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International

Incoming mobility - Useful information

Any student registered at USJ and wishing to access its campuses and attend courses must be vaccinated and have a vaccination certificate. For vaccination appointments at Hôtel-Dieu de France hospital, please contact vaccin@usj.edu.lb once in Lebanon, mentioning that you are an international exchange student.


Please refer to the website of the Ministry of Public Health BEFORE leaving for Lebanon to check the latest conditions of entry to Lebanon related to covid-19.

Once in Lebanon, you must:

International students coming to USJ must subscribe to the USJ insurance covering sudden illness, hospitalization and repatriation. The terms and conditions of this insurance will be sent to you separately.

You will not be able to register at your affiliate faculty if you do not provide a proof of subscription to USJ’s insurance. In order to do that, you must:

  • Fill and send the insurance documents by email in ONE PDF document to sri.mobilite@usj.edu.lb before your arrival to Beirut.
  • Once in Lebanon, pay the insurance fee through bank transfer (in USD or euros) to USJ’s account (which details will be provided to you in due time).
  • Send a proof of the payment (screenshot by email) to sri.mobilite@usj.edu.lb
We will then proceed with the activation of the insurance and will contact you at a later stage to pick up your insurance card.

It is highly recommended to apply, before the mobility, for a multiple entry visa covering your stay in Lebanonat the nearest Lebanese embassy or consulate.
To get a visa, you need to make sure that:

  • Your passport is valid for at least 6 months as of the arrival date to Lebanon
  • There is no mention of Israel on your passport (visa stamp etc.)
  • You have your USJ acceptance letter
Check the Lebanese General Security website for more info. N.B : European and/or Canadian passport holders can get a tourist visa upon arrival at the airport. This visa is valid for 3 months and on site, we can guide you through the next steps to follow depending on your case.

Finding housing is your responsibility. Many options are available:

  • Shared apartments : s by far the preferred option for international students. The offers are usually from individual to individual but mainly through the Facebook group « Mobilité internationale USJ ». We recommend you join the group and check out offers that are posted.Mobilité internationale USJ.
  • USJ Residence : it is located on Damascus Street next to the Rectorate, facing the French Embassy. It offers single or double-set rooms divided into two wings: one for girls, the other for boys. Places are however very limited and not always guaranteed which is why students must book in advance by sending an email to residence.etudiants@usj.edu.lb and wait for their reply.
  • Nearby dorms and residencies: :you can check the list on this link.

Upon arrival, you can take a taxi directly from the airport. However, airport taxis are generally very expensive and can sometimes be abusive towards foreigners, so we advise you to book a private taxi, Uber or Bolt eby connecting to the airport's Wi-Fi upon arrival.
For private taxi companies, we recommend Sioufi taxi (contact: +961 3 480 254) or Geryes taxi (contact: +961 3 777 880). They are trustworthy; they have English-speaking drivers and are reachable by WhatsApp. It is always better to contact them and book a cab 24 hours before your arrival.
In order to circulate within Beirut, you can use the collective taxi called "SERVICE". To go outside Beirut, you can use the bus (check the Bus Map Project and www.zawarib.net) Please note that the cost of transportation change continually based on the gas price.

nternational students must strictly comply with the official academic calendar of USJ and refer to their host faculty for any further details regarding teaching and exams modality (online, hybrid or onsite), exams dates, make-up sessions etc.

IMPORTANT NOTE : students registered at the Faculty of Law and Political Sciences (FDSP) or wishing to follow one or more courses in it must know that it has its own academic calendar that is different from USJ’s. Please refer directly to the secretariat of the faculty for more information and details on this subject:fdsp@usj.edu.lb

The final learning agreement cannot be finalized until onsite registration after being approved by the academic coordinators based on courses availability, schedules and within the limits of places available for each course.
Official registration is made at the host faculty and not at the international relations office. To do so, you need to:

