Travel to Canada

Canada is a popular travel destination because of its close proximity to Michigan. If you choose to leave the US for a trip, be sure to follow all entry and re-entry requirements for travel. Contact the International Center with any questions you may have about traveling outside of the US prior to any planned trips. 

US citizen and permanent resident of the US: consult the Government of Canada visa requirements or the Destination Canada for information about entry requirements. 

If you are not a U.S. citizen or permanent resident, you may need a visa even for a one-day trip.

Before Travel

  • Mail your visa application to the Canadian consulate, make sure that you have a travel signature from the current semester on your I-20 or DS-2019 form. The Canadian Consulate will only accept visitor visa applications by mail.
  • Keep in mind that visa processing times vary.

Entry to Canada

Return to the United States

  • Carefully read the IC’s Travel Advisory page.
  • When traveling outside the United States, you and your dependents must have the following documents to re-enter the US:
    • Valid Passport
    • Valid visa
    • Valid I-20 or DS-2019 with valid travel signature
    • I-94 card or print out
    • EAD card and job offer letter (if on OPT)
    • If your U.S. visa has expired, you may reenter the U.S. from Canada if:
      1. You have not traveled to a country other than Canada;
      2. You did not stay in Canada longer than 30 days; and
      3. Your visa has not been canceled (not the same as expired) by a cancellation stamp or by automatic cancellation of any U.S. law (e.g. after the Gulf War, visas issued by certain countries were considered canceled);
      4. You were not denied a U.S. visa at the U.S. consulate in Canada during this trip; and
      5. You are not a citizen of Iraq, Iran, Syria, Libya, Sudan, North Korea or Cuba.
        For 4 & 5, please read the detailed information in the travel advisory.

Special Notes for F-1/J-1 students and J-1 scholars

  • We will not be able to endorse your I-20/DS-2019 (nor your dependents' I-20/DS-2019) if you have completed your program (e.g. degree, Academic Training, OPT, research) and would like to travel to Canada during your grace period.
  • An F-1 student in OPT following completion of studies who travels to Canada temporarily (less than 30 days) can be admitted to resume employment for the remainder of the authorized training period, provided the student presents the endorsed I-20 and an unexpired EAD.