I had a few questions regarding F-1 OPt and H-1B. I'm currently working on my OPT. My OPT expires on Jan 4th, 2013. My company is planning to get my OPT extended before that.
How early should the request be filed to get my OPT extended? How much time does does it take, on an average to get it approved? Can I travel around December end to India if the status is pending? Do I need to go to the consulate if I travel on OPT extension?
About H1B visa: April 1st is the starting date to file a H1B. If filed on April 1, 2013, the status would be pending for a few weeks as I believe it takes a while to get it approved. Can I travel to India during my H1B Visa approval status is pending?
After the H1B is approved, say in May 2013, I would still be travelling on my F-1 OPT ext. If I plan to go in May and come back in June, do I need to go to consulate for stamping before entering US (and before H1B actually kicks in i.e. before Oct 1, 2013)?
I really appreciate your help. Thank you.