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  1. On 13-July-2018, we had our interview for F4 category. It was a bitter experience and we are very confused about it. It would be great if anyone clears our situation. Our interview was at 8 AM at Islamabad Embassy. Our priority date is 27/10/2004. We were 5 persons in total. My parents and their three children in which two were under CSPA with ages 23 and 26. We reached embassy and took tokens by 8:30 AM. First we went to a window in which the officer took our Interview letter, Pictures and took our finger prints. Then, after a while we went to another window where one officer collected our documents and it turned out that the birth certificate was not original. We protested a bit and then he said that if you wish me to put it with documents, I would but it would affect your case as you are under oath and this would be considered a lie. On hearing that, we asked him to give it back and then he told us that you could send it after wards. He was rude and asked us in a bitter way that whether we children are married or not. We told him that we are not. He also asked us what do we do and we answered him accordingly. This whole situation created an upset in my family and we got nervous as something terrible had happened. After a while we were asked to come to a window where there was a female visa officer with a male interpreter as we chose to give our interview in Urdu (native language). My uncle sponsored us but his income was well under poverty line so we had our cousin as joint sponsor as his income is on the higher side. First he interviewed my Father Q: Who was the petitioner? A: My little brother and (HIS NAME) Q: Where does he live? A: California (did not answer with the whole address) Q: From when is he living there? A: The answer was 2010 but my father answered it 2004 because my uncle shifted from NY to Rochester in 2004 so father confused it with. He corrected it after we cleared it to him. Q: How many children do you have and what do they do? A: Answered Properly but nervously Q: Have you all visited US before? (Question where it started to go wrong) A: Father told him that he had visited a couple of times in the fast. Q: You stayed for 6 months? A: Yes, i stayed for 6 months. Q: Did you over stay? A: Father said No. (and it was true) Q: You sure? A: Yes Q: Why did you stay for 6 months? A: I am a keen traveler and i visited my family (Answered nervously) Q: What did you do there? A: I like to travel, I traveled to many places with my friends and family. (The interpreter did not translate it to the VO) Q: But what did you do there? (asked again) A: Traveled alot and some other general statements. (interpreter did not seem to be satisfied so he did not translate it again and asked the same question again) Q: But what did you do? A: Some general statements but when he did not seem to be satisfied my father said that my brother had stores there and i sometimes used to go with them. The interpreter shrugged his shoulders and said something to VO which i could not hear properly and i was standing with my father. (I have two uncles in USA and they used to have stores but my petitioner is not an owner of property now and he works as an associate in a store officially owned by other relatives that is why his income is below poverty line significantly) At this point the VO peeked to another window, talked to some other fellow and put a stamp on the passport of my passport which i believe is that she revoked his existing visit visa which was still valid. Q: Do you have any domicile proof of joint sponsor? A: i gave them the copy green card of my cousin. They did not ask any question about him but my father volunteered and told them about our relationship with the joint sponsor but the interpreter did not translate it to VO. That was the last question they asked my father and situation got very nervous there. The they asked my elder brother who is 26 and working in QATAR right now. Q: Where do you work? A: answered properly Q: Do you have your police clearance certificate with you? A: I gave the the PCC as i was holding all the documents with me. The PCC had Arabic on right side and English translation on left side of the document. She asked that where is the English translation? My brother answered properly that it is on the same document and it is the one they provide officially. She looked on it for a while and then returned. She did not seem to look very happy. Q: From how long have you been in Qatar? A: 8 months but i visited for a month in between as he visited on eldest brothers marriage. Then he asked me one question that what do you do? I told him that i am engineer doing job right now. Situation was quite tense and we were not very confident as she seemed to be strict from the very beginning. Then she gave us 221g form on which it was marked that we have to provide birth certificate of my father. The thing that happened after it is the thing that is particularly bothering me. She kept all of our passports but gave my elder brother his passport so that he can go back to Qatar for his job. My brother refused to take it saying that he is here for a while. Then she said that we will process your case and if your visa gets ready, we will ask you to give us your passport. My brother insisted not to take it and said he can wait. She replied, "IT WILL TAKE A VERY LONG TIME". My brother said he can wait for two months and if it would not get worked till then he would take it back. This statement terrified us badly. After that she went away and I asked our interpreter how to submit birth certificate. He told us to to go to another window to get instructions. Then i asked him is there and remarks on our interview, he replied that your interview is concluded and now we would do a departmental verification. I asked is there any time frame for this process? he replied negatively. After that we went to the other window and got information about where to submit the document? We got it and we will submit the document is a couple of days. Now, we are very confuse about what would happen next and how long we have to wait? whole family is upset about it. Her statement about "LONG TIME" particularly is hurting us. My brother`s job is on stake as well. We are confused whether to ask for his passport as we are unsure about how much time would it take. There is nothing fraudulent in our documents, its just we gave the interview nervously which we think have created some doubt in their mind. The status of case is changed to administrative processing. During whole this process the VO stamped 5 or 6 of our documents, does anyone have idea what that stamp is about? It would be great in some expert analyzes the situation and gives us some advice about what to do.
