This page contains information for new international students who have been admitted to Western Oregon University. On this page you can find instructions on buying your plane ticket to Oregon, arrival dates, airport pick-up service, and notifying our office of your travel arrangements.
Once you have received a decision from the U.S. Embassy
Please review this section after applying for a United States Visa at the U.S. Embassy or Consulate.
All students must inform the International Students and Scholars Affairs office at Western Oregon University of the status of their U.S. Visa application, travel information, airport pick-up request, housing information, and understanding of the rules and visa requirements by completing the following online form:
Or you can notify us by emailing the following information:
- Your full name and WOU identification number
- Your contact information upon arrival in the U.S. (phone and email)
- The status of U.S. Visa (approved, denied, or pending)
- Your plan on attending WOU, deferring, or cancelling your admission
- Your flight schedule to Portland International Airport (PDX) in Portland, Oregon (airline, flight number, date, and time of arrival)
- Tell us if you would like to request an airport pick-up from Portland or Salem or not
- Tell us if you have made housing arrangements in the United States of if you may need a temporary place to stay while looking for an apartment or before moving into the residence halls
- Book your flight to the United States
- Confirm your travel arrangements with the International Students and Scholars Affairs Office
- Pack your bag and travel documents. Print the Emergency Contact information to staff of the ISSA office.
Arrival Dates for Initial International Students and Scholars to the U.S.
This section discusses airport pick-up dates, travel information, orientation dates, and academic term start and end dates. New international students and scholars should use this calendar when booking their flights to and from the United States.
Airport Pick-up Dates and Flight Scheduling Calendar 2012-2015
(dates listed in Month/Day/Year order)
Earliest day new students and scholars may arrive in the U.S.
-Initial students/scholars may enter the U.S. no more than 30 days before the Program Start Date on the initial I-20 or DS-2019
Airport pick-up dates from Portland International Airport (PDX)
-The airport pick-up service is only offered during these dates
-Fees apply for the airport pick-up service
New International Student Orientation Begins
-All new international students must report to WOU by this day
-Students may move into the on-campus residence halls
-Students must register for full-time courses and required courses listed on the student's admission letter
Final Exams End
-The Final Exam Schedule changes depending on the courses registered for.
Earliest Arrival Airport Pick-up Dates Orientation Begins (required attendance) Classes Begin Final Exams End
Session end date varies depending on course length. See Class Schedule for details.
08/19/2013 09/11/2013-09/17/2013 09/18/2013 09/30/2013 12/13/2013
12/03/2013 12/26/2013-12/30/2013 01/02/2014 01/06/2014 03/21/2014
02/24/2014 03/19/2014-03/25/2014 03/26/2014 03/31/2014 06/13/2014
05/19/2014 06/11/2014-06/17/2014 06/18/2014 06/23/2014 Session end date varies depending on course length. See Class Schedule
- Dates are listed in Month/Day/Year format.
- International students on an initial F or J visa may not enter the US more than 30 days before the "Program Start Date" listed on their I-20 or DS-2019.
- All new international students are required to attend the New International Student Orientation.
- Airport pick-ups for winter term are not available on December 24th, 25th or January 1st due to the holiday.
- All dates are subject to change without notice. Please see the orientation dates in your admission packet for the most current information or contact us with questions or confirmation before you purchase any tickets.
Deciding a Flight to the United States:
When deciding a flight, please look at the flight calendar, your admission packet materials, and the program start date on your I-20 or DS-2019.
Important things to remember when booking your flight to the U.S.:
- Do not book your flight until your U.S. Visa is confirmed.
- Book your flight to Portland International Airport in Portland Oregon. The airport code is PDX.
- Inform the ISSA office of your arrival using the New International Student Arrival Information Form.
- Arrive prior to the New International Student Orientation date to secure housing.
- Attendance at the New International Student Orientation is required for new/transfer international students. If you cannot attend, you must notify the ISSA office in writing with your reason (see next point).
- If you cannot get a flight before the Program Start Date on your I-20 or DS-2019, you will need special permission from the international student advisor to enter the country late. Contact the ISSA office and explain your reason for arriving late and when you would be able to get a flight to the US. If you cannot attend WOU by the first week of courses, you will be required to defer your attendance to a future term. Do not enter the country late without permission or your immigration status will be in jeopardy.
Important things to remember when booking your return flight out of the U.S.:
- When booking your flight to exit the U.S., do not to make plans for vacations/return flights until you have confirmed the days of your final exams with your academic professors.
