Learn how to properly enter the United States, and how to plan your journey from the
airport to UC Riverside. Then, get the details about the mandatory International Student
Orientation you will attend once you arrive.
After, visit our Newly Admitted Students page for additional information and resources.
We look forward to seeing you at the International Student Orientation Program. Orientation is mandatory for all F and J students. We look forward to seeing you at our International Student Orientation Program.
Please read everything in this document so you can arrive better prepared for life at UCR.
Whether entering the United States from land or air, you should be prepared to show the following documents at the port of entry:
If you have an initial attendance I-20 or DS-2019, you must enter the United States within the 30-day period before the program start date on your form. You will not be allowed to enter the US if you arrive earlier.
If you hold a “transfer pending” I-20 document, you may return to the United States
at anytime after a short visit home as long as page 3 of the I-20 Form is endorsed
Do not enter the US using a B-1/B-2 (tourist) visa, or tourist visa waiver. Changing your status to F-1 or J-1 within the US is extremely difficult and rarely approved.
F-2 students are no longer able to pursue full-time degree programs in the United States. Do not enter in F-2 status if you plan to be a full-time, degree-seeking student.
If you are currently in the United States in F-2 status, you must file and be approved for a change of status to F-1 before the quarter begins. Contact the ISS office at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
After you have entered the United States, you will want to go online to verify the status of your I-94 and that you have been filed as entering on the correct visa type. You can access it at https://i94.cbp.dhs.gov/I94. You will be asked to bring a printout of this page to document check-in.
From Los Angeles International Airport (LAX)
Distance: 110 kilometers or 68 miles
From Ontario International Airport (ONT)
Distance: 34 kilometers or 21 miles