Ds 160 Visa Interview

By Tiara

This week, you will be attending your third annual Visas in America Day event with us! In case you were not aware, The Refugee Team is hosting this free event every year to celebrate World Refugees’ Day as well as International Mother’s Day.

This event has quickly become one of our most anticipated events of the year because it gives people an opportunity to connect with refugees in a casual setting. It also helps promote refugee awareness through guest speakers that discuss different issues related to refugees in America and how we can help them.

At this event, there will be two separate talks given by professionals on refugees. One talk will focus on what it means to be a survivor of violence or torture, and the other will speak about why it is important to include refugees in society.

We hope that you are able to make time for both of these discussions since they take place for around one hour each.

Know your country's culture

ds 160 visa interview

Even if you have no plans to visit Japan as an adult, knowing how Japanese people are raised will help you relate to them as someone who is studying abroad.

The first thing that comes up when people talk about Japan is its beautiful nature. A lot of foreigners feel impressed by this perception, but what most lack is understanding the cultural underpinnings of this admiration.

Japan has some of the highest rates of urbanization in the world, with 80% of the population living in cities. This means there is a very high concentration of tall buildings, which many Europeans and Americans find impressive.

However, these skyscrapers were not built without significant investment and effort in education. What makes a building important to the community is not just it’s height, but also it’s use – for business or entertainment.

Education is one of the biggest industries in Tokyo, so they appreciate large office towers. It is similar to how European communities value heavily-guarded castles or government offices.

Be prepared for difficult questions

ds 160 visa interview

Even if you are well-prepared, there is still no guarantee that your application will be accepted! The US Embassy in India’s most recent monthly bulletin listed some of the things they look for when reviewing applications.

One of the major areas many applicants make mistakes is assuming that because their case was not rejected last time that it will this time as well. But with visa interviews, what seems like a simple “yes” or “no” question can quickly become more complicated and tricky.

The interviewer may ask about another person’s activities which could influence your chances, or whether you would actively participate in local culture. Or perhaps they will ask to see proof of an adequate amount of money saved for your stay, or evidence that you have enough medicine to get along without at home. It all depends on how much the consulate staff member feels you know yourself and who you associate with.

We recommend practicing your interview skills ahead of time so that you are not caught off guard while staying calm and confident.

Think about your attitude

ds 160 visa interview

A few days before your interview, make sure to check out the visa website to see if there are any additional documents or information you need to bring.

Make sure to review this info well in advance of the appointment so that you do not have to come back and find it right after the interview!

The embassy can’t hold the interview until they confirm all the necessary documentation, so be certain to have everything ready ahead of time.

In addition to bringing your passport for the interview, also verify with the consulate whether having an appointment is mandatory.

Practice interviewing skills

ds 160 visa interview

After arriving at the destination, you will be met by an officer in a private room for your visa interview. This person will ask you some basic questions to determine if you have a legitimate reason to visit the United States as well as whether you will leave the country after your stay here is finished.

It’s very important that you are able to answer these questions clearly and concisely without any hesitation or giveaways. Breaching silence or showing nervousness could hurt your chances of getting approved for a US visa!

While it may feel uncomfortable to talk about yourself, thinking ahead can help you prepare and make sure you're not leaving anything out. The better you know yourself, the more confident you'll be during this meeting.

You don't need to be the most extroverted person in the world to enjoy socializing in America, nor do you need to emphasize your achievements all the time, but knowing who you are and what makes you happy can help you get through this with less stress. Having a good understanding of yourself can also aid in building trust between you and others around you.

Decide who is best suited to the job

ds 160 visa interview

In fact, some employers will even ask you about your visa status while you are being hired! This is called a direct employer question or a DEQ.

Most employers have to check whether you have the right work permissions in Canada before they can begin employment with them. An example of this would be if you are seeking employment at a place that requires you to hold a working visa.

This isn’t very common but it does happen. What most people don’t realize though, is that YOU CAN PREVENT IT FROM HAPPENING!

You should do your research well ahead of time and make sure that everything is fully legalized by immigration laws.

Focus on your skills

ds 160 visa interview

If you’ve been out of work for more than six months, then it is time to look at transitioning into another position.

Finding employment after a layoff depends largely on two things: Your resume and interview skills.

Your resume should be focused on demonstrating that you can do the job well – no need to highlight past achievements if you are already meeting employers’ expectations.

Instead, emphasize the skills you have now and those you learned during the last job. For example, if you were in marketing before, what strengths did you develop while working in that field?

Interpersonal relationships? Writing? Marketing strategies? You get the idea!

Interviewing is also an excellent way to test out your communication skills. Even better, ask about the company and its goals so you can connect with them on some level.

If all else fails, try asking questions related to the job.

Be friendly

ds 160 visa interview

Before you arrive for your interview, make sure to check the visa website to see if there is any information about what time you should arrive at the embassy.

They may suggest coming early so they can get you checked in and things like that, but honestly, even we were never really told when our interviews would be.

We just had to show up and hope for the best! So, before you go somewhere, try to find out this info directly from the consulate’s site or through other sources.

That way you will know what to expect and how long it takes, which could help you feel more prepared.

And don’t worry if you are running late – some places let people wait outside while they come inside, or have an hour window during their schedule where you can visit.

Give them something to talk to you about

ds 160 visa interview

Even if you have no idea what they will ask, it is good to be prepared with some basic questions. Here are our top 10 question types and how to respond to each!

Questions about your career – What kind of work do you want to do? Why this field rather than another?

– What kind of work do you want to do? Why this field rather than another? Questions about travel - How long did it take you to get here today? Does your family live close by?

- How long took you to get here today? Does your family live close by? Questions about education - Do you go to school? Are there any courses or degrees that you are waiting for opportunity to explore more in depth?

- Do you go to school? Are there any courses or degrees that you are waiting for opportunity to explore more in depth? Important life milestones - When was your last promotion, did you graduate, marry etc…

- When was your last promotion, did you graduate, marry etc… Life stories - Tell us a little bit about yourself.