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The H1B visa is the golden ticket for foreigners who wish to work in the United States. Every foreigner must specifically work in a field where the American employer cannot find a US-based employee. The American company that employs you may often sponsor the H1B visa and do the paperwork on your behalf. It is important to know what happens and what you have to do to track your passport once the application process for an H1-B visa is done. We have provided all the necessary details in this article. So, read on.
But before learning about the process to track the passport, take a glimpse at what this H-1B visa is all about.
Attending the interview to get your H1B visa approval is an important phase that you cannot miss. Once the H1B visa interview is over, you will receive word from your consular office if your visa has been approved. Upon approval, your passport and other crucial supporting documents will be sent for further processing. Your consular office will also fix a date to collect your passport from the location you selected during the interview.
It is very important to keep track of your passport once your interview is over. There are several passport tracking options such as:
1. Instant checking
Visit the website https://www.ustraveldocs.com/in/in-niv-passporttrack.asp. Enter your passport number in the given box and check the status.
2. Online checking
You can logon to
https://cgifederal.secure.force.com/?language=English&country=India and check your passport status.
You can track passports using the portal's "Track Passport Delivery" link.
3. Via email
Enter your passport number in the body and subject of the mail and send it to firstname.lastname@example.org. DO NOT add any additional texts to your email. This email link will generate an automatic electronic response with your passport status details.
4. Phone contact
Monday-Friday 8:00 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Sunday: 9:00 a.m. to 6:00p.m.
In the United States you can call at : 1-310-616-5424.
To check their DS-160 and visa application status, non-immigrant applicants can visit the CEAC website and use their interview location, application ID, or DS-160 barcode number.
To track your passport's delivery status, utilize the CEAC Visa Status Check tool. This online tool helps check the status of any immigrant or non-immigrant US visa applications.
The step-wise procedure for H1B Visa Passport Status Tracking is as follows:
Step 1: Log in to the CEAC Visa Status Check portal to know your visa application's current status.
Step 2: Go to the "Visa Application Type" section and select immigrant Visa (IV) or non-immigrant Visa (NIV).
Step 3: Select the location where you attended your visa interview.
Step 4: Enter your Case Number or Application ID.
What is your Application ID?
An Application ID is also called a CEAC barcode, which can be found on the confirmation page of Form DS-160. This ID starts with with AA followed by eight digits.
What is your Case Number?
The case number is assigned to visa applicants by the US Consulate for221g or administrative processing. It is very important to enter the number correctly with the space. If not, you will receive an error notification that says, "Your search did not return any data."
Step 5: Enter the captcha code depicted in the image.
Your visa status appears on the PC screen as soon as you successfully enter the required details. Follow these steps to get passport after visa approval.
Immigration authorities may contact you by phone or email if additional documents are required. Hence, kindly check your inbox regularly for any such emails or notifications.
The US Consulate or Embassy cannot guarantee the issuance of a US visa before a fixed date due to various factors. Therefore, please do not make travel plans or buy tickets until your visa is finalized.
Understanding your passport tracker messages
You need to understand what the updated status of your passport against your application means. Given below are some sample passport tracker messages and what they mean. If the status of your passport is:
1. Transit to Post
This means your passport location is between the consulate and the CGI location, and the consulate is yet to receive the passport from the CGI.
2. Delivered to Post
This means your passport is delivered to the consulate.
3. Origination Scan
The US Consulate has filled your courier slip. It is waiting for the courier company to collect your passport. The courier company will issue Air Waybill(AWB) or reference codes.
4. Transit from Post
The courier company is transporting your passport to the pick-up location specified in your visa interview. You can check and reconfirm your passport delivery location in your appointment invitation letter from the Consulate.
5. Ready for Pick-up
Your passport is at the pick-up location.
6. Picked Up
This means that you or another person authorized by you has picked up your passport.
Process to collect your passport after your visa approval
You will be shown a list of thirty-three passport locations for visa collection for your visa interview appointment. You can opt for the one that works best for you. A courier service will deliver your visa and passport to the address you specified when you listed the service upon approval. A text message and an email will let you know when your passport is available at the location of your choice.
All the visa courier delivery charges will be included in your visa application fee. Hence you need not pay any extra charges. Choosing a courier location close to your interview location can expedite pick-up if you have an urgent travel need.
Important Information if you are from India
To receive your passport, the Cash on Delivery (CoD) option has been made available at a nominal fee since August 10, 2017. You can get this convenience from Premium Delivery Service.
If your visa has been denied, look up usvisas.state.gov for useful information on waivers and Ineligibilities.
Your H1B visa passport tracker messages will indicate your passport status. As we have already mentioned above, if your message says "Origination Scan," your passport is on its way from the consulate to the pick-up location. However, it is not yet available for pick-up. Hence, you should wait until you get a " Ready for Pick Up" message. Only then can you go to the pick-up location and collect your passport.
Here are some important pointers to remember:
Due to security and safety regulations, each passport will be delivered in a separate envelope. Additional passports or envelopes will not be discounted.
Your H1B passport and visa will not be handed over unless you carry the supporting documents to confirm your identity. Here are the papers and documents you will require to collect your passport from the pick-up location.
If you are going in person:
You need to carry the original copy of a photo id issued by the Government and a photocopy of your appointment letter.
If you send a representative:
If you cannot pick up your passport, you can also send someone- either a family friend or a relative- to pick it up. However, they also need to carry the following documents:
If the H1B applicant is below 16 years old:
A representative can be sent to collect the passport if the applicant is a minor below 16 years. The representative should carry:
If it is a group or family:
One person is enough to represent an entire group or family. The representative should carry one authorization letter, which includes names of all the family or group applicants along with the name of the representative. The person writing the authority letter should also include their government-issued photo id.
To note: All photocopies should be crystal clear, and the writing should be understandable and legible.
Also read: H1B Travel - A Road Map to Guide You
Here are some of the most common and important FAQs and answers to help you understand the importance of H1B passport tracking and its processes.
1. How long should I wait to get my visa and passport?
It is impossible to state a definite duration or turnaround time for H1B visas and passports. Factors such as the staff workload and intervening holidays will determine the visa processing duration. It takes 2 or 3 business days to deliver the passport and visa.
2. Is it possible to change the delivery location or address?
Yes, it is possible to alter the location and address before 11.59 the day before your interview. You can do it online or through call centers. You will not be charged any extra fees to make these changes.
3. What if my passport does not arrive on time?
If there is a delay in your passport, you can contact the following emails and numbers to find your passport status:
4. What if my visa has factual errors?
If you find any factual errors in your visa, you must contact the Embassy or Consulate where you had your visa interview. You can also send an email explaining the error to: email@example.com. You will receive guidance to re-submit your passport.
5. What should I do if my visa is tampered with or damaged?
If your visa is tampered with or damaged, you should reapply for a fresh one.
6. Can I collect my visa and passport from the US Embassy or Consulate?
No. Neither the US Embassy nor Consulate will deliver passports across the counter. All passports and visas will be sent to the pick-up location you gave during the interview.
Contact TechFetch H1B For Further Details
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**Disclaimer: H1B rules and regulations keep changing from time to time. For the latest updated information, always refer the USCIS official website**