Ask the Consul – Why do I have to visit the VAC at Galeria 360 before my interview?

Most visa applicants visit the Visa Application Center (Centro de Atención de Visas) or “VAC” in Galería 360 before their Embassy appointment, or before leaving their visa for renewal to complete the fingerprint collection portion of the visa application process.  Applicants make an appointment at the VAC from their profile on, after completing the application forms and paying the visa fee.

The Galeria 360 mall is located in Santo Domingo on JFK Ave. near Avenida Lincoln.  There is free parking and access to public transportation. To avoid long waits, plan to arrive less than 15 minutes before your appointment.   Before arrival, check that all of the information on the application is an exact match to the information in the passport, and review the list of prohibited items. Errors in the application or entering with a prohibited item will cause delays in processing the visa application.

When you arrive at the VAC, present your appointment confirmation page, the DS160 or DS260 confirmation page, and your passport to the greeter at the door. After a quick security screening, a greeter will confirm that the information in your application is correct and will place a barcode on your passport. The barcode helps track your passport every step of the way.

Next, the applicant will take a number and have a seat and wait to be called to a window. Within a few minutes, your number will be called to a window where VAC staff will take your picture. Be sure to remove your hat, glasses, comb your hair back, and wear minimal makeup.

At the window, the attendant will take your fingerprints, beginning with the four fingers of your left hand on the lighted glass screen, then the four fingers of the right, and finally your two thumbs.

After taking a photo and fingerprints, the VAC appointment is over. The application data is automatically transferred to the Embassy’s visa systems. Be sure to double check your confirmation page to confirm your appointment for the upcoming visa interview at the U.S. Embassy.

Please remember, VAC employees are not U.S. consular officers and they will only ask questions to confirm your biographical information and visa class. VAC employees cannot answer questions about specific cases or immigration law.  If you need information about visas, please check our website. If you still have questions after reviewing our website please send them to and we’ll be happy to answer them.