Arriving in the U.S.

Here are some highlights of what to expect in the airport upon arrival:

  • You should expect to go through both immigration and customs inspections at the U.S. port of entry.
  • Due to heightened security concerns since the attacks of September 11, 2001, your carry-on and checked luggage may be thoroughly searched by airport personnel. You may also be required to go through a pre-inspection procedure at certain airports abroad.
  • You should expect immigration and customs procedures at the various U.S. ports of entry to take awhile to complete.

Be prepared to show the port-of-entry inspector the following documents:

  • Passport (with F-1 visa)
  • Original International Gateways I-20 (NOT a photocopy)
  • Be ready to state the reason you wish to enter the United States; tell the CBP Inspector that you will be a student at International Gateways at SJSU.
  • Answer all questions politely and briefly. Do not offer any information that goes beyond the scope of the question asked you.
  • The port-of-entry inspector will stamp your passport and return it to you. F-1 students - please check to make sure that they have written F-1 and D/S with the stamp.

Please note: F-1 visa students are permitted to enter the US 30 days prior to the program start date listed on their I-20. Students who attempt to enter earlier may be refused entry.