Visa Interview Preparation

Despite having all the documents and meeting all the criteria people often get the refusal. A lot of its depends on the Interview, whether you successfully get the Visa or not. Here are few tips based on the people's experience and facts.

Now don't get nervous with the word interview. This is not like a job interview, however this is an important process (for visa seeker) so take it easy with confidence and follow the following tips.

The first essential step toward a successful interview is preparation.

The most important thing that you can carry with you is your self-confidence. Applicants who are well prepared and confident in their responses to the visa officer, are almost always successful in getting the US visa.

General Preparation
  • Get some information/ general knowledge on what the Visa is all about? What is the process etc.?
  • Prepare for most commonly asked questions.
  • Be there a little earlier.
  • Ask for a interpreter if you are not conversant or confident with English.
Document Preparation:
  1. Fill all the forms/applications neatly and completely.
  2. Know what you have filled in the form. Many times it happens (specially in parent's case) where children or the sponsor fill out the application and the applicant him/her self don't know what information is provided.
  3. Provide correct and authentic information.
  4. If getting copies for documents make sure the copies are of good quality and readable.
  5. Verify that the Names, Date of Birth, etc. should match with the information in your passport.
  6. Organize your documents in proper logical order:
    A well organized and orderly arranged documents can make it easy for you to find the right documents quickly during interview.
Physical Preparation:

Your physical presentation is often an important point. What you look like and how you say something are just as important as what you say. So dress up nicely and keep smiling.

Attitude Preparation:

Provide to the point and concise answers. Do not add any thing which is not relevant or not being asked. (In most the cases, this is where people make a mistake by giving unnecessary and unasked details). Other tips for the interview are:

  • Do not argue.
  • Do not ask unnecessary questions.
  • Be polite.
What the officer is looking for?

The primary goal for the interview is to verify all information presented in the application and to make sure that, you (applicant) has enough ties back in your home country and will come back after your visit to the United States.

Documents and interview/questions are a few ways through which the consulate officer tries to determine the eligibility for the visa grant.

What do "ties" mean?

"Ties" are the aspects of your life that bind you to your place of residence, including family relationships, employment and possessions. In the case of younger applicants who may not have had an opportunity to establish such ties, interviewing officers may look at educational status, grades, the situation of parents, and an applicant's long-range plans and prospects in your home country. As each person's situation is different, there is no set answer as to what constitutes adequate ties.

During the interview:
  • Greet the Interviewer when you see him/her at the beginning.
  • Communicate clearly and in a comprehensive way. Do not hesitate to politely ask to repeat or rephrase the question, if you don't understand any questions.
Generally asked questions:
    1. Why do you want to travel to the USA?
    2. Who is sponsoring you ?
    3. What do you do?
    4. When did you retired ?
    5. How much pension do you get?
    6. What is your annual income?
    7. Have you ever visited any other country?
    8. Do you have leave granted application? (If you are job holder)
    9. Can I see you Business/visiting card?
    10. Who will look after your business in your absence (if you are a business man).
    11. Do you have a credit card?
    12. How many children do you have ? And where are they? What do they do?
    13. Who is there in USA?
    14. How long will you be staying in USA?
    15. Will you work there?
    16. Will you come back?
    17. How can you assure me that you will come back?
    18. What does your daughter/son/son- in- law do?
    19. How long has your son/daughter been living in USA?

Read more questions and answers here. An Extended list of questions and their possible answers. Visitor Visa Interview Questions and Answers.

Finger Printing

Each applicant needs to provide a digital finger print for US visa purpose. The finger print will be taken any time before or after the interview.
Click here for more details on the finger print process.

When you go for the interview.

You are not allowed to carry any office bag, briefcase, electronic items, mobile phones, cigarettes, etc. into the consulate. Only a plastic bag or a woman's handbag is allowed.

Inside the Consulate:

The following picture indicates the main activities/process inside the consulate.
Note: This picture is provided for our understanding to get an basic idea of the process. This is a very generic illustration of the high level process, it may vary from consulate to consulate.

Inside the Consulate

Good Luck!

If you get the Visa, begin your preparations for the flight: After the Visa

If you don't get the Visa, don't feel bad but analyze the situation to find out what went wrong, and apply again when better prepared: Understand Visa Refusal and Reapplication procedure.

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