In a previous article, I wrote about my interview experience for the U.S. immigrant visa (F2A). Today I want to share with you what happens right after the interview when your visa has been approved.
When we applied for my F2A immigrant visa, we were living in Tijuana, Mexico, and the NVC (National Visa Center) scheduled my interview in Ciudad Juarez. On the last article I wrote, I created a list with all the questions that the immigration officer asked me during the interview, but I forgot to mention that I had my interview in English.
At the end of the interview, after the consular officer approved my visa, he handed me a green paper with the instructions on when and how I will be receiving my passport and the visa documents. To make a parenthesis here, remember that when you make your appointment with the CAS (Official U.S. Department of State Visa Appointment Service) for your fingerprints and pictures, you have to register/create an account and choose the address where would you like to receive your visa package. The consular officer informed me that I was supposed to receive my visa package in about two weeks and that I will be able to track my package online.
I had my interview on September, 3rd and after that day I was checking the online status every day, but there was no tracking number provided or any other information. After the first week, on the 10th of September, I called the call center to see if I could get more information. The lady on the phone told me that once the DHL issues a tracking number, I will be receiving an automatic email, and the tracking number will show up on my account, online.
Well…, I've never got the tracking number nor did I receive any email notification about my shipment. Two weeks after my interview, on 18 of Sept., I was frustrated, and I called the call center again, and sure enough, they already had my tracking number. I realized that the package was shipped on the 14th of Sept. and arrived at my destination on the 15th. It had been sitting in the DHL office for three days, and I had no idea of that.
My advice to you is not to wait too long before you make the call at the call center and ask for your shipment. If you do not see the tracking number on the online status for more than a week, give them a call. I still do not understand where the communication got lost, and whose responsibility is this “after the interview” process.
But anyway, when you receive the package, make sure the visa info on your passport is correct. With your passport, you will be receiving a sealed envelope which you have to hand it to a custom border officer at a U.S Port of Entry. You will also be receiving the information of the payment that you need to make so they can send you your green card at the address you selected on your DS-260. If you want to receive your Green Card at a different address than the one you specified on your DS-260 application, you should indicate the new address to the officer at the U.S. port of entry.
We crossed the border through San Ysidro, in Tijuana on a Sunday morning and everything went smoothly. They directed to the second inspection, and after a simple procedure, we were out on the California roads.
I hope that everything went well for you too, and if you would like to share your experience with us, leave us a comment below.
Here are some links that you may find useful in the interview process:
- Official U.S. Department of State Visa Appointment Service – This is the website where you will have to register and make an appointment for your fingerprints, photos and choose the address where you want your visa package to be shipped.
- After attending the U.S. Consular Section interview, you may track the status of your visa application at https://ceac.state.gov/CEAC
- Contact Call Center: https://ais.usvisa-info.com/en-mx/iv/information/contact_us: There is a list of the local numbers to call
- If you are calling from within the United States, please dial +1.703.249.4628.
- For service in Spanish: Open Monday - Friday, 8:00 to 20:00 local time. Open Saturday, 8:00 to 15:00 local time.
- For service in English: Open Monday - Friday, 9:00 to 21:00 US Eastern Time. Open Saturday, 9:00 to 16:00 US Eastern Time. You can also call from Skype: