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Review of CR1 Interview at US Embassy in London

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Filed: IR-1/CR-1 Visa Country: England

Updated this on our timeline, but thought I'd share it here as well!

My wife had an 8:30am interview at the US Embassy in London. The website says to arrive no earlier than 30 minutes prior to your appointment, as they will not be able to admit you due to security concerns. However, we arrived to the embassy at 8:10am to find a MASSIVE line to get in. They informed us that we would not be in the embassy before her interview, but that the appointment time didn't matter, as long as you show up that day. There is an initial line you will wait in where they will check either your DS160 (Non Immigrant Visa) or your IV package (Immigrant Visa) and passport. After these are approved, you are sent to a second line to enter the embassy.

I was able to be with my wife today as I am in the UK, however, despite being a US Citizen I was not allowed into the embassy because I was not on their "list." They informed me that if you wish to bring anyone to your interview, you need to book that with the embassy prior to the interview. Not a huge deal, just a heads up to anyone that plans to attend!

My wife went through security (basic airport style). They do allow cell phones inside the embassy now, however she told me that they asked her to turn it off. Once inside, they divide the applicants based on their visa category (either nonimmigrant or immigrant) and assign a number. She was called to a window in which they checked (briefly) her paperwork and asked her to sit again and wait for her interview. She was then immediately called to the interview where she had to raise her right hand and swear that the information she supplied was true. Of the ENTIRE binder of information we compiled and brought to the interview, the only question the interviewer asked was "how did he convince you to let him have that beard?" she responded "I like the beard!" and he said "mam, you're approved." That was it! They told us outside the embassy that inside would take 2-3 hours and it was over in about 30-45 minutes.

Overall, (obviously with the outcome) I'd say it was a positive experience today. My only advice would be to arrive to the embassy EARLY if you want to get in on time, however, it seems as though this won't affect your ability to be interviewed. They do provide umbrellas if it's raining, as well as plastic bags for your "watch, belt and cell phone" (you'll hear this phrase dozens of times).

She then had to select which mail service she wanted her passport delivered with and that was that! We're approved!

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