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Guillermo Senmartin
Guillermo Senmartin, Attorney At Law
Category: US Law
Satisfied Customers: 111553
Experience:  Over 12+ years of experience in various areas of U.S. Law and 15+ years of experience in U.S. Immigration Law..
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I have my I-20 as I'm going to study at a US university with

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I have my I-20 as I'm going to study at a US university with a starting 22 January '15. I've begun the online application process so that I can arrange an interview for an F1 visa next week at the US Embassy in London. I've a flight booked to the US on 11 Dec which I can postpone if nec. I know that if my visa is granted , I can only enter the US 30 days max before the course =26 Dec earliest. So what to do? (Part 2 coming up!)

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It looks like you have figured out where your problem is. You won't be able to use the F-1 student visa to enter the U.S. more than 30 days before classes. You also cannot use the ESTA Visa Waiver to enter and then change status to F-1. IF you had a B-2, you could enter using the B-2 and then apply for a Change of Status to F-1 from B-2. Or you can enter on the ESTA and then leave to Canada or Mexico and come back using the F-1 student visa. If not, you will need to change your flight for after December 22.

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Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thanks Guillermo! I didn't actually get to my question as there wasn;t enough space! It's this:

If I went to the US on 11 December as planned and already had my F1 visa in my passport, would I be able to travel to the US on the VWP and then go over the Canadian border so that my visa could become valid when I re-enter the US? Or would I have to not apply for my visa in London next week, and apply for it instead when I am in Canada in late December?

Many thanks!


You can get the visa in London and use the ESTA to enter the U.S. before the 22nd, and then leave to Canada and come back on or after the 22nd using the F-1 visa. That is possible, yes. Please let me know if you have additional questions and please do not forget to rate my service to you positively as that is the only way that I can get credit for my assistance. Even after you rate the service, I can still answer additional questions for you without additional charge. And don't forget that bonuses are always appreciated! Thank you.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thanks so much for your very fast and clear answers, Guillermo.

Best wishes,


You are very welcome. Please do not forget to rate me positively so that I can get credit for my assistance to you. You are not charged again and we can continue to communicate without additional charge if you have a few follow-up questions. Thank you!
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