In order to travel outside the U.S. you will need the following documents:
- I-20 (signed by your IPO advisor)
- Passport (valid for at least 9 months ahead)
- Valid F-1 visa
- I-94 card
In addition to the above documents, it is advisable to bring an unofficial transcript and evidence of your financial support or sponsorship.
I-20 Travel Signature
The signature on page 3 of your I-20 is for travel. However, that signature is only valid for one year. It is necessary to obtain a travel signature from your IPO advisor prior to traveling outside the U.S.! Please be aware that it takes approximately 3 days to obtain a travel signature, so it is important that you plan ahead! You may drop off your I-20 in the IPO office and it will be signed and returned to you within 3 days.
Travel to Canada, Mexico, and the Caribbean for Fewer than 30 Days
Travel to Canada, Mexico, or the Caribbean for fewer than 30 days does not require a valid F-1 visa for most individuals as long as you have a valid I-94 card.
If you have an expired F-1 visa and you intend to travel to these countries for less than 30 days, the following guidelines apply:
- Do not surrender your I-94 card upon entry
- When using this option, DO NOT attempt to apply for a new visa while in these countries
- This is NOT an option if you will be gone more than 30 days
- For more information on this, please visit this U.S. Deapartment of State website reagarding the "Automatic Revalidation" rule.
To find out if you need a visa to enter Canada, please visit the Canada Consulte in Seattle website.
Canadian students are not issued an F-1 visa and thus are not required to have one when traveling. However, they are still considered international students and must have all other immigration documents listed above (passport, I-94, signed I-20).
Canadian and Mexican Consulates: