- 1 What is a Visa?
- 2 How To book your visa interview
- 2.1 Step 1
- 2.2 Step 2
- 2.3 Step 3
- 2.4 Step 4
- 2.5 Step 5
- 2.6 Step 6
- 3 Conclusion
Before planning to visit another country, all travelers should learn how to schedule their visa interview and to know the required travel documents.
What is a Visa?
A visa is an official document that allows the bearer to legally enter a foreign country. The visa is usually stamped or glued into the bearer’s passport. There are several different types of visas, each of which afford the bearer different rights in the host country.
Visa requirements vary by country and also depend on the nationality of the traveler, as well as the duration and purpose of the intended stay. You may be able to travel to your country of destination visa-free depending on the purpose of the stay, or it may be necessary to obtain a visa or an electronic travel authorization.
For short stays, many countries require certain nationalities to obtain a visa in advance of travel from an embassy or consulate, while others permit select citizens to obtain a visa online through an electronic application system for purposes of transit, business or tourist travel.
Travelers who wish to stay for significant periods of time in a country, or visit for purposes of working or studying, are normally required to apply for a consular visa from the nearest diplomatic office of their destination.
How To book your visa interview
Complete the DS-160 form online (Also known as the Non-immigrant Visa Application)
Electronically submitting your DS-160 application is the FIRST STEP in the visa appointment process. You will need to have the information listed below to complete the DS160:
- Your SEVIS ID
- Your Passport
- Digital Image of yourself that meets these requirements
- Travel itinerary (If you have already made travel arrangements.)
- Dates of your last five visits or trips to the United States.
All answers must be in English. Most questions are mandatory and must be answered in the spaces provided.
Be sure to print or save your Online Non-immigrant Visa Application (DS-160) confirmation page when you are done because you will need it at the embassy.
Find the embassy nearest to you
Visit the U.S. Embassy’s website and select the country and the embassy nearest to you.
Most visa applicants will need to schedule a visa interview, though some applicants may qualify for visa renewal. The embassy or consulate information may include specific local instructions about scheduling interviews, submitting your visa application, and other frequently asked questions.
Once you locate the Embassy or Consulate near you, it’s important to thoroughly review all information on the specific Embassy or Consulate Visa Section website for local procedures and instructions, such as how to make an interview appointment.
Pay the non-refundable application fee.
To get started, if you’re applying for a U.S. visa for example, you can visit the U.S. Visa Information and Appointment Services website;
- Select “Temporary- Non Immigrant visas
- select the country of the embassy you chose in Step 2.
- Click apply (because have never used this site before and you have completed a DS-160). You will need your SEVIS ID and the Program number (P-3-05381).
- Finish that process to pay for your visa appointment. You can save and come back if you can’t complete it all at once! The cost of the visa appointment is $160. This fee is separate from the sponsorship fees you paid Inter-Exchange.
Most embassies will allow you to complete the process and also schedule your appointment. If so, schedule the next available appointment.
Schedule your visa appointment!
If you weren’t able to schedule your appointment after paying your application fee, you’ll need to contact your embassy directly. Review the embassy information, contact them directly and they will help you schedule your appointment.
Attend Your Visa Interview
On Your Interview day, you are required to bring your Online Non-immigrant Visa Application (DS-160) confirmation page with your application ID number on it so that the embassy can retrieve your application. Some embassies and consulates require visa applicants to bring one (1) photo, which meets requirements, to the interview. Review the embassy or consulate instructions where you will apply to learn more.
During the interview, applicants must demonstrate to the consular officer that they have binding ties to a residence in a foreign country which they have no intention of abandoning, and that they are staying for a temporary period.
Pick up your passport with visa
Processing time varies. Check with the embassy or consulate you apply with for specifics on when and where to get your passport and visa.
Once your visa has been approved, it’s safe to book your flights. You can log in at app.interexchange.org to check your travel directions.