Most people need to attend the U.S. visa interview in person.
If both parents or at least one parent is applying for a U.S. visa at the same time as a child under the age of 14 years, the child does not need to visit the consulate for an interview. The parent(s) may bring in the child’s application and apply on the child’s behalf.
Non-applicants are not allowed to accompany the applicants. However, if a child under 13 years of age is applying alone or the applicant has disabilities, someone may accompany them under some circumstances. You need to fax such requests several days in advance of the interview and include the reason for such a request.
- Arrive no more than 30 minutes before your scheduled appointment time. However, arrive at least 15 minutes in advance.
- Bring all the mandatory and supporting documents with you.
- Please review the security measures in advance regarding what can or cannot be brought to the interview.
- Pass through the security checkpoint and enter the waiting room.
- Submit your Form DS-160 confirmation page and other documents at the intake windows.
- Wait in the waiting room until called for fingerprint scanning at the fingerprinting windows.
- Once fingerprinting is done, wait until you are called for your interview with a visa officer at the interview windows.
- Each person will need to present his or her case individually.
- All the interview officers speak English and Mandarin. Therefore, if you don’t speak English or if you are not comfortable with it, it’s fine to have an interview in Mandarin. However, students and J-1 exchange visitors should answer the questions in English due the fact that the officer needs to assess your English language skills.
If you speak neither English nor Mandarin, you will have a tough time with the U.S. visa interview in China.
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If your visa application has been approved, you will be notified so that you can visit the nearest document pick-up location you designated at the time of the application. Optionally, if you opted for Premium Delivery Service, the passport will be delivered to you.
You should inspect your visa very carefully as soon as you receive it. If you see any errors, report them immediately by fax to the Consulate.
Depending upon the visa category and the country of citizenship, applicants may be charged a visa issuance fee before the visa is issued.
If the Consulate asks for additional information, you will need to submit it.
Unless specifically instructed, you don’t have to go back in person or schedule an appointment again.
Once your information is received and processed, the decision regarding your visa application will be made.
If your visa is refused, you will be given a letter. You should read that letter carefully to analyze what to do next.
If your application needs to go through administrative processing, it is incomplete, or it needs to be investigated for fraud, it may cause additional delays (a few weeks) and its outcome may be impacted. Most administrative processing requests are resolved within 2 months. However, the exact timing would vary based on individual circumstances.
Traveling while under a Pending Application
In case you need to travel (to a country other than the U.S.) while your U.S. visa application is pending, you can request through the Consulate Online Contact Form that your passport be returned to you. Once you are back from your trip and your visa is approved, the Consulate will contact you (by email and phone) with instructions to return your passport to the Consulate.
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