Imagine stepping onto an elevator and hearing the soft melodies played overhead, it is soothing, calming the nerves as the elevator inches to the next floor. Since some people have fear of elevators, I am assuming this is why the music is played, to calm the fear and put the people at ease.
Let me tell you, elevator music, after a couple of minutes can drive you crazy! This specific genre of music is not only used on elevators, but for when you are put on hold, during a phone call. I will share with you, my current experience.
We are still waiting to pay the DS-260 fee to be able to access the required document. I was told on May 28, 2015 that we should hear something within a week. On Friday, June 5, 2015, we (our sponsor and myself) were told by another agent that Monday or Tuesday we should be able to pay and “it is working for some people and to just keep trying”. Yesterday, I spent lots of time trying to call the National Visa Center (NVC) to ask why we still had not been able to pay the fee and to ask another question related to documents a NVC agent had told our sponsor I needed to fill out. Once the phone connects to the NVC, you are stuck waiting, listening to elevator music anywhere from 20 minutes to almost an hour. It will drive you crazy! Every few minutes, a voice over of a man repeating a message comes on. Since, it takes so long to speak to an actual person, your mind normally wonders onto other things. By the way, it takes many calls before you can actually talk to someone. It normally plays an automatic message stating they are receiving high call volume and to try back later, where the phone will then disconnect. Frustrating all around!
After many unsuccessful attempts on my part to get someone on the phone, yesterday, our sponsor was able to get through. Our sponsor said the agent was helpful and could see what was lacking. She stated she was going to send everything to her supervisor for us to get an invoice for the bill and the DS-261 document needing to be completed. An agent, named Sandy, had told me the same thing on May 28, 2015, but we shall see.
Once our sponsor relayed the correct information to us, we prepared the lacking documents. I had high hopes of emailing them off yesterday evening, but ran out of printer paper for one document. We emailed our documents, but this was a checklist that was required to be with everything. It was probably for the best because we were actually into the wee hours of the morning (between 1 and 2 A.M.). Probably 85% of the documents the NVC already had, from where it required, but to be safe, I sent the information again. Our marriage certificate, translated copy, birth certificates, etc.
I scanned the documents, but failed to scan them to save to PDF and PDF format is required. The documents needed to be named with our case number, name of the person intending to immigrate, plus what the document was(for example: birth certificate, affidavit of support, etc). Last night, I had done part of this, only I did not have the name. Since it was late, it did cross my mind about the PDF format, since I had to send the tax letter that way, but I kept plugging along scanning the documents.
Before sending off the email this morning, I checked to make sure I was doing it exactly right or else the case may be delayed. I feel like it already has been to something out of our control (their website issue). The files needed to be named a specific way and all need to be PDF format. Oh great! I had spent lots of time scanning the documents when our children were asleep last night and now had to change the format. The option to easily change the format was not coming up and I anxiously, wanted to get the documents emailed. A quick Google search brought me to a website, named Convert JPG to PDF. Perfect, it was what I needed and ended up being super easy, even if it did take time I had not planned on using in this way. For future reference, make sure when you are scanning, scan to PDF (if required). If not, you can always use this website I used and they have a thing where after 5000 documents have been converted to PDF, they donate a vaccine to children in need. Each document I converted, the numbers went down showing how many more they needed until a vaccine could be given.
All of the required documents, besides what we cannot access, are now in their hands, as of this morning. It was random, but my sponsor and I, both received emails this afternoon stating documents that were missing. The one for my sponsor was an automatic message they send out and I knew this from when an NVC agent told me and the other was for the documents, I had sent out this morning. We pray it does not take 30 days to review, as stated. If we do not receive something in the next few days, we may have to call NVC again and be put on hold with the awful elevator music. What do you do in cases like this, where you are placed on hold?