Travel and Arrival Information
On-campus courses run by MIT Professional Education are held on the main MIT campus in Cambridge, Massachusetts, unless otherwise indicated in the course description. Typically, classes begin between 8:00am and 9:00am and end by 5:00 pm, with short breaks in the morning and afternoon and an hour break for lunch. Many, but not all, courses end earlier the final day to facilitate travel. Participants receive more detailed schedule information by email 2-3 weeks in advance of the course start date. You may check the Short Programs course description pages in April/May for updates on registration times and course schedules. See our Courses page for links to the course description pages.
MIT Professional Education follows the U.S. State Department guidelines, which state that most MIT Professional Education participants, if they require a visa, need a tourist visa, not a student visa. Visa requirements may vary for Advanced Study Program international students. See the International Student section on the Advanced Study Program FAQs page for more information. Please consult the U.S. State Department to determine whether or not you need a visa.
When applying for a visa, applicants should use their MIT Professional Education acceptance letter as their letter of invitation and remember that the visa application process typically takes several months. Applicants are highly encouraged to start the visa application process as soon as they have been accepted to one of our short courses. The most recent guidelines can be obtained from the local U.S. Embassy or Consulate or the U.S. State Department.
Applicants from countries covered by the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) will need to visit https://esta.cbp.dhs.gov/esta for more information and to apply for authorization to travel to the United States.
There are a number of local hotels within walking distance of campus, as well as dormitory and long-term housing options. For information on where to stay during your visit to MIT, please visit our Hotels & Lodging page.
Boston has excellent public transportation (http://www.mbta.com). The closest subway stop to MIT is Kendall Square on the Red Line. The commute to the MIT campus by public transportation from Logan Airport is approximately one hour. A taxi ride from the airport or train station to MIT is about $30 without tip and takes about 25 minutes depending on traffic conditions.
We do not provide parking and do not recommend that you bring your car to Cambridge. Parking on campus and in Cambridge is extremely limited. Hotels do provide parking to their guests for a fee. Garage parking in the area costs $25 to $35 a day. Please see our list of public parking facilities (pdf) if you need to bring a car and are unsure of where you will park. Parkopedia is another useful resource for local parking options.
Packing for your trip
Typical attire for our courses is business casual or casual. While summers in New England can typically be hot and humid, the weather is quite variable and we recommend checking a weather forecast before packing. Additionally, we recommend packing a light sweater or jacket regardless of the forecast, as MIT classrooms are air-conditioned to relatively cool temperatures.
We recommend that you bring a laptop or tablet if you will need a computer during your stay. You will not have access to MIT computers except for classroom use if required for the course. Wireless access is available throughout the MIT campus. International students will need to make sure they bring the appropriate adaptors in order to plug in their laptops. The outlets are 3 pronged (two flat with one polarized side, and one round ground prong) and run on AC 110v. Visitors to MIT can access the free wireless network MIT GUEST (no login required).
Many dining options are available on and near campus. See MIT’s where to eat page and the list of local restaurants (pdf) provided by MIT Professional Education office on registration day. During your course, light refreshments are generally provided in the morning and afternoon. Please refer to the course description to see if lunch or other meals will be provided. Unless otherwise noted, meals are not included in tuition.
The greater Boston area offers world-class music, art, literary, sports, recreation, shopping, restaurants, and history resources to explore. For example:
- Duck Tour of Boston
- Boston Red Sox Fenway Park tour
- The Freedom Trail, Bunker Hill, Lexington, Concord
- The Bull & Finch (the "Cheers" Bar)
- The Swan Boats
- The North End dining experience
- Museums (Science, Fine Arts, Children's, Aquarium, universities)
- Assembly Row shopping
- The Prudential
- Boston Harbor Islands
- Boston Common and Boston Public Garden
- Boston Public Library
- Newbury Street
- Charlestown Navy Yard
- Faneuil Hall/Quincy Market shopping and dining experience
For information about these opportunities and other interesting things to do in the Boston/Cambridge area, and for information on what’s happening around town during your stay, visit Cambridge Office of Tourism, Cambridge Arts Council, Boston USA, City of Boston Things to Do, Visit Boston, Boston.com, and Time Out Boston.