Customs and Immigration

When you arrive in the US, you will have to go through Customs and Immigration. They will ask you questions about your purpose for visiting the US. Your answer should be “Student”. Keep your answers simple and direct. If they want to know the name of the school, tell them the name of the school, without any extraneous information. If they want more information, they will ask additional questions. For more information see the US Customs Service web site, which includes the brochure Customs Guidelines for Visitors to the United States. Immigration laws can also be found at the US State Department web site.

You may also be asked whether you are bringing in any food. Do not bring any food with you. Food you received on the plane should be left on the plane. It is forbidden to bring perishable foodstuffs, such as fruit, vegetables, and meat, or plants into the US. Also forbidden are articles made from certain protected species of animals. For more information, see the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) web site.

If you bring in more than US$10,000 in US or foreign currency you must declare the amount to customs upon entering or leaving the country.

If you use medications that contain narcotics or which are administered by syringe, carry a signed prescription from your physician with the medicine. Also tell your physician that about your upcoming visit to the US, since he may have to prescribe alternate medications. (Some controlled substances are prohibited, even in medicine.) Penalties for smuggling narcotics are severe.