Travel and Re-Entry Information for Current International Students

Traveling Within the U.S.

Department of Homeland Security (DHS) regulations require that you have your valid passport with you at all times. It is also suggested that you travel with your I-20 document. If you are uncomfortable carrying these documents with you on a daily basis, OGE recommends that you to carry copies of these documents when you are on or near to campus. However, whenever you travel outside of Waukesha, and especially for air travel, you should carry your original documents.

Traveling Outside of the U.S.

Required Travel Documents

In general you must have the following documents in order to travel out of the U.S. and re-enter as an F-1 student:

If your current I-20 does not correctly reflect your major, level of student, name, citizenship, or addition of dependents, you should submit a I-20 Update Request Form to request an I-20 that properly reflects the correct information before you travel. You can find all current international student forms through the International Student Support Canvas Course.

Travel Signatures

A valid travel signature on the I-20 is required for F-1 students (and F-2 dependents) to re-enter the U.S. after traveling abroad. Only DSO’s (Designated School Officials- authorized individuals in OGE) can provide such signatures for Carroll's F-1 students.

To obtain a travel signature on your I-20, please bring your most recently issued I-20 to OIE. You will be asked to leave your I-20 and provide the following information:

Your I-20 will be endorsed for travel and you will receive an email when it is ready to be picked up.

Automatic Visa Revalidation

After initial entry into the U.S., if you have a single-entry or expired multiple-entry visa, you may travel to Canada, Mexico, or one of the islands adjacent to the U.S (other than Cuba), provided that you have a valid I-20 form and an unexpired I-94. This process is known as automatic visa revalidation. However, if you meet any ONE of the following criteria, you will NOT be able to automatically revalidate your visa:

Additionally, nationals of Cuba, Iran, Sudan and Syria are not eligible for automatic visa revalidation. You are encouraged to schedule a meeting with OGE to confirm your eligibility before travel.

Traveling during Post-Completion OPT

The following items are necessary for re-entry after you have graduated and have applied for post-completion practical training:

It is not advisable to leave the U.S. with a planned re-entry date that is after your graduation date if you have not yet received your EAD card AND a job offer. It is possible that by leaving the country your Post-Completion OPT application will be considered abandoned and, ultimately, denied. You will have lost your 60 day grace period AND your post-completion OPT eligibility. Even after you have received your EAD card, it is important that you have a valid job offer to show at the port-of-entry when returning to the U.S. It is possible that you will not be permitted to re-enter without both your valid EAD card AND a valid job offer.

Panoramic View of campus