Coming to Boston

Preparing to travel to Boston and begin your studies at Northeastern University is exciting, and you have many things to do in preparation for both. When you plan carefully, your travels and arrival in Boston should go smoothly. Here are some of the key things you should do in preparation.

  • Obtain your F-1 or J-1 visa from the U.S. Embassy or Consulate in your home country. An interview is required so request an appointment early. More information on the application process is available in this section of the site.
  • If you are a transfer student currently studying in the U.S. on an F-1 or J-1 visa, obtain an I-20 or DS-2019 from Northeastern and a transfer form at
  • Understand the medical insurance requirements insurance.htmland purchase health insurance coverage if you are not already covered by a policy that meets Massachusetts state requirements.
  • Make sure you received the NU Health Report Form in your admissions packet. Have your doctor sign the form and make sure you have received all of the immunizations listed on the form.
  • Determine how much money you will need for tuition, fees, and living costs. Plan how you will access funds while you are in Boston.
  • Make your travel arrangement with your program start date in mind. Then let us know your arrival plans.
  • Leave copies of your important documents with your family at home (passport number, insurance policy, travelers check numbers, etc.)
  • Packing
    • Boston has four distinct seasons. Temperatures can reach over 90ºF (32ºC) in the summer and drop below 20ºF (7C) in winter. Students generally dress casually so carry only what you’ll need.
    • Avoid bringing valuables.
    • Consider purchasing electronics when you arrive in Boston. Electricity in the U.S. is 110 volt/60 hertz and electrical outlets have 2 or 3 pin plugs that will probably not be compatible with equipment from your home.
    • Purchase a SIM card that allows your phone to work in the U.S. or wait and arrange a new phone and service when you arrive.