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Outside the U.S.

When you travel outside the U.S., you will need to have a recent travel signature on Page 2 of your I-20. These signatures should be valid for one year. Please bring your I-20 to be signed about 2 weeks before you plan to depart the U.S.

Please be sure that you have a valid visa to return. You will again have to show your visa, I-20, and passport at the Port of Entry. If your visa has expired or will expire while you are outside the U.S., please let your International Student Advisor know before you leave so we can ensure you have the proper documents for visa renewal.

Within the U.S.

When traveling within the U.S., you must also carry your current I-20, passport, and visa with you. You may take copies of these with you and keep your originals stored in a secure location while sightseeing. Any law enforcement official can legally ask for proof of your legal status in the U.S.

During OPT (Optional Practical Training)

Travel outside the U.S. during OPT is allowed if you are able to provide proof of employment, EAD (OPT) card, OPT I-20, passport, and valid visa at the Port of Entry. We do not advise traveling out of the U.S. if your visa has expired – it is unlikely it will be renewed to return for OPT.

Further information on travel and OPT will be provided at our OPT Workshops.


Office of International Student and Scholar Services

521 Lancaster Avenue
Powell 013
Richmond, KY 40475
Phone: 859-622-3446

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