Get a New Travel Signature
Getting a travel signature from an OGS advisor is easy. If the signature on your I-20 or DS-2019 will be more than a year old by the time you reenter the US, you need to get a new signature before you travel. For students on post-completion Optional Practical Training, the travel signature is only valid for six months. And remember, the US government determines your eligibility to enter the US. Be prepared and have the needed travel documents with you.
Outside New York City or the US
Did you depart from the US without getting your I-20 or DS-2019 signed? Are you outside of New York City and need a travel signature? Did you lose or forget to bring your I-20 or DS-2019 with you?
Depending on your return date to the US, there are different steps for securing a travel signature.
Returning within one week
Check your I-20 or DS-2019 if you have it with you.
The travel signature is on page 2 of your I-20, or on the right lower side of your DS-2019 is valid for 12 months. You may still have a valid signature. If you do not, continue to step 2.
Request a Form I-515A at the US immigration crossing.
If you must reenter the US in less than a week, respectfully request that the officer at the US immigration crossing allow you to enter with Form I-515A. This gives you a thirty-day admission as an F-1 or J-1 student, and requires you to report to the OGS within that time frame to secure the required travel signature.
To qualify for the Form I-515A, you must have a valid passport, valid F-1 or J-1 visa, and your I-20 or DS-2019 (the officer may allow you to enter without your I-20 or DS-2019 at his/her discretion).
Returning more than a week into the future
Check your I-20 (for F-1 students) or DS-2019 (for J-1 students) if you have it with you.
The travel signature is on page 2 of your most recent I-20 and the bottom right of page 1 of your DS-2019. You may still have a valid signature. If you do not, continue to step 2.
Get scans of your documents if you are on post-completion or STEM OPT (F-1 students only).
If you are an F-1 student on post-completion OPT or STEM OPT, , you will need a scan of your EAD card.
Complete and submit your OGS Document Release Request Form.
The OGS will then generate a new I-20 or DS-2019. We take up to 5 business days to complete your request.