- 1 What Is the I94 Form or the I-94 Admissions Number? What Are Its Features and Functions? Who Is Supposed to Fill in the I94 Form? What Does Consultar I94 Mean?
- 1.1 How Do People Enter the US?
- 1.2 What Are the Different Ways People Enter the United States?
- 1.3 Who Needs an I-94 Admissions Number?
- 1.4 So Who Doesn’t Require an i94 Admission Number or the Form?
- 1.5 A Complete Guide to How You Can Use the i94 Travel History Form and What Is Its Importance.
- 1.6 What Is the I-94 Admissions Number?
- 1.7 Paper i94 Vs Electronic i94 Record of Admission
- 1.8 What Is the Importance of the i94 Travel History Document and How Can You Use It?
- 1.8.1 Proof of Legal Entry Into the United States and Timely Exit
- 1.8.2 Determines the Length of Your Stay in the United States
- 1.8.3 Indicates Your Legal Status
- 1.8.4 Consultar i94 for Status Changes
- 1.8.5 Supporting Document for Adjustment of Status
- 1.8.6 Evidence of Lawful Presence for DACA Applicants and Other Non-immigrant Petitions
- 1.8.7 i94 Travel History Document for a Drivers License or Other ID Cards
- 1.9 Step-by-step Process of How You Can Gain Access to the Electronic I-94 Record?
- 1.10 What Can You Do if You Are Unable to Access the Form?
- 1.11 What Is the Difference Between an I-94 and a Temporary Visa?
- 1.12 Conclusion
- 2 Frequently Asked Questions(FAQs):
What Is the I94 Form or the I-94 Admissions Number? What Are Its Features and Functions? Who Is Supposed to Fill in the I94 Form? What Does Consultar I94 Mean?
Form I94, also officially known as the Arrival/ Departure Record, is the document issued by the US Customs and Border Protection officers to the non-immigrants or the international visitors who enter the United States. This form is a record about your legal entry to the country and contains the length of time you can stay, and you have stayed in the United States. That is why the form is also called the “Admission Record Number or the Departure number”. The Word Consultar comes into play when you want to consult the i94 record, hence we thought we would call this article Consultar i94
How Do People Enter the US?
All the foreign nationals who enter the US through the air route or the sea route are given the admission stamp on their passports by the Customs and Border Protection officers. Their passports are also scanned to create and save their travel records electronically. This means that unlike earlier years, where you used to get your record detailed on paper, you will not get the same paper version of i94 now. Instead, all your travel-related information and history are saved electronically. If you wish to have a paper document, then you can go to the US Customs and Border protection webpage and access your travel-related information from there.
There are some exceptional cases where the officials will provide the paper document of i94. A few categories of foreign visitors like the refugees, parolees, and asylees receive the paper form of their travel history document. CBP also provides it to whoever thinks that giving a paper document is necessary. Before we try and understand what Consultar i94 is and what it is needed for.
What Are the Different Ways People Enter the United States?
Foreign nationals enter the United States through the land route, however, may probably still receive the paper document of i94 on their arrival. This means if you are crossing the Canada/ US border or Mexico/ US border to enter the country, you will get a paper document. The main reason is that the travel information of such individuals taking the land route to enter the country is not known to the officials ahead of time like in the case of sea and air.
However, there is an option for the land travelers to let the department know of their arrival beforehand which includes a fee payment of $6.00. By doing so, when they arrive, they will also have an electronically generated document at the port of entry by land.
In this article, we are going to provide you with everything that you need to know about the i94 travel document if you are visiting the United States for the first time. You will learn about what your i94 travel history form includes, what is it used for, why is the i94 document important, the i-94 admissions number, and much more. Before that let’s first see who needs this document and who does not.
Who Needs an I-94 Admissions Number?
The I-94 admissions number or the form is needed by most of the people visiting the United States, irrespective of whether they stay for a long term or a short period. In the US immigration term, these people are referred to as the aliens. So the i94 travel history document is issued to those aliens who are-
- Allowed entry into the US,
- Those who are applying for the permanent resident status or in other words green card, and,
- Need to extend their stay in the country.
Simply put together, this travel document is issued to most of the people crossing the borders and entering the United States with some exceptions.
So Who Doesn’t Require an i94 Admission Number or the Form?
