The US has announced an additional 250,000 B1 and B2 visa appointments for Indian applicants following the introduction of special Saturday interviews to reduce processing times for people applying for the first time. Many people expect this policy to be expanded to other US visa categories in the future.
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Consequently, consular operations at Consulates and Embassies in Mumbai, Kolkata, New Delhi, Chennai, and Hyderabad are now open on Saturdays. Plus, authorities are planning to open more slots for appointments on specific Saturdays. Interestingly, their plan also includes the following.
- Waiving interviews for applicants who have held US visas in the past
- Transferring consular officers from other embassies, including the ones in Washington, to India to speed up visa processing temporarily
- Recruiting more consular officers on a permanent basis to work in the Consulates and Embassy in India
In addition to this, the Consulate in Mumbai has increased its working hours during weekdays to open more slots for appointments.
All of this is to achieve the goal of ensuring that the US Mission to India begins operating at its full capacity by the summer of 2023.
In case you don’t know, B1 and B2 visas are for people interested in travelling to the US for tourism or business reasons. Therefore, granting more of these visas will allow Indians to easily visit the US to attend conferences and business meetings while engaging in other professional endeavours. Of course, it will also enable Indians to travel to the US for leisure and tourism.
Don’t forget the US Mission to India confirmed that the additional visa appointments will follow a first-come, first-served model. However, the process to apply for a B1 and B2 visa will remain unchanged for now.
It is safe to say that all of this will help strengthen economic ties between the United States and India. Indian businesses and professionals will now have more opportunities to indulge in profitable activities with their counterparts in the US and vice versa. Furthermore, this move will also promote tourism, boosting the economies of both countries to a great extent.
It is no secret that ties between India and the US have been solidifying in recent years, and the appointment of more B1 and B2 visas proves it.
We hope you found this information helpful. Follow our blogs for the latest updates and informative content on US immigration.