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2 years, 2 months & counting: US visa appointment wait time at new high due to high demand

Indians waiting to visit the United States across the country are baffled due to long wait times for visa and consular appointments. Students, people who have families working or living in the US and travelers from India may even have to wait up to 2024 for an appointment. The wait times are also being attributed to the shortage of staff which was caused due to the pandemic by the American authorities.

2 years 2 months counting US visa appointment wait time at new high due to high demand gcw
First Published Sep 28, 2022, 7:20 PM IST

Although America is regarded as the country of opportunity, you don't appear to have a chance to travel there anytime soon. The wait time for a visa interview has become longer as Covid cases disappear throughout the globe and travellers resume their journeys. And no, the wait will not last a few months. People who want to visit America should be prepared for a protracted wait to acquire a visa appointment. The wait period for a visa appointment for first-time non-immigrant visiting visa applicants to the US is two years and two months.

The waiting period for a visitor visa is 848 days in Mumbai and 833 days in the nation's capital Delhi, respectively, according to the US State Department website. Therefore, if you are applying for a tourist visa for the first time, you may be given an appointment in one of these two locations around December 2024.

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The wait times in Delhi and Mumbai were 758 and 752 days, respectively, over two weeks ago. In the national capital, the wait time for all other nonimmigrant visas is 390 days, while it is 392 days in Mumbai.

The US Embassy and Consulates in India, meanwhile, stated on its website on Tuesday that they are unable to accommodate all travellers before their scheduled departure dates owing to the huge amount of visa requests, even if the objective of the trip is time-sensitive.  Since there is a significant demand for non-immigrant visas to enter the United States as a temporary guest, the embassy advised anybody considering applying to check the wait time for an interview using a tool on the website.

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The embassy in New Delhi and the consulates in Chennai, Hyderabad, Kolkata, and Mumbai said appointment demand for visas is high across all categories and wait times may be longer for the majority of routine non-immigrant visa appointments. The embassy added that this is because of a lack of staff and numerous pandemic-related disruptions since March 2020.

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