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What to do if you forget to return your I-94 card

Sunday, October 24, 2010 by

US Customs & Border Protection support page icon

US Customs & Border Protection support page

Remember the white card an immigration officer put in your passport when you arrived in the USA? It showed how long you were allowed to stay in the country.

Do you still have that card? Well, if you do, it means that you are still in America! Not ideal for your future visa application.

Every year at this time, we get questions from students who ask what to do in this situation. Here’s what:

You are supposed to give the card to the airline agent at the check-in counter at the airport from which you are departing from the USA. In most cases, the agents actually take the card from your passport without asking. But in some cases they don’t, and if you don’t ask them yourself to take the card, you usually arrive home with it.

Find the full details here: http://help.cbp.gov/app/answers/detail/a_id/752 but essentially, do this:

  1. Make a copy if you I-94 card and keep the copy for your records.
  2. Make a copy of your boarding pass from your flight home
  3. and/or of  any other document showing that you actually left the USA, such as a copy of your passport picture page and of the page where you have the stamp showing that you entered you home country.
  4. And send it together with the original I-94 card to this address:

1084 South Laurel Road
London, KY 40744

Be prepared to explain what happened during your next US visa interview.


2 Responses to “What to do if you forget to return your I-94 card”
  1. Lim Kim Loong says:

    Hello ,have a good day.. my name is Nicholas i got some Question can you teach me?

    my friend come new york and she go custom . Then custom staff forget giv she white card.. now how can she do?? she gonna return to airport take the white card or got another way???

    pls help me thank you :D i know my English is no good :D But i learning now hehe thx…

Questions? Ask below :-) In English, please.

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