All students requesting travel signatures will be required to complete the Travel Signature Request Form. Please note that we will not be providing travel signatures during walk-ins. Please plan accordingly.
Preparing to Travel Internationally
When traveling outside the United States, F-1 and J-1 visa holders must have in their possession the following documentation to ensure their ability to re-enter the U.S. and resume their activities:
Passport valid at least six months beyond re-entry date
Valid U.S. visa in the appropriate classification, e.g., F-1, J-1, H-1B, etc.
Valid immigration document for the status being sought: I-20 or DS-2019 with travel signature from Rutgers Global - ISSS.
While not specifically required by regulations, the following additional documents are very strongly recommended when traveling abroad. These documents provide information about your legal status, academic and immigration history in the U.S. They need not be presented unless asked.
- Your complete unofficial transcript and Enrollment Verification to prove good academic standing
- Current proof of funding
- All previously-issued I-20 or DS-2019 forms
- If on OPT or Academic Training (AT), your OPT or AT authorization
- If needing to apply for a new F-1 or J-1 visa before returning to the U.S., a recently-updated I-20 or DS-2019 issued to you within the 6 months prior to your application for a new visa
- If your field of study or research is technology or science-related, we recommend you get a letter (on letterhead) from your supervisor, department chair, center director or graduate program director. The letter should explain as much about your program of study and research as possible in simple language.
Need Emergency Assistance?
If you need emergency help at an airport or other U.S. point of entry, call or email the Rutgers Global–International Student and Scholar Services during office hours (Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday from 8:30 a.m.–5:00 p.m.)
Rutgers–New Brunswick and RBHS (New Brunswick) Students: 848-932-7015; firstname.lastname@example.org
Rutgers–RBHS (Newark) Students: 973-972-6138; email@example.com
- Outside of regular working hours call the Rutgers Police at 732-932-7211 (New Brunswick) or 973-972-4491 (RBHS Newark).
- Keep these contact details on a printed piece of paper. You may not have access to your phone if you are sent to a secondary inspection area.
- We understand emergencies happen and situations may arise that require you to take an unplanned break from campus or from your academic work. If an emergency requires you to travel outside of the United States, contact an academic dean or your graduate program director and an international student adviser about the situation before leaving the United States. Visit our Leave of Absence or Withdrawal and Returning to Rutgers pages to find out how this may impact your legal status and how to prepare for your return.
Useful Travel Resources for International Students
- Study in the States, What to Expect when Entering the United States
- U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Know Before You Visit
- Immigration and Customs Enforcement - Travel Guidance
- U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Entering the U.S. - Documents required for Foreign Nationals (International Travelers)
- Department of Homeland Security (DHS) - I-94 Related Information
- NAFSA’s (Association of International Educators) 10 Points to Remember When Applying for a Student Visa