Entry Visa Processing Delay: how long has it been for you?

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#1 Jun 3rd, 2010, 02:48
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#1
I have asked about this earlier and from what I have found, this is a fairly widespread problem affecting a large number of people.

The Travisa site mentions the fact that there is a delay but provides no information on how long the delay is:


Processing Time Alert
Due to recent changes in requirements, there is a delay in processing time for former Indian nationals. Former Indian nationals should allow for substantial extra time when applying for their visa to accommodate these delays
.

I have been waiting for a month with no way to inquire about the status of the application. In my case I am applying in San Francisco. I have another international trip on hold till I get my passport back from the consulate.

Does anyone have any information on current processing times for entry visas? If you applied recently please share your experiences here.
#2 Jun 3rd, 2010, 06:56
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Quote:
Originally Posted by heisenberg View Post I have asked about this earlier and from what I have found, this is a fairly widespread problem affecting a large number of people.

The Travisa site mentions the fact that there is a delay but provides no information on how long the delay is:


Processing Time Alert
Due to recent changes in requirements, there is a delay in processing time for former Indian nationals. Former Indian nationals should allow for substantial extra time when applying for their visa to accommodate these delays
.

I have been waiting for a month with no way to inquire about the status of the application. In my case I am applying in San Francisco. I have another international trip on hold till I get my passport back from the consulate.

Does anyone have any information on current processing times for entry visas? If you applied recently please share your experiences here.
You can call the San Francisco Travisa at (415)644-0149 or send them an email at statusbymail.sf@travisaoutsour cing.com. If you want to get them on the phone you must call in the morning. I had problems with my visa and found that it takes them a few days to answer emails.
#3 Jun 3rd, 2010, 23:57
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It seems pretty impossible to get to anyone: either a busy signal or voicemail (that I know they will never respond to). Is there any value in going back there in person? Any way to directly ask the Indian Consulate?
#4 Jun 4th, 2010, 00:36
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Originally Posted by heisenberg View Post It seems pretty impossible to get to anyone: either a busy signal or voicemail (that I know they will never respond to). Is there any value in going back there in person? Any way to directly ask the Indian Consulate?
Given that the website does warn of "substantial" delays, I think that it is highly unlikely that the head of the visa section at the consulate would consider it a good use of their staff's time to step away from processing the backlog of visa applications to check the progress of your visa application, when it has only been a month.

The reality is that any time taken to investigate the progress of individual applications is time that cannot be spent processing those applications. Unless you suspect that your application has been lost, it is generally in your best interests to be patient.
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#5 Jun 4th, 2010, 01:16
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Originally Posted by heisenberg View Post It seems pretty impossible to get to anyone: either a busy signal or voicemail (that I know they will never respond to). Is there any value in going back there in person? Any way to directly ask the Indian Consulate?
Did they send you an email saying they received your passport? I received email updates for each step in the process.... with good or bad news.
#6 Jun 4th, 2010, 08:21
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I have no problem waiting a month. But all of us have plans in the balance. It would help just to quantify a little more closely what to expect. A month is excessive in general. But if that is what it takes, that's fine. The US state department posts cutoff times for greencard processing for instance. I don't think it's too much to ask for a time estimate.
#7 Jun 4th, 2010, 08:21
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And yes, I did get replies that they've received the passport, but nothing further at all since then.
#8 Jun 4th, 2010, 10:20
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My experience was that they received the passport and ran the credit card the very next day. This was the beginning of May, less than a month ago. They were having problems with their credit card system so my card was declined. It took several tries, emails and phone calls to get them to run it again and again until it worked.

My wife and I sent ours together on the same day using the same credit card. Hers went though immediately and she received her passport back within a week. My took almost three weeks.

I would call first thing in the morning if I were you. I had success getting through after about 10 tries.

Good luck
#9 Jun 4th, 2010, 18:42
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Originally Posted by heisenberg View Post I don't think it's too much to ask for a time estimate.
The problem is, even if they did give you an estimate, it would only be an estimate and you could still not rely on it to make plans. The time that any sort of "non-standard" visa application takes to process can vary wildly from case to case.

Mostly the answer you will be given is that it takes as long as it takes; unless you have political connections, there is nothing you can do which will affect the length of processing time.
#10 Jun 5th, 2010, 23:38
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An entry visa for someone who was an Indian citizen for 35 years without a single black mark on his record in either India or the US is hardly a "non-standard" visa application. The intent of the application is to be able to visit family members in India, as it is for most Indians who take US citizenship. Political connections shouldn't be used for this sort of purpose. All I ask for is some amount of transparency .. e.g. entry visas are taking between x to y days to process, if yours has been pending for more than a month, it is still within the range of processing times. I have no way to tell whether my application has in fact been lost or not. I don't know whether anyone has waited more than a month, because no one will tell me. When I did call the outsourcing office, they basically told me to go to hell.
#11 Jun 5th, 2010, 23:53
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Originally Posted by heisenberg View Post An entry visa for someone who was an Indian citizen for 35 years without a single black mark on his record in either India or the US is hardly a "non-standard" visa application.
No offence was intended by my calling applications for entry visas "non-standard".

