Dickinson College Humanities Program in Norwich

Visa Process

July 2, 2009 · 14 Comments

Andrew has gotten confirmation that his visa has been approved! Congratulations. I just went for my biometrics in Baltimore. The staff there was great. I have to say that I have less positive things to say about World  Bridge, the phone bank that answers questions for the embassy. The person I spoke to seemed to have little knowledge of the biometric procedures. However, all went well. I’m just hoping that I filled everything out right on the application.

Let us know about your visa process. I know that there has been some confusion with the new rules and procedures this year. Neither UEA nor Dickinson had ever gone through the process under the new procedure and there was a problem with the initial letters for you. Fortunately, we found a helpful and kind person in the NY consulate who has helped us immensely. Hopefully, those of us who have to apply through Chicago and LA will have equally good results.

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Categories: Bureucracy · Professor Qualls

14 responses so far ↓

  •   aidanoshea // Jul 6th 2009 at 16:54

    After a hectic couple of weeks, my application is in New York. My biggest piece of advice is to have everything ready to send out right after you get your biometrics taken, since you need to have it all postmarked within two weeks of that (because biometric data expires, inexplicably).

    I did my biometrics a while ago, and my supporting documents barely arrived in time. I got the info about our visa letters being wrong 20 minutes before leaving town last weekend. But now, like Prof. Qualls, I’m just patiently hoping I sent everything I needed to send (and hoping it won’t be disastrous if I [or UEA or Dickinson] made a mistake).

    Oh, and does anyone know why it costs $232 to apply for a UK visa? My guess is that they want to discourage people who aren’t serious about actually going, but I could be wrong.

  •   chelseagilchrist // Jul 6th 2009 at 18:15

    I had my own biometrics appointment last week and mailed my application off the second I got back home. My only complaint about the biometrics part of the application was that the nearest center to me was over an hour away, and the appointment took all of five minutes.

    After getting quite stressed out over the whole process (mostly about the funds part of it–I got quite worried that I would have to prove I had about $10,000 sitting around in my name somewhere), I feel a bit relieved that my application is in New York being processed. Besides being paranoid that I did something wrong or that I misunderstood part of the application process, I just hope it arrives in good time. Knowing me, I’ll have a hernia if it arrives at the last minute (or too late). For a while, I was pretty worried about the time-frame of this whole process as well, since we’ve been told to leave 8-10 weeks to have our passports and visas returned to us and at the time I sent mine off, we had something like 6.5 weeks until departure. After applying for a US passport card to get me in and out of Canada while my passport’s at the consulate and after finding my visa letters in a huge puddle of water and mud on my driveway after returning from vacation, I’m slightly more relaxed, but still anxious to get it back in time.

  •   Karl // Jul 6th 2009 at 18:47

    For those in NYC: we have found a very nice and helpful person at the consulate who knows that your applications are coming. He should be able to smooth over any problems for us. It usually only takes 12-15 business days to get a visa, so they should arrive in plenty of time for your August departure.

  •   buonacos // Jul 6th 2009 at 22:40

    Hi everyone!

    I mailed everything out this evening and it should be at the consulate first thing tomorrow morning. Like Chelsea, I had a traumatic experience with UPS and my visa letters. Turns out the UPS delivery guy left my letters along with one of my mom’s packages in front of the house next door. They so happened to choose the house where no one is currently living and so there were a few days during which I had no ideas where the letters where. UPS claimed to have left them on our porch and they were nowhere to be found. Sigh.

    Now, like everyone else I’m hoping I filled out the application correctly and will be getting my visa super soon. Other than that, I’ve been reading all the books we were assigned and counting down the says until we leave!

  •   chelseagilchrist // Jul 9th 2009 at 15:35

    My visa was just approved! It looks like I was all worried for nothing, since they say my passport will be overnighted back to me, but I’m the sort that would rather worry and plan for things to go wrong than to assume they’re going to work out and be surprised when I’m in trouble.

    Anyway, yay!

  •   Karl // Jul 9th 2009 at 15:37

    We just got an email that our visas have been approved! I guess there were fewer skeletons than I thought. Just 13 days until we depart. Oh, how much packing to do to get ready for the movers. Anyone know anyone who wants to buy a used car?!

  •   jeylam // Jul 10th 2009 at 15:31

    The visa application has been nerve racking but as I received my passport in person at New York Consulate a week ago the pressure and stress lifted off my shoulders. Going in and submitting my papers and hearing that our first Financial Guarantee letters were not acceptable made my heart sink but Thank God I was not rejected (it would have been a bummer paying another 200$ and starting the application over). Dickinson and the University of East Anglia have been amazing at working with me and the NY Consulate in order to supply the required papers and everything was taken care of in days. I was able to go back a week ago and submit my papers once again and pick up my visa and my passport in one hour =] So I am good to go. A few more weeks till we depart.

    And Mr. Qualls good luck moving and have safe travels! See you in London.

  •   allisonmschell5 // Jul 13th 2009 at 20:14

    First of all, good luck to everyone who is still applying! It’s a trying task! My father called me today and said that my visa arrived safely back at home…Hurrah! The process definitely was a bit of a pain, between waiting for the acceptance letters and then running out to the biometrics place during my internship. Although, one of the most useful things I learned during my biometrics experience was that apparently, according to the finger-print lady, I have a unique pattern on all my hands and suggested that I stay away from crime, because they would catch me right away. Imagine that!

    Anyways, there had been some disruption in the LA Consulate about them not accepting some forms of financial guarantee statements from the college. Fortunately, mine went through just fine and I didn’t have to send anything extra in! So relieved!

    So, in closing, I wish everyone luck with the process!

  •   kstaab77 // Jul 14th 2009 at 19:05

    I made the trek down to Chicago this morning on Visa Quest. Thankfully, everything went extremely smoothly and I was able to walk-in and get everything sorted with no problems. Oddly enough, the guy working at the visa window didn’t ask for my appendix 8 form, my biometrics form, or several of my other forms. He did, however, tell me that the financial guarantee form that Dickinson sent to us only showed that the maintenance fees (the 5400) were covered and not the course costs. I got my visa all colorful and embossed in the afternoon and now can’t wait to hop on the plane in just over a month!

    See you soon and good luck!

  •   buonacos // Jul 15th 2009 at 16:16

    Just found out my visa was approved by the NY office! Can’t wait to see everyone in Norwich in a month!

  •   buonacos // Jul 15th 2009 at 16:17

    Well, in London and then Norwich.

  •   mliberty // Jul 20th 2009 at 14:36

    Hey everyone!
    Only a month before we leave and counting down!

    So I just wanted to add onto everything everyone else has send about the stressful visa process. I had started to hear from other people that their visas had been a approved starting a few days ago. I began to panic that I did something wrong and wondered why I had not heard beyond the fact that mine was “being processed.”
    However, this morning I woke up to a WONDERFUL e-mail telling me my visa was approved and on its way!

    Now it’s on to the next stressful situation: packing!

  •   kgzell // Jul 20th 2009 at 16:09

    Congrats to everyone! After a stressful “long-distance” application process (I was working in North Carolina and my parents were in Virginia) My visa has been approved! Now I have to begin the packing process… and finnish the reading. See you all in ONE MONTH!

  •   becca136 // Jul 29th 2009 at 15:41

    I am sooo nervous about getting my visa. I hate waiting!!!! It got to LA on the 22nd, but I haven’t gotten any emails yet. By the way, why is it that people living in PA have to send there visa app. to LA and not one of the closer consulates?

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