Entering the U.S. in J-1 or F-1 Status
All F-1 and J-1 students (except Canadians) must have a valid appropriate F-1 or J-1 visa stamp in their passports before entering the U.S. When traveling to the U.S., you should present the following documents to the admitting U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officer:
- Your UVA Form I-20 or DS-2019
- Your passport valid for at least six months beyond the date of admission
- Your valid visa in your passport
The Immigration Officer will stamp your I-20 or DS-2019 and provide you with a Form I-94, Arrival/Departure Record (a small white card that should be placed in your passport.) Ensure that the I-94 card remains in your passport throughout your time in the U.S. The I-94 card should be marked "F-1" and "D/S" or "J-1" and "D/S." "D/S" stands for "duration of status." Visit www.virginia.edu/iso/issp for more information.
Using a valid F-1 or J-1 visa stamp and Form I-20 or DS-2019, you may enter the U.S. up to 30 days before the start date indicated on your I-20 or DS-2019 (see section 5 of your I-20 or box 3 of your DS-2019). You may not enter the U.S. in F-1 or J-1 status more than 30 days before your program start date. (Canadians and Bermudians traveling without a visa stamp will be required to show the SEVIS fee payment receipt in addition to their I-20 or DS-2019).
Do NOT enter the U.S. on B-1, B-2 or Visa Waiver, as you will not be permitted to enroll under these statuses.
More information on getting to Charlottesville and coming to UVA is available on the Welcome New Students page.