Undergraduate Student Travel

Important Steps for University-Sponsored Travel Abroad

Whether you’re a seasoned traveler or going abroad for the first time, we want to make sure you are well-prepared for the experience.   Below you'll find important reminders, tips, and resources for undergraduate students traveling abroad on University-sponsored trips. 

If you are travelling on a structured Princeton program through the Princeton Institute for International and Regional Studies (PIIRS) or the Office of International Programs (including departmentally-run language programs), please follow the specific pre-departure preparation steps on the OIP and PIIRS websites.   

For domestic travel, please see the Undergraduate Domestic Travel Checklist.

A TRIP IS CONSIDERED UNIVERSITY-SPONSORED IF:

  • A University account contributes funds or money is held and disbursed through a University account;
  • The trip is organized on behalf of a registered University organization, including but not limited to: student organizations, religious groups, sport clubs, varsity athletic teams, civic engagement organizations, residential colleges, academic or administrative departments;
  • The trip is organized by a University faculty or staff member;
  • The work will be considered for academic credit or is otherwise related to the student’s program of study.

Pre-Departure Health and Safety Checklist

 Submit a Travel Request in Concur  

It is a requirement that all University-sponsored undergraduate student international travel be registered in the travel registration system Concur prior to beginning travel.  Note: If traveling on an official group program, your travel may be registered in Concur for you.  Please check with your group leader or administrator.

 Review Princeton Travel Policies

  • Make sure your travel is in line with University policies.
  • If your travel requires additional review, be sure to allow 4-6 weeks for the review process to take place.

 Complete International Travel Preparation Materials

It is a requirement that undergraduate students participating in University-sponsored international travel complete online health and safety training prior to beginning travel.

  • Training modules are located in the Global Programs System (GPS) and must be completed once per academic year.
  • For questions or assistance, please email globalps@princeton.edu

 Obtain Necessary Travel Documents

  • Visit our Know Before You Go page to access important information regarding passport and visa considerations. 
  • Be sure to allow plenty of time to obtain your passport or visa documents, as it can sometimes take 4-6 weeks to process your application. 
  • Be sure to review information regarding traveling with electronic devices, as well as security regulations and policies to consider.
  • International students may want to consult with the Davis International Center regarding their US student visas.

 Plan For Your Medical Care

  • Students can also arrange an in-person Travel Health Consultation with a travel heath provider at University Health Services (UHS) to discuss chronic medical conditions, special diets, prescription medications and strategies for meeting their health needs while traveling internationally.
  • Consulting with UHS is essential, especially if traveling to an area where particular immunizations are needed.
  • Travel health consultations are also encouraged for students with health problems or concerns about traveling to a particular destination.
  • Here are a few questions you should ask yourself when considering your medical care:
    • Is a UHS travel health consultation necessary? (if so, schedule 4-6 weeks prior to departure)
    • Do I know what to pack in my travel health kit?
    • How does overseas health insurance work?
    • What services does International SOS provide if I need medical care while abroad?
  • Visit Travel Health Resources for the tools to address these concerns and to help you prepare for a healthy experience abroad.

 Prepare to Mitigate Travel Risks

  • INTERNATIONAL SOS 
    • Princeton contracts with International SOS to provide 24/7 worldwide emergency medical and evacuation services for eligible individuals traveling internationally on University-sponsored travel.  
    • Their services also include access to country-specific security and medical information, safety guidance, risk alerts, and more. 
    • Travelers can consult directly with International SOS for itinerary-specific pre-departure safety guidance, if necessary.
  • US DEPARTMENT OF STATE TRAVEL ADVISORIES
    • In January, 2018 the Department of State (DOS) replaced the Travel Warning system with Travel Advisories, which are available for every country in the world. 
    • Within the DOS Travel Advisory you can access country information pages, recent alerts, annual crime and safety reports, and other important country-specific details such as entry and exit requirements, local laws and customs, health conditions, the address and phone number of the nearest US embassy or consulate, and more. 
  • SMART TRAVELER ENROLLMENT PROGRAM (STEP)
    • Travelers are also encouraged to register with Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP), a free DOS service that allows US citizens and nationals traveling abroad to enroll their trip with the nearest US Embassy or Consulate. Benefits of enrolling in STEP:
      • Receive important information from the Embassy about safety conditions in your destination country, helping you make informed decisions about your travel plans.
      • Help the US Embassy contact you in an emergency -whether natural disaster, civil unrest, or family emergency.
      • Help family and friends get in touch with you in an emergency.
    • Non-US citizens are eligible to enroll in STEP to receive safety alerts, however, they should also register travel with their nearest Embassy or Consulate.

 Know What To Do in An Emergency

  • International SOS provides Princeton students, faculty, and staff traveling outside the US with 24/7 assistance in the event of medical or security emergency abroad. 
  • All Princeton travelers should become familiar with International SOS benefits prior to departure, as well as review important medical and safety information about the country to which they are traveling. 
  • Be sure to download the International SOS Assistance App and print an International SOS membership card and carry with you throughout your trip.

 Communicate with Others About Your Plans

  • Remember to touch base with your academic department and advisors so they are aware of your upcoming travel and to discuss your plans.
  • Remember to double-check with your local in-country partners or contacts about whether you’ll have internet access and/or cellular coverage while abroad.  
  • Consider how you will communicate regular updates to your department, advisors, family, and friends while away and share your communication plan with them.
  • Discuss with your department, advisors, family, and friends how you can be reached in an emergency while abroad.

 Get Ready to Make the Most of Your Trip

  • While abroad you'll have the privilege to engage with local communities and experience new cultures.  We've developed a Travel Syllabus to help you thoughtfully prepare for your travel abroad.
  • You may also want to consider Connecting With Princetonians Abroad to network and learn from other Princeton travelers.
  • Visit Upon Return for resources to help amplify your experience once you get back.