Recent policy changes from the US federal government have made travel more difficult for some members of our community. The federal government has also adopted more rigorous policies on questioning non-US citizens at the border. As a result, non-US citizens may face extra scrutiny at the border.

In response to these changes, the NYU Immigrant Defense Initiative (IDI) and the NYU Office of Global Services (OGS) collaborated with NYU Departments of Public Safety and Information Technology to create the NYU Travel Monitor Program, which provides security and support for members of the community passing through US ports of entry. 

What is Travel Monitor Program?

The Travel Monitor Program is a way for non-US citizens in the NYU community to register their international travels with NYU immigration experts. You provide information in an online form to make the OGS and IDI aware of your upcoming travel. If you then encounter difficulties when attempting to enter the US on your valid visa and travel documents, staff at IDI and OGS will be notified so that we can provide assistance. Please note, however, by registering your trip with the Travel Monitor Program, NYU is not endorsing your travel, nor can we guarantee your successful entry into the US.

Using the NYU Travel Monitor Program

If you have any concerns about being able to enter the US safely, sign-up to have your travel monitored by NYU. We won’t be able to guarantee your successful entry into the US, but by having your travel monitored by NYU, legal experts at IDI and OGS will be able to offer assistance if any issues arise.

Step 1: Register Your Upcoming Travel

Complete the Travel Monitor Program Registration Form with your upcoming international travel details.

Due to current Executive Orders, we recommend that citizens of the following countries register their upcoming international travel:

  • Iran
  • Libya
  • North Korea
  • Syria
  • Yemen
  • Somalia
  • Venezuela

If you have dual citizenship in one of the listed countries and plan to travel on your passport and documents from the non-designated country, you should be allowed to enter the US assuming you do not meet any other ground of exclusion from the US. If you are a citizen of one of the listed countries but are also a US legal permanent resident, you should be allowed to enter the US assuming you do not meet any other ground of exclusion from the US.

We also recommend that the following individuals register their upcoming international travel:

  • Anyone with a nonimmigrant visa (i.e. F-1, J-1) with a pending application for legal permanent residence (i.e., a green card)
  • Any non-US citizen who has had a criminal arrest, summons/desk appearance ticket (pink slips), conviction, or law enforcement contact (NYPD, FBI)
  • Anyone who has had an immigration arrest, been in immigration court, or has had contact with ICE
  • Anyone who has violated an F-1, J-1, or other visa/status (i.e., fell out of status, did not re-apply, took unauthorized leave of absence, performed unauthorized work, applied for public benefits, has a pending reinstatement request)

Step 2: Know Your Rights and Prepare for Your Trip

When you travel, it’s important for you to Know Your Rights. Before your trip, be sure to have paper versions of all of your required travel documents, a lawyer’s name and contact information, and the number for NYU Public Safety (on the back of your NYU ID card). Also be sure that a trusted friend or family member in the US knows your travel details. 

Be respectful and polite when interacting with US Customs and Border Protection. Officials may attempt to search your phone or laptop and ask questions about your social media accounts. For guidance on your electronic devices and traveling see this ACLU article on Border Agents and Your Electronic Devices

If detained or questioned by immigration officials, do not sign anything without the advice of a lawyer, especially form I-407 (for any US legal permanent resident in the US, this document is a “Record of Abandonment of Lawful Permanent Resident Status.” If you sign it, you would no longer be considered a US legal permanent resident nor would you be entitled to any of the benefits that go along with it).

Step 3: Respond to Notifications on Your Day of Travel

In participating in the Travel Monitor Program, you agree to confirm that you entered the country successfully. On your day of travel, you will receive text messages and/or emails asking you to confirm you have entered the US successfully. If we do not receive confirmation from you on your day of travel, within 3 hours of your anticipated flight arrival time to the US, the NYU Department of Public Safety will alert OGS and IDI staff. Your cooperation in confirming your trip is necessary to avoid an emergency response.

Additional Resources