Outside the U.S. During Study
The following information
is intended for students in J-1 status under the sponsorship of
Boston University's Exchange Visitor Program. While the information
below may be helpful to individuals sponsored by other exchange
visitor programs (e.g., Fulbright, Humphrey, etc.) it is recommended
that you consult with your sponsor regarding travel and, in particular,
to Home Country
If you plan to travel to your country of citizenship or legal permanent
residence, you should only require a valid passport or other travel
document issued by that country to ensure entry.
For Entry to Another Country
Be sure to contact the embassy or
consulate in the U.S. of the country or countries you intend
to visit in order to verify their visa requirements. Visa requirements
of countries do change, so it is always safest to have the most
current information before you travel. You can be turned away at
the border or denied boarding at the airport/seaport if you do not
possess the appropriate visa to enter the country of destination.
For Return to the U.S.
Many students choose to travel outside the United States during
the course of their study, often returning to their home country
during summer or winter school breaks, or visiting other countries
for vacations. In addition, many Boston University students take
advantage of visiting Canada due to its close proximity to Boston.
Anyone may leave the U.S.
at any time. However, to return to the United States in valid J-1
status, you are required to hold the following documents:
- Valid passport at least 6 months into the future
- Valid J-1 visa stamp
- Your Form DS-2019 endorsed by the responsible officer (RO) or
alternate responsible officer (ARO) at the International Students
and Scholars Office (ISSO). This "travel signature"
indicates that you are in good standing at BU and are eligible
to return. Only an RO/ARO at the ISSO is authorized to sign your
Form DS-2019. An RO/ARO travel authorization signature is valid
for one year except for travel to Canada, Mexico and adjacent
islands, in which case the signature is valid for six months.
To request a travel authorization signature on your Form DS-2019,
please visit the ISSO with your passport and most recent Form DS-2019. Travel signature requests are
processed in one business day. However, in case of complications
with your documents or record, we recommend that you request your
travel signature at least one week in advance of the day you plan
If you plan to visit a
country other than your home country, please consult the embassy
or consulate of that country to find out if you will require a tourist
visa to enter. You may find information about foreign embassies
and consulates in the U.S. by visiting http://www.embassy.org/
If you have been on a
study abroad program or have interrupted your studies for any reason
(such as a certified Leave of Absence) you may need a new Form DS-2019
to return to the United States. Please
contact your International Student Advisor at the ISSO for more
If the J-1 stamp in your
passport is expired and you will be traveling outside the U.S.,
you will need to apply for a new visa stamp in order to reenter
the U.S., except when traveling to Canada, Mexico or adjacent islands.
Please see "Obtaining
a J-1 Visa and Entering the U.S."
Canada, Mexico or Adjacent Islands
Traveling to territories that are contiguous to the United States
or in the neighboring Caribbean should generally be treated like
travel to any other country. However, there are special exceptions
that allow for an easier return to the U.S. if you have an expired