IF YOU ARE TRAVELING OUT OF THE U.S. (OVER BREAKS or ARE STUDYING OUT OF THE U.S. FOR FIELD STUDY/EXCHANGE)
Please make sure that all your documents are in proper order to avoid any complications when re-entering the U.S. Please review the following information to learn more.
Is your travel signature up to date?
Your I-20 must be signed by a designated school official at Hampshire College (i.e., Melissa Scheid Frantz in MISS, multicultural and international student services) within 6 months of re-entry into the U.S. to be valid. The signature page is page 3 of your most current I-20. Please do not wait until the last minute to request a travel signature. Stop by during Melissa's open office hours or email to schedule an appointment (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Is your passport in order?
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (CIS) and the Department of State (DOS) have advised that all passports should be valid at least six (6) months into the future when traveling. If you need to extend your current passport, or obtain a new passport, please contact your embassy or consulate in the U.S. immediately to confirm the processing time and procedures.
Do you need a new U.S. Entry Visa Stamp to re-enter the U.S.?
If your entry visa stamp in your passport has expired (or will expire while you are out of the U.S.), you will need to apply for a new entry visa stamp at the U.S. embassy or consulate abroad. Processing times may be longer than your initial experience at the U.S. embassy. It will be most helpful to contact the embassy or consulate now to confirm what documents are needed, to confirm if an appointment is necessary, how to schedule the interview appointment, and how long it will take to obtain your new entry visa stamp. The U.S. Department of State maintains a listing of links to U.S. embassies/consulates worldwide.
Please note that the Department of Homeland Security and Department of State have advised that airlines may not allow passengers to board their plane back to the U.S. if they do not have a current and valid entry visa stamp along with the corresponding SEVIS visa document. It is therefore essential to make sure that you plan for enough time abroad to obtain your entry visa stamp prior to your return to the U.S. Visa holders are not able to obtain new entry visa stamps from within the U.S.; one must apply at a U.S. embassy or consulate while abroad.
You will need to bring the following documents, and likely additional materials depending on the U.S. embassy/consulate, for the visa interview:
* Passport and Form I-20/Form endorsed for travel within the last six months
* Transcripts from Hampshire College (Request one directly from central records, first floor of Cole Science. They need at least 10 business days notice to prepare.)
* Verification of enrollment letter from central records (Request one directly from central records, first floor of Cole Science. They need at least 10 business days notice to prepare.)
* Financial support documentation for the amounts listed on page one of your current I-20. If this amount has significantly changed, MISS will need to create a new I-20 Form for you.
What do you need to know about travelling to a country other than your home country?
If you will be traveling to a country outside the U.S., other than your home country, whether it be for study or for an airport layover, it will be important to confirm if you will need to obtain a visa to enter/stop over. To verify if a visa is required, and to obtain application information, you can contact the local embassy or consulate of that country located in the U.S. For a list of foreign consular offices located in the U.S., click here. Be sure to contact the consulate well in advance of your planned travel, as some consulates require mail-in procedures that can take some weeks to process.
If you would like to travel to Canada, Mexico, or adjacent islands, what do you need to know?
Make sure you plan ahead to give yourself enough time if you have to apply for a visa. For more information about visa eligibility and the application process, visit: http://www.hampshire.edu/culturalcenter/5204.htm.
Your Travel Checklist:
- Your valid passport with stapled I-94 card and visa stamp
- Your I-20 form with valid travel signature on page 3
We highly enourage you to travel with:
1) current verification of enrollment form from central records
2) financial support documents
Note: When the immigration officials check your documents and stamp forms at the U.S. port of entry, make sure they
- Return all forms to you
- Accurately stamp/write on your I-94 card: make sure they write F-1 and not another visa category.
In case of emergency while traveling:
Contact Melissa Scheid Frantz at 413.559.5415 or Rochelle "O.C." Gorman at 413.559.5779 during business office hours (9:00 a.m.-4:30 p.m.), or call the Hampshire dispatcher (any time of day) at 413.559.5424.