Arrival Information

When should you arrive in Kansas City?

You MUST arrive in the U.S. BEFORE the start date listed on your I-20, but DO NOT ARRIVE more than 30 days BEFORE your start date.

If you plan on residing on campus please note that Residence Life is open Monday through Friday from the hours of 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. for check-in to your room. We will be unavailable to assist you if you arrive during the evening or weekend. In an emergency, you can contact Rockhurst Security at 816-501-4010.

TRAVEL TIPS: We want your trip to Kansas City to be safe and pleasant, so please observe the following travel tips:

  • Carry your passport, I-20, admission letter, bank or funding verification, and any other official or original documents like transcripts or diplomas.
  • Confirm your flight at least three days before leaving your country.
  • To reduce jetlag, drink plenty of nonalcoholic fluids on the plane, and get some rest. Refrain from eating lots of foods that contain a significant amount of salt and sugar.
  • Never carry a large amount of cash. Carry your money, passport, immigration documents and important documents with you on the plane. You should have at least $1,500 in traveler’s checks when you arrive to cover initial expenses such as taxi or bus fare, meals, first rent installment, books and supplies. Bank drafts, other than negotiable traveler’s checks, will take one or two weeks to clear.
  • If you need help, ask an airport employee.
  • Never leave your luggage unattended.
  • Be cooperative, patient and courteous when waiting in travel lines (queues).

Airport/Arrival Information

Kansas City International (MCI) Airport is served by large airlines including American Airlines, Delta Airlines, Southwest Airlines, Midwest Airlines, United Airlines, Continental Airlines and Northwest Airlines. Please make sure that Kansas City is your final destination (the airport code is MCI).

Luggage: Be aware that airlines have a maximum weight requirement per suitcase. Airlines also charge to check luggage per bag. If you have a great deal of luggage to bring with you to Kansas City, you may want to ship some items to the University before you leave your country. Please contact our campus post office. See detailed information below in the on-campus resources section.

How to get from the airport to Rockhurst University

Rockhurst is a 35-minute drive (26.4 miles/42.5 km) from the airport.

Super Shuttle The cost for ONE-WAY transportation on a Super Shuttle, for up to 3 people, is between $39 USD and $79 USD, plus tip. Please note that rate quoted is dependent on destination zip code. Additional passengers on the same trip may not be discounted. All major credit cards, cash and traveler’s checks are accepted. You can arrange for the Super Shuttle to pick you up by calling 1-816-243-5000 or you can make a reservation online.

Taxi The cost for ONE-WAY transportation via taxi is $70 to $100 USD, plus tip. Please note that the final charge is based on miles and time-traveled to destination. Please use this link to estimate your fare.

Uber: Must have the app on a smartphone and available credit card, cash is not accepted. The cost will be between $30 and $40 USD. Please see the following link for more information.

Official Arrival to the U.S.

You MUST report to the Primary Designated School Official (PDSO) Emily Kempf in lower level Massman Hall Room 12. You must see the PDSO within the FIRST WEEK of classes EVERY SEMESTER to complete the check-in process. You must sign up for check-in sessions by calling or emailing Emily Kempf (see resource information on page 15).

What do I bring to my check-in session?

  • Passport
  • I-20
  • I-94 card or printed electronic I-94 card from
  • Current address in or near Kansas City, even if it is only temporary. If you do not give us a U.S. address, you will NOT be able to register/ enroll for classes
  • You will not be able to attend classes until you have attended a check-in session

University Office Hours: 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday; closed on Saturday, Sunday and national holidays.

Need a place to stay near Rockhurst campus?

Here are several hotels near Rockhurst University:

Courtyard by Marriott Country Club Plaza
4600 JC Nichols Parkway Kansas City, MO 64112
Ask for Rockhurst rates

Hampton Inn & Suites Country Club Plaza
4600 Summit Kansas City, MO 64112
Ask for Rockhurst rates

Best Western Plus Seville Plaza Hotel
4309 Main Street, Kansas City, MO 64111

Sheraton Suites Country Club Plaza
770 W 47th Street, Kansas City, MO 64112 

Holiday Inn Express-Westport/Plaza
801 Westport Road, Kansas City, MO 64111

*The average cost per night at a local hotel will be $80 to $120 USD.

Housing Information

Admission to the University does not guarantee you will receive University housing. You are responsible for arranging your own housing. Rockhurst University’s classrooms and buildings are a smoke and tobacco-free area. Smoking is prohibited inside all Rockhurst buildings, but may be permitted outdoors in designated areas.

