When we found out that the petition we submitted was approved, I started reading to dos and preparing paperworks for my K1 visa application. Requirements and ready to use checklist, helpful sites:
The husband sent most of the documents via email, all I needed to do was print it. He only sent those documents that needed his signature via fedex. Thanks to technology, makes everything easier.
Tips: Always read and follow the instructions from the official websites properly to prevent delays and extra costs.
NVC Case Number. I called NVC and inquired about the status of our case. The rep on the phone gave us our case number and when they sent the packet to the US Embassy Manila. So you know, it was difficult to get in touch with a rep when I called their office. If I remember it right, I dialed their number 18 times before the phone rang and the wait time to talk to somebody was about 45 mins. So you really have to be patient.
The case number can be used to check your status online, once it’s ready you can start processing your application. How to check your status, go here. By the way, I didn’t receive my visa packet in the mail. And that is okay I guess, I made through all the steps without it. 🙂
Also, got my case number last Nov. 4, 2014 (almost a month after our petition got approved) so when I checked the status of my case, it was already in READY state. I didn’t have to wait.
SLEC Medical. Online registration is here. I registered Nov 7 of last year and scheduled my medical exam Nov 10th. I’m from Cebu and medical examination can only be performed in this clinic so I had to fly to Manila, booked a round trip ticket and reserved a hotel for 2 days. I was lucky my boss was very supportive and approved my time off from work in a very short notice. Examination took 2 days, and yes there’s a physical exam, you will be asked to undress. That’s the only part of the examination I didn’t like but it needs to be done. After 2 days I flew back to Cebu and back to work. And I passed the medical exam. #thankful
Visa Interview. Happened 2 weeks after my medical exam (Nov 25, 2014). Booked another round trip fare and hotel reservations. I know it was very costly but I also had responsibilities at work so I didn’t have the luxury to get 2 weeks time off. Really appreciate my boss for allowing me another 2 days.
On the day, I was nervous but I made sure all of my documents were complete and ready. My hotel was a walking distance from the Embassy to avoid Manila traffic. I was there 30 mins before my scheduled interview.
- Completed Form DS-160, Online Nonimmigrant Visa Application.
- A passport valid for travel to the United States
- Divorce papers
- Medical examination
- Evidence of financial support (Form I-134, Affidavit of Support plus supporting documents)
- Two (2) 2×2 photographs.
- Evidence of relationship with your U.S. citizen fiancé(e)
- Payment of fees
For evidence of relationship, you don’t have to make a scrapbook of your relationship or your love story from the beginning to prove your relationship is genuine. It isn’t necessary. In my experience: I prepared 2 chats incidents for each — (skype & gmail), not the entire chat transcripts (if you know what I mean), our travel itineraries both local and international, 10 photos together (4R size).
During the final interview, they got all my government/official paperworks. As for the evidence of relationship, they only asked to see our photos, that’s it. So save yourself from bringing those bulky scrapbooks/albums. The document space in the interview window is very small so your albums won’t fit, not unless you want to flip the pages from outside the interview window then go for it. I know this is a nerve wrecking experience but my only advise is be honest and be confident (not overly confident). Nothing could go wrong with honesty and a smile.
Duration of the entire process, half day. They will give you instructions in the end on what to do if your visa application is approved or not. I got approved and I was told to wait for my visa to be delivered.
Visa. It was on AP status on Dec 1st, issued on Dec 2nd. We were very excited then. Unbelievably fast! I booked my one way ticket (for US) on Dec 3rd, was able to saved a few bucks on my fare. I got my passport on Dec 5th with a visa on it.
CFO Seminar. PH government requirement, counseling session. You have to pre-register online because seats are limited daily. You can visit their website here.
Flying to the US. Packing was difficult, I left so many things in PH but that was okay except for one thing, I brought the wrong hard drive with me. I left just right after celebrating Christmas eve with my family. Brian and I wanted to at least have Christmas Day and New Years Day for the first time before we got married. So I arrived in the US the night of Dec 25th 2014. It is never too late to celebrate Christmas. 🙂
POE was Vancouver, Canada. Interview was very quick, they just explained what I needed to do in the US with the type of visa I had.
Tips: Triple check your documents and hard drives before leaving. Trust me, it was heartbreaking for me to find out that I got the wrong hard drive with me in the US. I left all my digital photos back home. Not pleasant at all.