Entering the United States
You should know what to expect at a U.S. port of entry.
Be prepared with the following documents:
- Passport with a valid non-immigrant visa (Canadians exempt)
- Original form I-20 or DS-2019 with valid travel signature
- Evidence of financial resources
- WSU current schedule and/or transcript
Don’t bring restricted items – see the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) website for rules regarding travel
with medications, food, or pets. You may also be fingerprinted and/or photographed.
Questioning & tips
- Officers may ask you questions about your reason for entering the United
States or about your academic program. If an officer asks about your
academic performance, remain calm, answer honestly and briefly.
- CBP may also ask questions about or inspect your electronic devices. This
may include your social media accounts.
- To protect yourself, put your phone on airplane mode.
More tips on how to prepare your devices
An officer may determine you (and/or your luggage) require additional
screening. This is not uncommon. You may be asked to go to an interview
area called Secondary Inspection where they will verify information and ask
you additional questions.
You can expect:
- Long wait time (multiple hours)
- Additional, more substantial and specific questions
Tip: Make notes of your experience, including officer name and badge number.