Visa is an official document required to enter and exit the country. When you apply for a visa, visa interview play a key role in determining whether you’re granted a visa or not.
Visa Interview is a scheduled meeting between the applicant and the official of the respective country. The official determines your eligibility for granting visa by asking detail-oriented and specific questions to understand your purpose of visit.
Through the intensive interview, process officials want to ensure that you’ll return home in the expected time and will not be part of any illegal activities during your visit. The questions may vary from basic to slightly personal. An ideal candidate would be someone who answers them without hesitation and with ease and accuracy.
Common Visa Interview Questions
Now there can be a variety of questions that might be asked depending from person to person. But here is a list of questions that would help you prepare for your work, study, tourist or visitor visa interview.
This list covers the majority of questions that might be asked in a visa interview . Keep in mind that not all the questions would be asked to the same individual.
1. What is the purpose of your visit?
In reply to this question, tell why you are travelling to the destination country whether it’s for work, family visit, study or vacation.
2. Who is sponsoring your trip?
Mention the name of person/agency sponsoring your trip. If it’s a self-sponsored trip, make sure you have the bank statements to show sufficient funds.
3. Are you Married? If so, how long have you been married? What does your spouse do?
If you’re not married state that you’re single/divorced. Else mention the name of spouse and exact marriage date.
4. Do you have children? What do they do?
Mention the number of kids you have and their names. If they’re studying in school, provide complete information. If your children are working, mention their respective companies and job titles.
Sometimes it’s difficult to recall the details; hence, you should be prepared in advance for such questions.
5. Do you know the Annual income of your Son/Daughter?
Prepare in advance for such questions and give the annual income details to the official.
6. Are you travelling with someone?
Answer in yes or no, If you’re traveling with someone clarify your relationship with that person.
7. Why are you traveling alone?
If the answer to your previous question is no, then they may ask your reason to travel alone.
8. Do you have health insurance to cover this journey?
Show the documents to provide proof of health insurance for the journey.
9. Do you pay Income tax? When was the last time you paid tax?
This is asked to check your financial status and honesty. Answer this accordingly with income tax statement proof.
10. Is this your first time in the country?
Answer yes or no.
11. Have you traveled to other countries?
Answer with a yes or no. If you have traveled to other countries, tell them the name of the countries you have been to.
12. How do we know you’ll return back within said time?
The officials just want to see whether you have plans to come back or not . Give them a detail of your work commitments and family responsibilities back home. You can mention your ongoing job, business or property etc.
13. Do you have a Job Leave Approval letter from the employer?
If you’re a working professional, make sure you have a leave approval letter from HR. Share it with the official when asked.
14. Where do you stay in the residing country?
Give your complete home address in the country.
15. What would you do if your visa gets rejected?
Tell them that you have commitments in the home country and you’ll go back to that. Mention your job and family which you would attend if visa gets rejected.
16. Why should we grant you a visa?
This is an important one. If you’re traveling to the country, mention how you are interested in their culture and what their country has to offer in terms of tourism. If you’re going for work or study, you can share how the visit would help you professionally with your career, why you have chosen their country for work or study.
Visa Interview Tips
Visa Interviews are an important step in acquiring your visa for the destination country. In 2018, 9.6% of the total visa application for Schengen area were rejected. Which makes it necessary to be well prepared before appearing for a visa interview. Here are a few visa interview tips that would help you clear the interview process.
- Ensure to be on scheduled date and time to the embassy/consulate of the country.
- Have a checklist of required documents and keep them handy before going for the interview.
- Explain strong ties to your home country and why you would come back to your home after the agreed date.
- The interview would be conducted in English and not your native language, so make sure you practice with someone beforehand.
- Be clear and concise about your purpose of visit and plans in the country. If you have relatives in the destination country, keep their information handy.
- If you have dependents at home or property, explain who will take care of them while you are gone.
- Answer all the questions with confidence. Do not hesitate as that would be taken as a sign of hiding information.
- Dress up appropriately and smile.
- Do not argue or ask irrelevant questions to the official.
- Verify the name, date, address etc. on your documents matches with the details on your passport.
H1B Visa Interview
The H1B visa allows employers in the US to hire foreign workers temporarily for speciality jobs. It’s issued for 3 years which can be extended up to a maximum of 6 years. It’s essential for an individual to have a Bachelor’s degree or equivalent to be eligible for that job. There is a yearly cap of 65000 on H1B visas hence the visas are allocated based on a lottery system. An additional cap of 20,000 visas for those who completed their masters from a US university. You can read all about the lottery process here.
H1B Visa Interview Process
Book an Appointment online to your nearest consulate according to your convenience. Make sure you have all the necessary documents.
- Arrive for Interview – Arrive 10-15 mins early at the consulate. Keep your original passport, appointment letter and visa application fee receipt ready to show to officials if asked.
- Security check – Security check will be done upon entrance.
- Fingerprint scan – Post security check you’ll be given a token determining your interview number. You’ll be taken for fingerprint scanning where the scans will be matched with the prints taken at Visa Application center.
- Wait for your call – Wait patiently and move to the assigned window when your name is called. Smile and be seated, follow the instructions given by official.
- Interview process – Be ready with all the documents and answer the questions in a clear and concise manner. You’ll immediately get to know if your visa gets approved and passport will be delivered to you in 3-4 days.
- Visa Denied – In case of rejection, you’ll be handed over your passport immediately.
H1B Visa Interview questions
Some of the questions which were not covered as part of basic interview questions. These might specifically be asked to H1B visa applicants.
- What would be your role in the company you’ll be working for in the US?
- Which company do you currently work for?
- How long have you been working here?
- Please show us your experience letter?
- What is your role in the current company?
- How will you survive for the first month before getting your paycheck?
Related: Tourist Visa for USA from India
- Questions regarding your sponsoring companies interview process, annual turnover, no of employees, salary, clients, CEO, projects, technologies etc.
- Questions regarding your education like educational qualifications, projects, technologies and software you are aware of, certifications, university name, research process, internships, prior work experience etc.
B1 visa Interview
B1 visa is a non-immigrant US visa granted to individuals for business purposes. It allows the visa holder to negotiate contracts, settle estates, consult with US business associates and attend conferences and business events.
The B1 visa holder can visit the US as many times required and hold business relations with the US.
B1 Visa Interview Process
Check your eligibility for the visa. An individual should have business intent, sufficient finances to cover their stay and should intend to home country after work is done.
Fill up the form with all the relevant information. Find the section for B1 visa and fill the form. Submit it online, and you’ll get the confirmation page and number which is required later during the interview process.
The application fee for the B1 visa is $160. Along with the application fee, you might also have to pay the Visa Issuance fee, which depends on your home country.
- B1 visa documents file
- DS-160 Form confirmation page and code.
- Passport with 6 months validity beyond your stay in the US.
- Interview confirmation page
- Bank statements.
- Letter with the purpose of the trip.
- Letter from Employer and payslips from last three months.
- If you have visited the US before bring documents supporting that.
- Ties to home country such as job, property, business etc.
- Letter from Authorities stating you do not have any criminal records.
On the interview, date be present on time with all the required documents. Be prepared to answer all the questions and present relevant documents when asked.
B1 Visa Interview Questions
Here are some B1 visa specific questions that might be asked during your visa interview.
- What is the name of your company?
- How many employees are travelling with you?
- Are there any specific dates for your conference or business meetings?
- Can you show your business/visiting card?
- What is your annual income?
- Do you have a credit card?
- Who will look after your business in your absence?
- Are you planning to work in the US?
- Are you planning to extend your stay?
Schengen Visa Interview
To stay or transit through member countries of the Schengen Agreement, one must apply for a Schengen visa. It allows access to 26 member countries. Schengen zone is defined by the Schengen Agreement that allows free and unrestricted movement of goods, services and people among these countries.
Schengen Visa Interview Process
- Type of Schengen visa– Figure out the type of visa you want to apply for e.g. Transit, tourist, Business, Study etc
- Where to Apply – Apply in the consulate of the country you’ll spend maximum time in or the country from where you are starting your trip.
- Appointment – Book an appointment based on your convenience.
- Visa Application Form (Download the form here.)
- Required Documents – Ensure you have all the documents before appearing for the interview.
- Interview – Attend the interview and answer questions with honesty and confidence.
- Visa Fee – Schengen visa fee is €60 per person. To get a list of Schengen visa fee for kids and special categories, check here.
- Wait for the Visa status – The approval period may take 15-30 days. So be patient and wait for your Visa status.
Schengen Visa Interview Questions
List of questions that would help you in clearing your interview.
- Which countries do you intend to visit and why?
- Have you visited Schengen countries before?
- Are you aware of what countries your visa covers?
- Will you study in a Schengen country?
- Stay and flight details.
FAQs for Visa Interview process
1. How Long does a visa interview take?
Although the interview process doesn’t last for more than 5 minutes, the entire process takes 2-3 hours in completion.
2. What should I bring to my visa interview?
Keep a checklist ready to ensure you have all the required documents. Bring your original passport and visa fee receipt along with the Visa Interview appointment Letter.
3. How can I pass my visa interview?
Stay relaxed and answer all questions honestly. Keep all the documents handy and provide proof wherever required.
4. How should I dress for a visa interview?
“First Impression is the Last Impression”. Make sure you look presentable at the interview. Wear smart formals like Blazer, trousers, salwar suit, business suit etc.
Further Read: Australian Visa For Indians: A complete guide