  2. Hello, everyone. I had just gotten back from my interview and would like to share my experience (in exchange for good luck haha) First, here's a brief timeline: Application Submitted: July 23, 2019 Biometrics Scheduled: July 27, 2019 Biometrics Date: August 16, 2019 Interview Scheduled August 16, 2019 Interview Date: September 27, 2019 The Cleveland Field office only has a estimated time of 4-8 months but I was still pleasantly surprised at how fast everything was scheduled. On to my interview experience: My interviewed was scheduled at 8:30am but I had read the time wrong and got there at 8:00 right when the office opens. I was the first person to sign in and was the first person to get called in after waiting for about 5-10 minutes. So if you have an 8:30 interview, it wouldn't hurt to get there earlier (and potentially catch the IO in a better mood). My IO was a woman with a strong french accent, but I understood her nonetheless. She called my name and greeted me. She asked for my ID: green card, driver's license, passport. She then asked me to stand up and raise my right hand and put me under oath. Her first question was about my trip outside of US that lasted 183 days (exactly 6 month). The application system had a warning about it so I knew she was gonna ask about it. She asked to see the passport stamp to check exact departure and arrival dates of the trip but US immigration didn't stamp for departure. I only had electronic copy of the itinerary so I asked for her permission to check my phone to show her. She just needed to see the exact dates of travel (leaving and coming back to US). I thought they'd have records of exact travel dates from immigration so I had only prepared for other trips during the middle of that trip. So it's best to print out your travel itinerary if your passport doesn't show all the departure and arrival dates. She also asked why I made that trip, why it was for so long and who stayed at my US residence while I was gone. At the end of the interview she mentioned that they might need more evidence from me, so I gave her my phone bill that showed I maintained my phone number during that 6 months. I also had other frequent trips but she didn't go into details for them. After explaining my travels, she went through my application line by line, starting from my name and address. I have an issue where I was accidentally registered to vote by my high school teacher, so I decided to put "Yes" for whether if I ever claimed to be a U.S. Citizen. But my IO corrected me and said it was whether if I actually claimed to be American and changed my answer to "No". I also explained why I was registered to vote and never voted in any elections. She asked for any evidence so I gave her the documents I had previously obtained from the Board of Election as proof that I cancelled the status and never voted. All of the evidence I gave my IO was also already submitted electronically. But it seems like she wasn't aware of it (not sure if they will read the electronic supplements after the interview). So I suggest if you have any supporting document that you'd like them to know about, definitely talk about it and give them physical copies because they might not ask for it during the interview unless you show them. I also typed a cover letter explaining all my issues and reasons in details and gave it to her. For my case, she didn't ask detail questions about taxes or jobs but it might be different for each IO. Reading and Writing test was the same sentence: "The President lives in the White House." Writing was on a electronic pad. It was pretty difficult to write nicely so don't worry about handwriting. There was no erase option but you can ask the IO to start over. Questions were exactly like the booklet and I answered them 6/6 correctly. After that, IO asked me to confirm my personal information again and sign. At the end, my IO said the evidence I provided might be sufficient but she still needs to talk to her supervisor about it. If they need more evidence, they will send a letter asking for more. If my application is approved, they will send a letter scheduling the oath ceremony. My result paper says I passed the test and "A decision cannot be made yet about your application." My IO was strict but nice and understanding and my interview lasted about 30 minutes. My advise is to be articulate and explain everything well. Know your application weakness and prepare evidence for it. I did a lot of research on this forum and even talked to lawyers (both lawyers I talked to advised against applying for citizenship due to the issues I listed above and the current immigration policy, but I decided to go for it anyways. We'll see if they're right about it.). Most importantly give them physical copies of supporting evidence once they raised a concern even if they didn't explicitly ask for evidence. I printed out all all the evidence I previously submitted electronically, as well as others I didn't submit, and labelled them accordingly so I didn't have to dig through all the documents to find the one I need. It might be an overkill but it's better to be prepared than to have to re-submit more evidence later. That's it! Fingers crossed I will be approved for oath ceremony soon and good luck to everyone on this journey!
  3. Hello My visa category is F4 Brothers and Sisters of US Citizen. I am married and have 2 kids of age 8 & 5 and a spouse. I want to know that on this visa category am i eligible with my whole family to immigrate or only my self.? Also if anyone knows a good Immigration attorney to deal this whole immigration procedure. Thanks
  4. Hello all! I would like to share in detail (and I mean that, in detail, haha) my experience regarding the CFO GCP Seminar dated June 3, 2019 at the CFO Manila site. As much as the people on this site have helped me out with the process thus far, I thought I'd give back in my own way and maybe someone out there would find this helpful. DISCLAIMER: The following account is based solely upon my personal experience and is not to be used as official reference for the CFO GCP Seminar procedure. Your needs, circumstances, and experiences may vary from mine. Always refer to the official websites and/or proper authorities for the requirements and procedures. Also, this is NOT PDOS. This is GCP. My info: Seminar for K1 Fiance(e) Visa, USA, I am the beneficiary California Service Center NOA1 - January 25, 2019 NOA2 - April 18, 2019 MNL# - May 9, 2019 (approx.) In Transit - May 28, 2019 NVC letter (e-mail) - May 29, 2019 Visa issued? - No. I decided to take the seminar early because most times the online appointment calendar will not have available dates within the next 3-4 weeks. For instance, on May 14 the earliest available date was June 3rd (3 weeks later, including weekends). In those three weeks I gathered and prepared all the other documents that I would need for the medical exam and the embassy interview. Before I leave for the US I would have to go back to CFO Manila (a second time, the first being attending the seminar), bringing my already issued US Visa with me, so that I could get the sticker on my passport (no falling in line, no extra payment, except for transportation costs as applicable). If you want to do the same, don't forget to bring 1) Your passport, 2) The CFO Certificate, and 3) Other valid government IDs just in case. As for the seminar experience itself: June 3, 2019 Monday AM schedule (9am-12nn) 8:00 am - I arrived at the CFO Manila office and fell in line to be received at the lobby. The line was quite long, extended up to the outside of the building, and slow-moving. At this point, prepare 1) A valid government ID, and 2) Your appointment confirmation/registration page (the one showing your photo, other details, and the QR code). The security guard will ask you to show him these (along with a bag check). Note: Before entering the building you may find a snack vendor right outside the main entrance. If you haven't had a heavy breakfast and/or are the hungry type, you might wanna buy snacks for later. 8:15 am - I surrendered my ID at the reception area of the lobby, far left counter (take note: this is not the air-conditioned area with counters numbered 1-7, you'll need that info later on). The reception guy gave me an ID lace tag with a number (like a visitor's pass). I wore it around my neck and followed the instruction to take the elevator to the 3rd floor. 8:20-ish - Upon entering the room at the 3rd floor, the lady to my left gave me a 3-page form to fill out, instructing that I fill it out completely and that the document cannot be taken anywhere outside the room. WITH VISA: Give the personnel your passport. WITHOUT VISA: No need to hand over your passport. Note: When I was there, the room was easily filled with people and the chairs and tables were limited so I didn't know where to write. If you encounter this problem, try checking the seminar rooms which would most likely be empty. It's alright to fill out the forms in there, too. The first page of the form asked about my personal information, the second page was about my petitioner and other information about us both, and the third asked about the beneficiary's children, among other things (I feel I shouldn't disclose too much because the form was confidential to begin with). The bottom of the third page is where you sign and date the form. IMPORTANT: Make sure you answer the form completely and accurately because as far as I've researched, some applicants get delays and other issues because of this. Most people tend to overlook 1) The beneficiary's and petitioner's complete home address including zip code, beneficiary's phone number, and mother's maiden name; 2) The petitioner's educational attainment and/or course/degree finished, job title, and other small details. Be ready with as much info as you can just to be sure. You can check your phone or notebook for reference anyways, so jot these details down ahead of time. Extra note: There was a part that asked how I met my fiance, I didn't expect this one. There are some check boxes you can select from. I met my fiance online so I checked "internet". The form asked to detail the "website", so I wrote down the name of the Android application (a game on my phone), and then the website address and "fees charged" were also asked. I wanted to make sure I completed the form as much as I can, so I Googled the application developer and the address of their headquarters and wrote those down. 