Travel Information for 2nd Year

Please Note: The information below is intended to help get you started, but is not all-inclusive for every situation. It is your responsibility to inquire with the U.S. embassy in your home country to see if other forms are needed. For example, it may be necessary to bring a copy of the host family application, school diplomas, or bank statements.

In your second year, as soon as you plan to travel outside of the United States, you need to call the Operations Department of Cultural Care: 1-800-448-5753. You will get details specific for your destination country.

An Au Pair who wants to extend has traveling restrictions during his/her second year. Here is the choice you must make: Extend your visa within the USA or travel to your home country to renew your visa. 

The advantage of extending your J1 visa within the USA is that you are already here, so you do not have to pay for the cost of traveling home! However, if you extend within the USA, you will only be allowed to travel to Mexico, Canada, and some U.S. Adjacent islands.

If you renew your visa in your home country, there are two advantages.  One, you can use some vacation time to visit your family and friends. And two, you can travel anywhere outside of the USA.

Here are the steps to get ready to travel home:

Note: It may take six to eight weeks to obtain an appointment at U.S. embassies. Contact information for U.S. embassies abroad can be found at

  • Arrange to renew the J-1 visa through the U.S. embassy in your home country before returning to the USA. Au pairs who do not renew the J-1 visa will not be allowed to return to the U.S. to complete their program. Some countries allow visa renewal by mail rather than requiring an in-person interview- find out if this is true for you.
  • Check if you will need a visa to enter any other country to which they will travel. Contact information for most embassies is available at
  • Have your extension term DS-2019 form validated for travel by Cultural Care.*

If the extension term J-1 visa is approved, there will be few restrictions on extension term travel. Au pairs are permitted to travel outside the US for no more than 30 days at a time.

These documents are most likely required when you visit the U.S. embassy in your home country:

  • Passport
  • Original DS-2019 reflecting the extension term dates, validated by Cultural Care for international travel.
  • Letter of good standing from Cultural Care (provided by Cultural Care when DS-2019 is validated for travel).
  • S. Department of State regulations regarding the second year extension program (provided by Cultural Care when DS-2019 is validated for travel).
  • Original proof of payment for $35 SEVIS fee (can be reprinted at
  • Confirmation page of completed DS-160 form. The DS-160 is available at
  • Non-refundable fee of US$160. The fee is paid directly to the embassy and the au pair is responsible for this cost. This fee is set by the US Department of State and is subject to change.

ALSO:  Cultural Care Au Pair cannot book appointments at the U.S. embassy on any au pair’s behalf, and has no ability to affect the scheduling of appointments of any embassy.

*Send DS-2019 form, including dates of travel to: Cultural Care Au Pair, Attn. Travel Validation, 1 Education St. Cambridge, MA 02141.

Tuesday, 15 August 2017 11:26 AM


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