Arrival Checklist

Arrival at U.S. port-of-entry

Initial Entry

If you are entering the U.S. for the first time on a new SEVIS record, you will need:

  • Passport
  • Visa (Canadians do not need a visa.)
  • Certificate of Eligibility (COE) - Form I-20 (for F-1) or Form DS-2019 (for J-1)
  • SEVIS Fee receipt

Re-entry for Change of Educational Level

If you were admitted to a new program of study and received a "Change of Educational Level" I-20 from UHM for the same SEVIS ID, and if you are entering for the first time on I-20, you need:

  • Passport
  • Visa (Canadians do not need a visa.)
  • COE

Re-entry for Transfer

If you transferred from another U.S. school and received a "Transfer-In" I-20 from UHM with the same SEVIS ID, and you are entering for the first time on that I-20, you need:

  • Passport
  • Visa (Canadians do not need a visa.)
  • COE

What do I do if I forgot a required document?

Customs and Border Protection (CBP) will probably escort you to a holding room, where you must wait until an officer is available to investigate your case. Generally, an officer will check your record and try to call the ISS office to verify your status. You may receive a form called an I-515A, which allows you temporary entry to the U.S. If that happens, you must report to the ISS office as soon as possible with your form I-515A.

Ground Transportation from the Airport
If you did not reserve an airport pick-up in advance, you can follow the signs to get a taxi via the Airport Taxi Stand. Other options other than taxi:  
Complete Visa Clearance and attend ISS Orientation
Please visit our Orientation and Visa Clearance page to complete your requirements for check-in. You may also sign up for the Welcome Orientation, which is optional.
Clear Registration Holds
If you did not clear all of your registration holds before your arrival, you should do so before the start of the semester. Login to your MyUH account, and then check on "View Holds." Some of the holds may not yet take effect. You should clear them before they do. Some holds might be from:
Take the tuberculosis (TB) test
If you still need to take the tuberculosis (TB) test for your health clearance, you can visit the University Health Services clinic on campus for walk-in or online scheduled appointments. TB tests normally require 3 days (Day 1 to administer, Day 3 to read results), so it is recommended that you schedule no later than the Tuesday before the start of school. For more information on the TB test, please contact University Health Services.  
Pay your tuition and fees
Check the payment deadlines to see when you have to pay. If you have not enrolled by the start of the semester, you will have to pay a late enrollment fee. We strongly recommend you sign up for eRefund. If you have already set up a bank account, eRefund allows you to receive any refunds directly to your bank account.
Open bank account
For those who may need to open a U.S. bank account, there are two banks on campus, the UH Federal Credit Union (located at Campus Center near the Campus Dining food court) and American Savings Bank (located at Hemenway Hall). Students are free to choose any bank, however, and there are several based off-campus. International students do not need a Social Security Number to open a bank account, but will usually need to show a passport. Each bank may have different policies regarding opening an account. Automated Teller Machines (ATM) for withdrawing cash are available at the Campus Center ground floor. Fees for withdrawal will vary.
Contact Academic Advisor

We strongly recommend you meet with your designated academic advisor to help you plan your class schedule. Most graduate students will have been assigned an advisor, and should try to meet with him/her. Undergraduate students may not have a specific advisor, but may seek out an advisor based on their major or school/college. A directory of advisors per department or school/college is available.

Specific advising centers include: