Preparing for Travel

As you solidify your travel plans, review the information here to make sure you have not overlooked anything important. These resources will help you pack smartly, remember what you need to have with you at the U.S. port of entry, and navigate your way to campus.

When to Arrive

Immigration regulations allow you to enter the United States no more than 30 days prior to the start date on your F-1 or J-1 immigration document, the I-20 or DS-2019. Students and scholars who plan to live off-campus should arrive a couple of weeks before the term begins in order to allow enough time to locate suitable and affordable accommodations. Students should plan to arrive in Boston in time to settle in and attend orientation sessions held before the beginning of classes.

Booking Your Flight

The majority of students travel to Boston via Logan International Airport. Some international flights arrive at Logan directly, while others—such as flights originating in Asia—stop at a city on the American west coast before continuing on to Boston.

The most common types of transportation from the airport are taxis and the public transportation system called the "T." Taxis can be found at the ground transportation area outside each terminal. Fare to downtown Boston will cost about $35 USD. Shuttle bus #33 picks up passengers in front of the airline terminals and brings them to the Airport subway stop. Take the Blue Line subway inbound to Government Center. Suffolk's campus is located several blocks from the Government Center "T" stop.

Return ticket note: Consult the University calendar for holidays and semester dates.

Departure Checklist

Make certain you have these important documents in your carry-on luggage:

  • Valid passport
  • Valid U.S. visa stamp (Canadian citizens exempt)
  • Your Immigration Document (I-20 or DS-2019)
  • Proof of financial support
  • Travel insurance to cover health expenses incurred in the U.S. in case of emergencies for any time you will not be insured
  • Sufficient funds in U.S. dollars to cover expenses for the first few weeks
  • Medical records including record of immunizations (in English); evidence of adequate insurance coverage
  • Marriage license and English translation if your spouse will accompany you
  • Valid foreign driver’s license and International Driver’s Permit and/or certified English translation—you won’t be able to drive in the U.S. without both documents
  • Temporary housing arrangements, including a place to stay the night of your arrival—do not sign a lease for any property before you see it
  • Transportation arrangements from the airport to Suffolk