Checklist for Student Travel Abroad
UC Education Abroad Program (UCEAP) offers UC Travel Abroad, an online training course on health and safety needs (food, water, hygiene, physical & mental health, personal awareness, disease & safety) for UCEAP students traveling to the following countries:
Argentina, Barbados, Botswana, Brazil, China, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Ghana, India, Indonesia, Jordan, Mexico, Morocco, Russia, Senegal, South Africa, Tanzania, Thailand, Turkey, and Vietnam.
Keep in mind that the information is intended for the UCEAP students only, as it provides UCEAP-specific references and advices on emergency contacts, travel insurance policy, etc., besides the general useful information about the listed countries.
Students traveling abroad through their campus study abroad programs should consult first with their campus study abroad office for relevant resources.
Graduate Students, Fellows, and Residents
6-12 Months Before Leaving
- Schedule a meeting with your program mentor to discuss project opportunities and explore resources available through your program.
- Research the country you will be visiting by using the Worldcue Travel Planner.
- Complete all compliance approval processes, e.g. Institutional Review Board (IRB), Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC), Biosafety, Export Control, etc. Each campus and laboratory has designated Institutional Review Boards to implement the institution's human subjects policies.
- Research funding sources.
- Visit the Export Control page and contact your campus Export Control office.
- Assess your need for funding, and resources to acquire it.
- Ensure your passport is up-to-date. Passport should be valid for 3 months beyond your date of return.
4-6 Months Before Leaving
- Confirm your project participation and study dates. Stay in contact with your project mentor.
- Confirm whether your involvement be included in your student records.
- Assemble contact information of your onsite advisor. Get phone numbers and local addresses for all contacts. Print them for your wallet and luggage tags.
- Purchase air tickets. Talk your program’s financial staff to ensure you do this correctly.
- Register your travel. Include a program staff contact among your 3 emergency contacts. Use the report to begin research on cultural norms. What are the dress codes, religious practices, and codes of conduct between sexes?
- Obtain the appropriate visa by contacting the respective foreign embassy.
- Research housing arrangements.
- Schedule a travel health consultation to assess medical needs, vaccinations, and medications. Some vaccinations need multiple visits.
- Check U.S. Department of State Website for travel warnings and alerts and also enroll in U.S Department of State: Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP).
- Determine Foreign Daily Per Diem Rates for destination.
- Follow departmental protocol for absence from campus.
3 Months Before Leaving
- Talk to your cell phone provider about international rates and research international service options. Think about accessories you will need for your electronic devices.
- Contact your bank, credit card company, or other financial institutions that you are going overseas. Inform them of where you will be going so they won’t freeze your account. Get your PIN, discuss limits and fees, check ATM locations, and provide them your itinerary.
1 Month Before Leaving
- Confirm your travel itinerary.
- Confirm housing arrangements. Communicate this information to family, local advisor, and program mentor.
- Research basic living conditions, such as type of food eaten, water supply, and modes of transportation.
- Compile and scan your travel documents, including passport, visas, travel insurance, state and university ID, emergency contact information, and immunization records. Store copies online, with a staff person, and a family member or friend. If you carry hard copies, carry them with you while traveling and store them in a safe place upon your arrival. Give any necessary copies to your program staff.
- Review What to Pack and assemble a Travel Health Kit.
- Become familiar with local dress standards, religious practices, customs, and codes of conduct.
- Research the cultural etiquette for your destination at businessculture.org and ediplomat.com.
- Purchase gifts for your hosts.
- Research ATM access in your area, currency exchange information, and whether travelers checks are acceptable.
- Download apps you may need on your mobile device, such as banking and travel apps.
- Talk to your phone service to set up international service.
1 Week Before Leaving:
- Confirm travel arrangements. Check the bag limits on each leg of your trip.
- Carry a small amount of cash. Note that exchange rates at the airport may be less favorable, so convert only what you need immediately. Some customs areas insist that you have local currency before leaving the airport.
- Keep reserve US cash for your trip home.