Recently, I have seen quite a few queries about F1 visa renewal. People have asked queries about the procedures, what documents to submit, success rates etc. I have applied and renewed my visa in Dec 2018, and I am going to write about my experience regarding this in the following.
Premise: Before submitting my application for renewal, I have consulted with quite a few persons who has applied and renewed their visas. I am expressing gratitude to them with this post. I have applied for my spouse and myself (2 applications). Step 1, 2, and 3 was completed when I was in USA. And, remaining was done when I was in BD.
1. Application preparation: I have submitted my DS-160 application with 100% true information (which means I did not hide any info and did not provide incorrect info). I filled up the application as if I am staying in USA (provided my USA application as the current address, and BD address as permanent address). I also prepared my spouse’s application and I put my name as the preparer of that application. I would also recommend filling up the application this way.
2. Photo: We took our photo regular mobile phone and followed instructions to match their photo standards. The standards are available in http://www.ustraveldocs.com/bd/bd-niv-photoinfo.asp . Although my spouse had to resubmit her photo later in the process, but my photo did not face any problem and got processed without any issue.
3. Visa fee payment: Visa fee has been paid by my relative in Bangladesh. The process is pretty straight forward. It is given in http://ustraveldocs.com/bd/bd-niv-paymentinfo.asp . Nothing more to write here about this.
4. Interview waiver program: After submitting the payment, I went ahead to get my schedule. I was asked a couple of questions which are given here https://bd.usembassy.gov/…/drop-box-checklist-revised-13117… . After answering this, I got interview waiver confirmation letter (a screenshot of this letter is attached with this post.)
5. Documents preparation and submission: I prepared all the relavent documents which are mentioned in the interview waiver confirmation letter (found in step 4), nothing more, nothing less. Then I Went to VFS (who receives and delivers passports for USA embassy), and submitted the documents along with our passports.
6. What happened next: After submitting the documents, our case was created at the end of 3rd business day. On the same day, we got a mail saying that my spouse needs to resubmit her photo. We took a new photo and resubmit that in the same VFS center. After submitting the photo, our visa got issued at the end of 2nd business day (5th day from the beginning of the process). No questions were asked or clarification was sought. We got a mail when the passport was ready for pickup from the same VFS agent. We went there and picked our passport up.
My personal experience, and success rate: Everything went pretty well and smooth. I think, the speed of the process heavily depends on the workload they have. I heard from someone that it took 3 weeks for him/her. Some other people mentioned about 2 weeks. But I got all of this thing within a week.
In addition to that, the success rate of this process is almost 100% (personal experience). All the people whoever I talked with have got their visas. Only 1 person (I do not know who s/he is, s/he is a friend of a friend of mine) have got his/her application for visa renewal rejected (For those who are interested, s/he could not return to USA with his/her old visa. This is an unusual case. Normally everybody gets visa without issue.)
Md Imran Momtaz