😂 They didn't seem to have any issues with that, haha. Then for "fees" I just wrote "None" because the app was for free. 8:30 am - I submitted the accomplished form to the lady at the form verification cubicle (the stations are labeled, you can't miss it). At this point, prepare 2 valid government-issued IDs, they will ask it from you. People commonly tell the personnel "My other ID is downstairs at the reception area", so it's best to bring 3 or more government IDs with you. Afterwards, you will be instructed to take a seat and wait for your name to be called. 8:45 am - The lady in cubicle one (who gave me the 3-page form) called my name and asked me to take a seat beside her. She proceeded to verify if the information on the form is correct, and then my photo was taken. You will be asked to check the photo and see if you find it satisfactory. Note: If you think it's a terrible photo, ask her to retake it because that photo is for FOREVER. 😂 And I say that because this photo will be printed on your CFO Certificate and that document will never expire. (Setting expectations: You may find that the photo is vertically compressed a bit. Don't panic. Apparently, that's normal. At least you'll look skinny, lol) After the picture-taking, the lady told me to "go have breakfast if I want to and be back before 9am". Basically, you can just wait it out in there if you like. 9:00 am - We gathered inside the room labeled "USA", it was the first room. Note: If you're quite short (like me, haha) don't sit at the back because it will be hard to see the screen if someone sits in front of you. From this point on you may find personnel going around the room handing out the immigrants'/emigrants' handbook and brochure about anti-mail order spouse law, along with a survey sheet where you can score the seminar experience. 9:20 am - The speaker arrived and apologized for the lateness. We started late because we had to wait for all the participants to finish registration before we could begin. Do the others a favor and come to the office early (around 7:30 am) to spare everyone else the trouble. Haha 10:32 am - The speaker gave her closing remarks and asked us to wait for our names to be called for the one-on-one interview. As soon as she left, I placed my completed survey form on the table, as instructed. There will be a cute little video playing on loop for those waiting in the room. At this point (and moving forward, while waiting for anything really), I recommend chatting with the other participants and maybe increasing your social network a bit. Personally, I found someone who was moving to the same state I was; so I got her info and now...I am going to be one of the principal sponsors at her wedding. 😂 Charisma: 25 (If you know what I mean) 11:00 to 11:30 am - I'm not sure when my name was called but I was something like 5th or 4th to the last to be interviewed. At the time there were two interviewers available, one guy and one girl (the seminar speaker). I was interviewed by the speaker. From what I've heard, each consul has his/her own style of questioning. Some kind of drill you while others were super nice and easy to work with. Just be prepared for more in-depth and personal questions regardless of who interviews you. A lot of people are so paranoid but there's really nothing to be afraid of. You can answer in English/Tagalog/Taglish anyways, so answer honestly and straight to the point and you'll be fine. My interviewer was more in-depth, I think, especially because my fiance is twice divorced and he has a kid, so I get why she wanted to understand how I am processing these circumstances. Anyway, your consul may refer to the 3-page form you filled out and ask you to expound on what you wrote on there. Extra note: My consul didn't even ask for any of my documents. She just asked for 2 valid IDs. My file folder did not see the light of day. 😂 DISCLAIMER: This doesn't mean you can attend the seminar with just confidence and honesty, lol. Bring all your documents regardless, as I did. It helped with my confidence and peace of mind. Y'all can't act nervous in front of the consul. IMPORTANT: If you are bringing divorce papers, bring the copies that show both parties' names and signatures, together with details of the divorce, not just the simple 2-page one. I think one of the participants in my session experienced issues because of that. If you don't have the printed copies, at least ask your petitioner to send soft copies to you; it just might work with the consul. 