  • Freshman and sophomore students are required to live on campus. You will need to contact Betty Carson in Residential Life directly to reserve your on-campus housing. Contacts are listed on page 15 and also under “Student Life” on the website.
  • If you are coming prior to the semester it is required that you contact Residence Life to obtain short-term temporary housing. Pre-semester housing is limited and available on a first-come, first-served basis, so make your arrangements early. Charges will vary depending on the type of accommodation.

Residence halls and on-campus apartments

Residence halls provide on-campus accommodation with single, double and townhouse style options. A meal agreement is required with the campus cafeteria for the residence halls. 

At this time we are unable to provide on-campus housing options for married couples or families. 

Can I stay on campus during holiday breaks?

  • Residence halls close for all breaks except fall break, Thanksgiving break and Easter break. Residents living in the Townhouse Village, on-campus housing and Rockhurst Row housing may remain in their housing overall breaks. The residence halls close during winter and spring breaks. Detailed information, including registration deadlines for break housing, will be sent to all residents prior to the beginning of each break. Failure to be out of the residence hall at the designated break closing time will result in a monetary fine. Room payments do not cover such periods when the halls are closed, so a daily rate will be charged for any break housing.

Are there laundry and kitchen facilities in the residence halls?

  • There are laundry facilities located in each residential facility. Coin-operated washers and dryers are located in the laundry room. Each costs $1.25 to operate a typical cycle. There are no kitchen facilities in the residence halls.

Apartment websites

Here are a few apartment search options you can browse:

Numerous off-campus housing opportunities are available that are located near the campus. Rented rooms and apartments (usually unfurnished) are available in a variety of price ranges.



Pre-Arrival Checklist

  •   Obtain valid passport and visa
  •   Complete travel arrangements and notify the International Student Advisor if in need of special assistance
  •   Complete the online housing application, along with a deposit (if applicable)
  •   Give family the International Student Advisor's address and phone number in case of emergency
  •   Notify the International Student Advisor of your travel itinerary for emergency
  •   Obtain your immunization information

Obtain a Visa

In order to apply for F-1, you must present the following documents at the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate:

  -Passport valid for at least another six months past the date when you plan to begin your studies at Rockhurst University.
  -If your passport is about to expire, be sure to get a new one, or an extension, before applying for your visa.
  -INS Form I-20 issued by the school where you plan to attend.

Recent (less than a year old) documents indicating financial support, i.e., original bank letter(s) (if supported by private funding).

It is critical that you apply for your visa early as it can take several weeks or even months. Once approved, the visa is placed in your passport. Canadian students who enter from Canada are exempt from having to get a visa but must use the Form I-20 to enter the U.S. in F-1 student status and must obtain a Form I-94 clearly indicating F-1. If you have a valid B-1/2 visa (business/tourist visa) in your passport, do not use it for travel to the United States if your intention is to study.


If you enter the United States using an I-20 from Rockhurst University you are obligated to attend Rockhurst for at least 1 semester before you can transfer. If you enter on another school's I-20 you will need to attend that school for one semester before transferring to Rockhurst. Failure to follow these procedures is a violation of status and you may be required to apply to the INS for reinstatement.


Official Arrival Date

You must arrive in the United States by the date indicated on your Form I-20. It is recommended that you plan your arrival for the Saturday before classes begin to participate in the Orientation process.  Orientation presents information you need about becoming an RU student before you start your first semester.  It's an important step to take where you will learn about all the resources that RU has to offer. In addition to meeting faculty and staff, Orientation also provides you the opportunity to meet students leaders who will introduce you to the spirit and traditions of RU, the academic life at the University and other new students.  Please take a few minutes to review the Orientation Schedules.  You may arrive in the United States as early as 30 days prior to the official arrival date indicated on your I-20. If you have applied for on-campus housing you will not be allowed to move into the residence until the Saturday before classes begin.

When you check-in at Rockhurst you will need your:

  • Passport
  • I-20
  • I-94 (you will need to log in and print this form)- I-94 Printable Form
  • You must check-in during the first week of classes with Emily Kempf, International Student Coordinator. Ms. Kempf is located in the Student Development Office, Massman 12.

Baggage and Mail

Baggage and mail should be sent to your residence or the residence of a contact you have established in the U.S. If you have applied to live on campus you will receive via email in July your housing assignment which will list your campus mailbox and address information.  If you ship your baggage, use a reliable carrier that will ensure proper customs clearance and delivery. Be certain to purchase insurance protection for your shipment.