Planning Finances & Bringing Money into the U.S.

Electronic Transfer

Before you leave your country, you should plan for your finances. After you arrive to the U.S., you should set up a local bank account. Plan to electronically transfer funds from your home bank to your American bank account. It is very difficult to exchange money from your currency to United States dollars while in the U.S. and, even if it is possible, there may be a large fee. You should arrange to have enough money to cover at least your first month’s expenses AND your first semester of tuition, books, insurance, and housing.


  • DO NOT underestimate the amount of money needed.
  • DO NOT carry a large amount of cash with you.
  • KU cannot accept cash payment for tuition and fees.
  • Information on tuition payment can be found in the Orientation section of our website.

Bringing Money into the United States

Bring your money to the United States in these forms:

  • U.S. dollar traveler's checks.
  • Have it electronically wired to your new American bank account.
  • Get a bank card from your home bank to withdraw cash from your account through an automatic teller machine (ATM).
  • KU now accepts VISA, with an additional charge of 2.85%.
  • Find more information regarding payment plans and options.

ATM Tips

ATMs are very common in Lawrence and are even located throughout campus. If you access your bank account through an ATM card, we recommend the tips below:

  • Make sure to contact your bank about any special procedures such as an international PIN number to access your account. Also notify them you will be using your card in the U.S.
  • ATM cards should be tied to a checking (not savings) account.
  • It is a good idea to give a family member access to your account at home in case of access problems or to add money to your home account.