Arriving to the Airport & Getting to GT

After receiving your F-1 or J-1 visa, you are eligible to enter the United States 30 days before the program start date on your I-20 or DS-2019. If you are unable to enter the U.S. by your Program Start Date, please complete the iStart Arrival Confirmation e-form to notify OIE of the delay.

Arriving at the U.S. Border: Customs and Border Protection
Information about what to expect when entering the U.S. as an international student or scholar can be found on Immigraton and Customs Enforcement's website and in the Customs and Border Protection video entitled You've Arrived. At the U.S. port of entry, you will be required to show the following documents: 

  • Valid I-20 (F-1 visa holders) or DS-2019 form (J-1 visa holders)
  • Valid Passport issued by your country of citizenship with at least 6 months of validity remaining
  • Valid F-1 or J-1 Visa Stamp (issued by the U.S. Embassy/Consulate)
    • Citizens of Canada and Bermuda are not required to obtain F or J visas. You will use your immigration documents issued by OIE to enter, but do not require a visa.
  • Copy of I-901 SEVIS Fee Receipt

You may also need to present the following documents:

  • Georgia Tech Admission Letter
  • Documentation of financial support

An electronic I-94 Arrival Record will be created upon entry into the U.S. You can access this record at the CBP I-94 site. Sometimes it can take up to 2-3 days for your information to appear. It is important that your information is correct in the I-94 record, so you should check for accuracy and contact CBP if there are any errors. The record should show that you entered the U.S. in either F-1 or J-1 status for "Duration of Status" or "D/S". You will need a copy of the I-94 record to complete OIE Check-In. 

Getting to Georgia Tech
Georgia Tech is located in Midtown Atlanta, just off of the I-75/I-85 connector highway, about 12 miles north of the airport. You can travel to campus from the Atlanta airport by taxi, rideshare or MARTA (Atlanta’s mass transit system).

Taxi: There is a taxi stand outside of the baggage claim at the airport. Most taxi companies have a flat, standard rate from the airport to Midtown of $32. You may pay a little less or a little more, but please be aware about the taxi that you choose: ensure that it’s a legitimate taxi company and agree upon how the price will be determined (flat rate or meter) before putting your luggage inside. If you need help, do not hesitate to ask an airport employee; we’re known to be polite here in Georgia!

Rideshare: Currently there are only two rideshare companies authorized to pick-up from Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport. The two companies are Uber and Lyft. To utilize these providers you must have their apps on your phone.  For more information on using rideshares at the airport, visit the Atlanta airport's rideshare siteSafety tip: Do not enter a car unless the car, license plate and driver match the details given in the app. Ask the driver to say your name to confirm the pick-up.

MARTA: Georgia Tech’s campus is accessible by Atlanta’s public transportation system, MARTA, which offers rail and bus service throughout metropolitan Atlanta. At the Airport, follow the signs from baggage claim to get to the MARTA station. At the station, you will have to purchase a Breeze Card. This is a re-loadable card that you can continue to use to ride the MARTA train and bus system during your time in Atlanta. A one-way fare will cost you $2.50. Take the MARTA train heading north. The two closest stops to Georgia Tech are North Avenue and Midtown. You can take the GT Stinger bus from Midtown station to campus. Look for the Gold Route at the GT Stinger bus schedule.  

Arriving on Campus
ISSS recommends that you arrive on campus prior to the first week of classes. In order to choose an arrival date that works well, undergraduates should plan to attend FASET orientation and graduate students should plan to attend graduate orientation.  Please note that Georgia Tech Housing has move-in dates set in their website, they also have early move-in options.

For information about temporary housing after your arrival, please see our website.

Please use caution when arriving to campus or your housing at night. OIE suggests walking together with other students or using public transportation until you become familiar enough with your surroundings to ensure safe practices. Georgia Tech offers the Stingerette Safety Shuttle service to provide safe and efficient evening transportation on Georgia Tech's campus and the neighborhoods in-between.