Pre-Departure Resources > Passport & Visa Info
You must have a valid passport for all travel outside of the U.S. If you do not already have a passport, apply for one immediately at your local Post Office. New passport processing can take several weeks, so don't procrastinate! If your passport will expire while you are abroad, renew your passport right away. Your passport must be valid for the duration of your time abroad and up to 6 months after your program ends.
Guard your passport carefully! If it becomes lost or stolen, having a copy can help expedite its replacement. It's a good idea to:
- Upload a copy to the International SOS website.
- Leave a photocopy with your family.
- Keep one copy with you (during your travels) in a separate place from your original passport.
Complete and up-to-date information on U.S. passports may be found here.
You may be required to obtain a student visa, depending on the country where you are studying and the length of time you will be there. Check with your study abroad program to determine if you need a student visa and, if so, the timeline for completing this process.
Obtaining a student visa is your responsibility. The DU Office of International Education (OIE) has no authority to intercede on your behalf. When you apply for a visa, you are asking permission from the government of your host country to allow you to live and study within its borders for a specified period of time. The two parties involved are YOU and the host GOVERNMENT—not the OIE!
Please make sure you understand the visa application process for your study abroad location as each country's visa requirements differ greatly. You should contact the appropriate country's embassy/consulate to confirm the requirements before submitting an application as these rules can change at any time. It is important that you read and follow all directions of the visa application process. You can't be too careful! Consulates are generally not lenient with their rules and your visa will not be processed if you have not followed their instructions completely.
Although the process may be frustrating, be patient and take the time to be sure you are following all instructions. Typically, consulates do not make any exceptions. If you forget to submit even one item of your application, it will likely be denied. We encourage you to be polite, yet persistent during your interactions with consular officials. Politeness and a little persistence can go a long way!
If you qualify to be a Cherrington Global Scholar, the University of Denver will reimburse you for the expense of the visa application fee; however, any other fees associated with obtaining a visa (immunizations or other medical costs, travel to a consular office, postage, etc.) are your responsibility.
Here's a summary of things to keep in mind when it comes to student visas:
- Visa requirements vary from country to country and from consulate to consulate
- Visa requirements vary depending on the length of your stay
- You are the only person who can apply
- Governments, not schools, determine visa regulations
- There is a window of opportunity to apply for a student visa; know your dates & deadlines!
- Don't compare notes with other students going abroad; their situation might be different from yours
- You need a valid passport to apply for a student visa (must be valid for at least six months after the end of your program)
- Be patient and respectful in your interactions with consular officials; they are under no obligation to issue the visa to you.