Seasonal Employment Tips for your Work and Travel Program

CICD Work and Travel Program
Apr 09 2019

Congratulations on securing a position in the USA! The J-1 Work & Travel program allows university students to come to the United States to share their culture and ideas through temporary work and travel opportunities for up to 4 months. This is not a work visa. It’s for work and fun!

The Center for International Career Development (CICD) is an official U.S. Department of State designated J-1 Visa Program Sponsor. CICD is authorized to complete the vetting for your application and to issue you the DS-2019 Form that is needed to apply for the J-1 Work & Travel visa.

Here are a few tips to help you succeed in the U.S. Seasonal Work Environment:

  1. Work dates: You are expected to work for the term that is described on your CICD Employment Verification (EV) Form. Remember, you are not able to work past your program end date. Instead, enjoy traveling around the United States during your Grace Period!
  2. Be on time: Your employer expects that you arrive on time to your job. Failure to arrive at work on time can result in being fired. If you think you may be running late, please notify your employer in advance.
  3. Be understanding and flexible: Employers list the hours per week they expect you will be working on the Employment Verification (EV) form. However, if your host company is experiencing less business than expected, you may receive fewer hours than originally indicated on your EV form. Read CICD’s Blog for instructions on applying for a second job.
  4. Dress appropriately: Come to work every day clean, neat, and tidy. You should wear the appropriate attire for your host employer and for your position.
  5. Have a positive attitude: Employers value people who are flexible and enthusiastic at the workplace. Come to work every day with a positive attitude, smile and always ask: “How can I help?”
  6. Work together: Employers like it when co-workers work as a team and share a common goal. This is also a great way to make new lifelong friends!
  7. Quitting/Resigning: If, for any reason, you decide to quit your job, it is STRONGLY recommended that you give at least two weeks advance notice to your employer. You must also contact CICD if you are thinking of quitting or changing jobs and we can help you with the process.

Once you have accepted a position with an employer (host company), you are responsible to keep in contact with both them and CICD regarding your visa status, travel plans, dress code, pay rate, and work schedule.

Follow the tips above for a successful Work & Travel program and please contact us with any questions!

Share your story!

CICD always has opportunities to win prizes with our photo contests. The most creative photos submitted during your J-1 program are chosen as the winners! Ask your coordinator if there are any contests going on right now!

The best part of an exchange program is sharing your experiences! Join CICD’s expanding network on Instagram, using the handle @CICDworkandtravel. Use the hashtags #CICDParticipants and #CICDSwt for a chance to be featured.

Want to learn more? Send us an email at with your questions.