The only individuals who do not require having a travel document are US Citizens or green cardholders. Other than that some other exceptions are:
- People entering under the Visa Waiver Program using the Border Crossing Cards,
- those who are a part of the airline crew entering for a brief period,
- Those returning travelers who have an expired non-immigrant visa and intend to return to the US (under the Automatic revalidation provision). However, they need to meet some requirements as per the immigration law. For details, you can visit the CBP official website.
- Most of the Canadian citizens are visiting the country or are passing through.
A Complete Guide to How You Can Use the i94 Travel History Form and What Is Its Importance.
How Can You Gain Access to the Electronic i94 Record?
Whether you are a student visiting the United States for studying, an individual entering the country for business or professional reasons, or a casual trip, the i94 travel history document holds a lot of importance. Before you get to the various uses of this document, here’s a quick look at some factors.
Overview of the Various Features of the i94 Arrival/departure Form
- All the data that is/was found on the paper form is available in the electronic version of the i94 form. This means that there is no variation in the information or extra details available in the digital version.
- It is a document to prove your legal entry to the United States which is why you need to keep this document safely be it the admission stamp on your passport or the paper version of the i94.
- The arrival/ departure record includes-Your I-94 admissions number, admit until date (which is the expiration date of the I-94), your name, passport number, date of entry, date of birth, class of admission (the visa status).
- Duration of status (D/S): For some people, the i94 travel history document is valid until a specific date that is mentioned in the admissions stamp on the passport or the form provided by the CBP officer. In these situations, you should exit the country on or before the expiry date mentioned.
In some cases, the stamp or the form has D/S mentioned on it instead of a defined date. D/S or Duration of Status is usually given to the individuals coming under the non-immigrant visa classifications F (student visa) or J (for the scholars). This means that they can stay in the country for as long as their visa is valid and they maintain it properly. Individuals with this i94 stamp need to keep their documents safe throughout their visit.
What Is the I-94 Admissions Number?
I-94 admissions number or the I-94 Admission record number is a unique set of alphanumeric codes consisting of 11 characters. Until May 2019, it was a set of 11 digit number codes but post-May, 2019, it changed to an alphanumeric combination for their internal convenience. Those who receive i-94 admissions numbers now will see a combination consisting of 9 digits first, followed by an alphabet, and then a digit again. Nonetheless, the older i94 documents are not going to get affected by this change and will still be considered valid.
Now, while you do not have to remember this number but it has its importance-you may be asked for it at times by your employer, or the Department of Motor Vehicles. So keep the document and the number safe until you exit the country. Also, this is a unique number, so if re-enter the US, this number will not be used. Instead, you will be given a new I-94 admissions number then.
Paper i94 Vs Electronic i94 Record of Admission
Electronic I-94 record of admission was introduced by the Customs and Border Protection in May 2013. To increase the efficiency and manage the admissions process effectively, the I-94 form was automated at the sea and the airports. At the entry points, the passport of the traveler is scanned and the details are electronically saved. However, when the travel record is saved electronically, he/ she doesn’t get to know the admission number. If you want to find out the number you can go to the CBP website, enter your details and obtain it. This way you can also get your I-94 details and print them so you present them where needed.
Before May 2013, the Customs and Border Protection used to issue a paper document of the I-94 to every individual entering the States whether by land, sea, or air route. However, since 2016 they have made it automated and the paper form is not available anymore except for the land border and some exceptional cases. This change however doesn’t affect the travelers in any way because you can easily retrieve the travel record online.
What Is the Importance of the i94 Travel History Document and How Can You Use It?
Your i94 document is useful in many different ways. If you are new to this and do not know where and how you can use it then this bit of information will help you learn more about this-
Proof of Legal Entry Into the United States and Timely Exit
This document contains your travel history along with the date you arrived in the country. It acts as proof that you have lawfully entered the country. At the time of your leaving the document will register the date and the time you exit. This will prove that you did not stay in the United States beyond the time given and that you abided by the rules and the laws. This means that your i94 travel history will help you re-enter the country without any hassle.
Determines the Length of Your Stay in the United States
The I-94 Arrival/ Departure document shows how long you can stay in the United States. Both the I-94 paper version and the electronic stamping includes the “Admit Until Date” next to which there is a date specified. That is the date until when you can stay in the United States. You need to leave the country on or before the given date. In some i94 travel records, instead of a defined date, you will find D/S mentioned. D/S refers to the duration of status and allows the person holding this kind of form to stay in the country until their visa is valid.
