Annual Conference FAQs

Annual Conference & ExpoNAFSA 2018 Expo Sales

The NAFSA annual conference brings together more than 9,000 professionals in the field of international education for five packed days of training workshops, educational sessions, networking opportunities, and special events.

Have questions about NAFSA's 2018 Annual Conference in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania? Check back regularly, as this page will continue to be updated.

When & Where

What are the official dates of the Annual Conference?
The conference begins Sunday, May 27 and ends Friday, June 1, 2018.
What is the address, telephone number, and web address of the Pennsylvania Convention Center?
Pennsylvania Convention Center
1101 Arch Street
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19107


When does registration open?
Registration and housing will open on March 1st, 2018. Further information on registration will be available late 2017.
When do I get my registration materials?
Registration materials will be distributed on site upon checking in at the registration counters. Please bring your registration confirmation to receive your registration materials. Both print and electronic confirmations will be accepted on site, you can also enter your name into the terminal to pull up your registration. Registration counters will be located in the Lobby of the Pennsylvania Convention Center.

Please note, registration materials will not be mailed to attendees in advance.
How do I get a receipt for my registration?
Once you are registered for the annual conference you will be able to view and print your confirmation, as well as log in to your registration portal at any time to make changes, print receipts and/or confirmations and create your itinerary. You will no longer receive a receipt on-site. You may not cancel your registration online – see the cancellation policies on the NAFSA website.
What if I need to pay by check?
Mail registration form (available March 1, 2018 ) to:
Attn: NAFSA 2018
C/O Experient
5202 Presidents Court, Suite G100
Frederick, MD 21703

Sessions & Workshops

Where are the conference sessions and workshops being held?
Conference sessions and workshops are held at the Pennsylvania Convention Center from Sunday, May 27 through Friday, June 1, 2018.
Can I still register for a preconference workshop on site?
Many preconference workshops will be filled. Please check with the registration desk on the ground level of the Pennsylvania Convention Center.
What time does a particular session or workshop start?
Check the conference website in coming months for actual beginning and ending times of sessions and workshops.
Where will a particular session take place?
Check the conference website in coming months and review the conference program on site for actual meeting room numbers and locations.
What types of sessions or workshops are being offered?
Review the conference schedule for information regarding sessions and workshop details. More information will be available in February 2018.

Transportation & Visas

How do I obtain a visa letter of invitation?
NAFSA is not currently accepting requests for letters of invitation. Please check back in January 2018 for further information.

Networking & Socializing

How can I find out about visiting attractions in Philadelphia and the surrounding area, and what restaurants are open and within walking distance?
You can visit the Conference Information Center located in on the ground level of the Pennsylvania Convention Center.

Private Events

How can I book a private event during annual conference?
For those individuals or groups interested in planning a private event or meeting during the NAFSA 2018 Annual Conference & Expo, please visit, for venue and vendor assistance.


What are the benefits to being a volunteer?
Based on documented hours worked, volunteers may be reimbursed 50%-100% of the general conference registration fee paid.
40 or more 100% reimbursment
30-39 75% reimbursment
20-29 50% reimbursment
1-19 No reimbursment
How do I become a volunteer?
A link to Shiftboard, NAFSA's online scheduling tool for volunteers, will be available in late March. For more information, please visit our Volunteering page.
What are the requirements to be a volunteer?
You must be a conference attendee in order to serve as a conference volunteer.
What jobs will I perform as a volunteer?
Examples of shifts are as follows:
  • Working at NAFSA Commons in expo hall to answer questions and assist attendees in discovering information on NAFSA’s products and services
  • Taking tickets and directing traffic at plenaries and special events
  • Assisting with exhibitor check-in at registration
  • Working registration area to hand out materials and totebags
  • Providing local information and conference directions at Conference Information and Hospitality Center
  • Working as monitor for sessions, handing out and collecting session evaluations.
How long are the shifts?
Shifts range from 2 hours to 6+ hours, so plan your schedule accordingly and be sure you are able to commit to shifts you take.
Can I choose my shifts?
Yes. All available shifts will be in the calendar section of the Shiftboard webpage. Volunteers will be able to add shifts to their calendar based on their own availability and interest. Check back for further instructions once volunteer enrollment opens.
Will additional shifts be added?
Additional shifts will be added throughout March and April as the conference schedule and needs develop.
What will I be required to wear?
When you check in at the LAT office at the Pennsylvania Convention Center for your first volunteer shift, you will be given an identifier to wear when on duty, to show that you are a volunteer. Be sure to wear comfortable shoes, as most shifts require you to be on your feet for long periods of time.

Support Services

What kind of accessibility arrangements are available?
NAFSA will provide support services upon request. Please request accessibility services or accommodations for people who experience disabilities at the time of registration and/or four weeks in advance to maximize our efforts. For questions, or to request accommodations, please contact an accessibility coordinator at or call 202-737-3699, Ext. 2596. 
What kind of child care services are available?
Please inquire about child care services with the concierge at your selected hotel. Be certain to make arrangements prior to your arrival in Philadelphia.


What meals are included with conference registration?
There are no actual meals included with conference registration, but the networking, opening, and closing receptions are complimentary with conference registration.
Where are the restrooms and telephones located in the Pennsylvania Convention Center?
Restrooms and telephones are located on all levels of the Pennsylvania Convention Center.
Where can I find out about general conference and program information?
Check with volunteers at the Conference Information and Hospitality Center located on the ground level of the Pennsylvania Convention Center.
Where is the location of the Lost and Found?
Check with volunteers at the Conference Information and Hospitality Center located on the ground level of the Pennsylvania Convention Center.
When is the 2019 Annual Conference & Expo?
The NAFSA 2019 Annual Conference & Expo will take place May 26-May 31, 2019 at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center. 


Can't find an answer? Contact NAFSA at +1.202.737.3699, e-mail

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