International Travel Instructions 

Before traveling internationally, all foreign nationals should verify their immigration documents will be valid at the time they plan to re-enter the U.S. Review the information for your visa status below for a list of specific documents required to re-enter the U.S.

Foreign nationals should also check the U.S. Department of State website for travel advisories and to confirm consular operations before traveling internationally.

Contact your OISS advisor if you have questions.

If your visa will expire before you return, you must make a visa appointment at a U.S. consulate or embassy abroad to apply for a new visa before you can re-enter the U.S.

  • It's not possible to apply for a visa stamp from within the U.S.
  • It is recommended to apply for a visa in your home country whenever possible.
  • Refer to the embassy’s website where you will be interview for specific instructions to renew your visa.
  • Refer to the U.S. Department of State website for visa appointment wait times and processing information.

Note: citizens of Canada do not need a visa stamp to enter the U.S.

F‐1 Students

  • Returning F-1 Students:
    • Passport, valid 6 months into the future at the time of entry
    • Valid F‐1 visa stamp (except citizens of Canada)
    • Most recent I‐20 with a valid travel signature on page 2. Travel signatures are valid for one year for continuing students and valid for 6 months for students on OPT.
    • Although not required, proof of financial support and enrollment is recommended (copy of your course schedule or enrollment verification from the Registrar's Office)
  • New F-1 students:
    • Passport, valid 6 months into the future at the time of entry
    • Valid F‐1 visa stamp (except citizens of Canada)
    • Valid form I-20
    • UNCW Admissions Letter
    • I-901 SEVIS Fee payment receipt
    • Proof of financial support used to apply for the I-20

  • F-1 Students on OPT: See the OPT webpage for details.

H‐1B Faculty & Staff

  • Passport, valid through the end of your H-1B visa authorization.
  • Valid H‐1B visa
  • Original I‐129 approval notice
  • Copy of entire H‐1B petition

J‐1 Exchange Student

  • Passport, valid 6 months into the future at the time of entry
  • Valid J‐1 visa
  • Original DS‐2019 with a travel signature signed within the past year

J‐1 Scholar

  • Passport, valid 6 months into the future at the time of entry
  • Valid J‐1 visa
  • Original DS‐2019 with a travel signature signed within the past 6 months