As a J-1 visa scholar, you are to enter the U.S. and report arrival to ISSS:
- Up to 30 days before the Start Date on your DS-2019. You are not permitted to begin your J program scholar activities or be paid before the Start Date.
- Up to 25 days after the Start Date on your DS-2019.
Be sure to choose an arrival date that allows you time to complete all of the required steps after you arrive, including time to rest from jet lag, check in with ISSS and your hosting department, complete paperwork, find housing, and more.
If you cannot arrive during the above grace period, you must ask your hosting department to request an amended DS-2019 Start Date from ISSS.
ISSS will update SEVIS with the new dates and issue an updated DS-2019 for you. Your SEVIS ID and Program numbers will not change. If you’ve already had your visa interview with the U.S. consulate, you won’t need to return to the consulate to show them the new form (unless they specifically ask you to).
You should wait for the new original DS-2019 to be mailed to you by your hosting department. Keep the older version in your records. Upon entering the U.S., show the newest version of your DS-2019 to the border official.
All J-1 visa holders have a 30-day grace period after the End Date on the DS-2019. During the 30-day grace period, you are permitted to travel within the U.S. and prepare for departure. However, you cannot participate in or be paid for scholar program activities. Review our Departure page for more information.