11:30-ish - My interview lasted about 5-10 minutes. The consul instructed me to go down to the ground floor and proceed to the air-conditioned area (one with the glass door, 7 counters, and lots of chairs). Try to sit by counter numbers 6 and 7 because that's where the magic happens. 😂 If you see other people holding receipts and the like, don't panic. At this point you should just wait for your name to be called (person from counter 7 will probably do that one) and he/she will collect your Php 400.00 payment and issue your receipt. WITH VISA: Hand over your passport. WITHOUT VISA: No need to give your passport. After that, you will once again wait for your name to be called. In the meantime, make new friends. Haha Around 12nn - My name was called by a lady at counter 6 and she gave me my Certificate. Because I don't have my visa yet, this isn't my last encounter with CFO just yet. But if you already have the Certificate AND the CFO sticker, you're good to go! As in, go leave the country. LOL Other notes: On Sunday, June 2 I booked a room at a nearby hotel to make sure I wasn't late the next morning. I live quite far from Manila proper, Monday morning traffic would have killed me, so I decided that staying nearby was the best option for me. You don't have to do this, too; but the option is there if you need it. If you've made it this far, congratulations. Your patience is praiseworthy. LOL. I hope I wasn't blabbering on too much. Hope y'all have a smooth-sailing experience like I did. Best of luck! 😁
  5. Hi guys, I had my IR2 visa interview on 4th of November 2019, and I would like to share my experience. I searched through the internet and I could find only two experiences for IR2 for children who are close to 20 years old (have mentioned the links below). Hope this post might help someone in the future. First I'll dive into the actual interview day directly, following I'll share a brief paragraphs about Medical, Biometrics and other stuffs if any. Interview Time: 7:15 AM. Went to the consulate around 6:45 AM in Formal dress, and were waiting opposite to the consulate. Then they called applicants with 7:15 AM interview and formed a queue outside, where an Indian guy/officer checked for the Interview Email Printout from NVC, DS260 with a stamp from our Biometrics and our passport. Then there'll be a screening process like in the Airport. I just took my Wallet and other files. Electronic and food items are prohibited, and they have a locker for the electronic items if you bring any (I believe that you have to pay some amount for this). I then arrived to the place where the interview takes place. Few Indian officers will instruct you to take specific documents in the language you are comfortable with. The documents they asked to takeout from us are: Passport, Birth & Police Clearance Certificate - Copy and Original DS260 with a stamp from our Biometric interview Two 50x50 White Background Photographs Sealed Medical Envelope. Then we get a token number according to the language we choose. There were 15 counters and the officers in the counters call up the token numbers on a First come First serve basis. An Indian officer will be present for this initial calling from the counter. He asked me to hand over the documents which was mentioned above and asked the following questions after greeting him with a Good Morning: Who's calling you (Who's you petitioner)? When's your birthdate? Have you been to USA? Have you been outside India? (Answered him with the places I have been) How long have you been in those places? (Answered him: "A week each") He then returned the Xerox copies of the documents and kept the original, and said that an US officer will be calling you for the next interview(with the same token number). This should be around 730 I guess (Didn't carry my watch inside) For the interview of US officer, what I noted was they called in specific categories to a specific counter. And for the US officer interview there were only three counters active. One counter was processing Parents Visa(IR5), another was IR1/CR1 and another was processing group people (where father and kid comes together). I kept on waiting till my number was called upon (I was sleepy too as I had only 4 hrs of sleep and have to just stare at the closed counter in front of you :P). Finally around 11 AM, my number was called. Greeted him with a Good Morning. Asked me to raise my hand and took an oath saying that the information I provide today is true, then you’ll be asked to provide fingerprints here too. Then he proceeded with the following