  1. Go to the administration office of the host faculty or contact them by email,
  2. Check the semester’s courses availability and schedules,
  3. If needed, you can ask to see or get in touch with the head of the department or Dean of the faculty,
  4. Finalize the learning agreement based on the number of credits/ECTS that must be validated at the home institution upon return,
  5. finalize your registration based on the host faculty’s procedure,
Important notices:
  • You should register in a majority of courses in one main faculty: your host faculty.
  • If you want to take some courses from another faculty, then you must give the code as well as the title of the courses to the administration of your host faculty.
  • If you are a bachelor student, you can only choose Bachelor courses. In some exceptional cases, you are allowed to register in one or two Master courses.
  • USJ’s internal regulations allow you to register in a maximum of 36 ECTS per semester.
  • You have up to 2 weeks as of the date of the beginning of courses at your HOST faculty to modify and finalize your registration. After this date, no modification will be allowed.
  • For registering, please send a jpeg photo of you (white or gray background) to the administration of your host faculty.
Arabic language sessions:
If you would like take a session of Arabic language (6 ECTS) , refer to the Centre de Recherches et d’Etudes d’Arabe (CREA) at the Campus des Sciences Humaines (CSH), Damascus street, Beirut, in order to fill the form and check courses details, availability and schedules.
Payment of the Arabic session:
  • The 1st session is free as long as it is part of your final learning agreement approved by your home university.
  • A 50% waiver applies to the cost of the 2nd session, whether during the same semester or the next, and it should also be part of your approved learning agreement.
  • Only Language and translation students can benefit from free Arabic sessions.
For more information and for registration, please contact CREA directly:
  • Director : Mrs. Nada Khoury (El) nada.khouryel@usj.edu.lb
  • Secretariat : crea@usj.edu.lb or Mrs. Aziza Tahhan Youssef aziza.youssef@usj.edu.lb
Final learning agreement:
Once the registration is done, you will have to fill a new and final learning agreement (2nd page), have it signed by the academic coordinators of your home institution and USJ then send it to the international relations office of USJ within the first 2 weeks after the start of the courses.

Your student credentials (username and password) will be sent to you automatically upon registration via SMS on an active mobile number. They will allow you to access USJ’s Wi-Fi network on all campuses as well as the online student website(site de l’étudiant)where you can have access to your grades, moodle etc.

The official transcript of records will be sent in scanned copies to you and the international relations office of your home institution by email within 4 weeks after the end of the exam period.

Grading system: In accordance with European accreditation criteria and quality standards in teaching and research, USJ has adopted since 2003 the European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System (ECTS).

If you buy a Lebanese SIM card from ALFA or TOUCHplease share it with your host faculty and the international relations office.
To benefit from the student plan*, you should be under 25 years old, have an active Lebanese sim card with a minimum of 15 USD. In order to activate the student plan to recharge your line:
• Access your profile on the site de l'étudiant using the username and password that you previously received via SMS.
• Click on MON USJ → Bouquet Alfa et Touch → ACTIVER l'option
P.S: an SMS will be automatically sent to Alfa or Touch and you will receive – a few days later – an SMS including the instructions to follow in order to activate the option. In case of any technical problems, do not hesitate to contact – for free – Alfa or Touch by dialing 111 or to pass by the IT office of any USJ campus or simply send an email to(sti@usj.edu.lb). *terms and conditions are subject to change by the Mobile Operators.

The Sports Center is located at the Innovation and Sport Campus (CIS), Damascus road, Block A, 4th floor. To register, you must have your letter of acceptance or student card. This registration will give you access to the gym, squash room and indoor pool.

The Student package :
• 20 USD pour 1 mois
• 90 USD pour 6 mois
*payable in cash USD and subject to change


Opening hours:
• Monday to Friday: from 8:00 a.m. until 8:00 p.m.
• Saturday: from 9:00 a.m. until 7:00 p.m.
• Sunday : closed
Contact: centresportif@usj.edu.lb

If you would like to join one of USJ sports teams, contact Mr. Maroun Khoury M. Maroun Khoury (maroun.khoury@usj.edu.lb)

Student life:
The Department of Student Life’s mission is to mobilize student life within the University through helping student bodies organize projects and through supporting various student structures such as USJ Clubs (music, law, scouts, cinéclub, mediation, discovery, etc.), Amicales USJ (student groups), the University Pastoral etc. For more info: sve@usj.edu.lb

Volunteering via “USJ on mission”:
USJ has always insisted on the civic engagement of its students and has tirelessly sought to promote justice in a society that lacks of it. Volunteering and civic engagement are in fact one of the missions of our University.
Following the serious economic crisis that has hit Lebanon and Lebanese citizens since 2019, all student structures were taking actions to try to relieve, help and be present with families in need. This is how the “USJ on mission” project was born. “USJ on Mission” brings together several structures of Saint Joseph University of Beirut: the pastoral, Day 7 Operation, and the Department of Student Life. This project was officially launched in April 2020 to collect food and money to help families in need affected by the economic situation in Lebanon. Initiations and actions were launched with more than 3,000 families in need. And, in June, it was decided to maintain this project for the long term. Thus, the project now engages with 250 families by sending a box of food every month.
Following the explosion that shook Beirut on August 4, 2020, actions were carried out at different levels and several services have been provided: medical, legal, psychosocial, clearing – renovation – catering, meeting food and material needs.

