J-1: Travel Procedures
When traveling outside the United States, J-1 scholars (and their J-2 dependents, if applicable) must have in their possession the proper documents to return to the US to resume their activities. These documents are:
Passport valid at least six months beyond the date of US reentry
Valid J visa stamp in passport
Form DS2019 authorized for reentry to the US by an ISS counselor in the travel validation section (lower right corner)
If one or more of the passport or visa is not valid, contact the ISS reception desk by phone (765-494-5770) to discuss how to resolve this issue. If your DS2019 lacks the signature authorizing reentry to the US, come to ISS during walkin times (scroll down to see walkin times) with the documents listed below to request a signature. Note that scholars may request a travel signature during either a student or a scholar walkin session time.
When visiting the ISS office, be sure to bring your passport, visa, I-94 card, and current Form DS2019 as these are the documents needed to reenter the US.
Furthermore, other documents could be carried to confirm the right to reenter the US. Such documents would be proof of financial support as listed on the DS2019 or a letter from the department confirming the appointment/invitation to Purdue.
If a J-1 scholar or J-2 dependent has a travel endorsement in the "Travel Validation by Responsible Officer" in the lower right corner of their DS2019, that endorsement is valid for a one year period from the date that it has been signed or until the expiration date of the DS2019, whichever comes first. The expiration date is given in item #3 of the DS2019. Following are exceptions to this one-year endorsement.
On the date that the J-1 ends their J program, the endorsement is no longer valid (for both the J-1 and all J-2's, if any). This date may be the end date on the DS2019 or sooner.
If the visa stamp in their passport has expired, the J-1 or J-2 will need to apply for a re-entry visa at a US Embassy or Consulate abroad. The link at the end of this sentence has online instructions written for students applying for a new visa, but the basic principles are the same: Renewing Your Student Visa
If the department terminates the J-1's program, the DS2019 is no longer valid (again for both the J-1 and J-2's, if any). It is imperative that J-1's in such a situation talk with an Immigration Counselor in ISS concerning their nonimmigrant status.
If a J-1 or J-2 is traveling to Canada or European countries and needs a visa stamp, that country might require a signature on the DS2019 within the current semester before granting a visa. Of course, if the J-1 is from that country, a visa stamp is not required. Please check with the consulate of the country to confirm what is required for a visa.
If a J-1 Visiting Scholar is outside of the US for more than 21 days, the reason for such a long departure must be evaluated to determine if the J program is maintained. A Visiting Scholar is a non-paid, courtesy position which does not receive a paycheck from payroll, though the department may paid a living stipend. If a Visiting Scholar is outside the US for non-personal reasons, such as awaiting visa approval or working on a collaborative project between Purdue and the scholar's home institution, ISS will need written confirmation for such situations to document the continuation of the J-1 program. Please speak with an ISS counselor during a walkin session or email firstname.lastname@example.org for advice on documenting the continuation of the J program overseas.
If one of these situations applies and a J-1 or J-2 plans to travel outside of the US, please consult with an ISS counselor before using the endorsed DS2019 to reenter the US.
APPLYING FOR A VISA. If a J-1 or J-2 needs to apply for a new J visa abroad, please visit the ISS office at least two weeks prior to the departure date and ask about required documentation for the trip. Besides the documents needed to reenter the US, the scholar would also need original proof of financial support as well as a letter from the department confirming the current appointment.
Please plan far in advance for travel. With well over 5000 international students and scholars at Purdue, end of semester periods can be busy at ISS with many travel and other types of requests.
Auto Revalidation of visa: A J-1 or J-2 may return from Canada, Mexico, or the Caribbean (except Cuba) with an expired visa. The travel may be for business or pleasure and for a maximum stay of 30 days. Stop in ISS to obtain a travel signature and (when traveling) carry a print of the USCBP 2012 CLP Bulletin regarding this regulation. Please read this bulletin carefully as it mentions additional restrictions from using this regulation that may apply to your situation.
Please note that you may need a visa to enter the country to which you are traveling. Be sure to check with that country's consulate concerning visa requirements.
Note regarding the I-94: it is recommended to carry a print of your electronic I-94 when using the auto-revalidation option (and keep a copy as a record). Access your I-94 on USCBP's I-94 site. Those with a paper I-94 should retain it for your reentry to the US.
Visa Appointments in Canada and Mexico
If traveling from the United States to apply for a non-immigrant visa at the US Embassy or a US Consulate in Canada, or at a US Consulate in Mexico located along the US/Mexico border, the J-1 or J-2 who is not a citizen of those countries must have an appointment for an interview. Schedule an appointment either via Internet or phone:
Canada appointment system:
- Internet based appointment system
- Phone based appointment system:
- from Canada, call one of the following local numbers:
- Calgary - 403.800.1194
- Halifax - 902.982.2191
- Montreal - 514.400.2591
- Ottawa - 613.800.0917
- Toronto - 647.955.3736
- Vancouver - 604.800.2794
- Quebec City - 418.800.1751
- If the applicant is calling from within Canada, but outside the above local areas, dial the toll-free number 877.341.2441.
- from the US, the number is 703.439.2319
Only applicants with appointments will be interviewed.
Mexican appointment system:
- Internet based appointment system
- Make the appointment from the US by phone with the US Embassy Mexico Customer Service Center (Monday through Friday from 7am to 9pm Central Time, and Saturday and Sunday from 9am - 3pm Central Time):
- 1-900-476-1212 with a cost of US $1.25 per minute.
- 1-800-919-1754 with a cost of US $7.00 per call payable by Visa or MasterCard.
- 011-52-477-788-7070 with a cost of 50 Mexican Pesos plus tax per call payable by Visa or MasterCard. Long distance charges are additional.
- Make the appointment from Mexico by phone with the US Embassy Mexico Customer Service Center (Monday through Friday from 7am to 9pm Central Time, and Saturday and Sunday from 9am - 3pm Central Time):
- 01-900-849-49-49 with a cost of 12 Mexican Pesos per minute.
- 01-800-112-85-00 by purchasing a PIN at any BANAMEX branch for the equivalent IN PESOS of US $10.00.
- (01-477) 788-7070 with a cost of 50 Mexican Pesos plus tax per call payable by Visa or MasterCard. Long distance charges are additional.
Canadian Landed Immigrant or Mexican Citizens:
Canadian Landed Immigrants in the US who wish apply for a visa in Canada, or Mexican citizens in the US who wish to apply for a visa in Mexico, do not need to make a visa appointment.