- F Visa students have 60 days following their Program End Date (on their I-20) or date of graduation (whichever comes first) to prepare to depart the U.S., apply for Optional Practical Training, or change their visa status.
- J Visa students and scholars only have 30 days following their Program End Date (on their DS-2019) or end of program date (whichever comes first) to prepare to depart the U.S.
- Following the Program End Date, students/scholars will not be able to reenter the U.S. on an expired I-20 or DS-2019 or US Visa. Please contact an International Student Advisor with any questions.
Traveling to Portland International Airport (PDX)
Once you have arrived in the Portland International Airport (PDX):
- Go through the U.S. Immigration and Custom Entry at the Port of Portland.
- Present your documents to the officer at the Passport Control. Make sure that every document (Passport, I-94 form, I-20 form or DS-2019 form, and admission letter) is returned to you by the officer after inspection. Check to make sure the information on the I-94 card is completed correctly. DO NOT put these documents in your check-in luggage as they need to be available when you go through Passport Control.
- Collect your baggage and exit the terminal. International passengers will exit by baggage claim level opposite carousel 10. Domestic flights will need to exit the terminal and go to the lower baggage claim level.
- Travel to Western Oregon University in Monmouth, Oregon.
WOU Airport Pick-Up Service (Fees apply):
- After arriving in the Portland International Airport (PDX), Go to Baggage Claim Area Carousel #10 on the lower level to pick up your luggage. There are black chairs across from carousel #9 and #10. This area is where a representative from the Western Oregon University International Students and Scholars Affairs office will be waiting for you. Look for the WOU sign!
- If you cannot find the representative, call the Emergency Contact Numbers listed below by using a pay phone.
- Or you can use the audio and visual paging services which are available throughout the terminal. To use these services, pick up a white paging telephone and press "0."
Emergency Contact Numbers:
Print a copy of the Emergency Contact Numbers and pack it in your carry-on luggage to the airport.
- Call the International Student Advisor, Adria Zampich-Gibbs, if you have problems with immigration, your I-20 or DS-2019, or customs.
- Call the orientation coordinator, Ermie Buncal, if you change or miss your flight, or cannot find the WOU representative at the airport.
- If your phone call is not answered, leave a detailed message and a phone number you can be reached at.
- If you cannot contact anyone, call the International Students and Scholars Affairs office which is open from 8am to 5pm Monday to Friday. The phone number is 503-838-8425.
Airport Pick-up Fees:
The airport pick-up fee will automatically be added to the student or scholar's WOU account. The fee is charged to every student or scholar requesting the pick-up. No airport drop-off service is available for students.
- From Portland Airport: $70.00 per person per trip.
- From Salem HUT/Bus/Amtrak Station: $30.00 per person per trip.
Other Travel Options from Portland Airport to Salem/Monmouth:
Students or scholars that arrive on dates other than the airport pick-up dates, will need to make other arrangements to arrive in Monmouth, Oregon.
Other Options to get to Salem/Monmouth:
HUT Shuttle: The HUT Shuttle can be booked online or by phone and is a shuttle bus from Portland Airport to the Red Lion Hotel in Salem, Oregon. The shuttle leaves from the bottom level outside of baggage claim near the "scheduled buses and vans" sign. More information about this option can be located on the HUT Shuttle website.
Amtrack Train and Greyhound Bus: The Amtrack Train and Greyhound Bus can be booked online from the Amtrack Union Station or Greyhound Bus Station to Salem Oregon.The TriMet/MAX shuttle will need to be taken to the station from the airport.
Other Travel Options: can be found at the Ground Transportation link at the Port of Portland. Search for Transportation Type: All in the Location: Oregon (Monmouth).
Pick-Up Service from Salem, Oregon to WOU:
- If you are traveling to Monmouth during the week day, you may want to take the CARTS Bus Route 40 to Western Oregon State - Werner Center in Polk County/Monmouth.
- If you want a representative from the WOU International Office to pick you up, please arrange a pick-up time at the shuttle station in Salem and the pick-up fee will be charged.
Arrival at Western Oregon University in Monmouth, Oregon:
Once you have arrived in Monmouth and are on campus:
- Report to the International Students and Scholars Affairs office in Maaske Hall at Western Oregon University on the first day of New International Student Orientation. The International Office is located in Maaske Hall and open from 8am to 5pm, Monday to Friday. If you have questions about orientation, please contact us at 503-838-8425.