I thought students applying next year might benefit from some things we learned along the interview trail. So while they are fresh in my mind... 1) get an Entertainment Book or other discount card. It will save you heaps on hotel bills and the like. 2) the weather can be quite unpredictable during interview season in the North and Midwest. It won't be held against you if you are late for this reason, but if you are flying or driving to your interviews allow some time for cancellations or other travel predicaments. 3) if you are interested in research, ask about whether you are limited to doing such work at that university or whether you can go elsewhere. 4) if you are able to go elsewhere for your research, ask if they will fund you. Do not assume that programs will continue to pay your salary if you take a research year or two elsewhere (ie, other university, NIH, etc.)You don't want to have to rely on moonlighting. 5) is research "suggested" which means "required" (ie, everyone but two "losers" have done a research year in the last zillion years)? 6) social life? People feel funny about asking this, as if it appears superficial, but you want to know whether the residents socialize with each other, whether marrieds and singles intermix and what there is to do during the few hours away from the hospital. 7)ask to see the call rooms. Are you sharing with someone or can you actually get some sleep because you have your own room. 8)have two suits if at all possible. Many programs have you come for two events - a night before social event at which you are usually encouraged to wear a suit and the more formal interview day following. Obviously no one will really care or even notice if you wear the same thing, but it is nice to have something relatively fresh to wear at each event. 9) don't bring your backpack, attache case, etc to interviews. Write down your notes afterwards and don't worry about where to leave your personal items. 10) come early if you can, check out the town, etc. It might cost you an extra night in a hotel but if you are seriously interested in a program, its nice to be able to talk about the town with the interviewers and to see what amenities there are on hand (will you be able to shop 24/7, is there a Wal Mart/Target/Borders/Starbucks - whatever you consider a necessity - nearby?) 11) what "perks" are there - are Palm Pilots provided? What about book funds, moving reimbursement, etc.? 12) do people actually show up for the didactics? Its great if they have lots of conferences and didactic sessions scheduled for the residents, but if no one shows up to lead them then they are basically useless. How often are they cancelled? 13) is the program in-bred? Where did the faculty train and is there a "program X" way of doing things or are other influences considered a good thing? 14) OTOH, do people stay once they finish because they like it so much? 15) how much help do they give you if you want to pursue a fellowship or post-residency fellowship? Will they make the calls and support you, or are you left to your own devices? Lots of these things fall under the lifestyle issue obviously, but can make a big difference. I'm sure I'll think of some more but encourage others to post their findings as well.