Life in the U.S. and Rexburg, Idaho may be different compared to life in your home country. This page is to help you prepare for living in Rexburg and what to expect before beginning your studies.
As an international student, you cannot live in U.S. government-subsidized housing. Please keep this in mind when looking for an apartment. All BYU-Idaho single students must live in approved housing. Housing information and listings of apartments can be found here. For married students, information about housing can be found here.
Additionally, you should not purchase housing contracts until you have received an I-20 and visa and know that you will be coming to the U.S. Many housing contracts are non-refundable beyond a certain date. You do not want to be stuck paying a contract for a semester you won’t be attending.
While you are a student at BYU-Idaho you are required to have health insurance. If you are planning on using health insurance other than the student health plan provided by BYU-Idaho, please be aware of the following:
- Your insurance must have coverage in the U.S.
- Because of school policy, it will also have to be approved by the Health Center at BYU-Idaho.
- Your insurance cannot be subsidized by the U.S. government.
- Different health insurance companies work with different doctors, specialists, offices, etc., you need to be aware of the providers in your network, so you aren’t overcharged for going to the wrong place (this may include being overcharged at the Health Center at BYU-Idaho). See the Health Center for more information on student health plans.
Spouse and Children
Your spouse/children can come to the U.S. with you while you are attending school. Your children can attend local schools, and your spouse can enroll at BYU-Idaho part-time. If you would like your spouse/children to come with you, you will need to make sure to include their information in your I-20 application (link to the application for I-20 page).
When you come to the U.S. you may go through things that you have never experienced before. See Cultural Adjustments for information that can be helpful while adjusting to life in the U.S.
Weather in Rexburg, Idaho can be a shock for many international students, especially during the winter months. Rexburg is windy almost year-round. Below you can find average temperatures throughout the year in Rexburg.
|Month||Average High/Low Temperature (˚F)|
Rexburg goes through hot summer months and cold winter months. Prepare appropriate outerwear to protect from the weather. Some examples of appropriate clothing:
- Heavy winter coat
- Waterproof snow boots
- Hat and gloves
- Rain boots
- Waterproof jacket
You may not have these items available before coming to BYU-I but can prepare to purchase these when you begin school.
Get Connected is an orientation for all new, incoming students. It is a two-day program to introduce new students to BYU-Idaho. All new students are strongly encouraged to attend. See to the Get Connected site for more information about Get Connected.
All new international students are expected to attend New Student Orientation which is provided by International Services. Here you will learn more about your non-immigrant status and requirements for maintaining your status while attending school. You will be contacted before orientation about the date, time, and place that it will be held.
There are several banks and credit unions in Rexburg. Some banks and credit unions may require a social security number and/or driver’s license before an account can be opened. If you are planning on opening a bank account, you should check with the bank or credit union to find out their requirements for opening.
Cell Phone Options
Cell phones and plans can be purchased in Rexburg if needed. Monthly plans can also be found at Walmart.
Shopping: Grocery & Retail
Local Grocery Stores
There is a free shuttle that can take students from different places around campus to Walmart and back.
Local Clothing and Retail Stores
Deseret Industries Thrift Store
Freeman Clothing Co.
Potter & Co.
Traveling Around Rexburg/Map of Campus
For information regarding travel and Rexburg please see the following:
The Selective Service System is an agency of the U.S. government that maintains information on people who are potentially subject to military recruitment. Almost all male U.S. citizens and male immigrants from ages 18 to 25 are required to register with the Selective Service. If you are a male between 18 to 25 years of age, you may receive a notice from the Selective Service. As a nonimmigrant international student, you are not required to register with the Selective Service. If you receive a notice, you will need to respond with proof of your nonimmigrant status. Refer to the List of Acceptable Documents PDF for more information about what documents can be submitted for Selective Service.
You must be a U.S. citizen in order to vote in local, state, or federal elections.