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Pre-departure Checklist

Now that you have obtained your visa to the US.  While you’re preparing for your upcoming trip to Lehigh, here’s a list of things to keep in mind before boarding the plane.

While at the Airport
How to Get to Lehigh

Housing at Lehigh

UNDERGRADUATE STUDENTS: First year international undergraduate students will be able to move into your residence hall beginning August 20.  Please contact Residential Services if you have questions regarding your housing assignment, ordering linens for your dorm, or moving into your dorm after hours (4pm).   

GRADUATE STUDENTS: International graduate students have the option of living on or off campus.  

On-campus housing: http://www4.lehigh.edu/housing/graduate

Off-campus housing: http://www4.lehigh.edu/housing/offcampus.  Graduate students who are planning renting off-campus apartments, please read Before You Sign so you’ll have a general idea of how the process of renting works in the US and what you need to know as a tenant.   

Immunization and Health Records

Every new student must submit the following forms to Lehigh Health Center by June 30:

UNDERGRADUATE STUDENTS: Read these instructions first!

Undergraduate Health Form

Immunization Record

Meningitis Form and Waiver

GRADUATE STUDENTS: Read these instructions first!

Graduate Health Form

Immunization Record

Meningitis Form and Waiver


While at the Airport

  1. Do NOT check the following documents in your baggage as you will need them at the port of entry.
    Form I-20 (F-1) or DS-2019 (J-1)
  2. You will no longer receive a paper Form I-94 (Arrival/Departure Record) upon entry into the US by air or sea.  At the port of entry, your passport will be stamped with date of admission, class of admission (F-1 or J-1), and “admitted until” date (D/S - duration of status, for F and J visa holders).  OISS urges every student and scholar to obtain a copy of their I-94 at www.cbp.gov/I94 during the first couple of days AFTER arriving in the US.    
  3. What’s Secondary Inspection?
    If the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officer at the port of entry cannot verify your information, or if you do not have all of the required documentation, a CBP officer may direct you to an interview area known as “secondary inspection.”  Read more here.  
  4. If you need to reach our office while at the airport, you can call us at 610-758-4859 (Monday-Friday 8am-5pm Eastern Standard Time) or 484-274-2717 (after 5pm or on the weekend).   

How to Get to Lehigh

Newark International Airport (New Jersey) to Bethlehem (Westbound)

We urge you to use Newark International Airport as your port of entry. Newark Airport is closer to Bethlehem than John F. Kennedy Airport in New York City. Upon arrival, Transbridge Bus service takes you to the South Bethlehem Bus Terminal at Adams and Mechanic Street, which is two blocks from Lehigh University. The departure times from Newark Airport vary from 9:00AM until 12:00 midnight on weekdays. Times also vary on Saturday and Sunday. It takes approximately 1 hour and 45 minutes from the airport to Bethlehem. A one-way adult ticket costs $24 from the ticket agent or $30.00 from the bus driver (only sold when ticket agent is closed). We suggest that you check for the exact times of departure at the Transbridge website at http://www.transbridgelines.com/daily.htm.

John F. Kennedy (JFK) Airport (New York City) to Bethlehem (Westbound)

If you plan to arrive at John F. Kennedy (JFK) Airport, you can take a direct Transbridge bus to Bethlehem, a three-hour trip.  There are only two buses departing from JFK every day.  Therefore, traveling from JFK is not as convenient as from Newark.  A one-way adult ticket costs $45.00 (cash only) from the bus driver (there’s no ticket agent at JFK). Be sure to get the bus to South Bethlehem Bus Terminal at Adams and Mechanic Street that lets you off just a few minutes from the Lehigh campus.  Please check website for the exact times of departure from the airport: http://www.transbridgelines.com/daily.htm.    

Philadelphia International Airport

If you plan to arrive at Philadelphia International, you can take a train from Terminal A to 30th Street Station ($6.25/ticket) and change to Bieber bus to Bethlehem ($13 one way).  Get off at Bethlehem Bus Terminal at 12 E. Mechanic Street (2 blocks from Lehigh campus).  


Office of International Students and Scholars • Lehigh University • 32 Sayre Drive, Coxe Hall, Bethlehem, PA 18015 • 610-758-4859 • Fax: 610-758-5156 • intnl@lehigh.edu
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