Travel in H-1B Status

You are permitted to travel outside of the United States during your period of H-1B authorization. However, please be aware that any time you travel outside of the US, you do so at your own risk. Re-entry into the US is never guaranteed for nonimmigrant status holders.

Generally, you need a valid, unexpired H-1B visa in your valid, unexpired passport in order to request re-entry into the US. If your H-1B visa has expired, or you do not have an H-1B visa in your passport for your current period of H-1B authorization, you must apply for an H-1B visa at a US embassy/consulate abroad before you can re-enter the US in H-1B status. You cannot apply for renewal of an H-1B visa stamp while in the US.

Refer to the website of the specific US embassy/consulate where you plan to apply for more information on what you will need in order to apply for an H-1B visa. Each consulate is different and may have different requirements. In general, you should plan to bring your original H-1B approval notice, a copy of your H-1B petition, a current letter from your MUSC department (on department letterhead) stating that you are still in valid employment status, and copies of your 2 most recent paystubs.

You must notify the Center for Global Health in advance prior to traveling outside of the US during your H-1B authorization period. If your return is delayed or you experience issues with obtaining a visa while abroad, please notify CGH so that we are aware of your situation.

Each time that you re-enter the US, you must retrieve your new I-94 admission record from the US Customs and Border Protection website. You will save a copy of the I-94 admission record for your own personal records. You must also provide your new I-94 admission record (and a copy of your new H-1B passport visa, if applicable) to CGH by email. CGH will then review your documents to ensure that everything is correct and that you are in valid H-1B status.

For more information on traveling in H-1B status, refer to the following document: H-1B Travel (PDF).