For more info : https://www.usj.edu.lb/usjenmission/index.php
Contact : Father Jad Chebli, s.j. aumonerie.usj@usj.edu.lb / jad.chebli@usj.edu.lb
Telephone : +9611421000 ext. 2103 / +96176189698

Considering the financial collapse, the devaluation of the national currency, as well as the constant fluctuation of the rate of the $ compared to the Lebanese pound, many rules and conditions can be imposed regarding the withdrawal of money in international currencies ($ or €). Therefore, we suggest you come to Lebanon with a sufficient amount of cash money (Dollars or Euros) that you can.

Gradually exchange against Lebanese pounds in a Money exchange office or with reliable persons according to your needs and based on the daily market rate.
or
Place it in a "Fresh Money Account" that you can open in a bank (we would recommend Bank Audi - Sofil branch, Achrafieh which is USJ main bank). However, please note that it might be a complicated procedure and that you may face restrictions and fees for each withdrawal, transfer, deposit, etc. For example:

  1. Monthly fees vary from $3 to $5 including SMS and card
  2. Cash withdrawals in dollars can be made in specific ATMs only, with a daily limit.
  3. Online transactions using the account are possible (example : a purchase of Ali Express) but in this case, the bank imposes a fee of 1.5% of the total amount.
  4. Money transfer from outside the country is possible (if your parents want to transfer you money directly to this account for example etc.), but note that the bank imposes fees of $ 5 for transfers between $0 and $ 500, $10 for transfers between $500 and $3,000, $15 for transfers between $3,000 and $10,000*
You can also get money transferred to you from abroad (called "fresh money" in the new vocabulary imposed by the crisis) and withdraw it in USD throughOMT or Western Union
As for using your international credit card in Lebanon (in ATMs, online payments etc.), refer to your home bank for details. Normally you can withdraw money from Lebanese ATMs using your European card but in Lebanese pounds only and at the official rate adopted by banks, which is much lower than the real market rate. Payments by credit card have become very limited: only few shops accept credit card payments and under certain conditions. Note that the cost of living in Lebanon (especially in Beirut) is around $ 800 per month including housing, living expenses, transportation etc. This amount was worth 1,200,000 LBP before the financial crisis at the rate of $1 = 1,500 LBP. But today, it is worth way more with a market rate of 1$ = 28.000 LBP (as of June 10, 2022).

*Important notice: : tous ces montants sont quotidiennement sujets à changement. Suivez bien l’actualité.

  • All of these conditions and rates may change any time so stay updated and check all the conditions and possibilities you have regarding money transfer and withdrawal before coming to Lebanon.
  • Considering the socio-economic context, we advise you to stay alert and careful : don’t go walking around with huge amounts of cash money on you and try to keep your money in a safe and secure place.

Our office is located at Rectorat USJ, Damascus road, facing the French Embassy. For questions or enquiries related to your mobility, you can contact Nayla Hocheimy Hajj through

email : sri.mobilite@usj.edu.lb | nayla.hocheimy@usj.edu.lb

phone : +961 81 115 706

Onsite meeting (Monday, Tuesday and Thursday from 9.00 am till 1.00 pm). Please ask for an appointment by sending an email at least one day in advance.

You can have your mail delivered to you at the below address. We will contact you by email upon receipt.

Postal Adress :
SAINT-JOSEPH University
International relations office
Nayla Hocheimy Hajj (c/o « your name »)
Rectorate, Damascus Street, Beirut, Liban
Tél: +961 1 421 000 ext. 1275-1158

ATTENTION : Please note that in case of extra fees, USJ will cover them provided you reimburse them upon pick-up.

For any practical information, you can check: USJ Campuses, The international Student's Guide et suivre nos comptes sur les réseaux sociaux USJ Facebook Page | Twitter USJ | Instagram USJ | SRI Facebook Page (international relations) | Groupe Facebook in/out mobility: Mobilité internationale USJ | Instagram SRI (relations internationales - #sriusj)

Here are some links to know more about tourism in Lebanon: http://www.mot.gov.lb/ | www.livelovelebanon.com | www.livelovebeirut.com | www.beirut.com |https://www.instagram.com/hiddengems.lb/ | https://www.agendaculturel.com/