In some circumstance you may be requested to send in paperwork to the US embassy via their Courier service.
This would normally be in cases where:
When should you book your flights?
In line with US Department of State and local embassy recommendations we advise against booking your flights until you have received your passport and visa back from the US Embassy.
We recognise that many participants choose to book flights before they have been approved but please note should you do this we can accept no responsibility for any costs incurred should you be required to change these.
*Please note this information relates to interviews booked at either the US Embassy in London or the US Consulate General in Belfast. If you are planning on attending an interview in a different country please refer to the local instructions for your location embassy.
You can see a full list of websites of U.S. Embassies, Consulates, and Diplomatic Missions at https://www.usembassy.gov/
**Wait times for interviews can be much longer in the run up to the summer so please make sure you book your interview as soon as possible after receiving your paperwork **
Once you have received all your legal documentation from us (including your DS-2019 Certificate of Eligibility ) you can go ahead and book your face to face interview at the USA Embassy.
Remember - you can't book your face to face interview until you have your DS-2019# (also known as a SEVIS ID) - and you can't get this number until you have been approved by CIEE and received your documents back.
Please note the US Embassy charges $160 US for visa interviews (approx £100).
These fees are separate to your programme fees and must be paid direct to the US Embassy at the time of booking your face to face interview
If you have lost or damaged any of your documents please let us know immediately as you must have these when you attend your face to face interview
You must have a DS-2019 with a date in the future in order to attend an interview at the US Embassy. If you have not received your DS-2019 Certificate at least 2 days before your interview you will need to contact the embassy to reschedule.
In some cases we may need to order a new DS-2019 Certificate for you. If you are scheduled to attend an interview and have not yet received your paperwork (or need new paperwork with new dates) it is VITAL you email firstname.lastname@example.org to request this. Please note it will take at least 3 working days to receive new paperwork from the USA (sometimes more if an agreement on new dates is needed from your Host Company).
Please DO NOT CALL as our team will be unable to assist you over the phone.
Step 1: Go online and complete your DS-160. This can be found at https://ceac.state.gov/genniv/. Remember you are a J1 Exchange Visitor when choosing certain options! You will need to complete the DS-160 (see here for full info on this) and upload a digital photograph of yourself before you can move to Step 2.
*Please note we are unable to assist with completing the DS-160. Please follow the guidance below
What's my Programme number?
Step 2: Go to https://ais.usvisa-info.com/en-gb/niv or click on the button below
After creating your account, please follow the process and guidance for each of the steps
1. Provide your DS‐160 number (see Step 1).
2. Determine your visa type (J1)
3. Select a courier return location – read the options carefully as an additional fee may be charged
4. Pay your U.S. visa fee via debit card (Visa or Mastercard) – this is $160 US Dollars and is required for anyone booking a visa interview.
5. Schedule an appointment
For any questions or issues relating to visa interviews etc. you can use the Operator Assistance Visa Information Line - or contact them using the @USAinUKConsular Twitter Account below:
• Callers within the United Kingdom should dial 020 3608 6998
• Callers from the United States should dial 703-439-2367
The call center is open Monday through Friday, 7:00 am and 7:00 pm (local time; EST in the United States). The call center is closed on all U.K. and U.S. holidays
IST Plus was formed in 2003. Since then we have worked with thousands of students and young people from all over the world to help and guide them on their international journeys.
We work with partners across the globe to provide the best service possible.
In the UK: 0207 788 7877
International: +44 (20) 7788 7877