I simply used that term to differentiate between the entry visas being discussed here, which have longer and varied processing times and the "standard" Indian visa which is a tourist visa issued to "ordinary" foreign tourists without any connection to India to consider. These have a processing time that is both brief and solidly predictable, both in the US and UK; they are issued the same day in some places in the US and take a maximum of three days in the UK.

Perhaps you might like to read the words "non-standard" as "more complicated"
#12 Jun 6th, 2010, 22:23
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Heisenberg,

I am in the same boat as you. My wife applied for the entry visa on 20 May and no word yet and she needs to travel urgently as our 2 year old son is in India. The situation is short of emergency but is certainly urgent. Did you get any info about your visa status? Do you think approaching the consulate with urgent reasons will solve the problem?

Thanks

We are in Houston though...
#13 Jun 6th, 2010, 22:53
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Originally Posted by heisenberg View Post An entry visa for someone who was an Indian citizen for 35 years without a single black mark on his record in either India or the US is hardly a "non-standard" visa application. The intent of the application is to be able to visit family members in India, as it is for most Indians who take US citizenship. Political connections shouldn't be used for this sort of purpose. All I ask for is some amount of transparency .. e.g. entry visas are taking between x to y days to process, if yours has been pending for more than a month, it is still within the range of processing times. I have no way to tell whether my application has in fact been lost or not. I don't know whether anyone has waited more than a month, because no one will tell me. When I did call the outsourcing office, they basically told me to go to hell.
Quote:
Originally Posted by purplerain View Post Heisenberg,

I am in the same boat as you. My wife applied for the entry visa on 20 May and no word yet and she needs to travel urgently as our 2 year old son is in India. The situation is short of emergency but is certainly urgent. Did you get any info about your visa status? Do you think approaching the consulate with urgent reasons will solve the problem?

Thanks
Did both of you all surrender your old indian passports or have a certificate to that effect ? Do you'll live toooo far off from the TraVisa site ?

I have 2nd hand information from folks in the last few weeks who walked all their paper work to the E53rd St. location in NYC, and had their visas processed pretty damn quick.

Here is the reasons why: 1) the lass/lad at the window/counter kind of go over the paperwork and once they accept it, applicant of straight forward applications is asked to come within 3-4 days to pick it up. (Two non-desi applicants were 10 year visa the same evening, the X visa for another did take a two days with weekend in between)

Why is it that one cannot just walk over if one lives within commute distance ?
The biggest, lamest,sorriest excuse I heard ever from a widget-pulling-keyboard-typing odd-jobber individual was - Oh! I am too busy !

Dropping off the application helps !!! It cuts down lingering anxiety of misplaced applications/wrong syntax/missing apostrophe/a comma here and semi colon there
#14 Jun 8th, 2010, 08:21
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Originally Posted by purplerain View Post Heisenberg,

I am in the same boat as you. My wife applied for the entry visa on 20 May and no word yet and she needs to travel urgently as our 2 year old son is in India. The situation is short of emergency but is certainly urgent. Did you get any info about your visa status? Do you think approaching the consulate with urgent reasons will solve the problem?

Thanks

We are in Houston though...
I dropped off the application in person first week of May. It's been complete silence since then. The thing is that the consulate in San Francisco is extremely efficient, in every other case that I've dealt with them in the past. Purplerain, I hope your wife gets her visa soon. I'll soon have a non refundable air ticket to cancel if I don't get the visa soon. The Travisa folks told me they couldn't care less.
#15 Jun 8th, 2010, 17:53
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#15
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Originally Posted by heisenberg View Post The Travisa folks told me they couldn't care less.
Harsh though it is, in a way they don't care, and can't afford to care. Their job is simply to check applications, take the money and pass them to the Embassy / Consulate for processing, and they do that job well.

The job of applicants is to apply for their visas in time. Also harsh, but true. Unfortunately people get caught out when the situation changes, but that's not the fault of Travisa, the Embassy staff, the applicant or anyone else, it's just the nature of visa applications.

Travisa and VFS get people turning up day in day out expecting to get visas on the spot, having applied too late, having bought holidays leaving the next day and not having realised they needed a visa at all, etc etc.

They hear it again and again and they simply are not in a position to affect the outcome of a visa application either in terms of the decision or in terms of the length of time it takes, or even demand answers from the Embassy or consulate. If the staff at Travisa allowed themselves to care about things they cannot control, they would spend their time being stressed to the eyeballs, upset and angst ridden and they could not do their job at all.
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