
VO: Why did you change job?
Me: My previous employer was outsourcing to Ukraine so I had to change my job
Typed some stuff on computer for a few seconds:
VO: Your visa is approved.
I got the email the same evening that the documents were available for pickup.
POE (Boston Logan):
Me: Good evening officer, how are you?
IO: Good evening. I am good.
Me: What a relief to be back home.
IO: I know, how was your trip? Howz everyone in India?
Me: Well, trip was good, everyone is fine, though my throat got screwed up by the pollution.
IO: Ah. Feel good to be back?
Me: Yeah, feels so great.
IO: You said yes to food in your customs form?
Me: Yea, I got some snacks and desserts from my cousin’s wedding in India
IO: I hear weddings in India are quite something
Me: With like 50 appetizers, 100 entrees and 50 desserts, its quite a show, though I am not sure if I like the idea.
IO: . Welcome home.
Me: Have a good one.
IO: You too.
Off to collect my bags.
Visa interview has its fair (more than fair) share of risk but if you have all the right documents and answer confidently, you stand a good chance.
I saw some people fumble with their answers and had to explain the answers 3 times.
For example the first family I saw getting rejected (for B1) could not properly explain what they did in India.The visa officer asked them 3 times about their business and and finally said, I am sorry you don’t qualify.
Tip: Spend some time on your answers to ensure that you are speaking words that Americans understand.
If you can’t explain your financial condition (for all visas except H/L), you are in dead waters. The VOs don’t understand words like marriage halls.
I know this sounds silly, but I personally witnessed 2 rejected applications because of this in a span of just 15 minutes and 5 visa applications.