Before Leaving Home

Check out this page for useful information about addressing needs and learning about services that you should know about and address before leaving for the U.S.

On this page:

Applying for a Visa

You’ve made it through the first big step and have been accepted to UB! However, before you can enter the United States, you must apply for a U.S visa.

Housing

Whether you choose to live on-campus or off-campus, there's information to help you make the right choice.

Getting Connected at UB

Get started with everything technology-related at the University at Buffalo with this orientation video. You can also visit buffalo.edu/ubit/start for short videos on some of the topics covered in the video below.

Learning the Basics

Managing Money in the U.S.

How much money can I bring into the U.S.?

If you plan to bring money (e.g. cash, money order, certified check, travelers’ checks, letter of credit) into the U.S., please note the following from the Customs & Border Protection (CBP) website: “Travelers leaving or entering the U.S. are required to report monetary instruments (ie. currency or checks) valued at $10,000 or more on a "Report of International Transportation of Currency or Monetary Instruments" FinCEN 105 form. “Failure to declare currency in amounts over $10,000 can result in its seizure.” 

Please Note:

  • We do not recommend that you carry large sums of cash when you come to the U.S. Please bring a money card or travelers’ checks instead.
  • Do not assume that you can multiply $10,000 by the number of people in your group and bring in that amount of money. The border officer will try to determine to whom the money really belongs. If s/he determines that it belongs to one person, s/he will seize it if the amount exceeds $10,000.
  • Never make false statements to a border officer about money or anything else. The penalty for making false statements to border officers is very severe, including a fine and up to two years of imprisonment.
  • If you do not follow the above-mentioned advice and your money is seized, we advise you not to fill out any forms to request that the money be returned to you. To file a request that will be approved by Customs & Border Protection requires in-depth knowledge of the relevant regulations and the way that such requests are adjudicated. For these reasons, it is much better to hire an attorney to help you get your money back.

How much money will I need during my first year at UB?

You can find the Estimated Cost of Attendance for your degree program at the Financial Aid website.

Public Transportation in Buffalo

At UB, it’s easy to get around campus, between campuses, or anywhere you need to go. 

Health Insurance, Health Forms and Immunizations

As required by the State of New York, UB requires that all students submit completed Health Background & Immunization Forms, and satisfy immunization requirements before registering for classes.

Health Background and Immunization Form Requirement

You should send the forms as soon as possible via Air Mail or Express Courier (Attention: Susan Snyder) or Fax (716-829-2564) to UB Student Health Services. Note: Since Student Health Services does not send confirmation that they received the forms, you may wish to submit them via Fax or Express Courier since both services provide confirmation of delivery. Please DO NOT return them to the International Admissions office. Also, scanned copies and e-mail attachments are not permitted.  

Student Health Services' mailing address is:

University at Buffalo Student Health Services
Michael Hall
3435 Main Street
Buffalo, N.Y. 14214

If you are unable to complete all of your immunizations in your country, Student Health Services will assist you in obtaining the immunizations, but this will delay your class registration and you may not get the classes you want.

If you are an undergraduate student and submit the Health Background and Immunization Forms in time, your academic advisor may be able to register you in classes before you come to Buffalo.  (If that is the case, an academic advisor will contact you.)

Undergraduate Students: Send Your Forms As Soon As Possible

If you submit the forms in time, you may be able to register for your undergraduate classes before coming to Buffalo.

Health Insurance

All international students at UB are required to have health insurance and will be billed directly for it. You are urged not to purchase health insurance prior to coming to UB because your insurance may not be accepted by UB.

Please note that international students at UB should purchase health insurance for any dependents who come to live with them in Buffalo.

Pre-Departure FAQs

Account Holds

A hold on a UB student's account may prevent the student from registering for classes, receiving grades or transcripts, etc. Students receive a hold when action is required on their part.

Every new international student has an “IS” Hold on his/her account. This will remain in place until you have fully completed your New International Student Check-in. Once you have completed the check-in, your IS Hold will be removed.

Paying your UB bill

When is the deadline to pay my tuition and fees?

The University bills students each semester for all University-related charges (tuition, student fees, on-campus housing and meals, health insurance, etc.). Your bill will be sent to your University at Buffalo email address after you register for classes. Bills are not sent by postal mail. It is not possible to pay your bill until after you register for classes, and your bill is sent to you. 

If this is your first semester at UB, the deadline to pay your bill is in mid-October (for students starting in the Fall semester) or mid-March (for students starting in the Spring semester). If you miss the deadline, you must pay a $30-50 late fee. Note: Even if you signed up for on-campus housing, your bill payment deadline is still mid-October (Fall)/mid-March (Spring).  Do not worry about emails you are receiving telling you that you need to pay your bill earlier.  Those emails are automatically sent to all students who signed up for on-campus housing and do not apply to you.

How can I pay my tuition and fees?

For information on the various methods available to pay your University bill, including payment by credit card, personal check or E-check, click here. University at Buffalo has partnered with Flywire to streamline the tuition and fee payment process for our international students.

On-Campus Employment

F-1 international students are eligible to work on-campus without special authorization. J-1 international students are also eligible to work on-campus, but need a letter from International Student Services authorizing such employment.

Please note that international students are not eligible to apply for “Work Study” positions.  Work study is only available to domestic students who, as part of their financial aid package, are awarded funding from the U.S. federal government to work in paid campus positions while studying at the university.

Finding an on-campus job

Once you have activated your UBIT Account, you can start to search for on-campus jobs using UB Career Services' Bullseye powered by Handshake job search engine.  

We also encourage you to attend the “On-Campus Employment” session during International Student Orientation.