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Entering Canada and Re-entry to the United States

To enter Canada and re-enter the United States, you need the following documents:

  • Student visa
  • Valid passport
  • Form I-20 or DS-2019 endorsed for travel

Entry into Canada

American visitors crossing the U.S./Canada border in either direction may be required to verify their citizenship. You may be required to show a passport or a birth certificate. Naturalized U.S. citizens should carry a naturalization certificate. Permanent U.S. residents who are not U.S. citizens should bring their "green card". For citizens of certain countries, Canada requires you to obtain a visitor's visa from a Canadian Consulate before you enter Canada. For information about visiting Canada, see Do You Want to Visit Canada?

Re-entry into the United States

If you hold an F or J visa and visit Canada for less than 30 days, and you have maintained a lawful nonimmigrant status in the U.S., and you intend to resume that status upon their return, you must keep the Form I-94 (a small white card known as arrival/departure record) in your passport. It is required when re-entering the U.S.

F-1 Visa Holders

Upon return to the U.S., you must show the U.S. Immigration Inspector a valid Form I-94, a valid Form I-20 (either a new one or a properly endorsed I-20) and a current passport.

J-1 Visa Holders

Upon return to the U.S., you must show the U.S. Immigration Inspector a valid Form I-94, a current DS-2019 (either a new one or a properly endorsed DS-2019), and current passport.

To request endorsement of your I-20/ DS-2019, submit your copy to the International Student Advisor 48 hours prior to departure. Because the inspector may still ask to see evidence of financial support for the total stay in the U.S., it is strongly advised that F or J visa holders carry such evidence with them.