2 Yrs Waiting Period For US Visitor Visas

The inordinate delay in issuing the visitor visas to US is messing up with the travel plans and budgets of Indians. Indian citizens wanting to obtain a non-immigrant visitor visa to the US for the first time are waiting for nearly two years.
According to the US State department website, the waiting time for the applicants seeking the visa is 758 and 752 days in Delhi and Mumbai respectively.

This means an applicant seeking the visa will get an appointment around October 2024 in these two cities. Just a month ago, the waiting time for those aspiring for the visitor visas was 581 and 517 days in Delhi and Mumbai clearly showing how the pandemic had increased the demand for travel, leading to longer queues.

The waiting time is likely to reduce and there could be an improvement in the situation by next summer when the US Embassy in India hopes to increase the staff just like pre-Covid time. We are on the mission to reduce the waiting time in all visa classes across the world. The visa processing is getting back to normal after a nearly complete shutdown and freezing of resources during the pandemic. This summer, the US mission in India issued a record-breaking 82,000 student visas. The B1/B2 tourism and business visas are being expedited. We will increase the staff by next summer and it would reduce the wait time, an official in the US Embassy said.

However, the visa crunch has not led to travel slackening as all the flights bound to the US are full in September, which earlier used to be a lean month. People are still getting their Canada student visas and many one-stop flights are full of students leaving for Canada. The fares will also come to affordable level once the student rush settles, said a travel agent.

The delay in issuing of visas is mainly for the first time visa applicants but not for the repeat visas. It is mainly due to shortage of staff that there is a delay, said another official in the US Embassy.