Indicates Your Legal Status
The i94 travel history document authenticates your admission into the country under a particular status having an expiry date. When the individual enters the country they get a stamp in their passport or the hardcopy of the I-94 form. The details of the stamp like the validity or the duration of stay should correspond to that of the visa status of the individual intended and its expiry date.
Consultar i94 for Status Changes
There are many situations where you need to extend your stay in the United States and make changes to your immigration status. In those cases, once your request is approved by the USCIS, they will issue form I-797(Notice of action) confirming the approval of your petition or request. Along with that, they will also issue an I-797A form as evidence for the applicant’s legal presence in the country. You will find an I-94 coupon at the bottom right of this document which should be torn and attached to the passport just like the I-94 card provided at the port of entry. This is a new form with a new I-94 admissions number.
Supporting Document for Adjustment of Status
Adjustment of Status or application for a green card is a huge process and there are several supporting documents that you need to produce while filing for it. i94 admissions number and the document is one of the critical documents that act as proof about how long you have been in the United States, your legal status, the length of your stay, your lawful entry into the country. So if you are applying for adjustment of status, presenting the I-94 form which is primary evidence of your lawful status, will help move the process forward.
Also, if you need to extend your stay in the US during your ‘Adjustment of Status’ form processing, USCIS will issue a new i-94 admissions number and document to accommodate your updated situation. You will have to keep it safe until you receive your green card.
Evidence of Lawful Presence for DACA Applicants and Other Non-immigrant Petitions
Not only does the Arrival/ Departure Record serve as a solid supporting document for the application for a green card, but it is also important in other petitions where one needs to prove that they were present in the United States at a given date. In some cases, one may also have to prove that they didn’t stay after the validity of their consultar i94 expired and that you reentered the country with a new document.
i94 Travel History Document for a Drivers License or Other ID Cards
Often times, depending on which state you are in, you may have to show your I-94 form to the Department of Motor Vehicles when applying for a driver’s license or other government agencies for state/government-issued ID cards. You might even need to show it to the schools or universities at the time of enrolling as proof of your legal status.
Step-by-step Process of How You Can Gain Access to the Electronic I-94 Record?
Finding the I-94 Arrival/ Departure record or the I-94 visa waiver record is extremely easy. You just need to follow a few simple steps to get access to your travel record if you need to print it to provide it as a supporting document. Now, there are two different ways that you can gain access to your I-94 information-
- Through the CBP One Mobile App
- Through the CBP official website
CBP One Mobile App
CBP One is a recent development from the Border Protection team that comes with different features making it convenient for travelers to access their information quickly. The app can be downloaded from Apple Store or Google Play Store. The good thing about this application is that through this the visitors needing to cross the land border can also have an electronic version of the i94 form instead of the hardcopy. Additionally, their entry into the country will be expedited and hassle-free. The app also allows you to access your current Arrival/ Departure Record any time you want to provide the information to the authorities or to quickly check how much time more they can be in the country.
All you need to do is –
- Download the CBP One mobile App on your smartphone.
- If you do not already have an account at ‘login.gov’, you need to create one first.
- If you have an account already, you simply need to sign in with your user ID and password after opening the CBP One App.
- The app is very easy to use. It operates by asking a few questions and gradually directing you to what you need- your I-94 form in this case.
- Individuals traveling by land can apply ahead of time for a provisional Form before they arrive at the US border. This way you can experience a swift processing time and your entry will be faster.
Through the CBP Official Website
- To get access to your latest i94 information, you first need to go to the CBP official website.
- Once the page opens, go to the “Get most recent I-94” tab and click on it.
- You will be diverted to the page where you will be asked to enter the traveler’s information. Enter the details as instructed as the first name, last name, birthdate, passport number, and passport country of issuance.
- Once done click the “Next” button to retrieve your recent I-94 form and travel history. You will be able to view the details in this format.
What Can You Do if You Are Unable to Access the Form?
In case you are not able to access your form, or it is showing an error then chances are that there are some mistakes in the information you have entered. Here are a few steps that you can take to resolve and see if it works:
- Enter your name as per your passport. If not then try entering it as per your visa, flight ticket, DS-160 form, or any other way the name appears in any of the documents.
- If you have a middle name, then Enter your first and the middle name in the “First Name” field giving space in between. Remember that the spellings or mistakenly put symbols can affect the entry and show an error.
- You may also try feeding in multiple first names or multiple last names together without a space. For example, Sean Paul can be written as Seanpaul.
