Global Education


Travel Documents


A valid passport is required to enter and leave most countries and must be obtained through the U.S. Department of State. Passports are required for every Ohio State education abroad program.

Due to potentially long delays, you must apply for or renew your passport as early as possible. All passports must be valid at least six months beyond the return date of your education abroad program.

If your passport will expire before then, you should renew it immediately.

Passport applications for U.S. citizens are available at many post offices, including the Campus Post Office on West 18th Avenue in the Journalism Building. Detailed passport information and application forms can also be found on the web at the U.S. Department of State.

Each passport application must be accompanied by the following materials:

Passport Photographs

Students can get their passport-sized photographs taken at the following locations, which are all close to campus.

2160 N. High Street
Columbus, Ohio 43201
Phone: 614-294-2105

1634 Neil Avenue
Columbus, Ohio 43201
Phone: 614-247-5910

FedEx Office Print and Ship Center
2016 N. High Street
Columbus, Ohio 43201
Phone: 614-294-7485


A visa allows you to enter another country for a specific purpose and set amount of time and are required for some Ohio State education abroad programs. To find out which countries require visas, visit the U.S. State Department's country specific information page. Check with your education abroad specialist to ask if your program's visa requirements will be completed individually or as a group. If you are applying as an individual, you can get a discount through Ohio State’s visa service provider, Travisa.

The campus branch of Huntington Bank (235 W. 11th Ave.) can notarize visa documents, if necessary.

Visa requirements are often different for non-U.S. citizens. Please read the FAQ: Education Abroad for International Students.

If you are an international student, be sure to let your education abroad specialist immediately and consult an immigration coordinator in the Office of International Affairs to have your immigration document(s) reviewed and signed before you leave the United States. Walk-in advising hours for immigration coordinators are held Monday through Thursday, 1–4 p.m., and by appointment on Fridays.

Visas are granted solely at the discretion of the issuing Embassy or Consulate of the host country. The Office of International Affairs/Ohio State and its visa provider, Travisa, have no control over visa denials, immigration and visa regulations and/or any changes in the Embassies/Consulates' policies.

Immigration and Customs

When you arrive in and depart from your host country, as well as when you return to the United States, you will be required to pass through immigration and customs. Passports and visas (if required) and possibly your luggage will be checked to ensure that you are following the import/export regulations. In some cases, the foreign immigration system may receive criminal data from the United States, and entry can be denied to those with prior criminal records (including misdemeanors).

Travel Arrangements

Some Ohio State education abroad programs require you to make your own travel arrangements, while others arrange a group flight so that participants may travel together. If you are responsible for making your own travel arrangements, the Office of International Affairs will give you specific instructions on when and where to arrive. If your program offers an optional group flight, you are strongly encouraged to take advantage of it. Group flights are required for most short-term programs, and their itineraries may not be altered.

Be sure to shop early for your airline tickets and monitor websites where cheaper airline tickets may be on sale. Take note of "student airfares," special fares available only to students currently registered at degree-granting universities. These airfares are generally cheaper and more flexible than published fares. In more cases, you are advised to book round-trip international airfare. Return dates can be changed later for a fee, if necessary. Student airfares can be found through student travel agencies like and ScholarTrip.

If you make your own flight arrangements, you are required to submit a copy of your flight itinerary to your education abroad profile prior to your departure.