How to Get a US visa in Dubai on Pakistani Passport
The overall experience was much convenient to get a US visa; it took me almost seven days altogether from the date of online application to understanding the visa stamped on my passport. However, there are a couple of things you need to know and arrange before you apply.
First of all, I want to highlight crucial information which you need to know before you apply.
US visa applications are handled directly by Consulate General of the USA in Dubai. Here are the general steps:
1. Fill in the application form online.
2. Pay the visa fee online.
3. Book the next available appointment for interview & biometrics.
4. Print out appointment confirmation.
5. Attend the appointment at the US Consulate.
As a first step, you need to complete the online visa application form, DS-160 here
The application process will take around 30 minutes depending on your circumstances.
On this screen select the country where you are living and the desired consulate/embassy; in this case, it will be United Arab Emirates Dubai. Then click on start application and follow the onscreen instructions.
It will ask your name, your home address, your parents’ details, your marital status, your education, employment details, address to stay in the USA, travel history and your previous passport details if any. You will also need to upload your recent picture.
Once it is done, you will review and submit the application. Please be reminded that once you submit your application, you cannot make any changes in it. Upon submission, you’ll get your DS-160 confirmation number.
In the next step; visit https://ais.usvisa-info.com/en-ae/niv and complete the following application steps to schedule a visa interview appointment:
a. Create a user account
b. Enter the DS-160 confirmation number
c. Complete the courier document return process
d. Pay the Nonimmigrant Visa (MRV) application fee
e. Schedule a Consular Section appointment
Luckily I got an appointment for the 3rd day. The required documents will be mentioned on your instructions page. Your document checklist will depend on your details which you submitted while filling up the application. However, these usually are:
1. Your original passport. Your passport must be valid for your visit to the USA, be in good condition, and have at least one-page blank on both sides.
2. A passport containing the most recently issued U.S. Visa (if applicable)
3. Form DS-160 confirmation page.
4. Confirmation and Instructions page.
5. One 5 x 5 cm (2 x 2 inches) colour photo taken within the last six months.
6. Documents showing the purpose of your trip, it may include hotel bookings, air ticket booking etc.
7. Documents showing the income and employment stated in the application form, such as a letter from employer and pay slips.
8. Bank statements, I recommend attaching six months bank statement.
9. Documents showing where you live, such as Property deed or tenancy contract.
The fee for USA tourist visa is 160 USD.
US Consulate Location:
First Street, Umm Hurrair 1
Next to Saudia Consulate, Consulate Area, Bur Dubai
The visa officer makes the decision then and there at the time of your interview. If a visa application is approved, they’ll keep your passport and tell you to collect it from your nominated Empost office in 3 to 5 working days.
On the Day of Appointment:
Reach the consulate 15 minutes earlier. While parking your car, I would suggest paying the parking fee for 2 hours as at times it’s super busy inside the consulate and you won’t be able to pay using your mobile phone as the security staff at the entrance keep it. You will be required to submit your biometrics.
Upon your turn, the visa officer will see your document and ask questions from the glass window. If your application is approved, he/she will give you a pink slip and take your passport. If you get a rejection, they’ll give you white paper and return your passport.
The visa officer asked me a few common questions about my itinerary; he also asked me that I have visited many countries was these business trips are personal. I replied smilingly that most of these were for leisure as travelling is my hobby. The whole interview was less than 5 minutes.
My application got approved, and the visa officer handed me a pink slip.
I collected my passport from my nominated Empost office after four days of my interview. I was amused to see a multiple entry visa stamped on my passport with five years validity.
Dont’mind the picture, smile is not allowed 🙂
Heading to the USA? Check out my blog for useful tips to save money and get the best out of your trip.
Looking for more specific information or got any question? Do post it in the comments and I’ll respond as soon as I can.