After scheduling a visa interview either online or by phone, the visa applicant must attend the scheduled interview at the U.S. Embassy.
To know the step-by-step procedure for scheduling a tourist visa interview, read: How to Schedule a Tourist Visa Interview at the U.S. Embassy in Manila
There are two types of U.S. visitor visas generally used by Filipinos when visiting the United States. The B-1 visa is used for business travel; while the B-2 visa is used for tourism purposes and for medical or health reasons. Business travelers usually get a combined B-1/B-2 visas since they usually indulge in tourist activities as well.
Contact details of the U.S. Embassy in Manila:
Address: U.S. Embassy, 1201 Roxas Boulevard Manila, Philippines 1000
Non-Immigrant Visa Section
Via PLDT or SMART (with NDD or IDD access): 1-909-101-7878
Seafarer Call Center: 1-909-101-7878
Callers in the U.S.A. can also contact the Call Center at 1-888-877-9888 (There is a fee assessed to callers by the call center for its services)
What to Do When Attending the Tourist Visa Interview at the U.S. Embassy in Manila:
1. Prepare all required documents including the blue copy of the machine-readable bill payment slip. You can find the list of the required documents at: How to Schedule a Tourist Visa Interview at the U.S. Embassy in Manila.
Take note that even if you have a confirmed appointment, you won’t be interviewed without this machine-readable bill payment slip and a lost copy of it would mean that you have to pay the same amount again.
2. Go the U.S. Embassy in Manila at least one hour (preferably two hours) before your confirmed schedule. If you arrive later than this, most likely, you will miss your appointment. There is no parking space allotted for any visa applicant at the embassy. There are public parking areas near the embassy, most of which are located across the embassy building near the hotels and side streets.
Once you get to the embassy grounds, you won’t readily go inside. It takes a long process from outside the embassy building. You have to line up outside the embassy gate where you have to wait until it’s your turn to get inside. Lining up in the relatively long line outside would take about 30 minutes. The security guard will ask you to provide your passport and appointment slip. Show all documents necessary. The guard will just confirm their validity. Once all requirements are deemed complete, you will be allowed to line up.
Checking-in at the embassy gate requires initial security checks. You are not allowed to bring a mobile phone inside the embassy. Due to the very strict security, if you are commuting, don’t bring a cellphone at all. If you’re bringing a car and you prefer to still bring a mobile phone, you have to leave it inside the car before lining up at the embassy.
3. Go to the pavilion after passing through the initial security checks. At the designated window, submit all documents for data entry purposes. You will receive a number on a small piece of paper.
4. Proceed to each window every time your number is called. Every number called is showed on electronic screens around the room.
You will be called for finger scanning. After which, most documents, including the forms and the passport, will be returned to you. Keep them handy as you need to present them to the interviewing officer.
5. Wait for your turn until your number is called back. Approach the required window and present all the documents to the interviewing officer. Provide only the required documents, but keep any additional supporting documents handy, in case the officer asks for them.
6. Answer all questions asked by the officer. After the interview and the reviewing of your documents, you will be readily advised if you qualify for a visa or not. If issued a visa, you will be given the courier form. Your passport will be left at the embassy. If not issued a visa, your passport, along with your other submitted documents, will be returned already.
7. Fill up the courier form with your name, address, and other required information, then proceed to the courier section, if you are qualified for a visa. If not, make sure you have your passport and other documents with you and you have to leave the embassy premises already.
8. Pay the courier fee for the sending of your passport with the visa in it, if you qualified for a visa. You will receive the passport and visa within one to two weeks.
If you don’t qualify for a visa, the visa application payment is not refundable.
Even if you are issued a visa, this is not a guarantee that you will be allowed entry to the United States. Every foreigner entering the country is subject to the scrutiny of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) officials and they are empowered to deny entry of any valid tourist visa holder, if there is valid reason to do so.
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