OPT-->H1B: employment start date, petition start date, and visa appointment?


  1. I started working for company X in 2019 on OPT and got H1B approval in 2020. So my true employment start date is 2019 and petition start date (i.e., start date on I797 i-94) is Oct 2020. I am still employed with company X and my question is: what should be my employment start date in DS160 (assuming 2019) and then what should be my petition start date while completing the form in traveldocs before booking a visa appointment (assuming Oct 2020)?

  2. Both my wife and I are on H1B and work for different companies and completing paperwork to get an appointment for visa stamping in India. Is it possible to book the visa appointment from one profile (say mine) by adding the spouse as a family member for two H1B visas so we can go together for biometrics and the interview?

Appreciate your advise. Thank you!

Note that you are applying for H1B visa and so your H1B employment start date will be October 2020, same as your petition start date. This is also the date when your status changed from F1 to H1B.
OPT employment is not considered while applying for H1B visa.

Sure this should be possible. In case of any questions you may contact VFS,


Thank you, Kalpesh.

I tried doing this, but there is no field to enter petition-related information of my spouse. Traveldocs form is directly copying the same petition-related information from my form even for my spouse, so it doesn’t look like I can use one account to book two visa appointments.

Interesting… I have created multiple DS-160 in past and booked appointment for my H4 dependents and B2 for my parents from my profile. Not sure if things changed lately.

Call VFS see if they have an answer or can help.

Yeah, I heard back from my attorney as well and they don’t think we can do this for H-1B. They did mention about the possibility of doing this for dependent visas.