questions: Who’s is petitioning you? (He didn’t get my answer, hence asked it twice) How old are you? (Answered 22) Are you married? Have you applied or denied for a US Visa before? How did your father go to US? (Answered: Through employment) What did he do? (Answered with the title of his occupation) Did he go on a H1B? (Answered: Yes he went on a H1B, then got his Green card and then through naturalisation he got his citizenship) He was looking into his computer in between the questions and it took around 5 min for the entire interview Then he said the golden words “Your Visa is approved”! And gave the originals back and a sheet saying the next steps which was basically on how to pay the Green card fee (This should be paid before you enter US) He didn’t ask me any other documents, but I took the following documents which was present in the checklist (https://travel.state.gov/content/dam/visas/Supplemental/appt%20letter_checklist%20for%20interview.pdf & https://travel.state.gov/content/dam/visas/Supplemental/BMB - Bombay.pdf): Affidavit of Support Tax Documents: Federal and W2 for last 3 years Pictures & Chat logs with my Dad Proof of US Domicile of my Dad PayStubs and Employment Letter of my Dad, Notarised document from my mother saying that she is okay with myself immigrating to US with my Dad (I am not sure if these is a compulsory doc, just in case if they ask I took, since my Mom will not be travelling with me to US) Other things which I carried is copies of my siblings and Mom’s VISA and Passport Copy, Dad’s driving license copy Few tips from people were: Read the DS260 answers well, be confident and truthful in your replies, answer strictly to the question and not give extra unnecessary replies. I had chosen pickup option for Passport, and it was available for Pickup at Chennai 3 days after the Interview. Medical process: I did my medical at Apollo Chennai. The base fee was around 15k with 5k extra for required vaccinations.Take: 6 50x50 White Background photographs Interview Email Printout Passport Original and Copy and DS-260 A report(original and copy) from a Doctor listing the vaccines you have taken from your birth until now. Initially, you’ll be giving your blood sample, then Vision and other general checkups will be done. You’ll be taking a Chest X-Ray then. Finally, a doctor will examine you and ask necessary questions and choose the vaccinations you must take. Then you’ll be taking the vaccinations. During the examination by the doctor, she’ll be entering the information you provide into the computer, make sure that the information is correct like dates and spelling. You can pick up the report the next day evening before 5. In case if they find any abnormality in the tests, they’ll call you else you can assume that you have passed the medical test. They’ll return the report sealed which you’ll be taking to the interview, then a sheet mentioning the vaccination’s you have taken and the ones you have to take in future and the a X-Ray disk (2 and 3 are not required for interview). Had my appointment at 9 am, the entire process got over close to 1pm. Biometrics process: I had my Biometrics at Chennai VAC, Kodambakkam 830 AM. Documents required: Passport, Biometrics Appointment Letter, DS-260. (In addition I also took the Visa Interview Email printout). You’ll be screened first. Avoid taking mobile phones. They’ll stick a couple of barcode stickers onto your passport. Don’t remove this. Then you’ll be called upon based on your token number. They’ll take fingerprints and a photograph and ask your birthdate, Visa type. This photograph will be present on your visa. Take care of your fingers before both Biometric and Visa interview, as there will be delays in you have a visible cuts or injuries in your hand. The earlier you go, the earlier you complete the process. For me it was over in around 20 min. NVC Received: 18-Jan-2019. Case Complete: 21-May-2019 Submitted all docs on April 12, and I was notified to re-upload the passport scan so that it can be read from left to right. This verification of scanned passport took more than a month. Interview Scheduled email: 15-Oct-2019 (Mumbai had a backlog at that time). Both VisaJourney and a Mumbai folks WhatsApp group were very helpful for the part from Interview letter waiting process to the end of the Interview. Other experience links: https://www.visajourney.com/forums/topic/486953-ir2-visa-interview-experience/ https://wynonapauline.blogspot.com/2017/07/my-detailed-us-immigrant-visa-interview.html
  6. Hey guys. I am at the moment waiting for a letter from USCIS with the scheduled date for my upcoming Green Card interview. My office is in Atlanta, GA. Is there any if you guys that recently went through an interview and want to share your experience?
