H-1B stamp approved in Kingston, Jamaica - 18th Nov, 2013


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Hey all,

My situation is as follows: I completed my MS from a US university 3 years ago, and have been working since then, first on OPT and OPT extension, and then on H-1B. My change of status from F-1 to H-1B was approved last year, and I went for stamping to Kingston Jamaica.

Overall my experience of the stamping in Kingston was very positive, although the number of Indians coming to Kingston for their stamping is definitely increasing exponentially. I had the 7am time slot, and among the first 80 or so people who were let into the consulate building, about 8 were Indians (who, I'm assuming, were all there for H-1B stamping).

Stamping process:

1) Arrange to go to the consulate about 30 minutes before your appointment time. Make sure you carry all original documents such as the EAD (OPT and OPT STEM extension) cards, your paystubs, tax documents, original I-797, copy of the LCA (if available), etc., along with 1 passport sized photograph. Make sure that if you usually wear glasses, then the passport pic is taken after removing the glasses, because otherwise the photo will not be accepted. Also take your original DS-160 form and any other supporting documents that you might need or want to bring with you.


2) Make sure you do NOT carry any electronic and/or battery operated devices to the visa interview. That includes cellphones, digital watches, cameras and even keychain LED flashlights. If you do carry any of those, you would need to give them to a local who holds these items outside the consulate for a fee, and you can get them back after you come back. She charges $5 or so, so keep USD bills handy.

3) The first thing that happens is that you're asked to line up outside the consulate, as per your appointment time. Then a staffer comes and staples your original I-797 and the passport photo to your passport. Do not remove these stapled things from the passport.

4) Then you're led inside, where you need to pass through the security check. Once you go through that, you'll be told to go to the main consulate building, and sit in a waiting area. Here, you are handed token numbers in a serial order.


5) The visa interviews are conducted as per the token number, i.e. B0001 is the first, then B0002, then B0003 and so on. Unlike it happens in India, your token number will not be called, or flashed on some screen. Here in Kingston, 5 people in one go are asked to line up in front of a certain counter, say B0001 to B0005 will be asked to go to counter #4, etc. Then the visa officer would ask you to step forward towards the window, in a serial order, first B0001, then B0002, followed by B0003, and so on until B0005 is done with the interview. Then the next row of 5 people is asked to stand in front of another counter.

6) After your visa interview, you walk to the left and exit out of the building.

I am not on a EVC model, but I do work for a company that does IT consulting. I was asked the following questions:


1) Which visa type?
2) Who's your employer?
3) Who are you working for?
4) What's your annual salary?
5) What's the amount as per your LCA?
6) Where do you currently stay?
7) Did you have a US visa earlier? Which type was the earlier visa?
8) Where did you go to school at in the US?

Some observations: I was not asked to show any documents at all, throughout the interview, your 
confidence is the key, and that almost every H-1B applicant is being asked mainly about 2 things: the monthly/annual salary, and the salary given on the LCA. Another thing is that when asked about the annual salary and LCA salary amount, try to answer like "Sixty thousand" in words, instead of just saying "60k".

Be calm, be confident and keep your body language positive, that's all you need. Good luck!


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In my earlier post, I forgot to mention about the fingerprinting. That happens between steps 4 and 5 above. You are handed tokens, and as per your token number, you will be called to a counter where you will be asked to press first the fingers on your left hand, then the fingers on your right hand, and then the 2 thumbs, on the fingerprint reader. After that you will be asked to go back and sit, again as per your token number, where you'll have to wait until your turn comes for the interview, as per point 5.


