Travel to the United States and Marian University

When to arrive

You may arrive up to, but no more than, 30 days before the start date on your I-20 (F-1 students) or DS-2019 (J-1 Exchange Visitors).

Keep in mind that it will take a few days to adjust to a new time zone and overcome any jet lag that you may experience.

Give yourself some extra time before new student orientation to get used to your new college home and take care of personal matters, like opening a bank account and settling into your new residence hall or apartment.

Please contact the Office of Housing and Residence Life to confirm arrangements if you would like to move into campus housing early early.

  • F-1 and J-1 students MUST arrive on campus before new student orientation, which is always a few days before classes start. 

Undergraduate orientation

If you are a new undergraduate student arriving for the Fall 2018 semester, you will take part in two days of orientation activities before classes begin. 

  • Because the International Student Orientation program is August 15, plan to arrive in Indianapolis no later than August 14.

You are also required to attend Student Orientation, Advising, and Registration (SOAR) on August 16. 

Graduate orientation

If you are a graduate student arriving for the Fall 2018 semester, your academic advisor will be in contact with you about student orientation requirements. 

Where To Arrive

Marian University is about 30 minutes from the Indianapolis International Airport (IND). Please choose IND as your final destination. A Marian representative  will be easily identifiable and will meet you at baggage claim. If you make arrangements to arrive at another airport, you will be responsible for arranging your transportation to Indianapolis.


Airport Pick-Ups from Indianapolis 

The Office of International Programs is offering free airport pick-ups from the Indianapolis airport for new students. Airport pick-ups MUST be requested via email to Rhonda J. Hinkle ( at least 2 weeks prior to arrival. 

Requests MUST be received at least 2 weeks before the arrival date. We cannot grant requests with less than two weeks notice. Please do not plan to arrive on a holiday.


More information about what you can bring, for example the amount of money and what kinds of food, can be found on the U.S. Customs and Border Protection website “Know Before You Go”


Presenting yourself to U.S. Customs and Border Patrol (CBP)

In preparation for your arrival, you should bring the following documents and have them on you when traveling. You will be required to show the following documents to the U.S. Customs and Border Patrol officers. DO NOT pack them in your luggage; carry them on you.

  • Form I-20 or Form DS-2019, "Certificate of Eligibility" issued by Marian University

  • A current passport, valid for at least six months

  • A valid F-1 visa (degree-seeking students) or J-1 visa (exchange visitors); please note that Canadian citizens are exempt from the visa requirement

  • SEVIS fee receipt (I-901 fee receipt)

  • Proof of financial support to pay living expenses and tuition, as per your I-20 or DS-2019

  • Contact information for the designated school official:

    • Rhonda J. Hinkle,, 1-317-955-6670

    • For emergencies outside regular business hours of 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday to Friday, contact the Marian University police at 1-317-955-6789.

It is important to be prepared; if you have incomplete or missing information, you may be referred to secondary inspection and may receive a Form I-515A "Notice to Student or Exchange Visitor" requiring you to submit additional information by mail to the U.S. government confirming your valid F-1 or J-1 status.

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