Relief for Japan and Other Nationals from the Pacific Stranded due to the Earthquakes and Tsunami

This advisory is for Japanese and other foreign nationals from the Pacific stranded in the United States due to the earthquakes and tsunami devastation in the Pacific. If you have exceeded or are about to exceed your authorized stay in the U.S. you may be permitted up to an additional 30 days to depart.

Visitors traveling under the Visa Waiver Program (VWP):

If you are at an airport, contact the U.S. Customs and Border Protection office at the airport. All others, please visit the local U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services office.

Visitors traveling under a nonimmigrant visa:

Visit the local U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services office. Bring your passport, evidence that you are stranded (such as an itinerary for the cancelled flight), and your I-94 departure record. For additional immigration relief options, please visit the Special Situation page.

Driving a car in California?

If you are not a resident of California and are over 18 years old, and have a valid driver's license from your home country, you may drive here without getting a California driver's license (DL) as long as your home country license remains valid.
However, if you are planning to buy a car, most insurance companies will not provide coverage unless you have a valid California driver's license. Also, since a driver's license is commonly used as a form of identification in the U.S. and would be useful if you drive temporarily in another state, it is recommended that you obtain a California DL.
Students who do not intend to drive or purchase a car may obtain a California Identification Card (ID) instead, which is also accepted as a form of identification. The eligibility requirements and some of the steps are the same for DL and ID applications.
For Eligibility Requirements to Obtain a California Driver's License or ID/For Procedure to Obtain a California Driver's License if You Are Over 18.
Please visit the DMV Web site for specific instructions.
Outside Enrollment for F-1 Student?

Are you planning to take courses at another college or university temporarily? The Outside Enrollment for F-1 Students Form provides the outside institution with validation of your SEVIS status. A new form must be completed for each Cuesta College term.

Current Travel Alerts from the U.S. Department of State

Travel Alerts are issued to disseminate information about short-term conditions, generally within a particular country, that pose imminent risks to the security of U.S. citizens. Natural disasters, terrorist attacks, coups, anniversaries of terrorist events, election-related demonstrations or violence, and high-profile events such as international conferences or regional sports events are examples of conditions that might generate a Travel Alert. Visit The U.S. Department of State for more information.

U.S. Income Tax Regulations and Income Tax form tips for International Students

For an introduction to U.S. income tax regulations and income tax tips for International Students for use in completing Income tax forms visit the International Student Income Tax Tips page.

Holiday Travel?

The International/F-1/Non-Immigrant Student Counselor, Irene Nunez, must validate your enrollment on page 4 of your current I-20 form if you want to return from traveling outside the USA. Traveling outside the USA includes crossing the borders of Canada and Mexico. The INS will minimally require a day trip down town to the Federal Building and a $100 fine if you try to return without a travel validation on your I-20 form. Remember that if your U.S. visa has expired, you travel at your own risk of not returning. Bring your current I-20 form to the International/F-1/Non-Immigrant Student Counselor three (3) weeks in advance of your trip so it can be signed.