  7. Just me sharing my embassy interview experience and some tips. Disclaimer: Do not use this anecdote as a strict reference to determine your visa application process/needs. Please refer to the official sources and authorities. My timeline (2019): K1 Fiance(e) Visa Sent I-129F - Jan. 24 NOA1 - Jan. 30 (6 days) NOA2 - Apr. 18 (78 days) Case# - May 9 (21 days) Ready - Jun. 3 (25 days) Eligibility Letter - Jun. 6 (dated), in the mail Jun. 14 Interview - Jul. 9 (visa approved) My interview was scheduled for 7:45am. I arrived at the US Embassy Manila before 7:30am at the entrance near the footbridge on Roxas Blvd. (if you look across the street there's Ermita Center building, BPI and AUB). At that point they were already letting in applicants scheduled for 8:30am, but don't take this as a solid reason to come waaay earlier than your appointment because I had to fall in line behind about 60 people once I was inside anyway. NOTE: If you have companions, you may ask them to wait outside where there are monobloc chairs, but be prepared to pay Php30 per seat (unlimited hours). If your fiance(e) is accompanying you, they can come with you inside but some time in the middle of the process they would have to sit apart from the applicants. Also, remember the no-electronics rule applies to them, too. They may surrender phones or whatnot at the security guard post. Before you go in somebody may also try to sell you a pen, telling you how it's necessary for whatever process you need inside. I would suggest you just bring your own pen to begin with. Most visa applicants don't need it (I didn't) but there are some cases when they do (I guess depending on your business there). I've had to lend my pen to some frantic people when I was there as the consul asked them to sign papers. At the first point of security, they asked for my DS-160 confirmation page, appointment page, and they verified my visa type and interview schedule, then told me which numbered lane I should go to (this is still outside the building). I was in lane 3. At this point, prepare your DS-160 conf page and your passport. The staff would put a sticker bar code on your DS-160 conf page and place your passport in a ziploc bag. The building entrance is to the left, look for the door that looks quite heavy and durable. LOL If you're bringing a bag, the guard would check it before you go through the scanner. Otherwise, you'll go through airport-type security next. Place your items in the plastic bin, onto the conveyor, and go through the body scanner. I followed the signs and exited accordingly. Turning right I saw the photo booth (for last minute passport photos, I assume), followed the signs until the area labeled "NIV" (lots of people seated on monobloc chairs - I think this is also a waiting area where you can get food and drinks) then turned left until the labeled door. If I remember correctly I think I entered the one with "K1" on it. Once inside, a lady told me to fall in line for the Filipino consul and I was in line for maybe 30 minutes or more only to be told that I had to go to window 38 to have my 2x2 photo scanned first, LOL. Then I went back in line for the initial interview. The consul asked for my DS-160 conf page, birth certificate, NBI clearance, MRV receipt, CENOMAR, medical docs (sealed brown envelope from SLEC); then later on the affidavit of support, my fiance's divorce decree, W2s and 1040 (tax return). He asked me basic questions about myself and my fiance, how we met, marriage history, children, etc. Then he directed me to another window for the interview with the American consul (waiting in line again). On my turn, the consul asked for my DS-160 conf page and for me to raise my right hand, swear this and that (sorry I couldn't remember, I was a bit nervous and would say yes to anything at this point LOL), and I said "Yes". Then he asked me basically the same things that the previous consul asked, even fewer questions actually. Stuff I could answer briefly. Didn't even ask for proof of relationship or anything. A lot of silence as he went through my documents, I think he was going through the proof of relationship section of my I-129F (but I still brought my own copy). Guess I was lucky. After that he said my visa is approved and he's making it so it would be ready in 1-3 weeks. He gave me the 2 pamphlets on domestic violence plus the little embassy info sheet, then I was done. I exited the embassy at 9:30am (about 2 hours total, most of which was just waiting in line). Other Notes: 1. Make sure the surface of your 2x2 photo is clean, or if you can't assure this, bring extra copies because the scanner there won't work if it has dirt and such. 2. If you're hungry or thirsty there's a mini-store outside the building near the 30-Peso waiting area (apart from the one inside). 3. I would suggest for you to just bring a clear long envelope to put your documents in so that you can go through security quickly. 4. I didn't see any clocks so maybe wear a watch if you wanna keep track of the time, just make sure it's not digital/electronic. 5. If you have kids with you, there's a play area for them inside, too. After the interview you may check your visa application status here: https://ceac.state.gov/CEAC/ For K1 visa it's under non-immigrant. Your application ID is the code found on your DS-160 confirmation page. (Mine was AA00****** format); Location - "PHILIPPINES, MANILA". If you try to pull it up under immigrant you may see that it still says "Ready" like before, the "case last updated" details may change on the first day or two after the interview, and then eventually you won't be able to check it under immigrant. At least that's what happened in my case. Again, please don't use my anecdote to strictly determine what documents you need, how easy/difficult the experience will be with you, or any other specifics. It's case-to-case basis, always. My aim is to provide an overview of the process because it's better than being clueless, LOL. And I just enjoy writing my visa experiences in detail. 😅 Good luck to everyone! My CEAC Status Timeline: Jul. 9-10 (Tue-Wed) - "No Status" Jul. 11 (Thu) AM - "Application Received" Jul. 11 (Thu) PM - "Administrative Processing" Jul. 12 (Fri) PM - "Issued"
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