Arrival Information | BCTC

Arrival Information

Pre-Arrival Information


It is difficult to exchange currency in the United States. It is recommended that you do not bring a lot of foreign currency money with you. It is best to bring U.S. dollars. The best idea is to carry a combination of cash, traveler s checks, and bank drafts.

You should bring some of your money in cash for your in route and beginning expenses. Try to get some $20 bills. Large bills, such as $100 bills, are not always accepted at stores here. It is suggested that you bring at least 50 one dollar bills. Certain gratuities are U.S. cultural traits. These one dollar bills are handy to use as gratuities for taxi drivers, hotel porters, and restaurant waiters and waitresses.

It is advised that you bring most of your money in the form of traveler s checks. You should get some large denominations, such as $100. Many of your large expenses occur soon after arrival. You may want to bring a bank check issued in U.S. dollars to pay your tuition and fees. If the amount of your check is over or under your actual tuition and fees, you can made adjustments later. If you bring money in the form of a bank check, cashiers check, or money order, please make it payable to the order of Bluegrass Community and Technical College. It is advised that you not bring a check for more than the estimated tuition and fees amount because the college will not be able to pay back the extra amount quickly.

Credit Cards

You can pay for your tuition and fees at Bluegrass Community and Technical College with a Visa or Master Card credit card. You can also use these cards in the bookstore and for most purchases in the U.S. It is very difficult for foreign citizens to open these credit card accounts in the U.S. If you want to use a credit card, bring one with you from your home country. You will probably need to make arrangements with your family to pay the bills for you back in your home country.

Everyone has personal preferences when it comes to fashion and clothing. You should check below on climate and weather to decide on what clothes to bring. Students wear casual clothes to school and most activities.

You should not bring a lot of clothes with you from your home country because you can buy things fairly cheaply here compared to most countries. You will have to do your own laundry here and therefore it is best to have clothes that do not need a great deal of special washing or ironing. Wash and wear clothes are the best.

  • A traditional national costume or dress from your home country. This will be fun to wear to festivals or special occasions.
  • Family photos, small photo albums, or items of sentimental or religious value. These items will help you get over homesickness and will be fun to show to your new friends here.
  • Small gifts from your country for friends, roommates, or people you want to express appreciation.
  • Any prescription medicine you are prescribed to take. Always carry the doctor s prescription with you when you enter the U.S.

It is recommended that you pack lightly and be prepared to purchase many of your needed items after you arrive, for example, pillows, blankets, cooking and eating supplies.

Before Arriving

It is recommended that you have a complete physical and dental examination before you leave your country. Your doctor should know that you are going to study in the U.S. and be away for all that time. Get copies of your medical records translated into English if your doctor recommends it. If you need dental work, it is recommended that you care for it before coming to the U.S. Most student insurances do not cover dental services. Dental services are very expensive in the U.S.

Medical Insurance

Bluegrass Community and Technical College has a mandatory health insurance policy for international students. This means that you are required to have insurance coverage while you are enrolled here as a student. The current insurance fee is $645 for 12 months paid in two parts (by the semester). The required International student orientation session will offer more information regarding insurance.

No matter the season, you'll love Kentucky's mild climate. Summers can be very warm, but cool evenings are not unusual. For spring and fall, it's a good idea to bring a light jacket. In the winter, we get a moderate amount of snow. The wettest seasons are spring and summer, and the driest is the fall.

Average High and Low Temperatures

Annual average precipitation 48 inches, including an average snowfall of 13.7 inches.

Average Temperatures per Month
Month Celsius Fahrenheit
January 4°C - -5°C 40°F - 23°F
February 7°C - -4°C 44°F - 25°F
March 12°C - -1°C 54°F - 34°F
April 19°C - 7°C 66°F - 44°F
May 24°C - 12°C 75°F - 54°F
June 27°C - 17°C 83°F - 62°F
July 30°C - 19°C 86°F - 66°F
August 29°C - 18°C 85°F - 65°F
September 26°C - 15°C 79°F - 58°F
October 20°C - 8°C 68°F - 46°F
November 12°C - 2°C 54°F - 36°F
December 7°C - -2°C 44°F - 28°F

Arrival Information

Planning your arrival in the United States is important. Make sure that you make accommodation plans for when you arrive. If you do not know where you will be living, you may want to research hotels close to campus. In the United States, it is important to make hotel reservations ahead of time to ensure you have a place to stay.

We recommend you arrive early for settling in, finding housing, and shopping. Also due to delays at immigration, it is not uncommon for international travelers to miss flight connections and need to reschedule. Upon arrival at BCTC, you must check in with the International Student Services Office which is located in the Multicultural and Global Learning Center, Newton Campus, Classroom Building, Suite 103G.

There are four time zones in the U.S. The airplane and bus arrival times are given in the local time according to that city's location. When changing planes or buses, reset your watch by the local time so you do not miss your departure. Lexington is in the Eastern time zone.

The University Inn
1229 S. Limestone St.
(866) 881-9676
fax: (859) 278-4530
Rates are $90

Holiday Inn Express
1000 Export St.
(800) 315-2621
Rates are $115

Arrival by

How will you be arriving to campus? Click below to learn more:



End your flight at Bluegrass Airport (new window) here in Lexington (code LEX). It is served by major airlines from the city of entry in the U.S. through the following connecting cities:

  • Atlanta
  • Charlotte (US Airways)
  • Chicago (United)
  • Cincinnati (Delta)
  • Cleveland (Continental)
  • Detroit (Northwest)
  • Pittsburgh
  • St. Louis (TWA)

Bluegrass Community and Technical College is approximately a twenty minute drive. You may take a taxi (around $20). If no taxis are waiting outside, you may use a free phone marked TAXI located on a desk near the hotel reservation phones. Lift the phone and it will automatically dial. There is no bus service to or from the airport.


You will arrive at the Greyhound Bus Station, 477 New Circle Road, on the north side of Lexington. It is about twenty minutes from the University.

The taxi to campus is approximately $20. By Car, Lexington lies along Interstate 75 (north/south) and Interstate 64 (east/west). Bluegrass Community and Technical College is south of Main Street. Take Limestone south past the University of Kentucky to Cooper Drive. Turn left onto Cooper Drive then turn right onto University Drive. The first left off University Drive is the Commonwealth Stadium parking lot. It is also the BCTC parking lot.

If you are interested in learning more about the Lexington Transit (LexTran) system (new window), it is a good idea to become acclimated to their schedules and services. LexTran is an easy and affordable method for students to travel around Lexington and the surrounding areas.


If you are arriving by air at the Bluegrass Airport, you will need to make ground transportation arrangements after you arrive. If you need to catch a taxi, there are different services that you may choose to use. Learn more about the ground transportation services offered specifically at Bluegrass Airport (new window).

Some taxi services will allow you to pay with a credit card, however, you should be prepared to pay cash. Keep in mind that it is customary in the United States to tip your taxi driver.

I'm here! What's Next?

Congrats! You have arrived in the United States. It can be intimidating to arrive in a new country and begin your educational journey. You may be interested in checking out the International Student Programs website to meet other international students on campus.

There are also a few other key steps that you need to make sure you take upon arrival.

After arriving in the United States, it is necessary for you to complete the following:

  • Attend your International Student Orientation
  • Visit the International Student Services Offices in Classroom Building 103G
  • Make housing arrangements
  • Ensure that you have obtained proper insurance for international students