- Try different combinations of names and see which one works.
- Similarly, there can be multiple passport numbers. Enter the one in the DS Form 160. If it doesn’t work, then see if there is a different passport number on your visa.
- In case your passport number has more than 10 characters, you can enter the last 10 characters. Some passports may include the year of issuance in their number making the overall passport number longer than 9 or 10 characters. The year is usually mentioned in the beginning as the first two digits. Remove that and enter the rest of it.
- Watch out for some common errors like “O” instead of “0” and “1” instead of “I”.
- If you have tried out everything and are still facing issues getting access to what you want, then get help from the CBP Deferred Inspection site.
What Is the Difference Between an I-94 and a Temporary Visa?
Many travelers, especially first-time visitors, often tend to be confused between a temporary visa and an I-94 stamp placed by CBP on the passport at the entry points. Remember that both the documents have completely different purposes and they cannot replace each other’s functions. Here’s a list of the various uses and characteristics of each of these documents for a better understanding:
- Proof that you legally entered the United States.
- It is an official record of how long you can stay in the country.
- You receive this at the various ports of entry of the United States – land, sea, and air.
- The CBP officer decides the length of your stay in the United States.
- If your stay gets extended for some reason, you can get your I94 validity extended.
- If there is a change in your visa status, say from an F1 student visa to an H1B visa, you will need to stay for an extended period. In that case, your I-94 should be updated accordingly by using I-539 (application to Change or Extend the non-immigration status).
- If you stay beyond the expiration mentioned on your Arrival/ Departure Record, then you might get deported. Your visa can get canceled and you might even be barred from further entry into the country.
- In rare cases, you might also be rejected entry into the country by the CBP officers if they sense a problem.
- Remember that I94 is not a visa and doesn’t help you in any way in traveling. It is a stamp that allows you to cross the borders and enter the country.
- This is a document that you will need to travel to the United States (unless you are under the Visa Waiver Program).
- Having a visa doesn’t guarantee your admission into the country.
- Unlike I-94, you need to obtain a visa from the US Embassy of your home country by applying for it.
- Once your visa is granted, it is printed on your passport.
- The visa comes with a specific validity the period of which depends on the type of visa you have. It is also not dependent on the length of your stay in the United States.
- You can only travel to the US only until you have a valid visa. Once it expires, you need to apply for an extension or a new one depending on what visa it is.
- Also, it can be for a one-time visit or multiple visits depending on the nature of the visa.
Now that you know what the I-94 admissions number is and what are the various uses of this travel record, you know how important it is to keep your I94 safe and in the vicinity. You technically cannot enter the country without this document (unless you’re under a waiver program) and you need to leave this at the departure so that CBP can register the history of your travel. Remember the date until when your travel record document is valid so you can plan an exit from the country on time.
In case you have received a Consultar I94 stamping on your passport and your details were entered electronically at the time of admission to the US, your exit will automatically be recorded, and you do not have to do anything. If you are carrying a paper format, you need to submit it to the officer present there, so they can forward it to the Border protection department later. Hope this article has shed some light on the various aspects of I-94 and is helpful in some way or the other. For additional information check out our FAQs section below. We hope to have defined what the term consultar I94 means and What you need to do when you are confronted with Consultar I94 Means.
Frequently Asked Questions(FAQs):
Your I-94 form may have an error whether it is an electronic form or a paper version. Therefore, you need to check the information thoroughly as soon as you receive the stamp (in case of electronic) or the document in your hand (if it is paper). Some of the mistakes can lead to serious issues to your immigration status later especially if they are related to the expiry date or the visa type. If you find an error, you need to contact CBP immediately and inform them. You can also visit the CBP Deferred Inspection office for the same.
There is no fee involved in getting the I-94 stamp. No matter where you are arriving from- air, sea, or land border and whether you get the paper form of I-94 or electronically registered one, you do not have to pay anything for receiving it.
When you leave your country, even if it is much before the expiration date of your I-94 admissions number, your departure will be recorded in the document. This means that you cannot use the same one when you re-enter the country. You will be issued a new I-94 at the entry point every time you enter the country.
If your I-94 was from before April 2013, meaning you entered before this date, then retrieving the data might be slightly tough with some money to be spent during the process. However, if you misplaced the hard copy of your record post-April 2013, then you do not need to worry. You can retrieve the I-94 information by going to the CBP website or from the CBP One app.