Here are some items that you should carry with you or put in your carry-on luggage. Do not pack these items in a suitcase you plan on checking in.
Your I-20 or DS-2019 visa document, valid passport (for at least six months!), and any other important documents (marriage license or school transcripts for example). If your spouse and/or children will be coming to the U.S. with you, be sure to have their I-20(s) or DS-2019(s) and their passport(s) readily available.
Your original supporting financial documents, such as personal bank statements, a financial aid award and/or the offer letter from your department.
Your new address
The street address of where you will be going in New Haven when you arrive. You will need it to give to the taxi driver.
Medications you use regularly
Including extra prescription eyeglasses or contact lenses. Make sure that you use the original container with the doctor’s information on any prescriptions you bring. If you have a health problem that requires medication, bring enough to last as long as possible.
English Translations of your important documents
Including your medical records, school transcripts, marriage license, medication prescriptions, etc.
Your valid driver’s license
Accompanied by an International Driver’s Permit (IDP). You will not be able to drive in Connecticut without the IDP. You must inquire at a travel agent in your home country on how to obtain an international driver’s permit. An International Driver’s Permit is valid up to a year after your entry in the United States and is only obtainable in person in your home country.
A credit card that you can use in the U.S.
You can use it to pay for things while you are getting settled and you won’t have to carry so much cash with you. You can also use it at the airport to pay for the cart to carry your luggage, and your transportation to Yale. It is safer to carry small amounts of cash.
An ATM card (bank card)
Make sure it is a card that you can use at an automatic teller machine (ATM) to withdraw cash in USD from your local bank account. You will normally pay a small fee to the U.S. bank, and possibly to your bank too, but you will get the most up-to- date exchange rate.
Some U.S. currency (dollars)
You should have between $200 to $300 so that you will have some cash to pay for immediate expenses like meals, transportation, or a telephone card. You might want to bring more in traveler’s checks, if you know you will be waiting for a wire transfer to come from your bank at home to your bank in the U.S.
U.S. traveler's checks
If you plan on carrying more than $200 in cash, you should carry U.S. traveler’s checks or credit cards for additional expenses (You may want to plan on bringing enough in traveler’s checks to cover your first month’s expenses). Traveler’s checks are recommended because of their security – they can be replaced if lost or stolen.