Update for collecting your passport, after your visa interview:

After your visa has been approved, you will be (should be) handed a red ticket that has a number and the words "US Embassy" written on it. Hold on to it because that's what you will need to show to collect your passport. Now, while booking the visa appointment in Kingston, you'd have been asked the pickup location, to which you'll have to enter the main DHL office, at 19 Haining Road, Kingston, Jamaica. Even though it says the pickup location is the DHL office, if you're given a red ticket, you will have to collect your passport at the US Embassy, not the DHL office. Do NOT go to the DHL office if you're handed a red ticket and do not go to the US Embassy before 2pm, because you won't be let in unless it's 2pm. Also, you'll have to again go through the same security check that was done before, so that means don't carry with you any cellphones, flashlight LEDs, USB/Flash disks/pen drives or any other electronic devices. Unlike in the mornings, where there are people outside who will hold on to those things for a fee, there will be nobody waiting outside to hold on to them at 2pm, and you'll have to go back to your hotel to drop the things off and come back to the US Embassy. Save yourself that enormous trouble.

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firsth1visa: I had bought 2-way tickets before landing in Jamaica, to and from Kingston (back to the US), so I wasn't asked anything else. When you come to Jamaica, on the flight, they will give you a white 3-part immigration & customs declaration form, the first part is for the declaration of any goods in your luggage, the 2nd is for details of your incoming flight and your address+duration of stay in Jamaica, and the third part is about the departure details from Jamaica. The 2nd part is what you will need to fill out on the basis of your hotel info, book hotels immediately after booking your flight to Kingston, and note down the address somewhere which you can then copy into the 2nd part of the immigration form. The 3rd part is also supposed to be filled out by you, you cannot leave it blank. If you leave it blank and cannot produce proof of an outgoing ticket from Jamaica, the immigration officer at Kingston would make you buy one right then & there, and then fill out the 3rd part.

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Update about coming back to the US:

My point of entry in the US was Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Took me about an hour to clear customs and immigration, with just one question asked in customs: Do you have anything to declare? The questions asked for Immigration were: (1) What is your purpose of visit? (2) How long are you going to stay in the US? (3) What do you work as? (4) Who is your employer? (5) What is your job role? (6) Which (programming) languages do you use? and (7) How long were you out of the US?

Again, confidence is half the battle won here. No documents were asked at the PoE, but you might be, so keep them handy, including all originals, the copy of the LCA, original I-797, EAD cards and the offer letter from your employer and employment agreement, as well as W-2s and filled out tax forms+paystubs (mostly not even going to be asked for, but just to be on the safer side).

All in all, a very successful and fun stamping+trip. Good luck to all of you.

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The nearest hotels (in no specific order of distance or preference) are the Knutsford Court, Liguanea Club, Courtleigh Hotel, Altamont Court Hotel, Jamaica Pegasus, Kingston Hilton, Medallion Hall and Christar Villas. Most Indians I see from here stay at Liguanea Club, and I didn't stay there because I don't care two hoots about that in my selection of hotels. Apart from the last 2, none of these places are walkable, to be honest, and I wouldn't recommend walking even from the last 2, because the roads there don't really have proper sidewalks. Recommended commute is by taking a taxi, and this goes not just for going to the US embassy, but for any place in Kingston in general - public transportation isn't as safe, useful or reliable for tourists as it is in the US.

Also, yes, you do NEED to buy an onward ticket before you leave for Jamaica, either back to the US, or to another country, before you land there. Otherwise you will be required to buy one, and until you do that, you won't be allowed to leave the airport. I hope that makes it abundantly clear that this is mandatory.

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I stayed in Jamaica for a total of 5 days, and I got the passport back on the 2nd day after my interview. But, I have also read of cases right here on Murthy forums, where people were told to stay back for a week and got their passports after that period. So, how long you should stay there, depends on the amount of risk you're willing to undertake and how much vacation you can ask from your employer.

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  • 11 months later...

Hello ,


I am  trying to book the slot for kingston.can you please help me with the following things?


1) Is the below  website where you would book the appointments after filling the DS160 form 




2) I was told that unless we pay MRV fees we cannot see any available dates.In the first place I was not able to make any payments as it says thee are no available appointments.


Am I missing any thing?


3) In jamica only kingston has the us consulate ?


4) Are the dates only opened in 1 month advance



Thanks In Advance





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