In order to travel abroad, you must hold a passport that will be valid for at least three to six months after the end of your proposed education abroad program. For information on how to apply for a passport, the requirements, the costs, and the estimated processing times, please visit the U.S. Department of State passport website.
Passport General Information
For students applying for a United States Passport, it generally takes four to six weeks after your paperwork is turned in to receive your passport. Applicants must provide proof of identity like a birth certificate, social security card and a current government issued-ID to supplement the application. Additionally, applicants need to obtain acceptable passport photos with their application. Most local Walgreen's, Wal-Mart and packing and shipping companies can facilitate acceptable passport photos. Currently, new and renewal passport applications are only accepted in-person.
Applicants need to turn in completed passport paperwork to a local Acceptance Facility. Acceptance facilities are usually post offices, clerk of court office and sometimes libraries. It is best to visit the local website for the facility to schedule an appointment or determine the hours in which passport applications are accepted.
The cost for a passport varies depending on the type of shipping and if it is expedited or not. Generally passport costs can vary from $135 to $200. Students are encouraged to budget for their passport early.
For the most up-to-date and accurate information, please visit the Department of State's passport website for their step-by-step tutorial. While this is not the actual application, it will provide you specific information pertaining to the exact documents, timing, cost and facilities available in your area.
Students are recommended to get all of their passport information in through Postal Annex. This is a great service to use for students, in an organized and timely manner. Postal Annex is located at 5262 N. Nevada Avenue STE 130, Colorado Springs, CO 80918. Their telephone number is (719)-593-1084, and Fax Number is (719)-593-1055. You can also email them at firstname.lastname@example.org.
A visa is a document (usually in form of a stamp in your passport) that gives you permission to travel into a specific country and stay there for a determined period of time. Processing procedures for visas vary greatly from country to country (and from applicant to applicant), so it is important to communicate with the country's nearest consulate or embassy here in the U.S. to verify the specific visa or permit you will need. Most U.S. citizens on short-term programs (1-4 weeks) do not need a visa or permit, with the exception of those traveling to some countries in Asia, Southeast Asia and South America. All students going on a semester or academic year experience will need a visa or permit. Those wishing to do international internships may need a work visa. Students should visit the provider website, country's immigration website and the UCCS program information page for complete and accurate information.
Please note that immigration and visa regulations can and will change over time, therefore it is always best to look at the country's immigration website for the most up-to-date information.
You must have a valid passport to apply for a visa. It can take from one day to three months to get a visa depending on the country, the purpose of travel, and your citizenship. If you are studying with a Program Provider (AIFS, ISA, Semester at Sea, etc.) the Program Provider may be able to help you with the process.
The Education Abroad Office does not process or issue visas. We are here to advise and assist you with the process, but obtaining a visa is ultimately your responsibility.
You should review the embassy or consulate webpage of countries you plan to visit for updated visa and travel requirements. Visas may be acquired directly from the counsulate or from a visa service. Pay attention to detail when submitting the paperwork to prevent delays. Below are a few resources to get you started on obtaining your visa:
- Department of State (Students Abroad)
- Department of State Country Specific Information
- Foreign countries and embassies in the United States.
- Visa Agency
- Students can get assistance in obtaining a passport or visa through a visa agency which can check documents and lessen the chance of getting your passport or visa application denied. UCCS students can get with CIBT Visas using the following account information.
- CIBT Visas Account 102493