Preparation to travel outside the United States and re-enter
An F-1 student should meet with the International Student Advisor whenever he/she plans to leave the United States to visit another country or home country. Complete the Travel Request Form prior to meeting with an advisor.
Visiting another country may require a visa: inquire with their consular offices. Please make sure that the following documents are available before traveling:
- Valid passport for at least six months;
- Valid F-1 visa (if your visa has expired, you must apply for renewal in your home country before re-entry to the U.S.; meet with ISAO advisor to discuss application of F-1 visa abroad);
- Valid SEVIS Form I-20 with an approved stamp and endorsement by the international student advisor.
For more information about traveling to Canada, Mexico and other adjacent islands (except Cuba) such as Saint Pierre, Miquelon, The Dominican Republic, Haiti, Bermuda, The Bahamas, Barbados, Jamaica, The Windward and Leeward Islands, Trinidad, Martinique or other British, French, and Netherlands territory or possessions in or bordering on the Caribbean Sea, call ISAO. Please schedule an appointment with the International Student Advisor before you plan to travel.
Preparation to enter United States for the first time
For F-1 students who are first-time travelers to the United States, remember that there is a possibility of refusal at the port of entry if you arrive to the United States more than 30 days before the program start date listed on your SEVIS I-20 form.
It is strongly advised that you also make sure you have the following documents in possession during your first entry:
- Evidence of financial resources;
- Evidence of student status (copy of registration, email with academic advisor regarding your course registration, etc.)
- Paper receipt for the SEVIS fee, Form I-797; and
- Name and contact information for your designated school official, including a 24-hour emergency contact number at the school.
For comprehensive information on procedures for traveling and arriving in the United States, visit http://travel.state.gov/content/visas/en/study-exchange.html. As a non-immigrant visitor holding a visa, you might be asked to participate in the US-VISIT program, a comprehensive registration system tracking entries to and exits from the United States. For more information, visit the Department of Homeland Security website.