International Student Services

April 29, 2020

Graduating in Spring – Travel Rules

The expiration date on your I-20 is just an estimate. If you will graduate earlier than the expiration date, your F-1 status in the U.S. ends earlier as well.

Travel rules change when you graduate. The travel rules after graduation will depend on whether you apply for Optional Practical Training (OPT).

We encourage you to review the Coronavirus information for F1 & J1 students for updates about travel, OPT, and graduating students. As the situation around the world evolves, your travel and return to/from the U.S. may be impacted. Review our FAQ page for the latest updates and information.

Students who do not apply for OPT:

If you graduate spring quarter, your cannot use your I-20 to reenter the U.S. after June 12, 2020. This includes returning from trips to Canada and Mexico, and cruises.

Starting June 13, 2020, you have a 60-day grace period to remain in the U.S. The grace period is meant for travel within the U.S. and preparation to depart the U.S.

Students who apply for OPT:

The travel rules after graduation in this situation depend on several factors: the status of your OPT application and whether you have a job/training offer. After your final quarter, we recommend you remain in the U.S. until your OPT is approved and you have a job/training offer. Travel with a pending OPT application or job offer is risky. For more information, please see the Travel and OPT guidelines.