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Plan for Your Trip
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Start planning before the visa interview and finalize your travel details after the visa interview. After a successful interview, attend the Pre-Departure Orientation and clear all items listed in the Pre-Departure Checklist.
Key takeaway
Make plans for your flight itinerary before scheduling your visa interview and completing Form DS-160. Pay to confirm after passing the visa interview.

Step 1 Have a tentative flight schedule and housing plan that you propose to US consulate
Step 2 Pass the visa interview
Step 3 Finalize your flight itinerary and purchase flight tickets

Make your plans for accommodation, cellular service, and local bank account, and start packing at least a week prior to your departure.

Step 4 Clear the Pre-Departure Checklist and Packing Checklist
Step 5 Check out Plan for Housing, Renter’s Guide, and Rental Inspection Checklist
Step 6 Book a hotel as a base for the first few days
Step 7 Schedule appointments for in-person visits of the housing conditions
Step 8 Make plans for your mobile phone and bank account opening in the States

On the travel day, go to the airport at least 3 hours before your scheduled departure. Remember to hand carry your Form DS-2019 (original), passport and other travel documents.

Step 9 Check out “Travel Day” Walkthrough
Common questions
May I arrive after my visa start date and leave the US before my visa expires?
No, your visa period should match your program period. Generally, participants enter the States within 30 days prior to the program start date (preferably at least 24 hours before your first day to get over jet lag), report to their “host” on the program start date, complete their program through the program end date, and exit during the 30-day grace period.